Hi! My name is Dmytro and I’m … a copywriter. I know, it may sound like in a scene of anonymous alcoholics meeting in a B-rated movie, and partly you’re right. We’re all addicted here. Ad-addicted, I mean. But our drug or alcohol or whatever is a process of creation. When you make something from nothing and this something becomes really awesome SOMETHING, you feel something that no drugs effect in this world can compare to. True?
Currently I’m based in Kyiv – the capital of Ukraine working for the local office of Havas (and sometimes – only, please, don’t tell my bosses – doing freelance work). In my opinion, Kyiv is probably one of the most underestimated European cities and you should definitely visit it before it becomes too mainstream. But you’d better do it in spring, summer or early autumn. Late autumn and winter sometimes are too harsh and depressive here.
That’s one of the reasons why a couple of years ago I decided to move south and spent almost a year working in sunny Dubai. These 2 cities are absolutely different at the first glance, but still they have something in common: the advertising business is quite young there comparing to the Western countries and creative industries are booming in both locations.
Dubai attracts visitors with warm climate, great beach life and tax-free business environment. While Kyiv could offer great local cuisine, cheap prices on everything including real estate, proximity to the main European business hubs and again – great creative potential! Only during the last year the world’s most iconic brands have chosen Kyiv locations for shooting their ads. Apple, Diesel, Lacoste and Lexus are just few in the list.
Kyiv is home to a lot of startups, film production studios and IT-companies that do outsource work for major brands in the US and Europe. Uber has chosen Kyiv as a headquarters for entire Central and Eastern Europe just recently, Ryanair launched several flights here and has plans for dozen more. I like this feeling of being in the heart of constant changes, I like to feel the pulse of new life, this booming fresh energy. You probably won’t feel it in stable societies like Western Europe countries or the U.S. And here I can say – we have a lot in common with the city.
I’ve been working in creative business for over 15 years and I’m still hungry. And probably this is the main secret of our job – being always hungry. Hungry for new ideas, awards, new interesting solutions, new challenges, new work. Hunger keeps you in shape.
And also – a copywriter like an experienced hunter should be always ready. I’m deeply convinced that the best ideas like the best film scenarios are taken from life. So the best ideas generators are excellent observes at the same time, they could become perfect spies in another life (and who knows – maybe they were the ones). Sometimes you see something: just a short episode of life, just a joke or hear an emotional phrase, and the next moment – boom in your head! – you know how to built the entire campaign based on it! And this is the best part of our work! We live for these moments!
I started as a copywriter on a local FM-station and I’d recommend that way of starting career to every copywriter who wants to succeed. Because when you have no pictures, have no colors, have nothing but words and sounds – you learn to use them like no one else! And the most important – you learn how to play with people’s imagination. It’s crucial, because no one likes dictatorship, and advertisement is not an exception. If you want people to do something, don’t dictate – let them make their own decision. Give them information and give them options to act. It’s like in humor – no one likes when you try to explain jokes, right? But everyone likes to enjoy the moment when he or she gets the joke right and start laughing.
The same stuff about ads – don’t consider your consumers stupid – they will pay you back with the same coin. Tell them stories, entertain them, love them and respect them, they feel it, believe me. Don’t listen that gibberish that people don’t have time for our riddles and stories, they should get a direct order what to do and that’s it. Pardon my French, but this is horseshit! Next time when you’re in public transport in, a queue or airport just notice what people do. Most of them play games on their smartphones or read. People like 2 things the most: great stories and playing games: give them one or another, and they’re yours! Yes, this is that simple but we either forget it or give up under the pressure of a brand manager who doesn’t want to risk.
How do I recommend to recharge creative batteries? – I think, you should be curious and open minded to everything in life. When you work on your ideas really hard, you spend a lot of emotional energy. Find something what can bring you fresh emotions: start a new hobby, try new sport, travel to new destinations, read, love, watch, breathe life! It may sound pathetic, but it works. Imagine you’re a sculptor – you need clay for your work. New information, new emotions, new experience – that’s your “clay” for your new beautiful ideas! Don’t stop and love what you do the most. See you in Cannes!