Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Bike for dummies???

You must have come across Bajaj XCD advertisement while watching IPL. The advertisement talks about free bike challenge. The free bike challenge goes something like this - “test ride the new XCD 135 DTS-Si. Thereafter if you buy any bike we will pay for it”

Having a good product is no longer enough. You also have to be able to tell the story of your product and gain trust of your customers in a world where nobody trusts anything.

But surprisingly, story telling is not so easy and specially to the Indian middle class and youngsters in the middle segment, to whom the bike is being targeted. The advertisement tries to sell aspirations when in reality; consumers of this segment are rationale buyers.

The marketing campaign cracked by O&M is very conventional which will not work because the terms and conditions are scandalous.

There are 13 terms and conditions mentioned on the Bajaj auto website which are not shown on the advertisement. After reading the terms and conditions you will realize how deceptive is the free bike challenge. Few of the decisive terms and conditions are as follows:

1. The test-ride challenge offer is made by Bajaj Auto and its select authorized 2-wheeler Dealers

2. The offer is valid only after taking a test ride on the Bajaj XCD 135 DTS-Si and on purchase of either the Bajaj XCD 135 DTS-Si or any motorcycle model of any manufacturer in the 100-135 cc engine capacity within 15 days of the test-ride.

3. (Most stirring) The decision of the Bajaj Auto Dealer based on the result of the draw shall be final and binding and is non-contestable. No correspondence will be entertained on the same.

The same product’s advertisement by O&M of Bajaj XCD 135 DTS-Si where the ad opens with two girls in a house, dressed in leather, fighting sleekly against each other in filmly style martial arts to be the pillion rider. Marketers think women are dumb enough to fight over a pony 135 cc bike. Or the consumers watching the advertisements are dumber…I think the marketers are the dumbest of all. Storyline is not really bad but this ad would have been more appropriate for some huge and premium segment bike.

Mistri diagnosis: All marketers tell stories. And if they do it right, we believe them. No marketing succeeds if it cannot find an audience that already wants to believe the story being told.

An advice to marketing team of Bajaj and O&M- "Make your story bigger and bigger until it's important enough to believe."

Author: Sanjay

Monday, April 27, 2009

Mistri Bomb: SRK – The God of all Brands…

Recently I came across a brand philosophy of world renowned advertising agency Saatchi & Saatchi called 'Love Marks'. According to the 'Love Marks' study, Shahrukh Khan is the most loved brand in the world. Since then I am trying to figure out why he is being loved so much by the audience. Is it for his roles in movies like ‘Om Shanti Om’, 'Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi’ and ‘Billu Barber’ or for his flicks in movies like ‘Chak de India’ and ‘Swades’.

If we look at this from a marketer’s perspective, two suppositions can be made - firstly, SRK thinks his audience are foolish. Secondly, this is what the audience want and that they buy into such amateur movies, watch and make them a hit on the box office. The second supposition is more valid as the Indian audience today largely want movies which are out of the world and not realistic. That is why they buy into such spoofs and love stories which can never be practical in nature. SRK is a good marketer as he is being able to understand the tastes and preferences of his target group very well and deliver movies which appeal to the target group.

Mistri’s Diagnosis

Being the most loved brand in the world is a great achievement, but where is this going to take Shahrukh khan is a big question? From Kolkata Knight Riders to Red Chilies production, SRK is leaving no stone unturned to fulfill his entrepreneur aspirations. But in this process, SRK is a brand which has emotional appeal among the audience is seen getting commercialized and may lose his credibility. Therefore it’s a challenge for SRK to manage his brand image smartly.

Author: Ramesh

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Loyalty beyond reason

The phenomenon whereby customers are so enamored with a brand that they ignore price, convenience, and competitor parity. This shows that customer behaviour is emotive rather than rationale response.
94% of Japanese women in their twenties own a product made by French luxury brand Louis Vuitton. Although Louis Vuitton charges 20 % more for its product in Japan than in France, 40% of entire nation own one of its products. Part of LV’s inflated price tag in Japan is the result of cost of shipping .But the primary reason for inflated price is brand itself.

According to a study it was found that shoppers are willing to pay up to 200% more when their decision is based on emotion rather than reason. Today early morning I got an sms from Vodafone communicating “find out if you and your partner will have a baby boy or a girl in your life” sms kid (your name) (name 2) to 51515.This is an example of how MNC’s like Vodafone are trying to tap emotional appeal of Indian consumers.

To tap on the emotional appeal of consumer branding plays an important role. In 2008 $654 billion was spent on branding. Today anything with a brand name is vulnerable and anything without one is an opportunity.
Author: Sanjay

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

New India vs. political class

INMA World Congress in Beverly Hills, California awarded lead India campaign as the 'Best of Show' award for community service also picked up the first prize in the 'Brand Awareness Across Platforms', the 'New Brand / Production/ Audience Development', and 'Public Relations and Community services' categories.

The emphasis of lead India campaign is on new India vs. the political class. Is it fair that a country as young as Independent India should be governed by the oldest set of Parliamentarians in the world?

In this general election more than any other time, there seen to be a complete disconnect between politics and the new reality. The nearly 20 million new voters of 1991 have grown up in an India where possibilities are endless. More important they believe that tomorrow has to be better than today.

This election is the first in which men and women born in 1991 will cast their votes. This new generation has grown up in an era of liberalisation and globalisation. Seen against the rise of 300 million middle class. It is clear that consumer economy is taking root.

The major concerns of today’s youth are burgeoning middle class, a slowing economy. Creeping intolerance, a terrorist challenge and a growing voice in the world. Yet the issues being raised in the campaign are largely about caste and religion. The debate is about yesterday not even about today…

Mistry Diagnosis:

I call these political campaigns as a marketing mix disaster. Considerable flaw in targeting and positioning…Karnataka will vote tomorrow and its upto the youth to take charge It is a myth that being small in number, educated civil society cannot influence electoral outcomes. Most of us are not motivated to engage with the political class. Many abstain from voting because they believe that they are small force to change the ways of Indian politics.

Victory margins are narrowing, so every vote makes a difference.

Author: Sanjay

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