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AdFest Festival aims to spread its net wider

Adfest Festival director Wilaiwan Surapongchai.

Adfest Festival director Wilaiwan Surapongchai.

Amid intense competition from similar shows in the region following the prolonged political problem in the Kingdom, Plannova - the organiser of AdFest Festival - aims to broaden its target audience, particularly big-name advertisers and international film production houses.

This move is aimed at strengthening the show's standing as a leading regional exhibition and conference for the advertising and marketing communications industry.

"AdFest not only offers insights and in-depth strategies in the advertising arena, we also exhibit a number of valued success cases to be applied in marketing communication, particularly amid the rapid change in digital media communication," Vinit Suraphongchai, chairman of Adfest Festival, told The Nation last week.

Vinit added that in the past many years, he had witnessed a small number of advertisers participating in the event. So Adfest Festival needs more from this group because the 17-year-old show was considered a key platform for young, creative marketers to find inspiration. To create the show for the new generation, Vinit's daughter Wilaiwan Surapongchai joined hands with him some years ago. Now she serves as festival director.

Wilaiwan said: "There are many interesting topics and stories shared by key speakers in the event, in particular, the stories from winners in each category. Marketers and young, creative minds should learn from this."

One of the highlights of the Adfest Festival early this month was about winning awards from Japanese advertising firms. They did a brilliant job with regards to innovative communication via digital and mobile communication, she suggested. Due to the most advanced telecommunications technology in Japan, the advertising and creative agencies are able to design and develop their campaign digitally, engaging customers effectively with wow factors. "This kind of lesson should be learned by marketers, advertisers as well as marketing directors of leading brands in Thailand," she added.

Adfest Festival is also interested in bringing in more exhibitors from film production across the region. At the recent shows, there were about 18 leading film production houses. Most of them were based in Thailand. Vinit added that he wanted to see more overseas film production houses attending the event to make a greater impact amid intense competition from a rival show in Singapore. Vinit acknowledged that AdFest's key rival was Singapore's Spikes Asia as that show's quality continued to improve with strong support from the government. The show also has a strong relationship with international visitors and exhibitors.

Meanwhile, the political situation in the country has affected the confidence of overseas visitors for many years, he said. Normally, more than 1,000 professionals from the advertising, communications and film-production industries visited the country every year, bringing economic gains, promoting tourism, and stimulating advertising-related business, such as film shoots for TV commercials.


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