Neha Kalra

CWG 2010: The 1,000 day countdown has begun

Sources reveal that the CWG Federation has allocated a sum of Rs 300 crore, spanning a period of three years, for advertising and promotions

From transport to steel, every sector in the country is gung ho about the Commonwealth Games (CWG) 2010 coming to India. So why should the advertising industry lag behind? The advertising and communication duties for the CWG have been divided amongst several agencies.

The brief that was circulated by the Commonwealth Games Federation amongst pitching agencies required them to build a brand around CWG Delhi 2010, encompassing a 360 degree approach to the communication. Shera, the official mascot of the CWG Federation, had to be leveraged in the communication, and a showcase of the glory associated with hosting the event in India was to be made.

JWT, Mercantile Advertising and Quantum Communications have been entrusted with the creative and media duties for the CWG’s Delhi episode; the agencies will look primarily at brand building multimedia such as television, print, outdoor, radio and various on-ground activities.

CWG 2010: The 1,000 day countdown has begun
MindShare will look after the media duties from JWT’s side; Quantum and Mercantile, which are full fledged agencies, offer media services as part of their portfolio. Idiom, a design agency, has designed the logo and is responsible for the look and feel of the brand that is being built around the CWG.

According to sources, the CWG Federation has allocated a sum of Rs 300 crore, spanning a period of three years, for advertising and promotions.

Sandhya Mulchandani, media consultant, CWG, reveals, “The communication for the Games is part of a larger vision, and is more than just the Games. It is about building and marketing the Games as a brand.”

CWG 2010: The 1,000 day countdown has begun
Rohit Ohri
CWG 2010: The 1,000 day countdown has begun
Rasesh Shah
CWG 2010: The 1,000 day countdown has begun
Sanjay Rastogi
The first campaign briefing was on the 1,000 day countdown to the Games. The three agencies were called to pitch for the briefing, and JWT was finally asked to create the communication for the countdown. The communication for the 1,000 day countdown began on January 4, three days before the countdown actually began on January 6.

Talking about the win, Rohit Ohri, senior vice-president and managing partner, JWT, says, “The duty of the agencies is to create awareness and involvement for the Games, not only across India, but throughout the world.”

Ohri adds, “Only through play do we get to know each other intimately and build a platform of friendship. So we created the tagline, ‘Come Out and Play’, which signifies an invitation to people to get to know each other closely.” The tagline and the logo were unveiled at a ceremony which officially kicked off the ‘1000 Days To Go’ celebrations held at Rajghat in Delhi.

Elvis Sequeira, vice-president and executive creative director, JWT, says, “I believe the difference between JWT and the rest was in the way we approached the task. We were very clear that we were not going to go out and just create a bunch of ads that told you that the Games were going to be held here in India, because the only game that most people in the country really vibe with is cricket. That means that if you want to change a nation’s perception, if you want the spirit of the world’s largest sporting event after the Olympics to permeate into the soul of every Indian, you don’t just create advertising – you create a movement. It needs a philosophy that can inspire India to come out from her homes, on to the streets, on to playgrounds, centrestage, to tell the world to come out and take notice of this new superpower, make new friends, erase boundaries. This acts as both challenge and invitation to the world to come out for sport and for pride in Delhi’s moment and India’s hour.”

Rasesh Shah, brand planning director, Mercantile Advertising, says, “The challenge really is to build an image for CWG Delhi 2010 such that it has a lasting effect and sets a benchmark for future editions of the games. The idea is to showcase the new India – a nation that has the confidence and ability to host an event of this stature.”

Sanjay Rastogi, CEO, Quantum Communications, says, “There are several milestones that need to be taken care of for the advertising and communication for the CWG, and we are taking it one at a time. The next briefing is awaited.”

In Delhi, the CWG will be held in 17 disciplines: aquatics, archery, athletics, badminton, boxing, cycling, gymnastics, hockey, lawn bowls, netball, rugby 7s, shooting , squash, table tennis, tennis, weightlifting and wrestling.

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