WHEN TEAM OGILVY TOOK 10,000 PICTURES FOR A 1.5 MINUTE MP TOURISM FILM

Piyush Pandey, Executive Chairman and Creative Director, Ogilvy South Asia, Hariranjan Rao, MD, Madhya Pradesh Tourism Board and Azazul Haque, CCO, Ogilvy South talk about creating two Madhya Pradesh Tourism Board ads which bagged awards at Cannes and at D&AD Awards 2018 and what makes these ads special

06 Aug, 2018 by NEETA NAIR

It has been a good year for Madhya Pradesh Tourism Board as two of their ads made by Ogilvy got the attention of international juries at two prestigious festivals, winning a Silver and Bronze Lion at Cannes for ‘Memories of Destination’, aka the ‘world’s most honest tourism film’ and another one, ‘MP main dil hua bache sa’, bagging a Graphite Pencil at D&AD Awards 2018. At Cannes, the campaign named ‘Memories of Destination’ - a collection of hundreds of photographs that showcases stories of millions of travellers who have visited Madhya Pradesh over the years - bagged a Silver Lion for its spectacular editing and a Bronze Lion for its rhythmic music. Incidentally it is also the first time that a State tourism ad from India has won such accolades at Cannes (However, the Ministry of Tourism India has won a Gold at Cannes in 2012 for ‘The Hinglish Project’.)

Piyush Pandey, Executive Chairman and Creative Director, Ogilvy South Asia believes that year-on-year his team has managed to retain the soul of Madhya Pradesh through their ads and keep it distinct from the other tourism campaigns. He says, “The idea has always been to put MP on the world map, even though this ad was not specifically targeted at tourists from other countries. Every year, we thought that the ads would get recognized internationally and finally this year, the jury noticed it and it won.”

The agency has had the Madhya Pradesh Tourism Board account since 2006. While their ads over the years have been the talk of town, winning awards nationally, this is the first international step for Team Ogilvy on that front. Even the much acclaimed Kutch nahi dekha, toh kuch nahi dekha film for Gujarat and the Jaane Kya dikh Jaaye campaign for Rajasthan have not got this kind of recognition at Cannes. Talking about his favourites over the years, Pandey says, “If your favourite ad is not the last one, then you need to worry. Having said that, we have come a long way. The first ad where we gave a bioscope- like treatment, set the tone for MP, and that too when we were facing adverse circumstances. We didn’t have the money to even go and shoot. We managed with a small budget and came up with something so fantastic.”

While it is too early to gauge what kind of impact the latest campaign will have on the number of tourists visiting MP in the peak season starting from November, one can surely say the ads have got a great response online, with the Madhya Pradesh Tourism Board (MPTB) Facebook page having crossed about 1 million followers. Talking about it, Hariranjan Rao, MD, Madhya Pradesh Tourism Board says, “The ads that we have created with the help of Ogilvy have been a major crowd-puller, especially as far as social media is concerned. And this is not the first campaign, it is the sixth or seventh campaign that we are running with Ogilvy in more than 10 years. The previous campaign also drove a lot of traffic to our website and social media platforms.”

Talking about the challenges the team encountered while working on this commercial, Azazul Haque, CCO, Ogilvy South says “We had agreed to show some 15-20 destinations in MP and show it the way a tourist would see it, without deleting the crowds from the frame. The camera was used the way a tourist would use it, so for example, we never took a drone shot. For every sequence, we have put together close to 35-40 pictures. And for those 35-40 shots, we had to have at least 300 pictures of real tourists to select from. In total, we took around 10,000 pictures in one month. To pick and stitch together the final 500600 pictures took close to three months and then another month for creating the apt music to match the photo sequence. We rejected nine tracks and settled on the tenth. It looks simple, almost like a Power Point presentation but believe me, it took us six months to make it. And all credit goes to Vijay Sawant, the director of the film. He rejected so many offers for five months simply because he wanted to focus on this one. You need a very different mindset to do what he did. Hats off to him.”

Feedback: neeta.nair@exchange4media.com Category: Interview Volume No: 15 Issue No: 9

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