OOH Amitesh Rao
Amitesh Rao
Director Brand and Media, MTS India
“OOH has an important role in generating brand awareness and salience metrics from a brand building point of view. OOH is also a great place for innovation; it provides the flexibility to bring alive the brand proposition in a unique and distinctive way.”
As Director of Brand and Media for MTS India, Amitesh Rao is currently focusing on developing the MTS brand into a key organisational asset that enables compelling propositions for consumers.

In his career spanning 12 years, he has created and managed companies and brands such as Pepsi, Nestle, Microsoft, etc. in various capacities.

A confirmed technophile and gizmo freak, Rao began his career with RPG Paging, where he pioneered India’s first retail distribution mechanism for paging. As an entrepreneur, Rao co-founded Applied Research International (ARI), a technology firm specialising in real-time simulation solutions and enterprise applications, and now a major global provider of technology solutions for shipping.

In conversation with exchange4media’s Priyanka Nair, Rao elaborates on how brand MTS has effectively tapped the OOH medium.

Q. MTS has widely used the OOH medium in its last few campaigns. What is the key strategy behind using this medium to its optimum?
We have been consistently using outdoor strongly across all markets from the time we launched. Out Of Home offers certain key advantages that make it very suitable for tactical messaging as well as brand salience.

Given that we operate across a number of geographies with an array of different products and bundles in each one; flexibility and speed of messaging is critical – OOH is well suited from this perspective as well.

Q. How effective is the OOH platform for MTS’ sustained brand building initiatives?
OOH has an important role in generating brand awareness and salience metrics from a brand building point of view. OOH is also a great place for innovation; it provides the flexibility to bring alive the brand proposition in a unique and distinctive way.

Q. How has outdoor helped MTS increase footfalls at its stores? How do you assess the audience engagement level?
Although, we have not typically not used OOH to drive footfall to a specific MTS outlet; catchment areas around key store locations do enjoy greater emphasis primarily as a brand salience tool rather than to specifically drive footfall.

Q. Does it bother MTS that there is no common audience measurement system yet in the Indian outdoor space?
We are keen to see the introduction of such a system. A significant proportion of our spends is in outdoor, and an objective measurement system will greatly improve efficiency and help optimise the spends as well as messaging.

Q. Is it always necessary to use innovation to deliver brand message in outdoor?
As mentioned, we primarily see two ‘avatars’ of OOH – one that is highly tactical, where the focus is on clear, actionable messaging and brand salience; innovation does have a role here as a means to magnify messaging.

However, it is the other avatar of OOH where innovation is an absolute must from a brand building and consumer engagement perspective.

Q. Could you highlight the most effective OOH campaigns that you have rolled out in the last six months?
There are many and they vary across all our circles of operation. However, some of the most outstanding OOH initiatives recently have been on our range of MTS MTag smartphones which included a superb innovation which allowed viewers to use a MTS Smartphone to project their own image onto a giant mock-up smartphone on the hoarding.

We have also used OOH effectively to promote Indian Idol’s MTS Golden Week, and for the MTS Super Zero campaign which launched a unique voice tariff plan in India.

Q. How much percentage of your marketing spends is allocated to OOH?
This varies from operation to operation and is dependent on factors such as the nature of the product, geographies covered, amongst others.

Q. What are the key factors that a telecom brand needs to keep in mind while planning to invest in outdoor advertising?
It is important to have a fine mix of geographical overlay with coverage and catchment areas. It is also important to have consistent visibility rather than sporadic bursts. Also, not to forget, clear and transparent mechanism to planning, buying and audit of OOH activities and the opportunity for innovation, especially with technology, are some of the boxes that should be checked while planning an outdoor campaign.

Archives: Interviews
 
Preeti Kalra
Associate Director (Marketing), Bayaweaver
Preeti Kalra
The essentials can vary based on the activity and the audience it is trying to reach. Also on what the content is actually ‘selling’. However the one key factor that does underline this process is description on the thought it is communicating. Something ambiguous or untactful loses the essence and the audience gets distracted. Clear and smart communication is essential.
Gaurav Gupta
Head, Integrated Marketing Communication, Tata Teleservices
Gaurav Gupta
The engagement factor depends upon the objective of the campaign. If the campaign is about the product launch or brand awareness, then ‘Wow’ factor can be used as an engagement tool. But if it is about increasing sales then the engagement factor can be completely different. It can be as simple as showcasing the product. So the objective of the campaign drives the engagement factor.
Chandan Deep Singh Dang
CMO, Tupperware India
Chandan Deep Singh Dang
Brands must be clear about the presence of its target consumer at the on-ground locations. The location must be such that the consumer has time to connect with the brand, absorb the message and hopefully that generates interest leading to action... A creative blend of activity design and messaging, while maintaining the authenticity of the brand, is vital for any campaign of the brand. Finally, the execution of the on-ground activity has to be par excellence.
Sanjeev Goyle
Chief of Marketing - FES & Business Head – AppliTrac, Mahindra & Mahindra
Sanjeev Goyle
The outdoor industry needs to be more organised with structured operations and feedback mechanism; campaign measurability and execution excellence can be the hallmark for OOH media. Innovation would sustain the outdoor medium for a long time. Trust is built by the way you see and perceive a medium and the results it gives.
12345...