Darko Bosnar: »We are very proud of the Grand Sempler at Imago. More than that, we put it in a very special place.«
The Croatian creative agency Imago was awarded the highest prize at last year's Sempler competition, the Grand Sempler for the best media strategy of the year, for the influential campaign »Consonant for Life«, and this year the agency made sure that Croatia got its first Lion at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. They were awarded the bronze “Oscar of advertising” for their campaign for the brand Jana “Wing of Love”, which won over the International Cannes Lions Jury with its love story between two storks. We asked Darko Bosnar, Art and Innovation Director at Imago Ogilvy, what advice he would give to this year's competitors for the Sempler awards and what the Grand Sempler means to them.
The campaign “Consonant for Life” received the Grand Sempler last year for the media strategy of the year at SEMPL. Why did you decide to enter this particular campaign, which is considered socially responsible?
The idea of this campaign is very simple and the innovative use of the medium is proof that a very simple idea can easily adapt to every channel, no matter the medium. The media, brands and everyone else could show their support for organ donation in a different and very unexpected way by removing consonants from their name. The “Consonant for Life” campaign was a great choice for the conference, which awards real media ideas.
What advice would you give to this year's entrants, who are competing for the Sempler awards? What is the decisive factor that wins a competition?
There is no winning recipe. Either you have a good campaign with good results, or you don't. But entry preparation for the jury is becoming increasingly important. This is sad in a way, as I see very good campaigns at festivals, which are badly prepared and the jury simply skips these entries and does not award them. I think being a member of the jury is a great responsibility, as your signature acts as your guarantee that a certain project is better than the other. It makes me very angry, when someone receives an award for a campaign with a bad idea and a great case study, but a campaign with a great idea and a bad case study does not. The work itself needs to be rewarded. Well, the jury reviews hundreds of campaigns and simply falls for the pretty pictures. The preparation for a creative competition has become a very complex and demanding task, as is the implementation of the campaign. But this is necessary, if you want to win awards. You have to be aware of this and also play this game with this in mind.
What does the Sempler award mean for you and your agency? Have the advertisers gotten to know you better on account of this and perhaps invited you to work with them?
This was the first Sempler not only for Imago, but also for Croatia. The awards are important, because they show how the agency breathes, how it works and how it thinks. I am very glad that I'm going to a festival, where I can meet lots of people from the client's side. It is important that they also value these awards, as we do, and that they appreciate them and want to win them as much as we do. Everything we do, as creative agencies, we do for them and their brands. Of course I find it nice, if another creative director congratulates me; I also appreciate if a brand manager or a marketing director congratulates me and tells me that he would also like such a successful campaign for his brand.
What do SEMPL and the Sempler awards represent in the region, in your opinion? What is the biggest added value of the SEMPL conference?
At Imago we are very proud of the Grand Sempler. More than that, we put it in a very special place. SEMPL is primarily a media conference, but I am noticing it is becoming increasingly interesting also for the creatives. We will gladly take part in the competition again with some projects we deem relevant and appropriate for SEMPL.
About the campaign “Consonant for Life”, awarded with the Grand Sempler
With the campaign “Consonant for Life” Imago and Croatian Transplant Association wanted to raise public awareness of what it means, to decide to donate an organ, express support to all those, who are waiting for an organ transplant and thank all the donors and their families, who saved someone's life with their noble act. For this purpose, they created an app, with which users of Facebook could express their support by “donating” consonants from their name. Several media and other companies joined the campaign and showed their support for organ donation by excluding consonants from their name or logo and thus contributing to raising awareness of this topic.
This year's SEMPL is a story about 1,000 satisfied visitors, a story about a full conference hall, many inspiring seminars and presentations, a story about new ideas and knowledge, new business contacts, great party and you. If you were with us, you know what we talk about – and if you were not, you will come next year.
Eight Golden Awards and the Grand Prix award were awarded at the fourteenth competition at the regional Sempler Awards competition. Slovenian creative agency Luna\TBWA won the Grand Sempler for the best media strategy of the year for the campaign "Laško Duel", which was created and executed for Pivovarna Laško Union.
A nine-member international jury for the fourteenth Sempler Awards Competition for the best media strategies of the year selected 34 finalists from all the entries. 25 shortlisted entries are from Slovenia, 4 from Croatia, 3 from Serbia and 2 from Bosnia and Herzegovina.