There was a time when advertising was booming and creativity was frog leaping forward. This was in the ’80s and ’90s. As we opened up our economy to the world, there was a huge influx of ideas into the country and Indian advertising grew manifolds creatively due to the exposure it got internationally.

But over the last decade or so, creativity has taken a backseat and marketing has taken over advertising. This reflects in the creative output of agencies across all platforms. The newer generation that has taken on the reigns of advertising thinks on a tangent. Instead of taking creativity to the next level, we see a steady decline in creativity standards in advertising today.

There seems to be a tangible disconnect between brand propositions and the creative route taken to substantiate the claim. Dream-11’s “Dimaag lagana hai to Dream-11 pe laga” is one such example. Logic has been set aside and rationality has taken a beating. Conversely, sometimes the ads are too rational and there is no creativity involved. This is primarily so in endorsement ads and benefit display ads where the respondent is asking questions and receiving answers from the public. “Kya apke toothpaste me namak hai”, “Colgate” and “Dove” are some of the standout examples.

There are some sparks of creativity here and there but overall the creativity standards have declined alarmingly. It seems the baton of creativity was not passed on to the next generation and they are somehow managing the show without guidance. This is a huge loss to the Indian advertising landscape and we don’t know how the gap will be bridged in the times to come.

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