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IHAVEANIDEA.ORG > articles >  Catching up with the Tomorrow Awards shortlists // We’re All Fans

Catching up with the Tomorrow Awards shortlists // We’re All Fans

Posted on September 23, 2010 and read 2,622 times

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rafikcreditpic  Catching up with the Tomorrow Awards shortlists // We’re All FansRafik Belmesk
Operations, AKOS

The call for entries deadline for Winter 2011 of the Tomorrow Awards is fast approaching. It has always been our mission at ihaveanidea to not only celebrate incredible, forward-thinking work through the Tomorrow Awards, but to help educate the industry about what goes into creating such work. In that spirit, we have been featuring interviews with the winners and shortlisted entries, to give you all a little taste of what’s needed to stand out at the Tomorrow Awards.

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Beyond celebrating the best and most innovative work our industry has to offer, the Tomorrow Awards set up to let everybody know and understand the how behind every winning and shortlisted campaign.

In this first of a three parts series, we sit down with Rob Schwartz, Chief Creative Officer of TBWA\Chiat\Day in Los Angeles to discuss one of his agency’s three shortlisted campaigns: We’re All Fans for the 52nd Grammy Awards.

We’re all fans

Tomorrow: How hard was it to convince the Grammys who seem like a pretty traditional organization to center their whole promotional campaign around a social media effort?

Rob: They are traditional but they know they’ve got to move into the 21 century. What wasn’t hard for the Grammys was connection with their younger audience. They were open to understand how the whole thing was being built from social media. It was everything. Not just the the idea using the media, but literally using social media as a graphic and as art direction.

And that part was very interesting for us as well because social media is so visual but no one had organised it in such a graphic way before. So they were thrilled when they saw the result because they could see the play between the iconic artist and their fans who went on and built the visual.

Tomorrow: How did you guys build the visualizer/aggregator that ended up being the main platform for the whole campaign? Was it done in house or using production partners? Which route do you usually prefer?

Rob: For this project we built pretty much everything in house. We partnered with a company called Visual Technologies to bring the visual aspect to life, but we’ve got a ton of in house capabilities. it’s not about not trying to work with outside partners. We do, but on this one the budget was extremely tight and we had to pull it off in house.

You ask a very relevant question though because it’s a dilemma we’re having all the time. We don’t live by hard and fast rules. I know some agencies literally give everything to production houses, just like I’ve seen other places make a point to do it all in house. I think we’re just trying to find the best solution depending on the project. What’s the best way to bring it to life? I don’t think there’s an ideal formula. I just think that people have to be open.

Tomorrow: Could the platform that you guys built be used beyond last year’s show? If you involved the fans in the campaign to promote the show, do you think it’d be feasible to involve them in the show itself?

Rob: It’s funny you say that as we’ve had a number of “fan on show ideas” and I think that’s the next step with the Grammys. We have a three years partnership with those guys, so we’re going to work on it again this year, and the more we can integrate between the content of the show, and the talking about the show, the stronger it will be.

The thing with the Grammys is that unlike American Idol, So You Think You Can Dance, and those types of shows it’s not fan-participative. The fans don’t have a say on what the final outcome is. Like the Academy Awards, It’s done by a special body of peers. So this has been a struggle for the show, especially since we live in such a fan-base culture. The viewers want to participate, and you can see that the more the audience is excluded the less they’re interested.

Tomorrow:Would it be good though to let the fans tinker with a show like that? It’s kind of hard of institutions to jump on the latest crowdsourcing craze…

Rob: I think the interesting thing we’re seeing from many clients is that all of a sudden, they see social media as a listening device. We’re seeing a transformation with clients who at first saw it as a cheap way to push their message (laughs).

What we’ve been counseling our clients to do is to use it as a diagnostic tool. Like a doctor’s stethoscope. Listen.Good clients, and the Grammys are one of them, are listening to the ideas that are happening organically. So rather than go out and say “Hey…we want some ideas!!!” which is sort of forced crowdsourcing, the crowdsourcing is organic. It’s already happening. It’s out there, you just have to look for it and take the best ideas.




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