Page 33 - AdNews Magazine Jan-Feb 2021
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                   “Yes, they could do it in a Volvo, or they could win a chance to do it in a Volvo and test drive a Volvo, but actually it’s more than that,” says Simpson. “It doesn’t matter what you drive, it’s about the spirit in which that
idea came about.
“So that’s an example of how we can use creativity to solve quite
specific problems in those tight spaces if you like.
“This period of time has forced experimentation and forced explo-
ration and I think once that seal has been broken, and once that muscle memory starts to build, I think it will lead to working in different ways and getting ideas to market more rapidly.”
The focus on Australia’s creative industry has also involved recog- nising the creativity and storytelling of the Indigenous community, something that experts argue has been overlooked for too long.
Many credit this heightened awareness for diversity and inclusion to the Black Lives Matter movement which reignited in the US during the start of the pandemic and captured people’s attention around the globe. Brands, noting the shift that was happening, also took notice and rushed to show their support through their social media posts and even incorporating it through their traditional advertising.
Yatu Widders Hunt, director at Dentsu’s Cox Inall Ridgeway, has noticed this trend and says local brands took positive steps in 2020 to respect Indigenous storytelling. The agency, which works to address disadvantages in Indigenous communities, works with brands such as on Indigenous engagement guidelines and policies.
“Coming from an Indigenous perspective, it’s probably fair to say there’s still ways to go to ensure stronger and better representation of First Nations storytelling and First Nations peoples,” Widders Hunt tells AdNews.
“And that probably goes to broader diversity and inclusion across the advertising sector. But having said that, there have been some incredibly positive steps taken, particularly this year, to really address that and to respect Indigenous storytelling as the anchor of work that we do and the country that we work on.
“2021 will be an exciting year for new businesses and these businesses will shake up traditional industries that failed to innovate or pivot when needed.”
Almeida Insights founder Alice Almeida
“At Dentsu, we talk quite openly about how we are, in many ways, continuing a 60,000-year storytelling tradi- tion through the work we do in media and creativity.”
Widders Hunt says despite the disruption of COVID-19, she saw more investment and energy from corporate brands in celebrating Indigenous storytelling. Recently, the agency has been working with Country Road, helping it develop its engagement guidelines, and showcase more First Nation voices through their marketing activity.
“More diverse teams make the work better, and stronger, and more reflective of modern Australian society,” she says.
“We also think that Indigenous communities have, as I mentioned, 60,000 years of experience in sto- rytelling and creativity, and that’s something we can learn from, be proud of and also embed as part of our own brand narratives, or the brand narrative of our clients.
“Particularly in 2020, where consumers and communities are looking to brands and corporates to take a stand on social issues. We’ve seen some incredible exam- ples of that, where a huge number of Australian organisations have supported the Uluru Statement from the Heart. We’ve seen brands such as Qantas supporting mar- riage equality. So I think brands are also becoming inf luencers in driving social change and are working in partnership with com- munities to do that. It’s actually a really powerful way for brands to generate social impact, as well.”
Clare Winterbourn, director of Born Bred Talent, is also seeing more interest from big brands in representing Indigenous creatives. Winterbourn, alongside Catherine Lumby, professor of media studies at the University of Sydney, is working to establish a fund for Indigenous creators.
The Born Blak Fund, which has attracted interest from big agencies, brands and organisa- tions, will launch in March this year and aims to provide creators with resources to refine and share their craft, and open a dialogue about Indigenous culture and educate brands. | January/February2021 33

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