dentsu India Team

thought leadership

This interview was originally published at SOCIAL SAMOSA.

Dentsu Creative’s CCO Joy Mohanty speaks to Social Samosa about his vision, the challenges that he is preparing for, and the future of the agency model.

After a major reshuffle in June 2022, Dentsu Creative has onboarded its new chief creative officer Joy Mohanty. He will be leading an all-new structure at Dentsu – with group CCO Ajay Gahlaut – one that combines all creatives under an umbrella and merges their victories and failures. 

As the world awaits to see how the new transformation at Dentsu 2.0 pans out, all eyes will be on Mohanty to sail the ship and continue to maintain the network’s winning streak at various international forums. Dentsu Creative bagged three Grand Prix at Cannes earlier this year. 

Mohanty speaks to Social Samosa about his vision for the network, the challenges that he is preparing for, and the future of the agency model. 

Edited excerpts: 

What will be your focus areas and your strategy as the CCO?

Though it’s still early days, I can feel Dentsu Creative being this massive talent hub with diverse streams feeding it, which is in the process of coalescing. The key thing for me to chase here is building and nurturing a culture around the work, that of creativity beyond silos.

What will be the newer challenges for you?

Some of it is from our current context. We live in a time where there is a surge of creation happening, as tech is forever bringing executional complexity down. It’s not just enough to be interesting but relevant as well, especially from a brand lens.

Also, having a purpose is not enough for brands. Walking the talk and doing good that is of personal relevance to the consumer is important.

As advertising continues to evolve, what do you think makes an impactful ad copy today?

From the days of Adam and Eve, the idea is Queen, and craft is everything else.

Dentsu Network had a brilliant year in 2021 and 2022 has been great so far too. How will you ensure that you keep the momentum going?

One of the ‘superpowers’ of Dentsu is its diversity, of disciplines and talent, which is all in one place. This allows us to create every possible solution to any given opportunity. Just feeding off this engine gives us a superb advantage to benefit our clients, and demonstrate to prospects what they’ve been missing.

What will be the biggest challenges and opportunities for digital agencies and creative heads as we move forward? How are you preparing yourself to face it?

I think it’s happy times ahead, for digital agencies or anyone in the marketing or ‘creation’ space.

I feel audio is making a huge comeback, especially on the back of podcasting. There is much potential for engagement and creativity there. What is interesting is that we are in a discovery phase and people are trying new answers.

Another area where brands can do a lot is with language on the internet, and how they interact with consumers. This is of significance in India, given our linguistic spread. Many brands have still to go beyond just an English and Hindi presence.

Retaining, nurturing, and attracting great talent is what every creative head obsesses about. This, we believe, is deeply connected to building culture, and we are inculcating a spirit of creativity that goes beyond silos. This is built on the huge width of talent and opportunity we have, and is the collective energy that brings us all together to create great work.

Dentsu has gone through several structural changes in the last one year. How do the clients look at this restructuring and what does Dentsu 2.0 look like?

I think clients welcome the fact they can turn to us for any conceivable thing they need, and every solution follows one roadmap. Every possible stream sits inside our office and works to one integrated plan.

What is your vision for Dentsu Creative?

It’s simple – great people do great work, and they’re all here.

I think we need to continue to chase format-agnostic ideas. I feel we need to move beyond attention metrics. I wish there was a way to measure how much an idea moved you (perhaps there already is!).

Today, many people have been born into a social-media world, one where cynicism sets in early. One can only navigate this world with authenticity. Poparazzi is a great example, an app that trashes selfie-culture, and encourages one to take photos of one’s friends, not of themselves.

Being authentic is at the heart of being creative.