Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Infection Alert

An edited version of the 'Viral Advertising' presentation I put together while at Lowe LDB, Colombo.

MASsive letdown


MAS is out..............for now!!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Bass GOD!

Alan Goldstien of Aghora....Boy! I would love to watch these folks live...

Friday, August 24, 2007


Visit this link to find out!

Unilever logo was designed by Lowe LDB, Sri Lanka?

Found this on the net:

Soon after the 26 December tsunamis in 2004, Unilever unveiled a new logo - a series of symbols depicting life and values, all of which combine in a large U. The concept was developed in-house by Sri Lanka's Lowe LDB over one weekend, "when people were still trying to piece together their thoughts and spirits," says Lowe LDB Chairman, Lilamani Dias Benson.

The campaign was, she adds, a reflection of the empathy between client and agency. "The visual elements were these symbols and all it did was to suggest that 'U' can make a difference."

Click to see the link displaying the above article.

Unilever logo symbolism:

Update (15th May 2009) - "What Lowe LDB did was a little film just after the tsunami which took the Unilever logo and used its symbolism to depict the incredible connection people felt to each other immediately following the devastation of the tsunami. We did not design the logo." - Lilamani Dias Benson, CEO/ Co-Chairman, Lowe LDB

International Children's Care - Sri Lanka

Nestled away in the scenic village of Mailapitiya (24 km south of Kandy, Sri Lanka) is a wonderful non-profit, non-government organisation called ICC (International Children's Care).

Going by the motto of " your own", ICC SL provides a home for orphaned/ destitute children over the age of 6 years. The Home provides children with good education, vocational skills, character building and life skills; helping them lead their lives as responsible, self-sufficient future citizens.

"What's most heart-rending, is the sincere gratefulness the children display for having a roof over their heads and food to eat… They need a great deal of support and have no idea where it will come from."

If you're keen on sponsoring a child, making donations, volunteering, or if you just want to find out more about ICC SL, feel free to write to Brian/ Prabhook/ Manesh/ Dawn at

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Unsung Heroes

As a kid, I remember leafing through the pages of magazines, studying the ads first and then reading the content. It was pretty clear I would end up in advertising some day. And what a brilliant time it's been so far!

However, upon reading an article by Ramanujam Sridhar, CEO of Brand-comm, I could strongly relate to what he was trying to say. He mentions an executive at his office who single-handedly organized a product launch for a client and yet the client didn't have a single word of praise for her. Disappointed, she left not only the agency but also the advertising business.

"People who have the capability to create history for their clients shouldn't end up consigned to the forgotten realms of history", says Sridhar.

Reminds me of the umpteen instances where young Account Executives (AEs) exceed expectatons on the agency/ clients' businesses. And in the event of success, more often that not, the client pats only the Account Manager/ Creative Director's back.

Account Executives are the 'Unsung Heroes' in the Marketing Communications' business.

They do the most amount of work at any agency and yet they are given the least amount of respect/ importance. Somehow, most seniors in the industry feel "AEs can be easily replaced".

Yea right! And these are the same seniors who keep ranting about a talent crunch in the business!

Try these steps to make a difference:

#01: Pay AEs better.
#02: Big deal if they don't have MBAs. Give them a chance. you'll be surprised how well the passionate ones will perform!
#03: Give them more respect!
#04: If your agency doesn't have a Planning department, empower your AEs with some planning skills. They'll love it and it'll work wonders for the brand/ creative product.
#05: Listen to them
#06: Encourage/ Motivate them to 'think'
#07: Pat their backs when their work is impressive
#08: Mentor them
#09: Try and give them a breather sometimes (You know how to use the photocopier/ fax machine too, right?)
#10: Give the AEs performance based incentives for heaven's sake.

To all the Account Executives around the world, Respect!

One Night Brand

A Harvard Business School Grad, Tom Fishburne currently works as a Marketing Director in the UK.

Lay your hands on a copy of his book 'Brand Camp' - A collection of over 80 cartoons which guarantees you a brilliant behind-the-scenes look at the world of Marketing.

Trust me, it's awesome!


Random person: "What are your plans now that you're back from SL?"

Yours Truly: "I love advertsing. The SL experience helped me fine tune what exactly i want out of my career"

Random person: "So what is it?"

Yours truly: "I enjoy inspiring creatives to come up with good ideas, I love understanding consumers and I'm really interested in internet marketing. I wanna be a planner"

Random person (rolls his/ her eyes): "Uh! So? you are going to become a journalist?"

Yours truly (stares at the ceiling): "What? No! I said I wanna be a planner. I wanna study Account Planning at Miami Ad School"

Random person (confused by now): "Everyone's doing an MBA! Why don't you also?"

Yours truly: "I better get going now!"

Webchutney does it again!

Check it out!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

The Writer in me :)

  • Rock on, dudes The state of the rock scene in town may draw some head banging (on the walls), but let's not conclude that our bands aren't rocking
  • Liquid rock Motherjane is one of India's leading rock bands, with an album of rocking original tunes
  • India calling Get initiated into the land and lingo of the country's night watchmen
  • Trip to heaven and back News from the east of Sri Lanka is not always pleasant, but tucked away amid all the strife is a paradise called Trincomalee

Adwords gave me exactly what I needed.....NOT!

Sunday, August 19, 2007

The Opium Trail Shocker

92% of the world's opium is produced in Afghanistan!!!!

As much as one-third of Afghanistan's GDP comes from growing poppy and illicit drugs including opium and its two derivatives, morphine and heroin, as well as hashish production!

Moonspell sums up why the above isn't going to change for a long time to come:

"Opium, we fantasize,

As we fuse with your root,
You are a strange flower,
We are your strangest fruit"

Targeted Advertising rocks!

Advertising on the Internet is intriguing! :)

Thanks but No Thanks!

Looks like in the year or so I've been away from India, telecom marketers here have become more annoying than ever.

I keep wondering if it's just Airtel or if it's the other services too!

I'm absolutely bugged with the number of times my new Airtel account sends me the following msg :

"Make the most of this weekend, chat along, make new friends, and find that special someone...login to mobile chat now! Call 696 and get going!"


And that's not all!

The other day I had a missed call when I came out of the shower. When I called back the #, I just kept getting a voice-over which said "This is not a valid #. Please check and dial again!"

The same number called me again in the evening and it was a recorded voice offering me something I didn't even care about!

Gotta block this no. : +91 98802 86018

Tsk! Tsk!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

I am India

Wow! I'm speechless!


Look out for the guy who directed this video - Varun Agarwal..he's gooood!

[v] rocks!

So...who's in? :)

Monday, August 13, 2007

Blogging the Agency

Via: Slideshare

My Way (Not the Highway)

My Way…
Is riddled with stones!
The going is rough,
A test to see how tough I can be!

The Highway…
Ain’t my cup of tea!
Just a posse of cars trailing each other at breakneck speeds.

I am the driver of my destiny!

Ironically I walk, I hitchhike,
I hop on to the most unexpected modes of transport,
I observe,
Helps me glean from others who’re living a life no less ordinary!

My mind wavers too,
I flirt with the highway at times,
Only to head back to My Way,
It’s going to take me far away!

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Monday, August 06, 2007

Thanks 'Times of India'

Imagine growing up reading the 'Education' section of a newspaper and then years later being informed that they wanna feature you!!! Thanks 'TOI', it was an honour!

Ever wondered how an Ad Agency works?

We missed a deadline cos' of him......NOT! :D

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Way to go, Barca!

In addition to donating some $1.9 million per year to UNICEF over the next five years, the legendary sports club will feature the UNICEF logo on its 2006-2007 jersey, the first such placement in the club’s 107-year history!

The Reds go marching on!

Boy! This kid is good. Reminds me of what I never was :D
Way to go, Rhain. Man U is the place to be!

News on TV = Nuisance

Quite honestly, I'm bugged with all the Indian news channels on the Telly!

It pretty much validates why the TV is called the 'Idiot Box'. No prizes for guessing who the idiots are!

Here's the proof:

1. The news channels can't even tell the difference between 'breaking news' and 'BREAKING NEWS'

Sample the below listed:

- "Former auto rickshaw driver and Canteen contractor own 50 foreign cars - CBI" (Geez! And I wonder how many accidents took place at the same time elsewhere in India and no one was bothered to cover them as 'breaking news')

- 'Prostitution racket involving Uzbek girls busted in Mumbai'
(It is newsworthy. But is it worth all the airtime??? I was under the impression there are various other topics which deserve 'breaking news' status!)

2. Is there one private news channel which devotes 1o minutes of airplay to the 'hearing impaired'? (You can argue that the crawling news bars take care of that. But hey! that's just the headlines!)

The only channel I can recollect caring about the 'hearing impaired' is Doordarshan. As a kid, I remember intently observing that bulletin.

3. STOP SCREAMING, 'Mr. BIGWIG at CNN-IBN'! (Like my friend says, "We have the volume control on our remotes! We will turn up th volume when required")

4. For heaven's sake, stop putting household problems on TV for public scrutiny. (No kid wants to walk into school after having been featured in a war of words between their step mother and genetic mother!)

5. Bipasha will kiss whomever she wants.( Stop making asses out of yourselves with takes like "Ronaldo aur Bipasha ka chumban". WTF????)

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

The Agnostic Front

6 AM

“Kowsalya supraja Rama poorva sandhya pravarthathe
Uthishta narasardoola karthavyam daivamahnikam”

The enchanting voice of MS Subbulakshmi makes its way through the crisp chilly air of my city. I hear birds chirping and temple bells chiming. It isn’t time to wake up yet but there’s no way I’m going to sleep through this setting.

Starting off with the ‘Suryanamaskara’, I begin my then daily routine of yoga.

Refreshing! In fact the word doesn’t do enough justice in describing the state of mind one can achieve through this form of meditation.

After a busy day in school, I make my way back home.

Come 6 PM, I wash my hands and feet. It’s time to check the oil and light the traditional brass lamp in our wall-mounted ‘mantapa’ – an alternative to the luxurious puja room seen in other apartments.

Colorful images of various Hindu Gods and Goddesses adorn the mantapa. Making circular movements with the lit incense stick in hand, I pray silently. Eyes closed; bowing my head I repeat “Bhavatu Sarva Mangalam” thrice and smear holy powder on my forehead.

Fast-forward to today. My profile on Facebook reads: Religious views – Agnostic.

One might wonder if we are talking about the same individual described in earlier paragraphs.

“What happened to the kid who grew up embracing religion?”

Life. Life is what happened to the kid.

Exposure to the media - reading reports on merciless killings, poverty, discrimination, religious intolerance and through my own experiences, the kid in me grew up.

I started wondering what’s gone wrong with the world. Whatever happened to living in harmony? Why is everyone tweaking and distorting what the prophets preached? All for ulterior motives?

Did God betray me? Or was I always living in my own ‘make believe’ world? Or was it culture and society that brought me up with high expectations only to scandalize me with reality?

I don’t know.

I look around at all the troubles which people around me face. I appreciate the lengths they go to in order to speak to their Gods: be it offerings or be it the physical and mental endurance they display in climbing arduous mountains, in crossing dangerous rivers; all the while bearing hostile weather conditions.

Wouldn’t the world be a better place if all positive religious zeal had constructive consequences for mankind? Wouldn’t the world be a much better place if all religions could appreciate and tolerate others too?

So many questions. Where are the answers?

For all the beauty that exists around us, I believe there exists a supreme power which controls the universe but I disagree that the power has a form, color or religion.

Hence, God and I decided that we need a break from each other. I felt I could take care of myself and that I had to let Him go take care of the needy.

In more ways than one, my relationship with God is like the one with my first love: Special, magical, intense - while it lasted. We moved on. But years later when we meet each other, we will still connect.

“How ‘bout coffee tomorrow evening, God?” :)