Well, it has been long since my last blog and the last time I published something was before I joined MICA. It has been just over a month that I have now been a part of an organization which is into Digital Communications. Just a thought which occurred to me quite recently is that whenever we read or hear digital marketing, the only thing which comes to our mind is digital advertisements or social media. Just so you guys know, it is much more than that. Keeping developing countries in perspective where not everyone owns a smartphone but has a feature phone or a basic mobile phone, any kind of communication directed to them turns digital. How is this possible? Let’s discuss it further.
For users having basic mobile phones, communication towards them using technologies like outbound calls where one can capture their mobile numbers and then use it for re-targeting is a very minuscule part of this digital act but what matters is the impact. For basic mobile phones, this is as digital as it can get. Of course, it isn’t Google’s right advertisement at the right place at the right time but still some form of infotainment through integrated voice response by giving a simple missed call can be magic.
Or else to keep you thinking, how about playing an advertisement when you call someone rather than a lame ringtone, how is this for innovation? Or even wondered what if Messi calls you, a football fanatic, how would you feel? Stay tuned to know more!
20.12.2012. He knows this date. They are coming! No one is going to survive! Mr. Johnson couldn’t believe what he was viewing. Being an ex-army officer, he knew how to combat this situation. But, holy crap! He looks around and no one is alive. They aren’t killed but murdered. He still hears distant voices. He feels something is ringing and there is a continuous sound playing in his head. Torturing him. It is the rise of the machines against mankind. However, he sees no robots or guns around. Still there is something ringing. He is unable to understand. He’s never been so confused and scared. And out of nowhere he sees a herd of dogs with blood on their teeth. It reminds him of the movie Breed. The dogs are tearing apart the human flesh. Oh wait. He now understands, it is not the wrath of god or nature nor the rise of machines, it is the rise of animals against humans. He sees vultures and eagles torturing humans. A group of vultures are attacking him. He is not surrounded though. He has dogs behind him and while running, he thinks that why are the animals killing only men and not women. He tries to console himself that the animals are not against the humans. Oh no! He sees an angel killing females. “Cupids are supposed to be good, right?!”, he shouts. But there is no one to hear him out. “It is a planned attack.”, he cries. He hears women screaming their heart out. This is the real wrath of animals. He is going to die. No one will survive this attack. He still keeps running and running. That sound is killing him mentally and the animals are hungry for his blood. Eventually, he sees a chimpanzee with a gun. His t-shirt reads ‘being animal’. Is this a joke? He never had imagined this sight ever. Mr. Johnson stops and looks in his eyes. Anger and pain is all he can see. The bullet is racing towards Mr. Johnson, the high-pitched sound is killing him, the dogs are still chasing him and the vultures want to see him die. He was the last man standing now. And he sweating and his wife is shouting,”Johnson, Johnson!” He wakes up and stops the alarm. He is frightened. He hugs his wife. “All are alive and everything is fine!”, he exclaims. She says, “Get ready for work, you silly fellow.”
Seeing the advertisement featuring her story, Natalie couldn’t be more proud of herself. The advertisement campaign was launched by a milk brand named Got Milk. Enjoying the ethereal view outside her bungalow, she remembered her childhood days when she used to cycle across the bridge, all the way to the other end of the city to play basketball. She was very passionate about the game and her dad supported all through her journey from being a school team player to owning her own team. Her dad, Ted, was a milkman and worked very hard to make ends meet. Although he always wanted Natalie to become a successful business woman, he never stopped her from taking basketball as career. Its been fifteen years and he has never regretted his decision. Natalie after winning the most important game of her career against the Shouting Skulls was asked to manage the team from the front. She did everything she could for her team. She wrote articles in various newspapers about the her team’s achievements. She never missed out clicking pictures of important milestones of her club and always created fond memories that all her peers could cherish. This attitude maintained the health and vitality of her organisation. Her relentless work towards her entrepreneurial venture was coming to notice. Mr. Portman, the head of Raatchi and Raatchi saw the efforts of Natalie and arranged a meeting with her. He explained how he had taken up a contract from Got Milk to launch their new product and how Natalie’s story would work wonders. He explained the concepts of associated marketing and Natalie without any doubt offered to use her story to market the milk brand. Ted sees the little girl in the advertisement and cannot stop his tears. Natalie asks, “What’s the matter?”. Ted replies, “I’m lucky to see your childhood days again and again.” They sit for a while enjoying their juice and as always, she rushes to work.
Consumerism is a much discussed topic for debate. The more we delve in the subject, we start to understand insights which we never could have in our first thought. The law of demand states that as the prices of the product fall, the quantity demanded by the consumer increases. If we have to reduce prices of a product, we need to have funds for capital expenditure. Once we setup the necessary process to increase production, on the other hand we also solve unemployment problems. Every person is a consumer and our task is to find out their needs. As an organisation, we need to have a customer-centric approach. Now there are many reasons for it. The first and the foremost are globalization and rise of the internet. The consumer is much more smarter now with the improved technology. He exactly knows what he wants and where he can find it. If we do not promote or protect his interests, our business will lose out and ultimately, we will go against the laws of economics and marketing at the same time. In fact, conscious consumerism is a great concept used by many NGOs. For instance, Make a Difference (MAD), an NGO working towards educating the under-privileged children uses the concept of conscious consumerism very well. The altruism of a few people motivates them to buy MAD t-shirts etc. which indirectly helps their target audience. This doesn’t only provide us with a sense of satisfaction but also breaks the vicious circle of materialism. Thus to end, I will say customer is god. The more we understand their interests, the better our services get making the world a better place to live.
We live our lives in parts and if we look back, we realize how our perception of fun, thrill, entertainment and satisfaction changes. As children, we used to wait for our school bus as the journey from our house to school was our definition of fun. When we entered college, celebrating birthdays by buying expensive cakes or dining at the most expensive restaurants was our new definition of fun. In fact, it was not only about dining but since we were eligible to drink, we had to order wine, especially red wine to show some standard. Subsequently, we entered the corporate world with loads of files, folders, excel sheets etc. which demanded so much and enervated us. Some of us also would fall short of stationery like staple pins, paper clips etc. for submission of our work for approval and gradually fun was redefined. College boys turned into urbane men who needed more thrill to take their minds off from the constant work emails. Nothing better than a roller coaster was the solution to that. For girls who were working women now, generally used shopping as a way to alleviate stress. I am sure all the websites like myntra.com, yebhi.com etc. made their life simpler. Now they could order almost anything online; be it a pair of stilettos, a dress and any accessory to go along with it. Being in a corporate attire for almost a week, shopping something new for their wardrobe was ethereal. But I guess, that’s what life is all about. If life had to be constant then most of the businesses would shut down and new fields of study would never evolve. Nothing would remain to titillate our brain. We could never have understood the power of subjects like economics, management, psychology etc. which are based on social dynamics. To summarize, a leaf has dry to give way to new life. It will change its colors from green to orange to yellow and, we know each leaf with an unique color represents the beauty of nature. Similarly, each step of our lives substantiates the beauty of life itself.
It is human tendency to visualize everything other than emotions and feelings. By putting on a psychologist’s hat, we get close to understanding, how tangible things also generate a certain feeling. Psychologists have done everything they can to divide people then it may be in terms of left-brained or right-brained personalities or even colours. By just taking a simple test, we are associated to a colour and one of them is blue. Most of us will fall under the blue category due to the generic attributes associated to it like emotional, loving, sensitive, idealistic etc. Looking from a marketing perspective, the colour blue gets an all-together new identity. For instance, why do most of the food chains across the world have a red coloured logo? Why does Tide still have a yellow coloured ring behind its name? This is because red colour induces hunger and most of the food chains like Pizza Hut, KFC, Hardees etc. have a blend of red colour in their logo. Similarly, blue colour induces a feeling of loyalty, compassion and tranquility in our minds. That’s the very reason most companies in India have a blue colour dress code. A few to name are Kirloskar, Cummins etc. If you have a good eye for detail, even WordPress has a blue user interface and for the matter of fact, Facebook has a blue logo and a blue UI. Thus, it is not only about nature having blue in it. It is perception of the colour blue that makes it so important in the business world.
Being an MBA aspirant, whilst preparing for multitude of MBA entrances, MICAT: An entrance for one of leading institutes for Communication, Media/Advertising and Marketing (MICA – Mudra Institute of Communications, Ahmedabad) has gained a lot of heed as it is the last exam for the season. Apart from the usual sections like Quantitative Ability, Logical Reasoning etc., it has a very unusual and an interesting section called creative writing. In short, it tests aspirants on their comfort with writing as a medium of expression. This is my first step towards its preparation.
“Humans are the only social animals having an ability to express emotions and feelings. It is this very quality which makes us bonded by various relations like being a friend, being a brother or a sister etc. In a lifetime, we play various roles and we live a different life in every role. However, if closely observed, till we find out our purpose of being in the world, we live life differently and the day we understand our purpose, we live an altogether a different life. Mark Zuckerberg: A Harvard University dropout chased his dreams and revolutionized social networking by creating Facebook. The day he realized, his prowess as a programmer, he followed his ambitions and truly marked a starting of a new era in the e-commerce industry. His life must be like never before. Indeed, we all live twice if we manage to find our sole purpose of being on this earth. Once we understand it, we will excel in any field of our choice and live our dream.”