August 13, 2013

dsc_8468The Philippine Association of National Advertisers (PANA), on its 55th year of upholding self-regulation and responsible communications, inducted its officers and board of directors last January 31, 2013 at the InterContinental Manila Hotel in Makati City. Also inducted were the officers and board of trustees of its advocacy arm, the PANA Foundation.  Chief Justice Maria Lourdes P.A.  Sereno graced the event as inducting officer and keynote speaker.

PANA envisions itself to be the locally and globally recognized and respected authority in the country in terms of effective, truthful, and responsible marketing communications, which are essential to the sustained success of the organization and its member-advertisers.  It aims to be an association of advertisers which is able to provide leadership, guidance, and support for the promotion of effective, truthful, and responsible marketing communications. Being a champion of self-regulation, consumer protection, values formation and the advancement in the practice of marketing communications based on global standards.

Stronger and Better PANA

“At the end of 2012, PANA announced its leave of absence from the AdBoard. For PANA, this is a necessary pause so PANA as an organization can respond to numerous changes in our industry and better serve its members,” said outgoing PANA president Margot Torres, SVP for Marketing for McDonald’s Philippines.

In her speech Torres shared some insights from a recent World Federation of Advertisers meeting, in which PANA is a member. She cited three steps for PANA to take in order to protect the advertiser’s right to market and keep its responsibility of protecting the consumer, promoting responsible advertising and good values. First is to open our eyes to change. Second is to is realize that the way we connect with our consumer has also changed, especially with the fragmentation of media and the explosion of digital. Third is to embrace that the way we work has changed.

“The role of the advertiser has become more critical moving forward. The challenge every advertiser faces is how to play conductor to multiple agency partners – it is like the conductor of an orchestra – without the music sheet that everyone can follow.”

Torres emphasized that PANA should stay vigilant and abreast with important changes in the world. “Let us broaden our view and look beyond the Philippines, beyond the very narrow view within our industry,” she said. Torres capped her speech with thanks and expressed her confidence that the organization led by the new PANA Board will lead to a stronger and better PANA.

The Best Is Yet To Come

In turn, 2013 PANA President Blen Fernando, VP for Marketing for Alaska Milk Corporation, welcomes the year with exciting news about the robust growth in our GDP rate. Noting that the opportunities arising from a bullish economic climate and rising consumer confidence and spending are ripe for PANA to mine, for member-companies to continue to flourish.

“Given this positive environment, it is timely to elevate PANA’s capabilities to global standards in order to address trends, developments and even threats from the dynamism that is taking place everywhere at such a velocity,” said Fernando.
Chief Justice Sereno in her keynote speech stated that in a sense our country is in a state of transition. “Transitions are exciting times.” As with every leadership transition, Fernando was asked what changes she will carry out.  She responded with, “If something is not broken, then we don’t fix it but we can build on it.”

For 2013, Fernando shared that the organization will focus on these three pillars:

The first pillar is PANA’s responsibility to truthful and responsible advertising.  “As the ultimate owners of the brands, the responsibility of truthful, honest and fair advertising starts and ends with us, regardless of the medium used.”
PANA will be deeply involved on the ways of improving the processes and strengthen the guidelines that affect advertising content, especially those that involve health, environment, families, women and children; push for the completion of infrastructures that maximize technology; rebuild an A-Team of at least 12 experienced talents in content regulation among our members and 12 in-training members; and help in expanding the reach of the processes of screening and arbitration beyond Metro Manila through the broadcasters’ chapters, especially on sensitive and potentially controversial categories.
“Along with our industry partners, we will continue to strengthen the ASC to accomplish this mission.” Board Secretary Clint Navales takes on this challenge as ASC President, with the support of Vice President Raul Alvarez and President Blen Fernando.

Second is the continuation of promoting marketing excellence through education, shared practices and exchanges with local and international groups. Treasurer Rudy Villar is working on more exciting GMMs. Beyond GMMs, PANA will work to address the needs of more senior representatives through round table discussions, reviving the involvement younger CEOs and having shared sessions with competent groups. PRO Bunny Aguilar will help PANA explore the ways on the digital world through technology-based educational sessions. PANAF Chairman Chairmaine Canillas leads our advocacies involving our aspiring marketing students through more compelling cases for our students’ competitions and strengthening our outreach programs.

Our third and last pillar, PANA will build business partnerships with key associations in the industry and other external stakeholders. These business partnerships should be ready to act on global developments that will eventually reach the Philippines. In Europe and even in Asia, advertising practices have been under the microscope, especially those that involve food, health and children.  We need to be ready to face these issues. Sandra Puno, PANA Director, will lead the sharing of these external developments with our members.  The other area is PANA’s launch of a business-building program.
“Now is the time to redefine our connections among industry associations to be more professional, one that will thrive through an objective and measurable approach. Through the partnership, we strive to also raise the level of excellence of groups we deal with. As brand stewards, our members clamor for business partners who will work with us to build a more dynamic advertising industry by providing business solutions.”

Auditor Yasmin Mallari has put together ideas, sub-categorizing business partnerships into local, internal cross category and global/regional. The business partnership program is set to be shared by the first Quarter.

Fernando encourages old and young to get involved and learn from each other. She emphasized that the talent and time members share is contribution to nation-building, no matter how small.

“In 2005/2006, we revitalized PANA and we have seen ourselves become good; over the past 2-3 years we have become better but we can still become excellent and become a great organization….The best is yet to come.”

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