AXN premiered the BBC drama Sherlock Season 4 in India with an integrated 360-degree marketing campaign. Taking cues from the global campaign, AXN India adapted the international thought ‘It’s not a game anymore’ and created an India-specific, clutter-breaking campaign. The fans seemed to have loved the concept, which in turn garnered social media conversations around the campaign tagline and the show.
With an aim to further the Sherlock craze, all marketing elements like on-air promotions, social media buzz, on-ground association, outdoor campaigns, radio spots, and PR tools were strategically used to make the premiere a huge success.
The integrated activities began with a month-long on-air campaign that included one-of-a-kind association with India’s leading app, Uber, and buzziest youth hangout joint, Social. The first step was for Uber travelers to unlock the Sherlock code on the Uber app. This resulted in top 100 winners of the activity to watch the exclusive screening of Sherlock Season 4 episode before the India premiere.
The three-week long collaboration with Social enabled fans to experience Sherlock’s eccentric lifestyle by being part of an exciting treasure hunt across key Social outlets in India. The fans also got photographs clicked at the Sherlock zone created at the venue, which was equipped with Sherlock props; fans also had the opportunity to win exclusive AXN hampers.
Furthermore, AXN got stand-up comedian Azeem Banatwalla (of EIC fame) to take viewers through the ‘Sherlock’ voyage. A five-minute crash course to all the previous episodes coupled with Banatwalla’s wacky humour resulted in more than 1 million views online.
Saurabh Yagnik, EVP and Business Head, English Cluster, Sony Pictures Networks India, said, “AXN is an aspirational brand for the youth so we strategically partnered with other aspirational youth brands—Social and Uber. We were able to engage with our target audience more efficiently and effectively creating a win-win proposition for all. The response from viewers has been phenomenal. We trended on Twitter for over 110 hours during the campaign period. AXN is home to Sherlock and we reinforced our position as the best destination for iconic shows and characters.”
Shobita Kadan, Director - Marketing and Strategy at Impresario (the parent company of Social), commented, “We were delighted to partner with AXN and provide a platform for the first-ever screening of Sherlock for which we share a common audience. Our patrons—true Sherlockians got the opportunity to enjoy the screening well before anyone else in the country. A 360-degree brand experience was curated through various touch points such as a treasure hunt, interactive photo booth and fun giveaways to reinstate the culture-defining Social experience.”
Shailesh Sawlani, General Manager, Mumbai and West at Uber, said, “We tied up with AXN to give our riders across Mumbai, Delhi, and Bangalore a first-hand flavour of Sherlock, this season. The campaign saw a great response across the three cities and it was a phenomenal experience for the ardent fans to simply enter a promo code to attend the exclusive screening.”