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Synergy

advertising

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ADVERTISING

ADVERTISING, GENERALLY SPEAKING, IS THE PROMOTION OF GOODS, SERVICES,


COMPANIES AND IDEAS, USUALLY PERFORMED BY AN IDENTIFIED SPONSOR.
MARKETERS SEE ADVERTISING AS PART OF AN OVERALL PROMOTIONAL
STRATEGY. OTHER COMPONENTS OF THE PROMOTIONAL MIX INCLUDE PUBLICITY,
PUBLIC RELATIONS, PERSONAL SELLING, AND SALES
PROMOTION. ADVERTISING INVOLVES THE PROCESS WHERE IN A MASSAGE IS
DESIGNED SO AS TO PROMOTE A PRODUCT, A THOUGHT, AN IDEA OR EVEN A
SERVICE. THE CONCEPT OF ADVERTISING HAS ASSUMED A DYNAMIC FORM WITH
THE USE OF THE VARIOUS MEDIUMS OF COMMUNICATION. FROM THE NEWSPAPER,
MAGAZINES, POSTERS, NEON AND FLUORESCENT SIGNBOARDS, BILLBOARDS TO
THE COMMERCIAL ON TV, LASER SHOWS TO INFLATED HIGH-RISE FIGURES AND
OBJECTS, ADVERTISING HAS COME A LONG WAY. THE WORK IS FORMIDABLE AS IT
SPEARHEADS A PROCESS INTENDED TO ATTRACT, MODIFY, CHANGE AND
INFLUENCES PUBLIC OPINION.

THE ADVERTISING INDUSTRY HAS THREE MAJOR SECTORS.


 B USINESS OR ORGANIZATION WHICH WISHES TO ADVERTISE,
MEDIA WHICH PROVIDES THE MEDIUM FOR ADVERTISING AND
AD-AGENCY WHICH CREATES THE AD TO SUIT THE NEED OF THE FIRM.
THE FUNCTIONS OF AN ADVERTISING AGENCY:

TO ACCELERATE ECONOMIC GROWTH AND CREATE PUBLIC AWARENESS


TO PROVIDE A TOTAL, PROFESSIONAL, EXPERIENCED SERVICE WHICH IS VERY
PERSONAL IN ITS NATURE
TO TAKE THE ADVERTISER'S MESSAGE AND CONVERT IT INTO AN EFFECTIVE
AND
MEMORABLE COMMUNICATION

THE BENEFITS OF USING AN ADVERTISING AGENCY

A DDED EXPERTISE


M
 EDIA KNOWLEDGE AND UNBIASED ADVICE
EASIER ADMINISTRATION
M  EDIA BUYING
Q
 UALITY CONTROL
INFORMATION
FENDING OFF THE MEDIA
AND WHEN THINGS GO WRONG
COST SAVING
TIME SAVING
ADVERTISING AGENCY'ROLE
SUPPOSE YOU ARE A COMPANY WITH A PRODUCT. IT MAY BE A TOTALLY NEW
PRODUCT.
AS A COMPANY WITH A PRODUCT OR SERVICE TO SELL, DESIGNING AND MAKING
THAT ITEM IS
ONLY PART OF THE BATTLE. PEOPLE ARE NOT GOING TO BEAT A PATH TO YOUR
DOOR. YOU HAVE TO
SEEK A CHANNEL OF COMMUNICATION.
AD AGENCY NEED TO CONSIDER, FOR EXAMPLE:
FOR WHOM IS THE PRODUCT OR SERVICE DESIGNED?
WHO WOULD USE IT?
WHO IS THE "TARGET GROUP"?
WHAT'S SPECIAL ABOUT THE PRODUCT? IN WHAT WAY IS IT DISTINCT? UNIQUE?
DIFFERENT?
WHAT'S ITS "POSITION" IN RELATION TO OTHER SIMILAR PRODUCTS?
WHAT DO YOU WANT TO CONVEY TO THE PUBLIC ABOUT YOUR PRODUCT?
H OW SHOULD YOUR COMPANY CONTACT THE PUBLIC?
WHAT MEDIUM SHOULD IT USE? RADIO? TV? NEWSPAPERS? MAGAZINES?
BILLBOARDS? BUS/SUBWAY ADS? DIRECT MAIL? ETC.
H OW EXTENSIVE A REGION SHOULD YOUR COMPANY TRY TO COVER?
HOW OFTEN?
COMMUNICATION AND MARKETING DECISIONS INVOLVE SPECIALIZED EXPERTISE.
MANY
COMPANIES THAT DESIGN AND PRODUCE PRODUCTS OR OFFER SERVICES LACK
THESE SPECIFIC
CAPABILITIES. THIS IS WHERE ADVERTISING AGENCIES FIT IN. ADVERTISING
AGENCIES EXIST TO
HELP COMPANIES TO COMMUNICATE WITH THE PUBLIC, MARKET THE COMPANY'S
PRODUCT.

COMPANY WITH A PRODUCT OR SERVICE  AD AGENCY MEDIA PUBLIC

THE PROCESS OF ADVERTISING INVOLVES CONSIDERABLE SPECIALIZED


KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERTISE
ABOUT
 PEOPLE - THEIR INTERESTS, PREFERENCES, NEEDS, WANTS, LIFESTYLES,
EXPECTATIONS
ABOUT
 MEDIA - THEIR REACH, THEIR EFFECTIVENESS, THEIR SPECIFIC APPEAL
ABOUT
 THE COMPANY AND ITS PRODUCT – AND ABOUT COMPETING
COMPANIES AND
THEIR PRODUCTS
COMPANY WITH A
PRODUCT OR SERVICE AD AGENCY MEDIA PUBLIC
ORGANIZATION STRUCTURE

THE ACTIVITIES WITHIN AN ADVERTISING AGENCY ARE TYPICALLY DIVIDED INTO


4 BROAD GROUPS: ACCOUNT MANAGEMENT, THE CREATIVE DEPARTMENT, MEDIA
BUYING, AND RESEARCH. THESE DIVISIONS ARE USUALLY PHYSICALLY
SEPARATED, ALTHOUGH ALL FOUR AREAS WORK CLOSELY TOGETHER TO
PRODUCE AN ADVERTISING CAMPAIGN IN ITS ENTIRETY. ACCOUNT MANAGERS
USUALLY HAVE DAILY INTERACTION WITH A COUNTERPART AT THE CLIENT'S
OFFICE AND COORDINATE THE ACTIVITIES OF THE OTHER DEPARTMENTS
ACCORDING TO THE CLIENT'S WISHES. THE CREATIVE DEPARTMENT DESIGNS
ORIGINAL THEMES OR CONCEPTS FOR ADS, WHILE THE MEDIA DEPARTMENT
PLACES FINISHED ADS WITHIN THE MEDIA IN WHICH THEY WILL RECEIVE THE
MOST EXPOSURE TO A TARGET AUDIENCE. THE RESEARCH DEPARTMENT PROVIDES
DATA ABOUT CONSUMERS TO HELP THE AGENCY AND THE CLIENT MAKE
INFORMED ADVERTISING DECISIONS. RECENTLY ADDED TO ADVERTISING
AGENCIES' ROSTER OF SERVICES ARE PUBLIC RELATIONS, DIRECT MARKETING,
AND PROMOTIONAL SERVICES. OTHER ACTIVITIES THAT USED TO BE COMPLETED
BY OUTSIDE VENDORS, SUCH AS PHOTOGRAPHY AND HIGH-TECH PRINT WORK,
HAVE BEEN BROUGHT IN-HOUSE IN MANY AGENCIES.
Profile of major advertising mediums

MEDIUM ADVANTAGES LIMITATIONS

Newspapers Flexibility; timeliness; good local Short life; poor reproduction


market coverage; broad acceptance; quality; small pass along
high believability. audience.

Television Combines sight, sound and motion; High absolute cost, high clutter,
appealing to the senses; high fleeting exposure, less audience
attention; high reach. selectivity

Direct mail Audience selectivity, flexibility, no Relatively high cost, junk mail
ad competition within the same image.
medium, personalization.

Radio Mass use, high geographical and Audio presentation only; lower
demographic selectivity; low cost. attention than television; non
standardized rate structure;
fleeting exposure.

Magazines High geographical and demographic Long ad purchase lead time;


selectivity; credibility and prestige; some waste circulation; no
high quality reproduction, long life; guarantee of position.
good pass-along readership.

Outdoor Flexibility; high repeat exposure; Limited audience selectivity;


low cost; low competition. creative limitation.

Brouchers Flexibility; full control; can Overproduction could lead to run away cost.
dramatize message.
SYNERGY ADVERTISING AGENCY
CORPORATE STRUCTURE

Type: 2
ORGANIZATION CHART
SYNERGY is all about interaction of discrete agencies, forces, energies or brains such that
the total effect becomes greater then the sum of the individual effects. Synergy uses fresh ideas and
pragmatic approaches to delivery something extra ordinary every time. From technology to corporate,
consumer and finance sector, synergy provides unparalleled levels of strategic advice and the tactical
execution of first class campaigns.

PEOPLE INVOLVED IN SYNERGY

AHMAD KAPADIA

MANAGING DIRECTOR

AMJAD SUBHANI

CREATIVE DIRECTOR

MOHAMMAD AHMED

DIRECTOR PLANNING

FURQAN KHAN

ASSOCIATE CREATIVE DIRECTOR


SYED MUHAMMAD JUNAID

CONTROLLER OPERATIONS

ALI RAZA MERCHANT


EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

ACHIVEMENTS:
Synergy Advertising wins 2 silver medals
Synergy Advertising, one of the leading advertising agencies of Pakistan, won 2 silver medals
one for best management practice “leadership Empowerment Committee” and second for best
creative Idea “Synergyzer magazine” at the recently held COM Network regional meeting.

ICOM Network, The world’s largest network of independent advertising agencies held its annual
regional meeting for the Asia pacific region for the year 2004 in Singapore.

The conference was a two-day event from 18-02 November 2004 and was attended by over a
dozen members of the ICOM Network from the Asia Pacific Region. Synergy advertising
represented Pakistan at the ICOM meeting, being the exclusive member of the network of the
Pakistan market.

The conference was spread over two plenary sessions during which new members from Pakistan,
Indonesia and Australia(Sydney) were introduced The newly inducted members made detailed
presentations on the status of advertising in their respective markets as well as the prospects.

This article was printed in The Nation, dated Saturday, December 4, 2004.
Winners of 17th APNS Advertising Agency
Awards
The APNS has announced the winners of the 17th APNS Advertising Agency Awards for the
period 2001 – 2002 which will be given at the APNS Awards Ceremony Scheduled to be held on
December 13, 2004 at Islamabad.

BEST VISUAL DESIGN

(COLOUR)

Gold M/s Synergy Advertising (Pvt)Ltd. for Bank Al Falah Ltd. ad ‘A Vision Revealed … A
Commitment Reinforced… Silver M/s. Synergy Advertising (Pvt) Ltd for Zak Pak (Pvt.) Ltd. ad
‘Skin care you deserve’

http://www.ahmedkapadia.com/category/blog/achievements/

More Victories for Synergy Advertising


May 9, 2006

This year again Synergy Made evident its knack for bagging awards as it won four awards this
year at the APNS awards ceremony. The details of the awards are as follows:

Best Copy Award (English)

Silver: M/s Synergy Advertising (Pvt) Ltd for Warid Telecom ad

‘Don’t you wish we were here earlier’

Best Visual Design (Black & White)


Gold: M/s Synergy Advertising (Pvt) Ltd. For Bank Al Falah Ltd ad
‘Kisan ki Falah Bank AlFalah’.

Silver: M/s Synergy Advertising (Pvt) Ltd. For Habib Bank Ltd ad
‘HBL e-Bank’.
S.H. Hashmi Awards for Public Service Advertising
Gold: M/s Synergy Advertising (Pvt) Ltd. for the Patients Bahbud Society for AKUH ad
‘Your Zakat Can…’.

http://www.ahmedkapadia.com/category/blog/achievements/
Synergy Advertising Receives 4 APNS Award
for Creative Excellence.
Karachi, February 25, 2010: The All Pakistan Newspapers Society (APNS), a premier body of
newspapers publishers, bestowed its Awards for Creative Excellence to Synergy Advertising in
recognition of the agency’s exceptional work in different categories. APNS announced the
winners of its 19th & 20tth Advertising Awards in Karachi. These awards recognize ad agencies
for developing campaigns for marketing and advertising purposes.

The jury comprising of eminent professionals and entrepreneurs awarded Synergy in following
categories:

• Best Corporate Advertisement 2007-08 (Client: UBL Fund Manager)


• Best Advertising Campaign 2005-06 (Client: Warid Telecom)
• Best Advertisement for a specific brand 2005-06 (Client: Bank Alfalah)
• Best Corporate Advertisement 2005-06 (Client: Habib Bank)

The winning ads can be viewed at www.brandsynario.com and www.synergyadvertising.biz

Synergy Advertising

Synergy came into being in 1999 as a full service advertising agency that later on transformed
into to a branding, communications and interactive solutions providing group. Synergy opened
up to other allied fields that brought along their value addition and increased creative activities.

Synergy has been very successful in creating a unique position for itself as an innovative brand
partner. Clients as well as media have generously appreciated the role of Synergy as a brand
builder and conferred many awards and accolades to agency during the last 10 years. The agency
has also been a recipient of ABBY Awards (India).

For more information:


www.synergyadvertising.biz

Advertising Awards to Ahmed Kapadia, MD


Synergy Advertising
The 19th & 20th APNS Awards function was held at Islamabad on Tuesday. Mr Asif Ali
Zardari, President of Pakistan gave away the awards to the recipients chosen by the jury.

The President said media should reflect positive societal changes and must contribute to national
development. The awards were given to the excellent journalistic and advertising efforts in 2005-
06and 2007-08 in various categories.
Synergy received four awards in recognition to its exceptional work during the years 2005-2008.
Managing Director, Synergy Advertising, Mr. Ahmed Hussain Kapadia, received awards from
the President at the award distribution ceremony.

Synergy has won the APNS awards in the following four categories:

1. Best Corporate Advertisement 2007-08 (Client: UBL Fund Manager)


2. Best Advertising Campaign 2005-06 (Client: Warid Telecom)
3. Best Advertisement for a specific brand 2005-06 (Client: Bank Alfalah)
4. Best Corporate Advertisement 2005-06 (Client: Habib Bank)

Synergy Advertising holds a tradition of winning multiple awards for its remarkable creative
solutions. Winning the current APNS awards is the continuation of Synergy’s brilliance in the
field of advertising. This milestone implies the strength of Synergy advertising and proves its
outstanding performance as an established agency of commendable repute.

Expressing his contentment on the occasion, Mr. Ahmed Kapadia – Managing Director, Synergy
Advertising said, “It is a very delightful moment for me and my entire team for getting such high
appreciation of our work at a national level. WE would like to thank Almighty for this honor.
WE am grateful to APNS, which by organizing APNS Advertising Agency Awards, is not only
recognizing the efforts of creative agencies but also promoting Pakistani talent at a global level.
WE would like to share the credit of this wonderful achievement with my entire team and
esteemed clients.”

Besides Mr. Mujib-ur-Rehman Shami-President APNS, Dr Jabbar Khattak-Secretary General


APNS, Mr. Qamar Zaman Kaira-Minister for Information and Broadcasting, the ceremony was
attended by the leading publishers, renowned editors, prominent media professionals, advertising
agencies and distinguished personalities from different walks of life that include members of
Judiciary, diplomats, political leaders, senior officials and intelligentsia. The President of
Pakistan, Mr. Asif Ali Zardari, was the chief guest on the occasion.

www.brandsynario.com and www.synergyadvertising.biz


SYNERGY CARE:
LATIF KAPADIA MEMORIAL WELFARE TRUST : Extending Latif Kapadia’s mission of
spreading happiness, a team of his admirers established Latif Kapadia Memorial Welfare Trust
(LKMWT) to assist and support families by providing educational and health facilities on the
outskirts of Karachi and few other cities.

They have been actively participating in the humanitarian services for the past three years and
supporting different welfare projects such as TCF, Reflections, and FESF etc. They are
convinced that we should hate sins but not the sinners; this is the attitude that motivates us
towards the welfare of convicts living in the confines of the prisons. They serve them with
proper foods and medicines if they need. They also took part in relief operations for earthquake
victims of Oct. 8, 2005 in northern areas of Pakistan.

Latif Kapadia Memorial Welfare Trust is a non-business organization purely. established for the
welfare of deprived and underprivileged families to provide them the best but inexpensive health
and educational facilities within the community. The task is huge and trust has limited resources.
We hope people like you can support us generously to continue the mission.

Aiming to provide convenient, reliable clinical services with minimal charges under the
supervision of qualified doctors and paramedics, LKMWT has started its first exclusive health
project ‘MediHealth Clinic’ in Shah Faisal Colony #1 near Saba Palace, Karachi. It is an OPD
service to provide convenient, reliable health services under the supervision of qualified doctor
and an average of 30-40 patients per day are treated.

US Chapter

The US chapter of the Latif Kapadia Welfare Memorial Trust (LKMWT )was established in San
Francisco USA by Aquila Aswat the daughter of the late Latif Kapadia. The MediHealth Clinic
is a subsidiary of Latif Kapadia Memorial Welfare Trust which is a tribute to the late Pakistani
TV legend and a Philanthropist; Latif Kapadia.

LKMWT is committed to providing support for families through health, education and welfare
projects in Pakistan. The first project ‘MediHealth Clinic’ has already established in 2007 which
is an OPD facility in Shah Faisal Colony #1, Karachi-Pakistan, providing convenient, reliable
clinical services with minimal charges under the supervision of qualified doctors. The trust is
focused at to develop ‘MediHealth Clinic’ to a full service hospital very soon and simultaneously
planning educational and health projects in other localities as well where such facilities are very
scarce and inadequate.
DIVERSITY
BRANDING COMMUNICATION INTERACTIVE

RESEARCH ADVERTISING WEB DEVELOPMENT


STRATEGY DESIGN SEARCH ENGINE
MARKETING
IDENTITY DIRECT MARKETING E-MAIL MARKETING

CULTURE:
WHY CLIENT GET SYNERGIZED?

RELATIONSHIP:WE ARE THERE WHEN U NEED US ,ALWAYS

RESULT: OUR BUSINESS IS OUR SUCCESS

COST: COST EFFECTIVENESS

CREATIVE:IT IS OUR RULE OF THE GAME

CREDIBILITY:WE DO EXACTLY WHAT WE SAY

SENSITIVITY: WHEN YOU CALL WE ANSWER,WHEN YOU EMAIL US WE REPLY

DIRECT:ALL PROJECTS ARE DIRECTLY MANAGED BY PRINCIPLES

EXPERIENCES:WE ARE NOT NEW IN THE BUSINESS AND WE USE OUR EXPERIENCE
WISELY

CONVENIENCE:FROM STRATEGY AND PLANNING TO DESIGN AND DEVELOPMENT, WE


HANDLE EVERYTHING IN HOUSE

TRANSPARENCY: CLEAR, UP-FRONT COMMUNACATION OF COST , DELIVERABLES AND


EXPECTATIONS .
CLIENT LISTS:
SYNERYG ERVE CLIENTS INCLUDING FINANCIAL INSTITUTION ACADEMIC
INSTITUTION,HOUSEHOLD BRAND MANUFACTURES AND WORLD CLASS SERVICE
PROVIDERS.

BANK ALFALAH

NBP

WARID

WATEEN

UBL

BIZTEK

SANULLAHA TEXTILE

BOSICOR

AIR BLUE

DAWN BREAD

TOPS

DUPONT

THAI AIRWAYS

TONI AND GUY

TOSHIBA

NJI

HOM (HANDI)

ELFY
SYNERGY’S WORK
INTERVIEW WITH MR. AHMED KAPADIA

Advertising passion
Ahmed Kapadia, the man leading synergy Advertising Group, wants Pakistan’s advertising
industry to get organized to become a player on world stage!

Q: Synergy’s values and achievements, if any?


A: The word “synergy” means the working together of two things to produce an effect greater
than the sum of their individual efforts. Synergy also means empowerment, leadership and
teamwork. It means that interdependence that helps to achieve is a higher goal than
independence. At Synergy we work as a team. Together we are everything, divided we are
nothing.

Our biggest achievement is they very creation of this company! Ask at any advertising forum
about which agency has come into the mainstream since 1990 in such a big way and the only
answer you‘ll get is synergy. There is consensus in advertising industry on some facts and I am
glad that our success story is one of them.

There is a long list of awards won by Synergy. The Abby Award 2004 being one of the most
high profile awards in the South Asian advertising community is one of them. We were the only
indigenous Pakistani advertising agency to have won this award! But awards are no universal
barometer of a company’s achievements. There are lots of things we are doing which the
corporate world doesn’t know about.

Most people are amazed when they visit our office in Karachi. We have a gymnasium in our
office for the employees, which even multinational companies do not have, we have a doctor
coming in every week for medical check-up of our staff. We have our own cafeteria and kitchen
too. These all are things that were simply unheard of in advertising in Pakistan.

We also have a managerial system that is completely indigenously developed and recognizes the
strengths and limitations of Pakistanis as people. Every week we hold a meeting of the
Leadership Empowerment Committee (L.E.C) where everybody can say whatever they want to
about the company and give suggestions for its improvement. We have a team of around 70
people working in our Karachi office. And there are around 40 in Lahore. We have just recently
opened an office in Islamabad, which is rapidly becoming a significant market on the advertising
landscape of the country.

However to us success is measured by more things than just the volume of business. This is the
primal edge that differentiates Synergy from other advertising agencies. Success in our business
is also about the number of successful brands that you have created or the advertising memories
you have contributed to the creative history of Pakistani advertising. Giving something in return
to the system and the industry is a big achievement too, considering that not many people in our
part of the world do that. We want to encourage such behavior which is the hall mark of
developed nations. And the best way to do that is by leading through our own behavior.

Synergy the only advertising agency in Pakistan that is publishing a magazine ‘Synergizer’ The
magazine stands for its credibility and everyone is praising our effort. We do not talk about
ourselves in that magazine; we speak of matters and issues that are important for the industry as
a whole. There is a calligrapher, Javed Aslam, in Karachi. He is a free lancer. Nobody has ever
cared to promote him. We have published his profile in the advertisement section of our
magazine. If he is good why shouldn’t we support him? That is a rule we apply to anything
worth promoting in the industry which is why Synergyzer has become the unquestioned and
credible voice of the advertising professionals of Pakistan.

Q: Did you come into advertising to make money, fame, or is it your Passion?
A: Call it an accident or a twist of fate. In 1986 I was looking for employment and somebody
suggested I should meet Javed Jabbar, who was big name in advertising industry and one of the
greatest advertising practitioners produced by Pakistan to date. So when I applied, he hired me as
a Client Service Executive. For the first six months, I did not know what was going on. Javed
Jabbar was in politics by then and he was away most of the time, this absence of leadership did
affect the workings at MNJ and made life hard for new entrants like myself, but it also taught us
to be independent and rely only on your own abilities. I stayed in that job till 1989 as I was also
doing my MBA in Marketing from IBA. I used to find it difficult to work and study at the same
time. Therefore it took me quite some time to complete my MBA.

Since then there has been no looking back. I went over to work at places like Orient Mc Cann
Erickson which was becoming Pakistan’s first international affiliated advertising agency after a
lull of twenty years or so. I then launched Ever new Concepts – one of the most established
advertising agencies of the country in the Karachi market, and finally opened up Synergy. Each
time, the rise gets better. I am in advertising today because it is my passion. But now I have
reached a stage where it is not my only passion anymore. There are many other (Passions) too.
Now the question if I am in advertising for money or fame. I believe if you run after either, it
will never come to you. So I have always chosen to focus on the quality of my work and have
never chased after either, on both counts. Allah has been more than kind and today I have both in
great stock. Alhamdullilah.

Q: Are you happy or otherwise about the way things are in the field of advertising in our
country?
A: There is an urgent need for reform. I have seen people in this field who have no idea what
exactly advertising ought to be doing and where is the industry heading! I don’t want to take any
names, but I do know that there are many agencies being run for the sake of making money only.
They have been in the business for so long yet they have never bothered to help the industry – a
role that should have naturally come to them. I believe it is wrong to consider advertising simply
a business. Because, if you work at it long enough and want to excel in it, it becomes a way of
life. And then not to be 100% committed to the profession’s well being is rather unbecoming
particularly so if the profession has made you into everything your are – as in my case. That is
the bottom line.
Q: Some people think you are a rebel in the advertising realm of Pakistan? Is it so?
A: I am not. But yes I am a straight forward person, who cannot hold back the truth. I am a
member of the Executive Council of PAA, which is not doing anything for the industry at
present and I believe that I have a moral obligation to point that out. This is what puts me at odds
with so many people. Even the interests of the advertising agencies are not protected.
Multinationals take care of their agencies, and that’s why they flourish. When Javed jabbar was
there, things seemed to be improving. They held major events like Ad Asia in 1989.

I am one of those who are trying to make people in advertising realize that it is important to give
something back to the system. By system I mean the advertising industry, which is going
nowhere. We need people here who are willing to bring about positive and meaningful changes. I
just told you that our agency is bringing out, Synergizer; don’t you think PAA should have
thought of publishing something like that? We did in five years, why couldn’t they do in 50
years? We cannot afford to wait any longer. We have gone ahead and taken the initiative to cyber
space and have launched www.brandsynario.com, which the first of its kind marketing web
portal dedicated to Pakistan.

Ahmed Kapadia, an impatient soul, has built an advertising empire from a scratch. Not happy
with the direction of the advertising industry in Pakistan, he laments that corruption is thriving
and mediocrity is ruling the industry. A fierce critic of the PAA’s role, the body that represents
Pakistan’s advertising as an industry, he is blunt, forthright but optimistic about what the future
portends for Pakistani advertising.

Q: Why no ads of Pakistani companies appear on leading international channels like BBC,
CNN, Sky news? Don’t you agree with the fact that such ads serve dual purpose: advertise
the product and at the same time promote countries of their origin as well?
A: If I have brands that I Export to other countries, I would definitely think about advertising it
on an international channel. And the ad would have a theme that has something to do with
Pakistan. But if I sell my product in Pakistan only, why would I run my ad on international
channels. It won’t bring me any profit. I think the onus of promoting Pakistan internationally is
on the Government, the private sector can play a significant but secondary role. The government
should be the one to do something to promote our culture and country.

Q: Where do you see Synergy Five years from now? How to do you gauge success?
A: I have a clear vision but only have a vague idea about that, perhaps because I am a true
fatalist at heart and firmly believe that everything comes only when Allah ordains it so. All we
can do is work towards a goal that we feel is worthwhile and pray to Allah that it works out to
our benefit.. We do have an idea where we want to go, but I don’t believe in planning
achievements. I believe in crossing the bridge when it comes. My plans are flexible. There are
too many things that we want to do at Synergy, but I believe that nothing speaks of achievement
better than success so you‘ll have to wait and see.
Q: Who is your role model?
A: Nobody.

Q: What is being done to improve that advertising sector in Pakistan?


A: In my personal opinion, at this point not much is being done and it is in this inaction that the
danger lies.

Q: What should be done?


A: Since the problems of Pakistani advertising are multi-faceted so are the solutions. I have
submitted a comprehensive plan to PAA, but I am not too hopeful about anything being done on
that, although I am an optimistic person otherwise. To have any meaningful change which
translate into hope for a better future we need to rise above ourselves and commit ourselves to
long term reform, the benefits of which may not even be realized in our lifetimes.

Q: Something about your personal life…


A: I am the only brother of four sisters. Such boys usually lead a protected life, but I was quite
independent even when I was in my early teens. Today I have my mother, wife and three
beautiful daughters living with me. I do consider myself an ambitious persons, but my ambitions
have nothing to do with fame or money. I believe one is brought into this world for a purpose
and to play a role, and I believe in giving one’s best to the world. After achieving all I have till
now, I still feel there’s a lot more for me to accomplish.

I like the tremendous amount of talent that exists in Pakistan in terms of human resource, but
which is grossly misused. I like the enthusiasm of our talented people. I like straightforward and
honest people. I believe one should go for the content instead of form. Contrary to form. Content
is everything because it gives the necessary depth and value to ideas, initiatives and efforts.

I dislike mediocrity, which is prevailing in Pakistan. Mediocrity and corruption are related to the
thinking of people too, who are not working hard enough, are not focused enough and are not
realizing the gravity of the situation. I dislike people with egos and attitudes because it cripples
them to point where they feel no remorse nor any need for improvement both of which are
essential ingredients for societal renaissance.

Q: Keeping in view all that is happening in the world, as a Pakistani, what do you feel are
the challenges facing us as a nation?
A: The main problem facing the Islamic world is lack of leadership. A leader provides direction,
creates systems, and gives importance to merit. A major problem is the absence of merit. Only a
true selfless, honest and fearless leader can bring merit. The so-called leader here seem to be
taking the nation for fools. I firmly believe given the right leadership people can make a
difference. It is up to everyone in whatever our sphere of influence to become a productive
leader and inspire people by our own actions to bring about a change in their circumstances. If
this is achieved it will most definitely trickle upwards and change the destiny of our nation and
others like it.
Q: How do you see brand building?
A: Nations that have managed to build brands are ruling the world. If you cannot differentiate
between product and brand, then you are trading. There is a big difference between the two. I
consider brand building and brand equity an integral part of marketing and advertising.
In Pakistan the concentration is on selling. When you start to sell, you must also build brands.
Synergy is a brand; when you hear the name ‘Synergy” you’d have an image of it in your mind.
Similarly when you say Nike, you get the image of the personality using Nike.

You see ads like Travel- Asia and you feel like going to those places. Similarly, Pakistan should
pay attention on developing its tourists’ attractions. We have all the resources in our country.
There is a lot of natural beauty as you go up north. Tourists love to explore those regions. A little
concentration on this area would boost our economy.

Q: How do you compare Pakistan’s marketing scene with countries like India or Malaysia?
A: India and Malaysia are way ahead. You must remember how much our television dramas
were popular in India once. I went to India in 1992 for a commercial and at that time every body
was talking about Pakistani dramas. Then satellite was introduced. Now the whole scenario has
changed. Even our channels are playing Indian dramas. India drew is strength from cinema.
Pakistani film industry is nothing compared to theirs. Cinema industry, I feel, plays a vital role in
promoting one’s culture and country.

Wars are not being fought on the frontier, but on the TV channels. Media is the name of the
game. Our basics are not right. The role of our associations is not what it should be. There of
course is a lot of talent here, but still there is no development. There is some quality work being
done. An example is the ad of Habib Bank that we made. We worked very hard on it and it took
us quite some time to bring to perfection. Actually the thing lacking in us is consistency. We do
produce quality work, but it’s in bits and pieces. We only need to organize everything.

http://www.ahmedkapadia.com/blog/press-interviews/advertising-passion/
An interview with Mr. Waseem Ahmed, Assistant Manager HR,
Synergy Advertising

Let’s start with a brief background about Synergy Advertising.

Synergy Advertising was established in May 1999 and in a very short span of time I’m pleased
to say we have made a name for ourselves as a centre of excellence in brand communication. We
are currently Pakistan’s fastest growing integrated media communications group and have
services that straddle the complete spectrum of advertising services ranging from traditional
advertising, to media exploitation, media planning and buying, events, BTL, brand development,
media marketing, research, PR, productions, publication management and strategic
communications.

In a short period of time Synergy has gained a client portfolio that consists of some of
corporate Pakistan’s biggest names? When you were starting Synergy, were you confident
of making it big in such a short time period?

We wanted this agency to pursue things differently rather than follow set standards right from
the start. In Pakistan, most agencies are acquired as inheritance and run thereof as one man
shows. Synergy, on the other hand is a collective of ad agency professionals which though it may
sound Marxist, is nevertheless a concept that has very evidently worked. Everyone at Synergy,
including myself started our careers at the bottom rung of the corporate ladder. Our true strength
has been our adherence to meritocracy. Where we are today is the result of our honest intentions,
hard work, fortitude and resilience, qualities that are integral to the success of any business
model.

Your agency has ventured into many areas such as Synergy Brand, publications and
marketing. Are you satisfied with the progress made so far?

I’m quite satisfied with most areas we have diversified into including our in-house magazine
which has given us a leeway to speak the truth. Under the banner of Synergy Marketing, we have
organized a number of launches, conferences, fashion shows and award ceremonies. Synergy
Brand is a new concept which too is doing well. Our experience in marketing and the relevant
FMCG experience of our Executive Director Ali Reza Merchant have helped us synergize our
efforts to create our own brands. These ventures are ample proof that Synergy is not afraid to
boldly go where none have gone before. The trouble with our people is that they look for instant
results, not realizing that on the road to success the slow remain steady and are the steady are the
ones to win.

How does it feel to win the Abby Awards?


Winning the ABBY in India was a big honor for us particularly because it was testament to the
global competitiveness of the Pakistani advertising industry as a whole. Having said that, WE do
feel that the pennant of victory we brought back home could have been lauded a bit louder, not
just to applaud the efforts of our agency, but to support the endeavor of a Pakistani advertising
concern. The lack of that support is not about bruised egos; rather it’s about the absence of a
collective voice the industry does not seem to have.

Some commentators say that Pakistani ad industry is on its way to boomtown, if it’s not
there already. Do you subscribe to this view?

The ad expenditure is direct corollary of the economy growing. While the overall economic
picture is bullish and the ad expenditure is risen by some estimates over an astronomical figure
of 30% per annum, so the boom town theory has some merit to it. However the real challenge is
sustaining this growth. While growth in some sectors like telecom, automobiles and banking
have fueled this growth, it is important that we ensure that benefits of a healthy economy go to a
lot more people. Concentration of wealth will only ensure that the economy overheats in the long
run.

In terms of development of the advertising industry we still have to go a considerable distance,


particularly in areas of content. So a boom in terms of money value may have taken place but in
terms of talent, creativity, advertising management processes and improvement in the regulation
of the system we operate in has unfortunately not happened.

Do you think agencies can survive by just providing traditional services?

Yes, they can continue to do so. If you do something right and do it consistently, there will
always be market for your product or service. The secret is that Synergy is not a one-man show,
it is a collective effort. We understand issues of the clients and by using our marketing
knowledge to understand client problems, we are able to provide them with total solutions and
that’s what makes us different. It takes two to tango. WE have always stressed on the fact that
good advertising is the outcome of both parties working together giving each other the respect
that is there due.

Are you open to the idea of foreign affiliation?

Yes WE are. What needs to be realized is what foreign affiliations are. Foreign affiliations are
unfortunately seen as a panacea of all that is wrong with advertising in Pakistan. That is not true
since even the MNC affiliated agencies are being run by local people who scarcely get any
foreign exposure. In our industry affiliation are only used to secure business and that results in
binding unwilling clients to unwilling agencies.

At Synergy, we believe that a foreign affiliation must provide the agency with substantive
advantages and insights. We are a part of Independent Communications Network (iCOM) which
is a group of a number of agencies representing 81 countries.

When it comes to advertising, what are some of the areas in which Pakistan lag behind India?
In India, back in the 80s there was virtually no television and so they were nowhere close to us. Back then
the quality of ads across the border was pathetic. After 1992, when the Indian market was deregulated, a
marked improvement was seen in the quality of ads simply because the ad industry started drawing its
technical strength from the cinema which was an industry that India invested in for over a century now.
Another reason is that worldwide no particular ad is created by an agency alone. As I said earlier, good
advertising is the result of both parties working together. In Pakistan, where we lag behind is total lack of
knowledge about advertising processes not just from the agency side but also from the brand management
side and this results in total confusion and chaos. Advertising in Pakistan is reflective of the psyche of the
nation. Unfortunately, our ads are visually oriented. Nobody talks about the concept, about the big idea.
We blatantly use the word strategic thinking but never use it. Then there is no consumer insight, on what
is it exactly that we need to say to the consumer. If a client likes Atiqa Odho, Atiqa Odho is it. We are
also marred by a lack of trust between the client and the agency. In Pakistan nobody trusts the other
person due to one’s own insecurities. See, advertising is like cricket in Pakistan – everyone has an opinion
about it and a client is no different.

In your view, what is good advertising?

Solid content and great execution. Good advertising catches your attention not just by looking
great but also being relevant to your needs and provide you a solution. In Pakistan the emphasis
is always on the form as opposed to the content and that is where the disjoint occurs. Good
content means you go through a particular process to determine the objectives and purpose
behind the ad. Ultimately it should not only sell but also achieve the long term objectives of the
brand.

Is it true that when the advertisements fail the creativity test, most agencies blame the clients?

Now what is creativity? You see creativity is a misused word. First you need to exactly define
what is creativity since what may be creative to you may not be creative to me. We talk about
Indian ads. Sure they are lovely but do you think they are created by agencies alone? The answer
is no; client input is always there. There are parameters of the creativity test and the fact that the
quality of input is equal of the quality of input. Then of course the deadlines have to be mutually
agreeable. It’s true that in certain cases, agencies do blame the client. Actually, a client blames
the agency more often. The trend is that when something is good it is to the client’s credit and
when it is bad it is the agency’s fault. There is no collective accountability or ownership and that
is where quality of advertising in Pakistan sinks faster than a lead balloon. The problem
compounds when there is mediocrity on both sides simply because people are not trained with
regards to the value addition processes involved. Creativity does not happen in a vacuum. There
are processes to it. Any good advertising in Pakistan has an equal client and agency involvement
written all over it.

Given the high rate of turnover in the ad industry, how do you convince your employees to
build a career at Synergy?

WE have developed a very good reputation in the market because WE have done things that
were unheard of. And this is not an idle boast. WE have a system of empowering people
whereby if our employees have a talent in a certain area WE try to nurture and develop by letting
them do things which they know best. WE are open to every suggestion and any idea provided it
is a win-win situation.

Also when you want the right people you start to trust them and invest in them. WE take fresh
graduates mostly and train them. Like Ogilvy said that a good agency must be like a training
hospital, WE sincerely believe that. WE hire people fresh or experienced only on the basis of
three things honesty, hard work and a positive attitude. That is all WE need everything else
creative talent included, God provides.

On the operational side, every week we hold a meeting of the Leadership Empowerment
Committee (LEC) whereby they can say whatever they want to about the company as well as
give their suggestions and register their grievances. Plus, we have our own cafeteria-cum-kitchen
as well as a full-fledged gymnasium. Then on a weekly basis a doctor visits to undertake
medical checkups of the staff, all at the company expense. WE are not interested in stars but
people who can create synergies. To help them do that, WE believe in investing in our
employees so as to substantially reduce the high employee turnover.

What is your long term vision for Synergy?

Our long term vision is to synergize the immense talents which we have in Pakistan in terms of
human resource. Pakistani people are highly talented but what they lack is direction and proper
guidance. And of course they are extremely despondent with the current state of affairs. WE
want to leave a legacy behind of Synergy being not a one-man show but an agency run by people
who can contribute something that will change to the advertising sector as well as contribute to
humanity at large. Our role should be to give something back to the system.