Sagar Ghoting is a Creative Director with Advantage, Egypt. He has previously worked with JWT, Leo Burnett, Ogilvy and Lowe.
Why are you in Advertising?
Selling razor blades door to door was getting tiring.
Did you always want to get into advertising?
Were there any particular role models for you when you grew up?
Everybody around me.
Who was the most influential personality on your career in advertising?
Nobody in particular.
How has advertising changed over the course of your career? Is execution/art direction more important than it used to be? Do you think advertising has become more clever and less intelligent?
To answer the first part of your question.The so called RTB – Reason to buy has changed to NTS -Need to sell. Earlier one had a tangibledifferentiator to offer in his product for the consumer to buy it. Now there is product parity inalmost all categories.
‘Reason to buy’ ads started to change to ‘Need to sell’ ads and the quality of overall advertising suffered in the bargain. At a point where advertising in the west was evolving, the ones in the industry at home were suffering by NTS mediocrity. Scam seeped in because one needed a pat on one’s own back,recognition within the industry, as well as adifferentiator from the other for one’s own progress.
There in, came the likes of Piyush and Balki who cut through the NTS ads and still won awards. It was aturning point, showing the rest of the industry how todo better advertising even when one had ‘the marketeers’ sitting on top of their heads to make sure you did advertising that ‘the marketeers’ thought would ‘sell’. Today, still in an extremely price conscious market like ours the good people in the business are tryingto change and evolve consumers. Hats off to them.
The second part of your question, is execution/ artmore important than it used to be. I think it hasalways been important and always should be. It is justthat art has evolved and is getting more noticed. But yes advertising is becoming more visual based.
As for the last bit, I don’t agree with the statementof advertising has overall become more clever and lessintelligent. All kinds of advertising exist todayclever and intelligent.
How is advertising in Egypt different from India and SE Asia?
It is not really different. They are just different markets at different points of maturity.
What would you advice youngsters who want to work overseas?
‘Youngsters’? How old do you think I am? Anyway, I would say, figure out why you want to go outof the country first. Good work can be done anywhere ‘especially at home’. So make sure ‘why’ you want to leave.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
Anything and everything around me.
Do you think brands whose advertising wins awards, do well in the market?
Not necessarily. Any form of communication, when done ‘right’, does well in the market whether or not it wins awards.
Was there any time when you wanted to quit advertising?
What makes a good Creative Director?
His/her upbringing in his/her work family.
What are your views on Scam Advertising?
To each his own. Nothing is right or wrong, it depends why one is doing it.
We hardly get to see Illustration based Art Direction. What do you think is the reason? Is it that we don’t have any inspiring illustrators or is it the Client?
I think it is a combination of everything, the creative working on the project, his ability to use illustration, the quality of illustrators and the client. Some good creative ‘have’ effectively usedillustration in communication and I guess there was a good illustrator and a good client to buy it.
Who would you want to spend a dinner with?
At this moment I feel like having dinner with my mom.
Whats on your iPod?
Rock, lots of masala and some movies.
Mac or PC?