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Random Articles
Vodafone 3G Adverts: personal Opinion... Vodafone 3G ad-How will it look like? I have been quite intrigued about something lately. And that is, the ongoing 3G hype in the market. Two prominent players in telecom industry have rolled out their 3G services(BSNL and Airtel). I have seen the TVC for airtel. What intrigues me is how Vodafone’s 3G ad would look like. Personally, I have been a fan of Vodafone’s ad for of course the high brand recall they have brought for Vodafone. And...
Ads – To be continued You must have seen the LG phone ad of Genelia D’souza trying to drive off when her car gets stuck between two other cars. And then a message is received on her cell phone….”you are late”… she tries to take someone’s scooty….and …?? It says “to be continued…” Yes, we are talking about, “to be continued” ads, or as I call them, Ads – To be continued …. “Cliffhangers”. Cliffhanger as per Wikipedia is an ending or stopping point...
Startups should be VISION Oriented or MONEY Oriented??... I had a brainstorming session with my colleagues some days back that being a start-up whether we should be Vision Oriented or Money oriented in approach. It was a difficult question to answer. We do face typical issues which I believe all startups face like managing cash-flow, development of idea, execution of plans, building strategy and off course sustenance. So while facing all that what should be our focus? During MBA days while studying and also while interacting with...
Haywards5000; Mardangiri and Hausla Buland... Company:      SABMiller India Brand:            hayward 5000 Advt Type:     Television Commercial and Street shows Advt Agency:  Jagran Solutions, India Advt Title:       Hausala Buland Theme:           Mardangiri My Views: The commercial has the theme of ‘Mardangiri’. A good commercial in terms of way of communication. The Sanjay dutt has an iconic personality of so called ‘Mard’; so he fits best in the category. In terms...
Twitter Campaign Anything4Jetta by Volkswagen... Twitter Campaign – Anything4Jetta Yet another superb campaign by Volkswagen, this time they have used Social media. It was like yet another normal office day, I logged in to Twitter and as a routine looked at the trends. It was #anything4Jetta at the top. It was curious to see what’s happening there. People are going crazy with it. I too get little deeper into it to see why Volkswagen decided to go Social. Why Social campaign by Volkswagen:  ...
Finally Munni ZANDU Balm ho hi gayi... Finaly ‘Munni Badnaam Hui’ songs controversy is ended up with a un-expected note that ‘Malaika Arora’ will be a new brand ambassador for Zandu brand of Emami. When all this exercise was going on.. I was just trying to figure out more information about following; Zandu Balm as a Brand and it’s Brand strategy? How does the word ‘Jhandu’ (pronounced same as Zandu ) came to the common language, with a meaning as ‘Fool’ or ‘one with low IQ’???...

mEducation : A new drive

Need not say that education is one among the most lucrative and evergrowing segment from business perspective. No doubt why huge investments are made by companies in education sector. Recently I got to know about Hungama’s tie up with Aptech. When I dig deeper into it, got to know about a new untapped segment to be aggressively tapped by Hungama, and the segment is called as mEducation. What is mEducation? mEducation means mobile education. While education sector already reached into e-learning and even DTH, the mobiled education was still untapped. What’s going on? Airtel and Hungama are aggressively moving forward to trap this segment. Some time back Airtel with Hungama launched  ‘CAT Fastrack’ pack – a 30 day crash course for CAT aspirants. On same direction Airtel then partnered with Akash Education Institute to air the coaching on their digital TV channels too. Hungama then partnered with Aptech (50:50 joint venture) The limited liability partnership is named as Aptech Hungama Digital Education, where Hungama team will create specific modules and courses with Aptech which will then be brought on media like mobile, DTH etc. Four verticals for courses will be, namely English and personality development, entrance examinations, K-12 segment and vocational education were identified by the team, as potential fields. Market news are indicating a potential partnership between Hungama and NIIT in coming future. What is Hungama Doing? Hungama is trying to focus on Entrance Examination and Vocational Education as two broad segments. Partnership with Aptech and focus on NIIT is showing its drive towards Vocational Education and now with Akash Institute its clear that they are aggressive for entrance examinations too. What can be predicted? On this drive, we can expect the potential partnerships by Hungama digital with companies offering online/offline coaching for CAT, Medical, IIT and IAS Entrance examination. How will the partnership work?? My views: Hungama being a larger company they have their digital media vertical well established. While partnering with the companies, they must be looking to leverage their knowledge capital i.e the faculties, resource and experience earned over a period of time. Using which, they can promote their products using their own digital media services vertical. I believe the potential partners may be finding an opportunity to connect with a bigger brand like Hungama, where they will be getting tremendous visibility with them At the same time, they might also have a fear of their brand getting diluted under the bigger umbrella brand of Hungama. Lets see how the things moves on and if any more direct competitors comes for Hungama in this mEducation...

Twitter Campaign Anything4Jetta by Volkswagen

Twitter Campaign – Anything4Jetta Yet another superb campaign by Volkswagen, this time they have used Social media. It was like yet another normal office day, I logged in to Twitter and as a routine looked at the trends. It was #anything4Jetta at the top. It was curious to see what’s happening there. People are going crazy with it. I too get little deeper into it to see why Volkswagen decided to go Social. Why Social campaign by Volkswagen:             If we look at the target segment for VolksWagen, we can observe that the demographics are changed a lot in last couple of years. 4-5 years back, to purchase a four wheeler in 12-15 lakhs segment; companies were targeting people in age group of 35-50 years. But now this has been changed to 25-35 years. It means more youth, which is likely to use internet. Social media is a hot trend today, people want to share every in-n-out with the social community. #Anything4Jetta Campaign:             The anything4Jetta campaign is leveraging this youth. The twitter campaign is giving it an avenue to reach to larger youth. More-over getting them participated in contest is creating an engagement. The competition is luring customers by offering some daily prizes for best tweets also giving an opportunity to win the grand Jetta itself. People are driving crazy for it. You can see 100’s of tweets every minute to gauge the success of the campaign. Not just that Volkswagen has given a support of traditional and print media to give a boost to this online campaign. My wishes to the team behind this campaign. Lets wish if I too be among the winners. 🙂 To know more about the campaign, Visit this link...

Business with Emotions ?

BUSINESS WITH EMOTIONS ? As the online communication has prevailed widely, the use of icons representing the mood of the writer has been a great step in this area. Before these symbols (emoticons or smileys) became so popular, I am sure there were much cases of miscommunication than as of now, however their importance is not only limited to chats, emails, instant messaging. They could be of great help in any type of written communication both formal and informal. The history says, A person by the name of Harvey Ball spent 10 minutes designing the first illustrated smiley faces in 1964 in Worcester, MA. He did this for a client who was attempting to ease that transition of two companies following a merger. So, even the start was a formal one. But some business owners are not happy with the use of emoticons. In a traditional sense they consider such use to be infantile and do not exude a professional approach to correspondence in a business-to-business or even business to customer environment. It is said that emotions have no place in business, They may be right in their approach , but the meaning of business itself has  changed so rapidly in recent years that, this view sounds to be clichéd. Now people are considered as an important asset in business and if there are people, emotions can’t be rooted out. So why can’t they express themselves in formal mails. I do agree that all types of smiley’s can’t be used in business communication but I am not talking about those. We can’t ignore the use of facial expression and body language in communication. Thus these smiley’s / emoticons help sender convey the meaning effectively. And if business communication is considered the effectiveness has the largest ratio among other factors. The use of emoticons is prevailing at a rate that I don’t think this area could be untouched by this. If not today this has to be the scenario after 15-20 years when the major users of this would be running the corporate world. Their most important application could be in the area of branding or advertising. Like MilkPEP, a dairy industry promotional group funded by the nation’s milk processors, has begun a campaign to evoke its distinctive milk mustache TV ads through the medium of text messaging by adding a milk mustache to the smiley emoticon. This was a forward-looking step taken by the company and the result is known all-over. So as the internet becoming a medium for advertising, these smiley’s may play a great role in targeting...

The Google Plus Strategy

Google plus has created enough Buzz now. The social media space is changing drastically. All the social media enthusiast must be interested to see the features war between the two companies (Facebook and Google) for their social networking platform There is a question running around about the success of Google Plus, as it has given two big failures as Google buzz and Google Wave. Hence a big chunk is skeptical about the success of Google Plus. While everyday new feature additions are coming up for Google, I am monitoring the same to compare it with Facebook, who set the standard in social media industry. There are two ways to go ahead your competitors. 1. Provide more value 2. Kill your competitor. Facebook when launched, it offered many more new things to the social community. The concepts of Social media adverts, Facebook Fan Pages for company, Facebook Deals, Notes, wall and much more. The value offerings are huge in terms of targetting, since it caters almost all social networking needs of different target segments. Facebook was a success as it was much better than existing social networking sites like Friendster, MySpace, Orkut etc. But what about Google Plus Strategy? Since Facebook has already invented a lot in social media space. Google seems to have chosen another strategy. Google is a big company, if they wish they can push Google Plus for another 5 years with massive input of money. They are launching a new feature every other day to compete with the Facebook. Lets look few of the following features: Facebook Wall – Google Stream Facebook Group – Google Circles Facebook Video Chat – Google Hangouts Facbook Fan Page – Google Entity Facebook Social Games – Not launched yet (But there is a news that Google invested 500 millions with Zynga so somthing will surely come up soon) (Facebook has recently launched ‘Sponsored Stories’ – I will surely write about it soon. 🙂  ) Overall, Google Plus is trying to provide the same features with little better UI/UX, to kill the dominance of Facebook. Not just that, if the Google Plus is able to drive in traffic in first 6 months (already 20 million users have registered in first 3 weeks of beta launch), they will start affecting the larger revenue stream of Facebook i.e. Facebook Adverts. If its been hit, it will be difficult for facebook to sustain their R&D to compete with Google Plus. The strategy of Google Plus is like ‘if you can’t be better, just kill your competitor’. Now lets see How Facebook responds to...

Print adverts Vs Online adverts

Out-of-home advertising (or outdoor advertising) is made up of more than 100 different formats. As ads continue to disseminate, advertisers must adopt strategies that address the target market and stand out among the ad clutter, leading viewers to notice, consider, and recall the ad’s message. So the question is which kind of OOH advertising to follow? Print advertising or online advertising? So print advertising, as per Ajay.J, AVP of SRS group, is a formidable tool and would work very well depend upon one’s objectives. For example thematic campaigns such campaign aims at reinforcing or modifying brand imagery. This kind of a communication needs impact and has to engage the target audience in a different manner – something beyond a few moments. They work nicely in stature building also. On account of a mix of functional and psycho graphical reasons, print is very effective in building stature around brands – that imagery we hold for them in our minds. Go back a couple of years and imagine full page Accenture ads with Tiger Woods over there, in nice, strong, white glazed newspaper sheet – things such as these could make them appear larger than life. Another scenario where print ads work best are when the need is for a mass reach: Sometimes, it is important to have a couple of million people see your communication right on the first day, or even the first few hours of the day. Print is unbeatable over here. But if you see online advertising, it is best when you need to have action oriented response. Online adverts are more measurable because of the PPC options and click through. It also provided high OTS-c certain messages need repeat exposure to reinforce the message or positioning in the minds of the consumers. And for this, online is the best possible option as it can do so with a high level of frequency, in a pin-pointed manner and at affordable budgets. Also it provides direct interface with the customers. It also leads a larger multimedia support. The only disadvantage is that it may get annoying for the customer to tolerate online ads like interstitials and pop ads. But if you see the 2011 statistics, 49% of the ad spends are on the adnetwork, 43% on SEO/SEM and a 30% on blogs. This shows ROI of the two depend on various factors, namely campaign objective, time frame variable, desired TA response and media consumption habits. It is the two used together which will give you a holistic...

AMBIENT MARKETING: EXPECT THE UNEXPECTED

If we sit and analyze the advertising world today, we may come across few developments. Wikipedia acknowledges mainly four of these. A decline in the power of traditional media, a greater demand for point-of-sale communications, need for precise audience targeting and increase in versatility. This led to the development of ambient marketing. Ambient was first used in relation to advertising in 1996 by Concord Advertising, a UK agency specialising in outdoor campaigns. As ANZMAC 2000 paper explains, it evolved from a need to apply a single term to what was an increasing request from clients for ‘something a bit different’ in their advertising. Clients, concerned with issues of cut-through, competition, decreased effectiveness and disinterested audiences wanted (and still want) advertising ‘with bite’ from their agencies. This push by clients for something different saw agencies placing ads in unusual places, such on as floors, petrol pump handles and backs of toilet doors – previously not considered as locations for advertising. Such campaigns did not fit neatly into existing categories like out-door, print, radio or television and hence a new term was coined. Wiki experts say it is the name given to a new breed of out-of-home products and services determined by some as Non-Traditional or Alternative Media. Ambient media advertising can be used in conjunction with mainstream traditional media, or used equally effectively as a stand-alone activity. The key to a successful ambient media campaign is to choose the best media format available and combined with effective message. Now it has become a standard advertising term. Ambient marketing is also called guerrilla marketing or place-based marketing by some, ambient marketing is marketing or advertising wherever customers happen to be, part of the immediate surroundings. Guerrilaonline.com says ambient marketing on Internet may be performed in form of placing relevant thing (an image of a stylish shoe in case of shoe retailer) as an avatar published with blog postings, commentaries or on social networks. No other forms of ambient marketing have been recognized by secondary research however an internet activity of businesses already points out that businesses are aware of importance of recognition of the brand with the relevant product images or logically associated subjects. So what are the effects this sort of marketing can have on customers??? Well for one, ambient marketing confirms better reach to the customers as it is showcased in public places. Secondly it is very cost effective though it needs a lot of effort in terms of newness, surprise, humour, creativity and audience involvement. The best part is that it offers instant spotlight on the brand and...

Ad Attacks

Companies spend a lot of money on naming their brand , researching about their audience’s needs, positioning it accordingly, targeting and advertising it, hoping their brand identity scores a basket in the image formation. And what do they finally end up doing? Ad attacking  their competitors. What do you call this? Another marketing stratagem? Some 7Ps jumbled magic? Or is it some plain tactic ignorance? Well I’d say the latter. It is not a space where ignorance would be a bliss. I feel ad attacks are a huge waste of investment. Why? This all takes a toll on your credibility level. Take the example of ODOMOS and Good Knight Naturals Mosquito Repellent Cream. The confrontation started between Dabar India Ltd. and Colortek Meghalaya Pvt. Ltd., when an advertisement appeared on Zee News Channel in 2009. The advertisement was launched by Colortek for their product Good Night cream, directly comparing the competitors brand to disseminate their supremacy. Objecting the advertisement of “Good Night cream” Dabar India Ltd approached High Court of Delhi. It raises doubt on the credibility of the brand. Also it is a sign of how insecure the company is of its brand. And if that happens.bam! Your brand image falls flat on the ground. Take the Rin vs Tide controversy. That explains it. It might just take your stocks to higher points for the weekend but it is only momentarily, not to forget the rivalry chain reaction you start. Take the example of Pepsi-Coke battle. It has been going on for years now. Sometimes though it can get you at par with your competitor, like in the example of Harpic vs Domex war. But usually you end up with confusing the customer even more like in the case of Complain vs Horlicks. As per corporate-eye.com, in the news of late has been the Dunkin’ Donuts vs. Starbucks taste test ads where Dunkin’ Donuts tells consumers that more “hard-working” people prefer their coffee than the high-priced Starbucks, “elitist” coffee.  Rumour has it, Time Warner is preparing to launch a comparative advertising campaign against Verizon. And now, Campbells is attacking Progresso with ads telling consumers that more Progresso soups contain MSG than Campbells soups do.  Progresso is responding with its own attack and its own Progresson Taste Challenge. So yes it is a never ending war. So what’s the solution? The answer is to hold back your brand’s integrity and become a specialist rather than a generalist in your product type segment and narrow down your brand focus. Then this way you can assure the quality of your brand...

Google Plus, What Next…

Social networking as a business has been evolved from connecting with friends on Friendster, building groups on MySpace to creating communities on Orkut and then to another world like Facebook which has set many social networking standards. Strategy: I always say Facebook renovates and Google innovates, meaning Facebook has done vertical integration or growth by building various features into single product, but Google is about acquiring new trends and doing a horizontal growth with multiple product lines. But now with the launch of Google Plus, it seems they have built a product which can work on Vertical growth strategy like Facebook. Even though Google has started it as an invite only launch but they surely will use the PUSH Strategy soon to divert the users to the Google Plus. Why Google Plus: Unlike Facebook or twitter where your content is searchable on internet, Google plus will have more secured networking features. Furthermore the Google already have a large user base on the products like Gmail, Orkut, Picasa or Picnik; the integration of it will create ease for users to easily adopt Google Plus as their friends will be some-how connected to it. Will Google Plus Lead to Orkut Minus? Orkut is not dead yet. It still as popular in countries like Brazil. So, what will be the Google strategy for Orkut now? Will they stop it or will they keep both social networking platforms running simultaneously? It seems awkward to have your two products competing with each othersL. Or will they migrate all the Orkut users to Google Plus?  May be its feasible as Google Plus offers almost all features of Orkut. Will Google Plus also have ‘Online Gaming’ as Facebook (Mafia Wars, Farm Ville etc)? I personally don’t think so. I differentiate Orkut (and hence Google Plus) and Facebook by two simple words. Orkut is about ‘Social Networking’ and Facebook is about ‘Social Browsing’. Orkut had a defined purpose of networking whereas the Facebook has changed it to Social Browsing, where the purpose is not defined. To make it simple, let’s look at it like this I open facebook and then decide what to do now? To see the pictures, play the games or to try different apps. Like Orkut, Google Plus may also keep the Social networking away from Social browsing. Hence they might keep features which are networking relevant only. Effect on Advertising: Google PPC is one of the most used online advertising platform. The Facebook entered as a Social Media Marketing Tool and introduced Facebook adverts with more targeted advertising based on user interest, age etc. Since...