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YouTube innovates to reach out to mobile users

10-August-2012
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YouTube innovates to reach out to mobile users

After creating top-of-the-mind recall with live coverage of London 2012 Olympics Games, YouTube has launched a theme song to cheer for the Indian squad. RockeTalk, a mobile social networking application, along with Maxus has carved out a mobile innovation – the PRBT or the Profile Ring Back Tone – for the social distribution of this song.

The special theme song is composed by the noted music composer Shantanu Moitra and lyricist Swanand Kirkire titled ‘Aap Agar Saath Hain, Tou Jeet Bhi Saath Hai’.

Unlike the CRBT (Caller Back Ringtone), this plays every time a user is called and can be heard by the person calling, the PRBT (Profile Ring Back Tone) sits on the user’s social profile page and plays every time a visitor or friend visits it.

Tushar Vyas, Managing Partner-South Asia at GroupM said, “It’s imperative that marketing solutions designed for the mobile space are able to engage without too much complexity. The PRBT is able to do just that. In the social mobile, simplicity of a solution can spell reach and participation. RockeTalk’s custom advertising allowed us to leverage the YouTube song in an unprecedented manner.”

YouTube’s two-week ‘cheer for the Indian squad’ campaign is already on its way to clock over one lakh PRBT opt-ins, leading to 10 lakh socially recommended ‘listens’ of the theme song.

The significance of the PRBT lies in the market context and campaign timing. Due to an all-round Olympics frenzy this season, most brands have used the ‘Olympics theme’ in their advertising communication, rendering the Olympic conversation noisy. This posed a challenge for YouTube when reaching out to the mobile user with its theme song cheering the Indian squad. The common ‘download a ringtone’ message was sure to be less effective, considering the over-used ‘download’ tool on the one hand and a multitude of Olympic themed downloads on the other hand.

Under the aegis of Maxus, RockeTalk effectively addressed this challenge by creating the ‘PRBT’ to catch the attention of its 8.6 million month active base, and to rise above the din. This reach becomes valuable since RockeTalk is an application supported on feature phones and smartphones, reaching across the metros and deep into tier II and tier III towns, shared an official release.

The user journey was kept simple without taking away its social dimension. Users were invited to take a pledge with YouTube, supporting the Indian Olympics team and urged to set the YouTube special song as their Profile Tone in support of the Olympics spirit. Users simply had to click on an invite banner or an invite message in their inbox and the inspirational tone was automatically set as their profile tone on their social profile page. The moment anyone visited the profile, the YouTube track played on its own as the Profile Tone.

The innovation was already integrated into RockeTalk’s social structure, as RockeTalk is a voice and video based social network and users are accustomed to record and post their audio profiles as credibility boosters.

“RockeTalk has steadily been customising campaigns for brands, choosing the branded programming and innovation route over the commodification of ad inventory. In the PRBT, we have a product that carries the credibility of user recommendation. It creates a word-of-mouth like high value for YouTube,” said Sameer Agarwal, Chief Marketing Officer, RockeTalk.

As an advertising innovation, the strength of the campaign lies in the fact that a Profile Tone set by a user is not only heard by her, but by every user who visits her profile. Within a rich multimedia space, it is thus converted into a powerful social recommendation tool.

Vinod Thadani, COO, Madhouse India, sees the YouTube Olympics PRBT campaign as significant. He said, “What Maxus has engineered on the RockeTalk social platform is important because it is not a one off case or a digital marketing flash in the pan. Maxus has steadily been innovating to create value not only for the brands it serves but also illustrating the immense possibilities to the industry as a whole.”

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