Thursday, September 17, 2009

Case study: How to communicate with different audiences for same product?

Today, we will talk about how the same product is pitched differently to different target audiences. We will use two great advertisements from State Bank of India, India's largest Bank. Both the ads are about Life Insurance products from SBI but are clearly aimed at different target audiences.

In the first ad as you can see above, the setting is distinctly rural to appeal rural viewers. We can easily interpret through the body language of the hero(and the detailing of the tampering process)that he has no better work to do. The viewers can easily identify with his need for a life insurance when he is caught tampering the poster of the local hoodlum/politician. Thus the ad is influencing the approach of target audience towards life insurance by simulating a real life and believable situation. The situation very well sums up the tagline 'Kahin bhi kabhi bhi' (wherever and whenever).

The second ad conveys the same message but in a very subtle way and is strongly emotional. The ad is cleverly focussed on elderly middle class citizens who are financially independent and are free of family responsibilities. The positioning is clearly for elders who are 'Young at heart' and who don't want to miss out on any of the life's excitement just because they are physically old. This positioning is depicted in the way two sisters deny to be treated as old people and the way they enjoy their 48 hours long journey(some memorable moments include scenes wherein sisters play cards and wave at children standing along the railway route). The bonding between brother and sisters is used considering the family values of the target audience.

What is the secret of the success of these two ads? Though there is no single reason, I think, one of the reasons is that the target audience can quickly identify with the emotions, values and messages that the ads convey. This is important because the message in most interesting ads is lost by the target audience if the emphasis is merely on making the ads attractive and appealing. You may think about other reasons for success of these ads.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Why Social Media is critical to marketers?

I had registered myself for the ‘Digital Marketing World’ a virtual conference arranged by Marketing Profs. While browsing through the topics of webinars, I stumbled upon a very interesting webinar on Twitter success stories. Many of us think that social media is just another fad and will quickly fade away. However, social media seems to get bigger by the day. E.g. of the total visitors to twitter, 41.7% belong to the age group 35-49 years, followed by 19.6% in 25-34 years(and we always thought people in age group 25-34 are socially most active than any other age groups). Most surprisingly, 16.6% visitors belong to age group 55 and above. The number of active internet users in the world is also mind-boggling. There are 625 million active internet users in the world whereas this number is roughly 230 million in Asia-pacific. Can marketers afford to ignore this silent revolution?

What’s the secret of this incredible growth in active usage of social media? In my opinion, there are two most important reasons. Firstly, social media harnesses the power of anonymity. Secondly it is the only ‘many-to-many’ mode of communication that we have developed so far. While the anonymity lends power to consumers to speak their mind freely, uniqueness of this mode of communication lends power to marketers because they can not only communicate with consumers but get a feedback from them almost in real time.

Though the whole concept is still nascent and is evolving, marketers cannot afford to ignore this revolution. The webinar also talks about some companies which have woven their marketing strategies around social media.

Here’s how you can visit the virtual conference: