Mehta said that agencies in Southeast Asia are now attracting better talent, having reached a certain stage of maturity. “We’re now seeing the potential that always was there,” he said.
He says while creativity has always been strong in Southeast Asia, historically different markets have excelled at different disciplines, “Now it’s every engine firing.”
Attributing Lowe’s growing award success to strong creative leadership across all markets, Mehta said that having made a conscious effort to up the work, awards shows are now back on the network’s priority list.
On whether the region has finally shaken off its reputation for scam, Mehta says there are signs that the industry is growing up. “I suppose scam became an outlet because there was a lack of opportunity…but now awards are being won for real work for real clients. Happily, marketers are seeing the value of good creative and no longer viewing creativity and effectiveness as mutually exclusive concepts."
And asked whether award-winning creatives become a prime target for poaching by rival agencies, Mehta says that if you’re not constantly receiving other job offers the chances are you’re not good enough. “People should stay because they like (where they are) rather than agencies having to raise the exit barriers.”