Life as we know it…after the LAIF awards.


NOW…if you or your agency didn’t win a single award statuette at the recently concluded LAIF Festival, then accept my condolences. LAIF must have been hell. However, on the other side of the pearly gates, if you or your agency won any of the awards, then congratulations, your LAIF was measured in GOLD (or whatever you must have gone home with).


At this year’s LAIF…we all learnt one thing, “Co-Creativity is the new model for excellence”. I guess that gives our client’s more arsenals to shoot down hyper creative ideas like Boko Haram land to air assault missiles. Not necessarily. The idea of co-creativity impinges on the notion of “mutual creative empowerment”. No longer should creative agencies view themselves as the exclusive bastions of “creativity”. And while clients do posses the power to curtail agency creative exuberance by often times infusing their “business sentiments” in the creative process, they have a larger responsibility to ensuring that creativity remains the most powerful tool in business.


And for that reason, LAIF 2014 experienced a little bit of a paradigm shift in it’s quality of entries, model of award organization and general appeal towards gaining stakeholders confidence and public wide credibility. While my reserved opinion is always that guests appear over dressed for what is exquisitely a creative award night, my colleague, Mr Chuka Obi who beyond reasonable doubt was the single most awarded talent of the night made me think other wise when he said “better overdressed than under dressed”.


LAIF always seems to get it right with starting very late in a hurry.  Whether it’s in this LAIF-time or past LAIF events, punctuality has always been its style gone viral through the years. The event I.V says 5pm but didn’t start till 7pm. While periodic glitches such as nominee mix-up popped up here and there, the event did live up to the hype. The Jury were also well selected. Well above pass mark with their selection of award works. While branding was classy, communication started late but came through eventually and the event experience was tasteful…except for the Dugbe, Mokola and Bodija level noise that the guests brought to the event hall. At one point, I was convinced that I was at these famous Ibadan markets sipping Moet. Odd. Truth be told, must we sell chairs and tables at the event, including the ones we are sitting on right now in our offices in order to have a profitable LAIF awards night? This sitting style is merely a way of crerating such rackety, mini-national assemblies at each table. Thus, the unsavory display by guests who showed little decorum and respect for the award show. 


All in all, LAIF was a success. Not a huge one, but successful regardless when you think back at the harrowing memory of the 2013 event. It now remains the responsibility of the Management Board to map-out a future strategy hinged on benchmark milestones for the event to achieve. LAIF as I would love to think, should be the path-finder of not just the advertising industry but the entire creative ecosystem. While co-creation is the theme for this year, one would have loved to see this proposition or single-minded big idea come through more as a thematic manifestation of the award experience. The glimmer was there but was snuffed out in a twinkle.  Co-creativity would then have become the mantra of the creative industry, fostering bonds within and also outside agencies for 2015 up-until the next LAIF. Nonetheless, it was a memorable event.


So what will LAIF 2015 bring? The time is now. Let’s get the ball rolling.



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