Sunday, December 12, 2010

3 Big Shows: Two big ideas

So everybody knows I did 3 advertising, marketing and digital events last week - and writing about all will take some time. So with three shows, I have three comments for each. Take it in stride, I have a bad cold and no time for BS.


The Vietnam Digital Marketing and Technology Conference

What a crappy name. Too bad it was a great event. Lowly promoted, highly attended, this event made people talk, all day long. As opposed to what the Vietnamese call seminars, where old professors stand up and deliver all day, this conference got everybody talking - and served up more Chivas than anyone could drink at the end. Sponsored by Golden Digital I loved this event because it brought all companies together to sell an idea, and the sponsor won for being a sponsor, not a sales shill. Key points:

1) Fast talking man from who presented that Tiger Woods won public sentiment with his extra-marital activities because the Chinese value a man's prowess by how many mistresses he has - and China is Nike's biggest future market. Hello Accenture? Didn't you used to Be Arthur Anderson? Those slimes who sold us Enron's accounting? Who are you to talk about morality?

2) Tony Troung from Golden pulled this off almost all by himself and is an absolute rock star. Plus, you gotta love his freakin' hair. He does, we know that!

3) Todd from Golden also rocked. Why? Because he didn't give a PowerPoint presentation. He worked from a sheet of internet linked notes on screen and the audience took his presentation apart - but directed it in ways that made everybody care. Tired of being lectured to, the participants bonded here. Open forum = open ideas.

The Big Show/Vietnam Advertising Festival

Hey kids! Let's put on a show! Right. Isn't a festival supposed to involve people, engage people, make them talk and discuss? This festival seemed designed to put us all to sleep. From the three old men, the only guys to hit the stage, it seemed like Sun Flower Media, The Creative Circle and Vietnam Marcom were just three old dudes doing this for themselves. So they gave them flowers. To put on their own graves? Festival? I didn't see anyone dancing. A drab display of old media as if no one saw that digital had already wiped out most of their business. Next year, we'll call it the BIG Dinosaur awards - and we can still have it at the zoo. But, yes, there were highlights.

1) TBWA's YouTube moving announcement. It features gay dudes, bitches, more bitches, and the ever so hot but camera shy "George". That bitch. The biggest film idea of the show - but way too long. It's a 140 character world girls. Next time. Audience loved it.

2) Grey print. Like I care about Grey? They're uhh, gray. But their print and copy rocked. Unfortunately Indian creatives did the work and took the credit. And nothing against people from India. If the expats around here aren't putting Vietnamese creatives front and center and passing on the knowledge, that just sucks. We didn't send you here to get famous, expats. We sent you here to teach other people how to get famous. Stop sucking limelight.

3) The Young Lion's school student necktie campaign. Everybody else on that assignment over-thought it. You nailed it. Thank you. True. Clear. Brilliant. And totally on target. Cool. The other teams thought the judges were the target. You nailed the target. Kids in school.


What a mess. And that's what we like about it. "My PowerPoint fucked up.". Okay. "Geez, people kept walking in and out of the room." Yes, com se, com sa. Shit happens? But sometimes good shit happens. And BarcampSaigon is the place for it. I saw no other advertising agency people at this event. May describe the death of dinosaurs while they're still walking - slowly, through the old rubble they used to make a living out of...

1) Sun at Little lives. com has 40,000 kids, little kids, on an educationally based social network in Singapore. "Dad, can you help me with my math homework?", sez kid. "Make you a deal, can you help me with my Facebook profile?", sez parent. Oh, da times dey are-a changin'.


Vietnamese guy explains Silicon Valley culture (in Vietnamese). A mix of capital and ideas that becomes a business in itself. How to make it here. Sorry no direct link.

3) John and IPR

Audience lost. Even trouble asking questions. "Wait. My idea is an intellectual property? Like I thought of it and it has value?"

You've gotta love the idea that anybody is even listening to this idea. "So wait, can't I just steal an idea from another guy?"


These events should make us all think and talk. The Vietnam Digital Marketing Conference and BarcampSaigon did that. The Vietnam Advertising Festival/Big Show was just an outdoor display without even an internet community to discuss or any social activity at all. Why or why not? I don't know why or why not. And nobody else will either because the organizers don't seem to want that. They want a kingdom. And so they have one. At a zoo. And then the people leave.

Stay tuned for Saigon/CreativeMornings starting in January.
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