As the India Chapter of the International Advertising Association (IAA) is poised to host its Nations as Brands Global summit in New Delhi, Taj Palace Convention Centre on Sept 5th and 6th, we met with Summit Convenor Srinivasan Swamy, who is also the immediate Past World President of the IAA.
Here’s an extract form the interview:
How did the idea of a theme like Nations as Brands emerge?
As branding becomes all-pervasive, it is a well-known fact that some products and services are synonymous with Nations. In fact, there is a strong symbiotic relationship between the nation and the product. And this relationship either build the nation as a brand, or helps position the product based on the nation.
Can you give us some examples of what you said?
Just think of new age technology and you automatically think of the Silicon Valley. The reverse works as well. Or say “start-up nation” and you will have the name Israel in your mind. Think of cricket and the UK pops up in your mind. Think luxury products, haute couture or cuisine and France is what comes to your mind. So, whether it is geo-tagging in one direction or the brand being synonymous with the country, this is an unexplored but fascinating area of marketing that every advertiser or advertising agency person needs to understand.
Yes, it is definitely a new concept as a theme, but how does your Summit specifically address this concept or this theme.
By bringing in celebrated speakers who are not the regular done-to-death members of the speaking circuit. People with an established track record, who can shed light on this in an authoritative manner. Take for example destination branding. We have the Chairman of Landor & Fitch flying down from London. Or the concept of “start-up nation”, and we have Ido Aharoni an acknowledged expert in this field to shed light on this unique issue. Similarly, we have an expert on Luxury, an expert on Cricket (David Gower) a genuine Unicorn from India (Suraj Saharam of Delhivery) and even a French Michelin Star Chef as a speaker. Think about it, all these people are positioning statements in themselves. There is so much marketers/advertisers, Agency heads and media heads can learn from listening to them. The fundamentals of marketing were perhaps intuitively applied decades ago to build the connection between brands/categories and nations. There is so much to learn from lateral thinking than linear thinking by marketers.
What about India?
Oh, we start at a macro level with Amitabh Kant setting the context as to what manufacturers and marketers can expect from Brand India and then go on to the auto industry and several other aspects that no marketer should mix. And of course, the icing on the cake is our Union Minister for Infrastructure Mr Nitin Gadkari spelling out what awaits the world from Brand India. Any way you see this, the theme and content are unique, relevant and of critical importance to marketers, media and advertising agencies. And as we always say, it doesn’t get any bigger.
IAA hosted a hugely successful IAA World Congress in February 2019. Will IAA Global Summit be as big?
It certainly can’t be in that league but I can assure you that as far as the content goes, we have about 50 wonderful speakers over two full days. Many of them are stars and as mentioned earlier, many wouldn’t have heard them in any other conference. After 3 ½ years IAA is bringing another world class event to India. I would be delighted to have your readers register as delegates at nationsasbrnads.org. The pricing is kept very affordable – only Rs 6000 + GST if 5 or more register from the same company.
MediaNews4U is delighted to partner with IAA Global Summit as Digital Media Partner.