Dubai Lynx 2013 Photography

“Who sold that idea?”  These were the final words of Ian Haworth on day two of the Dubai Lynx Awards. There holds so much meaning in these four short words and they remain circling in my mind.


One such meaning is the generation of ideas … creating and crafting them. Whether based on a brief or a non-brief, aka personal work, strong ideas create movement and movement is what we like to see. Our team is getting more and more involved in the creative process. Planting seeds and nurturing shoots. Mood boards, sketches, brand sheets … it’s an interesting industry and we love having our brains picked. One thing we (as a company) should evolve towards is the proactive selling of ideas. At the moment, we’re sort of stuck between the brief and the pitch but going forward, we’d love to be stamping our own mark. Books, ads, campaign concepts … all of it.

As a shout-out to fellow creatives and photographers then, why not move away from the reactive role of waiting for that phone to ring and take the ball in your own hands. Use your initiative, get creative and be proactive. Brands and most agencies love fresh and strong ideas. Brand them yours so you take the credit, travel the world and look around, adapt to your market … you get the picture. Back to the very words, I started with … “WHO sold that idea?”

The idea Ian was referring to was this mad space base jump by Red Bull. Talk about risk taking. Various presenters used this awesome demonstration of ‘brand activation’ to talk about Red Bull in different ways. We all know what cool stuff they do and I’ve even had the pleasure to work for them. Their branding is so strong, so strong and their guidelines are very precise. It’s evolving day by day from a beverage company to a content culture brand or as Roopak Saluja summarized nicely in his presentation ‘Red Bull is now a media company that happens to sell liquid in a can.’

Take risks were words that kept on being repeated throughout Dubai Lynx. TAKE RISKS. Young brands are daring. More mature ones are not.  We photographers are all young, independent and hungry with no one to report to other than our own soul. Let’s play devils advocate and push our clients to do more, dare more, risk more. Let’s turn the resistance of idea killers. Years ago, I found the below great artwork by It hangs in our toilet, which is probably the best to put it …

Wouter-Kingma-ideakillers_poster_largeThe Monday morning started off with a provocative call by Martin Wiegel. Who cares? In a nutshell, only 0.5% of fans talk about your brand on Facebook, 80% of your buyers know little or nothing about the brand they buy and finally ‘your consumers’ are just somebody else’s consumers who occasionally buy you. Consumers are not buying from you either exclusively or often.  Oh and they don’t talk about you. Guys … where is the love?

Not new but a good refresher by Mark D’Arcy … because we have an oversupply of everything. What we are producing now is competing with everything produced, EVER. Enough said.

Finally, on noise creation, whether a presentation, your social media voice or your public blah blah … make it relevant. Create a message your clients want to hear, be part of what interests them. Great content inspires participation. Stop talking about yourself, full stop.

One question I’ll leave you with is this. What makes a good idea? A great idea? Over to YOU.


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