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Celebrating creativity: A conversation with Facebook APAC Creative Shop Leader Fergus O’Hare

adobo magazine’s EIC Angel Guerrero met up with Fergus O’Hare, Facebook APAC Creative Shop Leader during the lone day of the APAC Facebook Awards judging on May 9, held on the 22nd floor conference room of the spectacular Facebook office in South Beach Tower on Beach Road in Singapore.

O’Hare, who spearheads the region’s chapter of the Facebook Awards, shared that, “Facebook is all about creativity. For people’s marketing to work, the ads have to be creative as well as well-targetted. If the ads are not creative, people will not stop and look at them.”

“So it is important that we celebrate creativity every step of the way,” he continued. “We are here as Creative Shop to do the best creative work in the world and we want APAC to rise to the top and be the cream of advertising in the world.”

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The Facebook Global Awards has been running for the last four years, but this is the first time they are holding it at the regional level. The winners from each region (North America, LATAM, EMEA and APAC) will go to the global awards in June and will be judged by the global council in New York.

Categories include Best use of Facebook Platforms; Innovation; Facebook for Good; Beyond Facebook/ Instagram, and a new focus on small businesses. There is no entry fee to the Facebook Awards.

When asked what the jury will be looking for, O’Hare explained that, “We are looking for great work, good use of Facebook, good use of the platform, and work that is thumbstopping. Like any great advertising it should have emotion, it has craft and all the wonderful things that make it great, and that it resonates with the audience.”

He observed that most of the best work were videos, with big brand as well as small businesses represented. The winners list will be released later this month.

The regional council of creatives formed by this year’s jury will enable Facebook to connect with them a few times a year and, O’Hare added, “we can give them a look of what is going on in Facebook and what innovations are coming up. To work with them to find out what they need from us as Facebook to help us expand our canvas to make it even better for creativity.”

“We would like to see more Facebook-first and Facebook-only campaigns” remarked jury member Kitty Lun. Meanwhile, Spencer Wong of McCann & Spencer Hong Kong, said that, “Some of the work from the Facebook Awards, I believe, will also be entered and do well in Cannes.”

For his part, David Guerrero, CCO of BBDO Guerrero Philippines shared, “The Facebook Awards judging was well organized, inspiring and relevant to our work. It puts a real focus on mobile and opened us to new possibilities. Lots of good people to talk to as well.”

Fourteen creative stars from advertising agencies across the region formed this inaugural jury:

2016 Facebook Awards APAC Jury

  1. Pei Pei Ng, Executive Creative Director, Possible (Singapore)

  2. Perry Essig, Global Creative Director, TBWA (Singapore + NY)

  3. Masako Okamura, Executive Creative Director, Dentsu Vietnam (Vietnam)

  4. Hanyi Lee, Chief Creative Officer, The Secret Little Agency, (Singapore)

  5. Pann Lim, Co-Founder and Creative Director, Kinetic Singapore (Singapore)

  6. Troy Lim, Executive Creative Director, Publicis Singapore (Singapore)

  7. David Guerrero, Chairman and CCO, BBDO Guerrero (Philippines)

  8. Pradyumna Chauhan, National Creative Director, McCann WorldgroupMUMBAI (India )

  9. Ant Keogh, Executive Creative Director, Clemenger BBDO, Melbourne (Australia)

  10. Jung A Kim, Executive Creative Director, Innocean Worldwide (Korea)

  11. Scott McClelland, Executive Creative Director, BBH Asia Pacific (Singapore)

  12. Hagan de Villiers, ECD for Digital Arts Network (part of TBWA) (Singapore)

  13. Ali Shabaz, Chief Creative Officer, Grey Group SEA(Singapore)

  14. Spencer Wong, Chief Creative Officer, McCann & Spencer (Hong Kong)

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