"A lot of very creative and new ideas are being developed right now"

by Alexander Krei

Regardless of the coronavirus, the association Eyes & Ears of Europe wants to present its awards again this year. These days, CEO Corinna Kamphausen draws attention to the creative ideas emerging from the crisis.

The spread of the coronavirus is causing deep cuts in social life and the economy is feeling the effects. Of course, the crisis does by no means stop at the media industry. Therefore, the industry association Eyes & Ears of Europe has also been facing challenges in recent weeks. "At first, this is – as with all small, medium-sized and large companies – also very hard for us", says CEO Corinna Kamphausen and refers to the regular academies which recently had to be cancelled unavoidably. The realisation of larger events is also uncertain at present. In addition, personal networking is no longer possible – an important aspect for the association, which of course cannot be fully compensated for by digital media.

But even in uncertain times, Eyes & Ears of Europe wants to be an important contact and inform its members about possible solutions, tools and assistance. Therefore, the focus is clearly directed towards the future, e.g. July, when the eSports Day is scheduled to take place in cooperation with the City of Cologne and other partners. In any case, Corinna Kamphausen has positive news to report on the industry. "Now, a lot of very creative and new ideas and campaigns are being developed, even though – or perhaps because – funding is limited," she says. At the same time, more linear television is being consumed again. This is "indispensable for news and information", emphasises the CEO.

Additionally, there is also an increase in streaming, which in turn benefits the many streaming services. In addition, the agencies have very quickly adapted to remote work. This means that creative approvals can now often be carried out via video calls. And then there is another piece of good news for creative people – this concerns the annual Eyes & Ears Awards, which are now being presented for the 22nd time. This year, the awards ceremony will take place on 16 November in Munich. "Until then, we hope that we are all out of the woods again and have stabilised – and above all that we can meet, exchange ideas and celebrate together," says Corinna Kamphausen. 

Eyes & Ears of Europe

"What makes our industry unique
and strong, is our creativity."

Corinna Kamphausen,
CEO Eyes & Ears of Europe

Regardless of the Corona pandemic, the countdown is starting as planned: Since April 15, the submission portal has been open for the only competition in which all marketing, design and promotion creatives of the German-speaking media, but also beyond, compete against each other. Kamphausen is also optimistic about the competition. "What makes our industry unique and strong is our creativity. And we will certainly see a lot of good and exciting things this year," she is convinced. "From the most diverse formats and streaming platforms to the various campaigns against Corona, which have now been created in no time at all and can be submitted as 'non-profit social spots', we will once again be able to see a great deal of creative diversity from all over Europe."

Of course, the EYES & EARS 2020 does not only include the Awards, which will bring to light all the creativity of the industry. Rather, the association is once again focusing on several event parts in November, including the Conference. In addition, the promotion of creative young talents through the well-established "New Talents" competition will be part of the event. "Our day-long event offers a wide range of current topics, cases and challenges: New Talents, high-ranking keynote and international speakers present and discuss with the participants", says Corinna Kamphausen (photo) about the plans for the EYES & EARS 2020.

One of the innovations of the EYES & EARS 2020 is the new cooperation with a partner country. "In these times it is even more important that we Europeans unite and strengthen each other", emphasises the CEO of Eyes & Ears of Europe. France with its creative scene and movement will be the first to start. A first preview was already given last year when the presentations of W9 and Gédéon from France were so convincing that now other French TV stations and agencies should be given space. The goal is clear: "This way we learn to understand them even better, can intensify the cooperation with the respective partner country and gain even more relevance there", explains Corinna Kamphausen.

What this would look like was supposed to become clear in the summer – at a meeting of the Eyes & Ears members in Paris. However, this falls victim to the Corona pandemic and had to be postponed for the time being. Next year, Corinna Kamphausen promises, it will be the turn of another partner country. "After all, Europe is very diverse and inspiring," she says. It is to be hoped that the virus will be defeated by then at the latest.

This article was originally published at DWDL.