Preetesh Sewraj, CEO of the Leories. Picture: Supplied
Preetesh Sewraj, CEO of the Leories. Picture: Supplied

Award-winning advertising this year will feature brand communications that make use of existing human truths, presented in new and exciting ways. That’s the opinion of Preetesh Sewraj, who starts his tenure as CEO of the Loeries on April 1 2020, taking the reins from Andrew Human, who is leaving the post after 15 years.

Sewraj believes 2020 will have two overarching themes: greater adoption of innovative technology in communication; and a heightened awareness of environmental impact due to human activity.

“Audiences are becoming hungry for exciting tech-led brand communication. As such, industry stakeholders will be seeking these solutions in order to keep audiences engaged,” he says.

As the natural environment comes under increasing strain on a global level there is growing consumer awareness around the climate crisis. This, he says, will stimulate the brand communications industry to incorporate messaging that reinforces the commitment of brands to be responsible corporate citizens that genuinely support sustainability.

Sewraj, however, is cautious about making any predictions, pointing out that brand communication is an industry in a constant state of flux, a fact which drives creativity. The industry typically makes decisions dynamically, rather than conforming to a strategic direction based on strict annual timelines, with many leading trends only emerging in the course of the year, making them impossible to predict.

The power of the Loeries, and the fact that is has become such a prestigious awards ceremony, he says, lies in its ability to stimulate greater innovative thinking across the Middle East and Africa, as well as to celebrate and learn from the great work that comes out of this region. “Collaboration is an area where there is always room for improvement. I see the strengthening of relationships as a crucial step to creating communication that enthrals and engages consumers while delivering brand objectives for organisations across the region,” he says.

The big take-out:

2020 will be a year in which we see more technology-led work, environmental awareness and interregional collaboration. 

“As a region, our key strength is authenticity,” Sewraj says, adding that brand communications across Africa and the Middle East have truly embraced the concept of generating authentic stories that resonate with consumers.

He points out that the Loeries also works to create an additional strength: the cross-pollination of ideas and the celebration of work across the region, which ultimately creates a stronger platform for industry stakeholders to create ground-breaking brand communications.

Entries for Loeries 2020 are now open. This year the Loeries calls for work that makes a difference and creates change. Entries will close on May 11 2020. More information is available at www.loeries.com.

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