Riding on a diverse portfolio of clients, Webchutney looks to capitalise on the increasing importance of the digital medium and leverage it for its new and existing clients effectively.
Siddharth Rao, CEO and Co-founder, Webchutney, told exchange4media, “Our growth and business strategy will evolve in tandem with brands adopting digital at the core of their marketing efforts or including it at the outset in their marketing mix as they gain confidence in optimising the brand experience and drive engagement by bringing it alive online.”
He further said that the agency was confident to see itself at a firm position in the digital media space. “We see ourselves positioned strongly in leading the digital media space with a larger presence as the medium gets absorbed at the grassroots. With new technologies and the emerging media assuming a more definite role in adding brand value, we will continue to push the edges through innovations in everything new in digital that becomes relevant in the Indian digital landscape.”
As per Webchutney’s survey of online ad spends of top 1,000 marketers in India (Digital Media Outlook 2010 Report), the total online spend share of marketers in the Indian ad pie was estimated at around 3-4 per cent in 2009-10 (around Rs 603 crore). This is set to grow by 45 per cent in 2010-11, making the Indian online market (top 1,000 marketers) worth Rs 876 crore approximately. The top 1,000 advertisers will account for 74 per cent of the overall ad market in 2010-11, according to the study.
Discussing the plans further and how the agency was looking to utilise this opportunity, Rao said, “We are confident about scaling our business by acquiring new clients and expanding the scope/ scale of operations with existing clients. Considering the pace at which digital is increasingly becoming an important medium for marketers across industries/ sectors, we’re on track to grow 75 per cent this fiscal year.”
Today, marketers have a fair idea of the digital medium, and especially so when they call for individual social media pitches to ensure their online presence is under knowledgeable thought process. On client’s changing perception on the medium, Rao remarked, “As an interactive agency, we help them understand the value of building engagement online through distinct activities characteristic of the medium. Over the last two years, we have seen a surge of interest amongst telecom, FMCG and automotive players attempting to build a strong presence online. The size and scale of their executions is increasingly large now – we estimate that four out of top five spenders online this year will be non-Internet companies.”
Having said that, Rao believed that a lot of aspects on that front still needed to undergo a change. “For most part, marketers harbor the same ambitions from offline campaigns in their approach to digital marketing, which are typically influenced by numbers and conversions. Very little has changed in most marketers’ understanding of how this medium really works, especially when it comes to including digital in the marketing mix at the outset, or even giving it its fair share,” he shared.
When asked about the boons and banes of being an independent agency, Rao replied, “Independents continue to dominate a large part of digital media spends today in India for a good reason. They are able to move fast, they are more entrepreneurial and spirited in some sense. With the right talent, being a part of network, of course, allows you somewhat easier access to clients because of the legacy relationship. Having said that, independent agencies like ours take great pride in working with companies like Microsoft, HP, Airtel, Barclays, Marico, and Titan, who work with very large and respected network agencies for their traditional media needs.”
Some of the well-known pieces of work from the agency’s digital creative factory have given food for thought for the industry and target audience. The Tata Tea ‘Jaago Re Campaign’ was one of the most successful campaigns by the agency. They created the website www.jaagore.com along with its various interactive aspects to change the user’s ‘awareness’ quotient to ‘action-oriented’ thinking.
They have also constructed the website for Marico for its brand ‘Saffola’, www.safolalife.com. The agency did a complete makeover of the official website to give comprehensive information on all healthy living topics, including a healthy recipe database, videos on different heart conditions, tips and advice ratified by dieticians and experts.