'Give truth a chance'

Epica's Creative Circle will be about brands and political correctness. What will opinion makers like Beth Massa bring to the table?

Beth Massa, founder Ozarka

The Epica Awards, which take place November 15th in Amsterdam, are the only international industry prize that’s awarded by journalists. Its conference – with the theme ‘Will Responsibility Kill Creativity?’ – will be about brands’ role in society. To what extent are they responsible for a better world? How does it influence their communication? What does ‘purpose-driven marketing’ really mean?

Twenty tables occupied by CMOs, creatives, journalists, agency directors, opinion leaders, creators and scientists, all discussing the nature of our industry’s shared responsibility. The findings of these sessions will be collected and shared with the worldwide (industry)press.

Beth Massa, founding partner of sustainable supermarket Ozarka, shares her view on the subject in advance.

NA: What will you bring to the table during the Creative Circles and the theme ‘Will responsibility kill creativity’? What would you like to bring across?

I will bring the message that “the truth is out there. And it’s complicated.” The words “responsibility” and “political correctness” are so broad in their definitions they only slightly intersect. I know responsibility will not kill creativity, and in fact, is a tremendous source to draw from for creativity and inspiration. I can talk about this. 

NA: Shouldn’t we talk more about the game of advertising itself, instead of trying to save the world? Or are companies / brands and creativity the main tools (and the mains ones responsible?) left for that to happen?

From my perspective as a sustainable entrepreneur, advertising and marketing got us in to the environmental catastrophe we are into today. We have advertised lifestyle stories that in reality, completely contradict those images. And it is the same marketing and storytelling techniques that can pull back the curtain and reverse these environmentally devastating consumer behaviors.

NA: What is your favourite, preferably unusual suspect, purposeful campaign?

I love the Storyofstuff.org.

NA: What is our single most important responsibility as an industry, in your humble opinion?

To give truth a chance. To allow equal time to those who want to tell what happens to the planet when the Red Bulls and Starbucks and Nestlé's of the world sell a story that ends up trashing the planet.

NA: Where do you hope this industry will eventually head to? Could picture a perfect picture?

I am an optimist because all problems are solvable. The only thing we need is just the decision and commitment to solve them. The advertising world can play an absolutely critical role in sparking a revolution toward truly sustainable behaviour in a way that feels young, energetic, empowering, rebellious, momentous!

Do you want to participate?

If you would like to be part of Creative Circles, please contact kyra@adbusiness.amsterdam, +31-6-11303369. There are only 20 tables. Tickets for Epica’s Award Show (and afterparty) can be purchased here.

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