As the annual event that celebrates communication looms near, my thoughts flew past to last year’s summit at Aamby Valley. The mood was festive, with activities galore.
Last year, I had called it – “celebrating creativity in communication”. The keynote addresses, discussions, opinions and ideas expressed – if you look closely, all this applauded creativity and innovation.
PRAXIS, the world’s largest communications festival in the world celebrates and focuses on learning, sharing and engaging. We are looking forward to connect at Jaipur, the Pink City. I spoke to some PR professionals to get a feel of what expectations are.
At the threshold of the event, Roger Darashah, Chief Operating Officer, Adfactors PR observes certain definite trends. India is ‘recalibrating’ away from the metros towards Tier II and beyond, he feels. Fashion, ideas, business, Government priorities, economic opportunity, art, culture no longer revolves exclusively around India’s five principle cities. Initiatives as diverse as the Pro Kabadi League, Prime Minister Modi’s UDAN regional airport scheme are providing new platforms for regional trends and identities. Brands – B2B or consumer – can longer assume that a Delhi-Mumbai approach will be sufficient to engage and build loyalty. “How messaging can be adapted and conveyed across this increasingly diverse consumer base will be one of the biggest challenges of the next few years in India,” is his insight for the future.
The other trend, he points out is “the re-evaluation of the ‘millennial’, in favour of Generation Z; people aged under 25. The latest generation is far more aware of big data, algorithms and issues such as privacy; they are far more discerning that their predecessors when it comes to sharing – or even viewing – content. “With so many competing media and platforms now available, brands are going to have to work even harder to engage them,” he says.
Learning from experiences is something that Minal D’Rozario, Co-Founder & Director, Ideosphere Consulting, was looking forward to – “For emerging companies like ours it helps us to learn from the experiences of others, but also keep us in touch with our ex-colleagues, peers and mentors”. Of course, she will take time out to “step back and re-channelize.”
Sharing knowledge is definitely a major plus point. Pratishtha Kaura, Associate Account Manager, Text100 recalls that every year there is a wonderful line-up of speakers that share knowledge on the ever-evolving PR and Communications landscape, along with the fun element of a wonderful venue, where the entire communication industry is under the same roof. “This year’s theme – The Beauty of Communications sounds really interesting and I am sure it is going to be an action packed treat,” she adds.
Putting the event in context, Samir Kapur, Senior VP of Adfactors PR comments that it has evolved in all parameters, from getting together of communication professionals to knowledge-driven platforms; and that it has successfully bridged the gap that existed, here was a need for a platform to acknowledge, reconnect and share ideas in the communication fraternity. “The event relates all three aspects of our industry: content, creativity and community””.
Beyond the Indian shores, the participation of global leaders has helped us both learn their ideas and also get insights into their operations. One important aspect of PRAXIS is “encouraging tomorrow’s leaders, young talent of the industry can change, enhance with these young minds”.
And, I sign off by saying – celebration is an attitude, which will go right if we engage, share and learn.