"An idea can come from anywhere and anybody," says ad-veteran Rohit Misra. And, with the very logic, Misra announces IdeaDemocracy, his entrepreneurial venture in partnership with New York-based creative director and user experience designer, Chetan Mangat.
What is unique about IdeaDemocracy as an agency is the fact that it brings to India the concept of crowdsourcing ideas. The idea is simple - the creativity process will be thrown open to everybody at large, with everyone getting an opportunity to contribute with a creative idea.
"Creative people are everywhere. Some are fortunate enough to make it a profession. Others might not be. Our challenge is how to harness the talent available. While this concept exists overseas, the focus often is on the delivery medium. At IdeaDemocracy, we start with the creative process. We want to see what are the challenges faced by the brand and then how we can best harness the available talent pool," Misra tells afaqs!.
According to him, the need of the hour is democratisation of the creative process by harnessing talent and ideas from wherever they exist. The onus for creative thinking cannot be confined to just an in-house creative team, Misra explains.
"Rohit (Misra) brought an idea that was well thought out because it allows businesses to seek talent and find solutions to problems. I was immediately excited by the collaborative thinking aspect of this project and how we could use our social graph to solve creative challenges," adds Mangat.
Misra, in his last role, was president, India and Sri Lanka, Rediffusion-Y&R. He quit Rediffusion in 2009. Backed by more than 20 years of experience, he has worked at agencies such as Ogilvy, JWT, Euro RSCG and Y&R in India and overseas, handling brands such as Airtel, Reckitt Benckiser, Yahoo!, American Express, Pepsi, Xerox, British Airways and Peugeot, among others. He has also had a stint as an independent marketing communications consultant.
Mangat, on the other hand, runs a digital agency, Blank & Co. based in New York and New Delhi, and an art network called Collection with Howie Chen in New York. Through his career, he has worked extensively on e-commerce and digital projects for brands such as Fendi, Calvin Klein, Levi's Vintage Clothing and others.
IdeaDemocracy will focus on both large advertisers and SMEs and while the partners will look after business development, the creative ideas of course will be outsourced.
Beginning with the basic idea at the very fundamental level, IdeaDemocracy is crowdsourcing its own design. A contest on the platform's website currently invites people to design a logo for the company and then vote for the most popular design. This will also extend to other facets of the site's development, where the design of the home page, intro videos, social media strategy and a mobile app will be crowdsourced as well.
Expressing his zest about the model, Mangat says, "People are now ready to connect directly with one another. They have stronger creative opinions and most importantly, thanks to the web, it is easy to give direction and provide inspiration. We can all leverage our imagination and be creative directors. From a technical perspective, we are going to make a collaborative tool, which utilises the power of the social web in an extremely innovative and unique manner."