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Metro rails provide huge captive audience to advertisers

03-August-2004
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Metro rails provide huge captive audience to advertisers

The Metro railways in Kolkata and Delhi are a big opportunity for advertisers to capture an over 15-million-strong ‘captive’ audience. Delhi Metro Rail promises business worth Rs 10-12 crore per annum, while Kolkata Metro is already doing business worth this amount.

Amitabha Sengupta, Senior Brand Manager, Incoda Advertising, says with 10 million people using the Kolkata Metro every month, “in-coach branding through panels provides a unique opportunity to commuters to view them during rides ranging from 7 to 33 minutes from city’s north to the extreme south and vice versa. Out-coach panels of the trains also provide a huge opportunity for brand building”.

The opportunity to deliver the message in a captive environment, free from noise and distraction, leads to a higher level of retention. ORG-MARG has substantiated that a cross-section of people in Kolkata and its suburbs use the Metro not only for convenience and comfort but also because there is an element of aspiration in riding the Metro, making them a dream target audience for all advertisers. “About 96 per cent of commuters come from the Rs 14,000+ income group. Incoda is doing business worth Rs 5.5 crore and we have set a target of Rs 8 crore this fiscal. The Metro is certainly a big opportunity for all brands to reach the target group,” says Sengupta.

Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) spokesperson Anuj Dayal is confident that Metro advertising is set to take off in Delhi. “By 2005 almost 15 lakh people will use this transportation mode. This year Metro advertising contributed almost 20 per cent to DMRC’s annual turnover. This figure will see a substantial increase in the coming years,” says Dayal.

Having set his eyes firmly on DMRC, Kamra, GM (Marketing), TDI International Agency, a major player in airport advertising, says Metro rail advertising is their next big bet. “Sectors like telecom, FMCG, insurance, banking, etc., can use this platform effectively to reach target groups. From train panels to pole kiosks, everything can be used for advertising. Where else can one find such a large captive audience?” asks Kamra.

While advertisers are quite optimistic about Metro rail advertising, media planners in general have till now given a pretty lukewarm response to the medium. Most of them preferred to check its efficacy before including it in their list. However, Uday Pal Singh, Media Group Head, GroupM Media India, is confident that Metro rail advertising will pick up in the coming years.

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