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Mihir Mody

Founder & CEO | 29 Oct 2012

Wall paintings have certainly moved beyond traditional display. There has been a lot of innovation like glow paintings, florescent paintings and reflective paintings in the last couple of years. Things are changing along with the change in technology and it has become more systematic and organised.

Adwallz is one of the upcoming agencies that is into implementing mapping, tracking and monitoring technology for ad campaigns on walls in India. They are also the first ones to roll out digital wall-paintings and glow-in-the-dark ad units amidst other path breaking accomplishments.

Mihir Mody, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Adwallz, is one of those entrepreneurs who have welcomed economic slowdown with a smile. He has carried out extensive research to understand the requirements of rural advertising by visiting villages, interacting with the masses and conceptualising advertisements which are in line with the taste of the locals there. In a span of 10 years, he has built a network of suppliers, contractors, sub- contractors, painters, and events coordinators in 300 towns of India converting each and every corner of India.

In conversation with exchange4media’s Priyanka Nair, Mody elaborates on the changing role of wall-paintings in Indian advertising, the potential of this artistic medium and more...

Q. Wall painting is considered to be the oldest outdoor media format, especially in a country like India. How has this medium evolved over the last decade?

Wall painting as a sector has seen a drastic change over the years. Couple of years back, this sector was completely unexplored and unorganised. It is only in the recent years that corporate giants have realised the effectiveness of this medium.

There have been a lot of innovations in this medium and it is evolving as a new medium of advertising now. A lot of corporate and brands are welcoming this medium to target the rural and semi-urban market. This medium is extensively used in rural areas and brands connect with the audience instantly through wall paintings, as it can be done cost effectively and in any language.

Q. Wall painting has evolved from being an art form to being considered as a media format. What are the key reasons for this evolution?

Wall painting is the oldest form of media, used by early humans to preserve stories and messages for their future generations. It has been in existence long before other mediums like print, television, radio and the Internet.

Over the last couple of years, this media has regained importance for brand managers and media buyers looking to reach out to rural consumers with targeted messaging. The most important reason being the shelf life of the advertisement. The life of advertising on walls is much longer as compared to any other types of outdoor advertising. The mileage, when compared to other forms of advertising, is much wider. In rural areas, wall paintings work the best. Therefore, for a company it is essential to strategise and use the medium effectively.

Q. The unorganised nature of the wall-painting business in India has turned out to be the biggest challenge that the industry is facing even today. What are the various steps that the industry is taking to convince marketers to leverage this outdoor medium in their communication plans?

It is a fact that the wall-painting business has been one of the most unorganised sectors amongst all other mediums of advertising. But Adwallz has changed the face of that. With the introduction of Adwallz, the wall-painting industry has become more organised, systematic and transparent.

We have built a network of more than 6,000 painters across India, along with training the painters and giving them understanding of the industry. I have personally visited nearly 100 cities across India and have understood the needs of the industry.

We have provided our painters with bank account numbers, insurance and Internet education. We have also given them digital cameras and laptops so that work can be carried out fast and in a sophisticated manner. As an agency, we are trying to change the way wall painting is perceived.

Q. What is the process of rolling out a wall-painting campaign for a brand?

There is a systematic and strict process that we follow at Adwallz to execute every campaign. We start with forming the creatives after understanding their target market. The planning for every campaign is done after understanding the clients’ market, target audience, brand awareness and other essential factors, which is then followed by designing, strategising to find the right locations and finally, zeroing on to walls where wall-painting is then executed. And all of this is done in a pre-specified time frame so that maximum benefit is derived from it by the company targeting a specific festival or a distinct customer base.

This is followed by online monitoring and geo tagging, which is necessary in every campaign. We share the pictures of the campaign with the client and their team and they can like and comment on the same.

Q. Which are the various brand categories that are using Adwallz services?

We work with various brands across sectors, including FMCG, telecom, banks, cement, automobile and consumer durables, among others. Some of the brands we have worked on include HUL, Marico, Vodafone, MTS, ICICI, HDFC, Philips, Huntsman, and so on.

Q. What are the essentials that a brand wall-painting should have?

The most essential would be the logo of the company/ brand/ product. It gives a clear message that the company wants to put across to their target group with the right combination of colour and image, which helps the viewers recall their brands faster.

Q. Which are the regions that are high on wall-painting campaigning in India? Has it move beyond its traditional display?

There is no particular region as such where wall-painting campaigns are high. Every campaign is done keeping in mind the target audience of that particular brand. We generally have campaigns pan India all round the year.

Wall paintings have certainly moved beyond traditional display. There has been a lot of innovation like glow paintings, florescent paintings and reflective paintings in the last couple of years. Things are changing along with the change in technology and it has become more systematic and organised.

Q. What do you think needs to be done to push the unorganised Indian OOH industry forward?

To get this industry organised, there needs to be a systematic approach with a smarter outlook overall. There needs to be more transparency and people need to be educated about requirements of the industry.

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