Good work should make you nervous – Havas CEO Gregorio

Rachael Micallef
By Rachael Micallef | 17 November 2015
Anthony Gregorio

Good work should make you nervous, Havas Australia CEO Anthony Gregorio says, noting that with the market fragmenting, taking a creative risk is more important than ever.

Gregorio's agency Havas recently released the first above the line work for Wotif-owned Lastminute.com.au, taking shape as an over-the-top, cheeky execution, stemming from its brand platform of 'live last minute.”

While the work is a bold move for Lastminute.com.au's first big brand campaign, Gregorio said work like this can only come from brands and agencies taking a risk.

“Work has to make you feel a little bit nervous,” Gregorio said. “In this day and age, with how fragmented the marketing environment is, I think taking a risk is more important than ever.

“Not risk for risk's sake, but a calculated and well educated risk is incredibly valuable.”

While the debate between art and science is always one that crops up in creative circles, Gregorio isn't advocating throwing research by the wayside. But he said irrespective of the amount of empirical data a brand or agency has, the creative process involves a “leap” at some point.

“I'm not anti-research, I'm certainly not against taking a bit of time to think things through, but I do think some clients use research the wrong way,” Gregorio said. “They base their decision on research as opposed to using it as a guiding tool.

“At the end of the day, even if you use qualitative groups you can’t be absolutely sure and sometimes you have to rely on your marketing team's experience and the experience that your agency has.”

The Lastminute.com.au campaign was launched recently and will be in market throughout November.

Wotif Group director of brand marketing Amanda Behre told Adnews that the campaign aims to drive brand preference for Lastminute.com.au and therefore build sales.

Behre said that “it's been fantastic to work with a creative agency who isn't afraid to challenge us and I think we've ended up with a brilliant campaign because of it.”

Gregorio said that while the Wotif group are focused on results like any good business, it knows to get results it's important to be a “little bit left of field”.

“With the way the world is there is a lot of conservatism by clients,” Gregorio said.

“It's a tough old world and its easy to understand how that happens but when you’re in a position and you have the kind of challenges that lastmintue.com has, you need to kind of shake it up.”

“They've been quite fearless.”

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