The BAV (Brand Asset Valuator), touted as the most powerful tool in Y&R’s (Young and Rubicam) global arsenal, has finally made way, in its true form, to India. The move is seen as a significant step from Rediffusion YR in establishing itself as an agency to reckon in the Indian advertising ecosystem.
The BAV is used worldwide by leading marketing companies for diagnostics and understanding a brand. The proprietary tool was first unveiled in the United States in the mid 1990’s by YR and has since become a strong offer from Y&R. It is conducted annually in over 50 countries. India too would be conducting the BAV on an annual basis.
To attain the same rigour and expertise as elsewhere in the world, the Indian BAV study, undertaken by Rediffusion YR, covered 4800 respondents, over 100 categories and more than 1350 brands. Y&R global teams worked with Rediffusion YR to finally process the data and arrive on detailed brand insights.
The BAV essentially diagnoses brand health, the imagery that it has, the archetypes that a brand is part of and whether the brand architecture is in line with the company’s vision and future readiness. It tells a brand about consumer segments that are loyal to the brand and it can also help in carving out loyalty strategy for a brand. BAV can educate a brand on its placement viz-a-viz the category it competes in and the mindshare that the brand enjoys.
A deeper look into BAV in fact brings out a more strategic consulting side to it and to the conversations it can have with clients. BAV can guide a brand into other power brands that it can partner with to create a more robust platform to connect with its consumers. It can also advise brands on the kind of celebrity it should get to endorse itself. BAV can also advise on the areas and growth opportunities that brand can venture into and the success rate it can attain in new product extensions and categories.
While BAV is a very strong differentiator for Y&R globally, and the Rediffusion YR office is hopeful that the same will come in place in India too, one of the biggest challenges facing Rediffusion YR would be how BAV can also work on clients that are not in the agency’s fold.
Gautam Talwar, Chief Strategy Officer at Rediffusion YR explained that the proprietary tool had guidelines around the exclusivity clause on who it can go it or not but he asserted that while BAV’s first benefit is to existing clients, it also would be a tool that can assist non-Rediffusion YR clients.
An entry point
One of the biggest advantages of BAV will be its ability to allow Rediffusion YR to connect with new clients. In a conversation with exchange4media, Gordon McLean, Global Managing Partner, Young and Rubicam Group explained, “I would say that in every one of our offices, everywhere in the world, we have probably started a discussion and ended it as an actual client relationship. I am hopeful for this in India as well. The first reason we do this is for our own clients so we have deeper insights that can help a client’s businesses and add more value to them. But it is also the most powerful new business tool that Y&R has ever had.”
McLean is convinced that BAV’s strength comes with its deep focus on brands. He said, “The most important thing that clients have is brands and they are looking for insights into their brands. BAV gives us an opportunity to have a point of view and a perspective on the brand. For us, as an agency, it is a powerful tool because it differentiates us. I believe the same will apply to Rediffusion YR too because this takes the conversation to a level that is more about insights and intellect in comparison to some of the more common conversations that can transpire between an agency and client.”
Rediffusion YR’s steps to augment BAV will continue in days to come. Some specific plans have been put in place for next week when a team of two from Y&R’s New York office comprising Y&R’s lead research strategist and lead BAV analyst would spend a week in Rediffusion YR offices. Everyone from the planning group would delve deeper into BAV so that all analytics can be done in India post that and the teams become conversant enough to absorb BAV as tool in its day-to-day planning for clients.