The Reception


Must see


7 Soundbites

As this year’s Dubai Lynx draws to a close and arguably the great and good of the creative industries pack up and go home for another year, here are 7 soundbites worth reflecting on.

Ramadan Series Part 2

In Part 1 of our series this year, we explored data-driven industry insights. Rather than slowing down as is common belief, several industries peak during Ramadan, including beauty and entertainment. Next, we look into how to use data and insights to inform a creative strategy. Specifically, we analyze the top 5 trends of the best Ramadan ads on YouTube.

Return on Giving

With all the talk around CX today, it’s clear that avoiding hassles is not enough when it comes to delivering a consistent, positive customer experience. In today’s constantly evolving world, brands need to recognize that reducing customer hassles is a necessity, not a differentiator. Great customer experience is driven by creating benefits from a product's usage (beyond what is expected from a brand) and satisfying emotional needs or uplifting expectations. You don't get delighted when a brand gives you products that work or just good service. You expect that in today's times - more so than ever before. You get delighted by a brand when you get more than what others in the category give you or are capable of giving you. Delivering this rewarding experience across segments, lifetime values and individual preferences requires a reinvention across many elements in a brand's business model, with the (right) belief that a superior experience will lead to success. 

Q&A with Natalie Shardan

After earning her Bachelor of Arts, she joined BBDO Dubai in 2005. Natalie has since worked for Y&R, JWT, Mullen Lowe MENA and Nomads, where she worked as a Client Servicing Director before she joined Serviceplan in 2018. Natalie now has more than 13 years of experience in the advertising industry. What’s your golden rule? Be brave and get out of your comfort zone more often. If you don’t try new things you won’t develop or learn. Challenge yourself to do better every day and do it with passion. Who has been your biggest influence? It’s places and people. Starting with my parents that have always been brave and pushed me to do things differently and supported me all the way. Dubai, as a diverse city that has people from different walks of life. Living in this city has opened my mind and influenced the way I think.

'Be bold and brave'

“Bravo, my baby!” words I say to my 2-year old everyday, who is excited to wake up, test limits, try options, find smarter ways to play and play some more, ask WHY every five minutes and in the process, learn and find happiness every step of the way. I worry that this bravery will be restricted as he navigates and grows in the system. I am part of the system. And so, I introduce him to superheroes, princes and princesses, witches and wizards, scientists and warriors, athletes and world leaders to keep that light burning. I have never introduced him to a marketeer. I have never introduced him to a brave marketeer. And I can change that now. Omar Nour told us that if dreams don’t scare you, you are not dreaming enough. Hiding behind failures and excuses, not learning from them, is contagious and all around us. However, it is our responsibility to find that inspiration, that moment, hold on to it to turn it around, make it work, make it better, live with passion.

Upcoming Events


Join us as we launch our new series of Brand Conversations

Dubai Lynx Festival of Creativity is the biggest industry event in the Midd

Dubai Lynx Festival of Creativity is the biggest industry event in the Midd

Editor's choice

Dear male allies. By Elle Graham-Dixon.

A memo to the many wonderful male allies supporting us on International Women’s day. Thank you for your support. It can be hard to speak out about feminism as a man. Hard, in particular to feel as though you have the right. So sometimes you may accidentally say things that don’t help because, well, no one is perfect. Because I know you truly care, I hope that you’ll appreciate some gentle feedback.


IWD 2019: thoughts from the women in our network

This year, to celebrate International Women's Day 2019, we went to our network to ask them one question: Two years on from #metoo, and with recent reports showing the significant gender pay gap, what do you think we can do as an industry and individuals to move the conversation forward and make change quicker?


Imposter syndrome and how to deal with it

Congratulations!  You've just been promoted / picked up an award / won a big pitch but instead of giving yourself a well deserved pat on the back, you cannot shake the creeping fear that Toto is going to pull back the curtain and expose you for what you really are…a fraud - and sooner or later everyone’s going to find out, writes Tanya Livesy.

Think piece