Equipped with six specialist units whizzing in different facets of communications, Madison is all set to enter the domain of in-film advertising and marketing of films and music. The group has sought to kick-start its operations in this upcoming field by acquiring an entertainment firm operating under the name of TeamWorks fp&e.
The new outfit, with an authorised share capital of Rs 1 crore, will operate under the name of Madison Teamworks fp&e (Mates). Brainchild of Darshana Goradia (ex-Sony TV) and Sooraj Bhalla (executive producer of Hindi feature film 'Sharaarat'), Teamworks film promotions & entertainment (TeamWorks fp&e) has clinched business over Rs 3 crore and has a roster of 14 clients like LML, Frito Lays, Reebok, Castrol, etc. TeamWorks fp&e is currently working on several films including AB Corp's 'Virudh', Creative Eye's 'Aabra-ka-Dabra', Entertainment One's 'Waqt', and various films from Ram Gopal Varma's 'The Factory'.
However, dwelling on the latest venture, says Sam Balsara, Chairman & MD, Madison Communication, "We and our clients are constantly looking for new ways to reach the consumer in an impact-full manner and in least cost. The high cost of conventional media accompanied by the growing clutter has made in-film advertising an exciting and viable opportunity. On the other hand, producers who are also constantly under pressure of making more lavish productions and then finding ways and means of meeting such expenditure are now more open to commercial exploitation of their properties. In keeping with the Madison philosophy, we will offer a highly specialised expert service in this area in a completely transparent manner. Between Madison, Darshana and Sooraj, I believe, we have what it takes to make a successful foray in this area - an understanding of brands and their requirements, winning client's trust and confidence, creative abilities to weave brand stories into film plots, an understanding of producers' concerns and beliefs, a knowledge of what is happening in the film market and finally, the selling skills."
Considering the fact that most of the A-category films in India are extensions of life's and lifestyles, there is always room for relevant brands to be absorbed in the script. Normally, for in-film advertising, brands operate on communication platforms such as presence, utility, benefits and values. Besides, what is also very important for any brand placement is 'relevance'. The storyline, script, actors and the primary TG of the film has to be relevant to the brand.
TeamWorks fp&e has successfully managed to get Shah Rukh Khan to wear Levi's jeans with Reebok shoes and have a cup of coffee at Café Coffee Day or a slice of pizza at Pizza Hut. All this happened in the film 'Main Hoon Naa'. A major part of the film was centred on youth, hence the proposition turned out exciting for the brands.
Let's have a look at yet another example of their work. In 'Kyun Ho Gaya Naa', the lead actor Vivek Oberoi is featured as a rally enthusiast and in tune with that, his introduction in the film is dressed in an overall with Lancer, Castrol, Ceat and Cafe Coffee Day logos stuck on it. An extensive rally sequence shows the actor zooming ahead in an interestingly designed Mitsubishi Lancer, at the pit stop the Ceat Radials were changed and Castrol GTX Magnatec is used with close shots of the product pack and the logos. Even the graphics were much like ESPN's actual rally coverage, with the advertiser's logo appearing on the screen.
TeamWorks fp&e is already working on several films coming from productions houses like UTV, Creative Eye, The Factory, Entertainment One, Red Chillies, AB Corp, etc. An Amitabh Bachchan in the morning jog, clad in Reebok tracksuit or Sanjay Dutt working in a garage, recommending Castrol GTX, does create an extra impact on the movie-buff Indian consumer.
However, with all these assignments already in the queue, it is believed that Mates - the new venture of the duo, would certainly begin with a bang.
Says Goradia, who would lead Mates as the chief executive, "I am sure that advertiser's spends in this area are going to grow in leaps and bounds in the near future and our joint venture with Madison enables us to operate on a wider canvas and with adequate resources to get a good share of this market. Madison is like a dream come true, not only because of its enormous size and reputation but also because of its liberal entrepreneurial ideology. I have dealt with Madison Media when I was with Sony and I believe the organisation deserves respect for its objective and professional outlook with a focus on deliveries."
Bhalla, who would be the content chief, takes a content provider's stand. "I believe the new venture will turn under-utilised resources of content into profit for large number of producers. Also, we will be now in a capacity to inculcate a corporate and professional culture in the fraternity, which is much needed. On the whole, the marriage with Madison will facilitate entry into untapped areas and markets, quicker and at lesser costs," he observes.
With Mates, the Madison Communication's squad will have seven specialist members in a row - with other units being specialised in creatives, media, outdoors, rural, PR and retail. Most Madison units have achieved substantial growth in recent times with hordes of new business acquisitions across units, notably, BenQ, Bajaj Capital, Marico, McDonalds and Airtel. A recent Economic Times Survey has ranked Madison Media as the second most admired agency and Madison Creative as the 12th most celebrated one.