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ADVERTISING Top Kenyans To Judge At Loeries 2018 By Andrew Human T hree of Kenya’s top brand communication leaders are heading to Loeries Creative Week Durban in August to join the judging panels. The Loeries rewards advertising and all brand communication across Africa and the Middle East. Megha Dutta, Serah Katusia and Svetlana Polikarpova are all leaders in the Kenyan marketing landscape. Dutta is Creative Director at DDB Nairobi. In her 15 year career she has worked across two of the most challenging economies - India and Africa - and is one of very few women creative heads in Kenya. Katusia is Managing Director at Mediacom Eastern Africa. She has also worked in client service and strategy and lectures at Kenya’s International School of Advertising. Polikarpova is the Founder and Director of Tandem Network, her own automated influencer and content marketing platform, and an independent digital marketing consultant at Right Here. She has managed the marketing strategies for some of Kenya’s largest brands. According to Global Entertainment and Media Outlook: 2017 – 2021, published in September 2017 by PWC, total advertising revenue in Kenya reached US$1 billion in 2016, and is set to grow at an average eight per cent over the next five years, peaking at US$3 billion in 2021. Internet advertising is one of the fastest- growing sectors in Kenya’s entertainment and media (E&M) industry; by 2021, revenues will hit US$ 227 million. Polikarpova will be looking for contagious and engaging ideas that encourage online audiences to co-create with brands, and a move away from a broadcasting style to a networking style. ‘We have to remember that brands no longer have centre stage, consumers do. I want to see how they This year, the Loeries has changed its Official Rankings to include finalists – in previous years it only ranked winners. This is good news for the local industry as it will provide more opportunity to be recognised, and a deeper measure of performance against the rest of the region. 10 MAL25/18 ISSUE engage consumers to develop and spread a narrative.’ She says that last year was challenging for all Kenyans. ‘Many campaigns coincided with noisy presidential elections so agencies had to put extra effort into getting audience attention. I’m looking for innovation in cutting through the noise by using new digital marketing tactics.’ Dutta says that work has to be better than good to win a Loerie. ‘I’ll be looking for three must-haves: an idea that cannot be denied; both the idea and the brand must be memorable - if you only remember one, it’s either art or capitalism, not advertising; and it must invoke a sick case of FOMO – if I’m not kicking myself for not thinking of it before, chances are I’m not rooting for it either.’ According to Katusia, some brilliant work has been produced in Kenya over the past year. ‘I know there is great excitement and participation from Kenya. Last year was a good year for us. This year I want to be wowed by brand creativity in this ever- changing media world.’ In 2017, Kenya brought home 10 Loeries, including two Golds – for Ol Pejeta Conservancy’s ‘World’s Most Eligible Bachelor’ by Ogilvy Kenya, and Safaricom’s M-Tiba. This year, the Loeries has changed its Official Rankings to include finalists – in previous years it only ranked winners. This is good news for the local industry as it