Youth centric brand Fastrack has been among the few Indian companies that have used the potential of social media to its advantage. The watches and eye gear brand targets the youth and it is only logical to use a medium that its TG is familiar and comfortable with. Fastrack has been using social networking sites like Orkut and Facebook to host its communities. It has also used the services of Blogworks in this initiative.
Elaborating on this initiative, Simeran Bhasin, Marketing Head, Fastrack and New Brands, said, “Using social media is a completely new ballgame. You can’t intrude and do a banner advertising there. We have been using this media to watch, learn, observe and listen to what our consumers are saying. On Orkut, we realised that even before we started our website, consumers on their own had started 15-20 communities and they would have members joining in and growing month on month. Today, we have perhaps over 50 communities on Orkut started by consumers who are fans of Fastrack watches and sunglasses. On Facebook, we have taken a different track as it is slightly niche and now catching up in India. On it, we have started our own communities – ‘Life on the Fastrack’ and ‘Bikers on the Fastrack’.”
Bhasin further said, “We have also started a brand page on Facebook, called the Fastrack World, where we put up whatever is happening on the brand, be it a new campaign, a new idea or a new forum on the hottest topic that Fastrack would want to discuss.”
Seeing the involvement of its consumers, recently Fastrack has also started taking online feedback from its consumers before a collection is launched. Questionnaires and product pictures are sent to members of one or more Fastrack communities and even bloggers to get an honest opinion on the product, be it the price or the design. Bhasin said, “These feedbacks are a pleasure as compared to the traditional research as online is a casual medium and we get frank opinions from people who are passionate about the brand.”
The Fastrack sites http://media.fastrack.in is a dynamic media room providing a one-stop to access all Fastrack developments, while www.fastrack.in is designed to captivate its young audience. Incidentally, the website was launched a year and a half back. The brand itself was re-launched in 2005 with a new positioning targeting the youth and early jobbers.
Bhasin said, “The brand has grown almost 10 times in the last three years and has brand presence in over 3,000 outlets across the country and is continuing to grow strong. Fastrack is one of the few brands where consumers come asking for the brand. We have consumers who are so fanatic about the brand that they buy products from every single collection. The involvement of the consumer in product or advertising is very high and to cash in on that we embarked on a digital media exercise. In today’s age of digital media and we being a youth brand, it will be an anathema if we don’t have a website or use social media as means of engaging with our consumers who use this medium well.”
Fastrack keeps in touch with communities started by other users to let them know that if they need authentic information on the brand they don’t have to go searching online and download, but can directly get in touch with Fastrack and get first hand information. Indeed, a good strategy to keep in touch with its TG where loyalty is a difficult proposition.