Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Advertising Week2007

In its fourth year, Advertising Week2007 ran from September 24 – 28 in various venues in New York City. The splashy event drew advertising and media leaders from the US and Canada. This year’s focus was social impact, talent and diversity. Advertising agencies recognize the Internet’s rise as an important media that supports do-it-yourself programming. More Americans turn from ads that sell but don’t show America’s diversity in race, style and expression. New blood from different veins is needed to maintain the talent bank and address diversity in the media and the agency work place.

During the New York Times CEO Summit I – Media, held September 26, Laura Desmond CEO of StarCom Media Vest Group – The Americas stated that “There was no right or wrong way to get on the superhighway of change…we just have to commit to changing media choices…include digital and mobile channels.” Emilio Estefan shared his thoughts on connecting with Latinos during Univision’s Connect Via the Cultural Beat. Estefan, media genius and Grammy Award winner, believes music is an essential element for ads and programming to cross national boundaries. North American agencies must get off the trap of simply adding a beat and translating an ad to Spanish language. Rather, “the message requires a cultural translation.” While Estefan stressed the many nations that comprise Hispanic America, he fell short by not mentioning the ethnic diversity. Hispanics range from the light tan and slightly wavy-haired people who populate Telemundo and Univision programming to the Asian, the brown indigenous and African types who live there, too.

The highlight for September 26 for this columnist was Chaka Khan and Emily King’s appearance at Tribeca Cinemas, after the Branded Music Entertainment: How Leading Brands Activate Through Music panel. It was as if Chaka Khan was performing in my living room. Chaka Khan sang two cuts from her latest CD Funk This and classic rocking anthem “I’m Every Woman.”

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