In Conversation With Ravikant Banka, Founder and CMD, Eggfirst Advertising
From engineering to advertising, how did the transition come about?
Engineering training deals with the exact sciences. That sort of exactness makes for truth and conscience. Engineering also calls for huge dollops of imagination. For without imagination, how is an engineer to invent something that never existed before. Engineers are masters at turning dreams into reality. So in that sense, is engineering any different from advertising?
I was in the thick of marketing strategy and consulting (with A.F. Ferguson & Co.) before I started Eggfirst. I wanted to get closer to consumers and connect with them some more. A full-fledged advertising was a natural progression from there. There’s nothing like advertising to touch human lives and influence consumer behaviour; perhaps on a daily basis. What’s equally important is, advertising is one step closer to action than consulting advisory. It helps us make a visible tangible difference to the lives of our clients and their consumers. It's a whole new way of thinking and Eggfirst is a continuous work in progress. It is my labour of love.
Is there a story behind the inception of Eggfirst and the name itself?
Advertising, I believe is all about emotions and emotions are not an exact predictable science. It’s about dealing with uncertain outcomes versus engineering where outcomes are reasonably predictable. This leads to the need for taking many decisions on your conviction. The name Eggfirst embodies that sentiment of taking decisions basis your convictions and moving ahead. Sometimes there are no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ definitive answers. In these situations, one just has to take a ‘call’ and move ahead with conviction. Fence sitting doesn’t get anyone anywhere. That is what the name Eggfirst connotes. It’s about taking a call with conviction and moving on.
And by the way, we haven’t left any space for competition here: if you look up Chickenfirst.com a smile is guaranteed.
If 5 degrees is a division and Eggfirst is the provider of end-to-end Digital Marketing/Social Media Strategy... then what is the difference between Eggfirst & 5 degrees?
The difference between Eggfirst and 5 degrees digital is the same as the difference between a whole and a part of that whole. 5 degrees is the digital arm of Eggfirst Advertising and Design, a diverse, multi-faceted, advertising agency. At the core, Eggfirst creates impactful result-driven Advertising Campaigns for brands. These campaigns express themselves across a wide span of elements such as Television, Print, Radio, Outdoor, Events, Exhibitions and Promotions, Sales and Marketing Collaterals, Direct Marketing and more. 5 Degrees Digital is but a small part of the extensive portfolio of services we provide, albeit over the last 6 years, we have become one of the leading names in Digital marketing services.
Any words of wisdom or dread to young entrepreneurs planning to set up an agency?
First and foremost, I would like to clear the general perception among young entrepreneurs that advertising is only about glamour and glitz. It is not. And newbies looking to make a mark in advertising must not be fooled into thinking otherwise. Truth be told, advertising is actually all about grit, long working hours, tight deadlines, and incredibly hard work. To make it big in advertising, one must possess guts, gumption, loads of confidence and finally, the ability to roll up their sleeves and slog it out till the end, not to say, a distinctively creative mind. That being said, I would like to impress upon youngsters that today, advertising is at the threshold of a revolution- the digital revolution. Digital marketing promises to be the game-changer in the advertising industry. If you are blessed with oodles of creativity, technological flair and analytical strength, well- the world is your oyster!
Who is Ravikant Banka behind the entrepreneurial veil?
I am just your regular bloke- affable, unpretentious and easy-going. I love my work and am happiest when I’m working on a new campaign or building a brand from scratch.
What are the changes you have seen in the advertising industry in the past decade?
The last decade has seen exciting new developments in the world of advertising. Most prominently, the medium of advertising has undergone a drastic change. What we are witnessing today- a titanic shift from traditional to digital marketing- is the result of the digital revolution that has caught the marketing world in its vortex. Everything around us is becoming digital. Most people get their daily dose of news, entertainment, information, etc., from the internet. It makes sense therefore, to shift the medium of advertising from traditional radio, newspaper and television to digital marketing. Digital marketing is extremely important, not only because of its rapid growth but also because it is essentially the future of marketing. Soon, digital marketing will replace traditional forms of advertising altogether.
Is Eggfirst still the "silent but active" agency it was until a few years ago?
There’s a lot going on at Eggfirst right now. We’ve completed eleven scintillating years in the industry, won awards aplenty, and over the last 6 years, become one of the leading names in Digital advertising. One of our recent successes has been the Cello Main Aur Maa film, an online brand viral video, which has garnered more than 5 million views in 26 days! We’ve notched up a considerable number of prestigious brands, adding to our already extensive portfolio of clients. We’re active yes, but silent, definitely not!