Anindita Das : In A Chat With A Copywriter

Anindita is an advertising copywriter currently leading the creative team handling IKEA, Max Healthcare and Roca Sanitaryware. When she is not gazing at the computer screen, she is most probably solo travelling, secretly writing soppy poetry, concocting an unheard of recipe, clicking a complete stranger’s photo, walking around Safdarjung Enclave or day dreaming behind the wall.

Why are you into Advertising?
I was inclined towards writing from an early age. Stories and books have always enthralled me. In the end, I realized advertising is nothing but good story telling.

As a child growing up in a Guwahati, going to the book fair and watching an occasional movie, were my only forms of entertainment. My fondest memories are also of my father telling me bedtime stories. That’s how I picked up the knack of cooking up the most bizarre stories to enact at playtime.

English also happened to be the subject I studied the least at school. All of them put together, my career was meant to be in advertising. Today, I feel I am a consummate brand story teller.

Add to that the perks of logging into your facebook account before you check your official mail… being dressed in pajamas one day and in bling party wear another day… and oh, not having to call anyone ‘Sir’!


Tanvi Tandon : In a Chat With An Advertising Creative

Tanvi Tandon is an award winning Copywriter, hailing from Mumbai in India and currently residing and working in New York City. She aims to bring a dash of bravery back into the Indian advertising scene after her stint in the US. She is currently in the midst of publishing her children’s book ‘What If?’ and can commonly be found grooving with her headphones on and eyes closed on a subway platform.

Why are you into Advertising?
Because of the insane opportunity to shape public opinion (for the better!). Career wise, it’s also like the chilled-out middle ground between corporate boredom and self-employed struggle.
Personally, I like being creative. I also like to write. Why wouldn’t I want a job that rolls both into one convenient little package and pays me for it?

Did you attend school for fine art or design or Communications?
Yes, I recently graduated from the Miami Ad School, Miami where I did the copywriting portfolio course. Prior to that, I received my Bachelor’s degree in Mass Media at KC College, Mumbai University.


Tell us about your many Awards? How has that impacted your career? Do clients listen to you more?
I believe anyone who hates on awards only does so because they haven’t won any (or wish they had). The wins were a result of 2 years of hard work. They helped immensely with my visa application process (to the USA) and with getting a good start in the industry. Feels good to see raised eyebrows when you mention a couple of Clios.
I wouldn’t say I have had too many opportunities to communicate my wins to clients and notice the effect. However, prospective employers are instantly impressed, and my seniors at agencies take my ideas a little more seriously, even when I was still an intern/junior.

Were there any particular role models for you when you grew up?
As a writer, my biggest style influence will always be Roald Dahl. His work for both children and adults is so interesting, different, and inspiring.
As a person, my biggest role model is my father. For his work ethic, intelligence, and general awesomeness.

Who was the most influential personality on your career in Advertising?
I have had many invaluable mentors. From each of them I have retained words that have shaped my career, and instead of naming one I will list the best things I have learnt from them all:
“If you’re on time, you’re already late” – Ron Seichrist, (Founder of MAS)
“The best writing is based on experiences. If you don’t experience enough things, how will you write about them? Try everything!” – Sagar Mahabaleshwarkar (CCO, Cheil India)
“A headline/tagline is only good enough when you’re willing to tattoo it onto your skin.” – Erik Vervroegen (ECD, TBWA/Chiat/Day NYC)
“You have two ears and one mouth – that means you must listen twice the amount you speak.” – David Uribe (VP/CD, Asylum Marketing)
“Good things come to those who hustle.” – Pierre Lipton (CCO, 360i NY)

Where do you get your inspiration?
Observation. People tell me I walk slowly, which is especially a problem in New York City, but I do so because I am drinking in my surroundings. Watch human interactions. Overhear conversations of passers-by. Notice the beauty and detail in everything. There is inspiration to be found literally everywhere.

Tell us something about the RXM Creative work environment. 
RXM is a boutique digital agency, and we are a total of 7 people. The founders, Raul and Mihai, are always pushing for work that breaks the mould. They want to create interesting and brave content, and have so far been pretty successful. It’s nice to work in a place where there aren’t 100 levels of hierarchy that an idea must survive through; and where petty office politics don’t affect the quality of the work.

What do you think of the state of Print advertising right now? At least here in India, the released work is most often too sad?
I’m not sure what you mean by sad – I have not noticed emotionally depressing work in particular from India this year, nor did it seem too pathetic. Personally, I feel like print overall as a traditional medium is failing, but the ideas and concepts that go into making good, creative print ads still apply as social media content. In fact, more people will see it online than in actual print itself, so as long as the Indian industry recognizes this shift, keep the good work coming! The USA has already been catering to this shift for some time now.

Do you think brands whose advertising wins awards, do well in the market?
Not necessarily. A campaign that wins awards may not immediately lead to sales growth, but it’s still so important because it cultivates the brand’s image. Award winning work like REI’s #OptOutside required them to forego Black Friday sales numbers nationwide, but made a huge difference to public perception of the brand.

What advice do you have for aspiring creative professionals? 
Never settle on the first idea (or the 10th). Don’t wait for good things to come to you; if you want it, make it happen yourself. Be kindest to the least powerful person in the room.

Whom would you like to take out for dinner?
Justin Roiland, I need to know how his brain works and how he could come up with something as amazing as Rick and Morty.

What’s on your iPod?
This question is worth its own separate interview. I am ‘Vibrosphere’ on SoundCloud, listen to mostly electronic music of various genres (chill, psytrance, RnB, experimental, etc)
Link to a playlist of my favourite chill music from the past two years.

Mac or PC?
Mac, duh. PC for gaming though.

Whats your Twitter Handle?

24X7 Fresh by Seagull Pune

Advertised brand:
Advert title(s): Fresh Banana
Headline and copy text (in English):A Fresh banana provides instant energy and restores balance in the body. Its peel on the other hand can just do the opposite.
Buy the freshest fruits only on
Advertising Agency: Seagull Advertising, Pune, India
Creative Director: Sanju Ayyar
Art Director: Shailesh Meshram
Copywriter:Sanju Ayyar
Illustrator:Shailesh Meshram

Short rationale (optional): The ad campaign through quirky, interesting lines explains the innumerable, unknown facts about farm and dairy products which are available on the client website.

24x7 fresh copy


Abhishek Chaswal : Interview With A Senior Advertising Creative

Self-proclaimed Led Zeppelin groupie in past life. Dhakkan of IITJEE 1994. Faizabad returned. Anti-depressant salesman. Occasional poet and balcony singer.  Pharmacist by education. Copywriter by profession. Time-killer by choice.

Why are you into Advertising?
Because it keeps my best instincts blissfully stimulated. Also, it’s probably the only profession in the world where everyone (sometimes, even the client) wants to do your job. Copywriting saved me from doing MBA.

Did you attend school for fine art or design or Communications?

Prateek Suri : Interview With An Advertising Copywriter

Prateek Suri, Creative Group Head, Contract Advertising is also an avid drummer. Till his metal outfit disbanded a few years ago, he was often seen on stage at music festivals across the country. He now spends his free time as a part-time session drummer, who loves the outdoors as much as beer, YouTube, trolling the internet and annoying his wife.

Why are you into Advertising?
You stare into nothingness, day dream with your feet on the desk and ‘think’ all day long. Just when you delude yourself into believing that this is life, you get so busy that your coffee goes cold, days blur into nights and your dog forgets your face. Gotta love that unpredictability.

Did you attend school for fine art or design or Communications?
Yes, I studied advertising and PR at IIMC, Delhi after graduating in English from DU.


Shahir Ahmed : DesiCreative in Dubai

Shahir Ahmed is a hotshot creative with TeamYR Dubai 

Why are you in Advertising?
Because it’s the only desk job in the world that pays you to have fun.

Did you always want to get into advertising?
Without any exaggeration, I wanted to write ads since I was 14. Wrote my first ad when I was 18. Wrote my last ad 4 hours ago.


Amit Kapoor : DesiCreative in Dubai

amit Kapoor : DesiCreative in Dubai Amit Kapoor works with Team Y&R Dubai
Why are you in Advertising?
Because nuclear physics was too easy. On a serious note, I blame Alok Nanda and Vikas Gaitonde for that. They had done a campaign for Air Mauritius that drew me to advertising. Interestingly, several years later, I’d written an ad that caught Alok Nanda’s fancy. He called up Sanjay Khare, the art director I’d done the ad with, and we spoke. We met once after that and he offered me a senior position in his agency. But it was around the time I was moving to Dubai.

Did you always want to get into advertising?
Not really. I started out by selling space for a yellow pages directory. My beat was Kalbadevi (Mumbai). Then, I was a management trainee in a finance firm. I quit that job to open a dance school with a friend. That failed gloriously, too. A friend mentioned advertising and it seemed like a profession that gladly accepted screw ups like me. (more…)

Interview with Gavin Barrett (Guy behind the Give Me Red Campaign)

signatureGavin Barrett is the man behind the Eveready Give Me Red campaign. He now runs his own shop in Canada. A lot of young creatives grew up watching your ‘Gimme Red Campaign”. Tell us about it.

This will be the only long answer, I promise.
It started with a great brief created by Subroto “SG” Ghosh, who was the group account director at the time.
It was an exciting time.
The Indian market was about to change.
Pepsi had begun making waves in the market. Coke had not yet launched.
MTV was entering India through bootleg tapes and Star TV had just begun broadcasting.
There was more money and younger people spending it, on new goods like walkmans and discmans.
Batteries were no longer destined for “transistor radios”.
That was the old Eveready. “The Chosen One for Your Transistor.”
I had to find a way to connect with what would later be called the MTV/Channel V generation.
I went through three rounds of creative development – some of them were fantastic ideas that I’ve saved to this day.
But Shanta (V Shantakumar) kept pushing me to go one further.

I knew Give me Red was the big idea when it came to me.I wanted the TV commercial to feel like something that could run on MTV – and so I wrote a spot that was both a parody and an homage.
I still have the original scripts – which I typed on the single beige Mac Apple SE that Rediff had at the time.
It was written in a program called MacWrite. It reminds me that I’m practically an ancient!
Rediff was going through an unusual time in which everybody collaborated in making sure that great work made it to market.
ACD Bugs Bhargava went to Calcutta and sold the idea to the client.
Shanta told me that Bugs dressed up as a doddering old man to represent the old brand, then left the boardroomand returned a few minutes later dressed as a hip young college student with a walkman and headphones.
GM Conrad Saldanha went to Hong Kong to supervise the special effects.
Sharad Nigvekar rose to the occasion and designed a completely fresh layout for the ads and outdoor.Lalit Ajgaonkar who was the film executive and a friend of mine from St Xavier’s, recommended Ehsaan Noorani, who wrote the killer track.
I had a blast writing everything and working with all these amazing people. I think it shows.
When I moved to Hong Kong, Rahul Bose took over as writer on the campaign.
He wrote an even bigger TV spot and the campaign kept going from strength to strength.
Still, that first campaign, especially the TV spot, was a breakthrough.
I heard they stopped using Give Me Red as a line only a couple of years ago. (more…)

Bhavik Gajjar | DesiCreative in Toronto

bhav Bhavik Gajjar is a top rated creative with TAXI! Toronto.

Tell us about Cannes winning McDonald’s ad?
How did that change you life?
The ad took me to Cannes, Cannes took me to Brazil, I almost drowned in Brazil so it almost took my life. Kidding…not really! it did change life in a good way. It confirmed why I didn’t get into my dad’s business and got into advertising instead. But like they say, you’re only good till your last good ad which is true because I think these awards are really only suppose to motivate you to beat your last award winning idea.

The McDonald’s ad campaign came out of a simple question in my head. If we have B/W and colour ads on the same page in newspaper, why is it that the copy/editorial is always in black? (more…)