Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Indian Govt bans Bulk SMS for 72 hours

Indian Government banned sending bulk sms and mms for next 72 hours in lieu of very important Ayodhya verdict. According to some estimates, the bulk SMS business in India accounts for revenues of roughly Rs 20 crore every month.Bulk sms is a very effective and potential communication tool for many brands. This cost effective tool is being used as marketing tool by almost all major banks, corporate, brands, public services etc.

A very cost effective and direct communication medium is now banned for next 3 days; according to popular news channels' latest tweets:
@starnewslive and @ndtv. Stopping these services means, you won't get your morning news alert, your bank transaction sms, latest offer information in nearby mall and even a internal informative sms from your company (if they are using it).

On the other side, everyone knows how important is verdict about 'Ayodhya'. It's one of biggest national issue. This judgment is super sensitive in many ways, be it communal, political, cultural or historical. Surely, government is taking all steps to handle unexpected havoc after the judgment. However, I personally feel that this is more than what we can expect in a demographic country like India.

How can government cut off people from this very important communication medium? Why should all those suffer just because of Ayodhya verdict? Why should a marketer stop communicating with their audience for no reason at all? Will they ban Blogs, emailers and outbound calls, too? Are tv channels, radio stations and print next in line??

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Volkswagen breaks clutter with audio ad in today's Times of India

Ask any marketer, how tough is it to break the clutter today? Any marketer would it difficult to choose among plenty of media vehicles and ad spaces. It's never easy to choose right channel and right vehicle for your brand. But, how many times we think about quality of message? How many times we think about 'idea' behind it?

I saw a brilliant campaign in today's Times of India. Volkswagen, a German automobile manufacturer has come up with this innovative campaign in today's (21st September, 2010) . A full page advertisement on last page of TOI in any other case would never break clutter. However, Volkswagen did this with superb innovation built within advertisement.

Can you think of Audio enabled print advertisement? Can you think of a print ad that sings? Well, here it is. This full page TOI advertisement speaks!! Yes, they have attached an IR enabled light weight speaker on this advertisement and as soon as you open your paper, this light sensitive speaker starts speaking! A wonderful brand message with print ad, that would surely catch your attention! I am amazed!! Here are some pics...
As they call it 'Power of Idea', I think this is power of Idea. My friends have been tweeting and posting updates on facebook about the campaign. I am sure, people are discussing it at their workplaces and among their friends. This proves, good Idea goes beyond media vehicles and ad spaces. Such innovation can become talks of town within hours!
[Photo Courtesy: Varun Attrey]

Update 1: Just realized this campaign is also on Hindu