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From floating hoardings to branded kites, Portland thrives on innovation

From floating hoardings to branded kites, Portland thrives on innovation

Author | Jagadeesh Krishnamurthy | Thursday, Jan 25,2007 7:53 AM

From floating hoardings to branded kites, Portland thrives on innovation

Portland India, a player in the OOH medium, has been doing some innovative work in this space. Some of their recent work for brands like Bharti Airtel and Big 92.7 FM has been particularly eye-catching. The agency plans to continue with their innovations and providing measurability systems for their client’s benefit.

Accepting that the company was young in this space, Arminio Ribeiro, President, Portland India, asserted that they had grown at a fast pace to become one of the most preferred brands in the OOH space today. Taking through some of their recent works Ribeiro said, “Our recent works include our partnership in the launches of brands like Big FM (Adlabs Radio) and Kingfisher Airlines, and also the much talked about mould of the Maruti Swift on the hoarding as well as the Nike football. The novel cut-outs for Bharti Airtel’s Songcatcher have been created by us.”

Citing examples from the telecom sector, Ribeiro explained, “Unlike traditional media services, outdoors has more geographical differences, is complex in structure and has a multitude of media owners to interact with. We pioneered the hub-and-spoke model for network operations. The telecom sector, for instance, has two types of communication – one that emanates from the centre and the other at the circle level, thereby amplifying the need for customised approaches.”

“In fact, it is our width and depth of experience in the telecom sector that has equipped us to better handle varied client needs. For the Vishwakarma Puja in Kolkata, we produced 3,000 Airtel kites to flutter around the city, thus making both the medium and the message relevant to the audience,” Ribeiro further said.

Speaking on the recent creation of the Kinetic Umbrella and its benefits, he felt it was too early to comment on the same. Revealing his views on the tracking systems in place for the industry, Ribeiro accepted the fact that as an industry the tracking systems might have been lacking. But, according to him, Portland, right from its inception had foreseen this and thereby had invested in the client’s need for measurability and control. Revealing more, he said, “We pioneered the concept of tracking systems for this medium and have made use of AdEx and other measurability systems for the client’s benefit. The results have been noteworthy and beneficial to advertisers. However, there is talk of common systems that are likely to be developed for the industry in total, which would benefit advertisers, agencies and medium alike.”

When queried on the development of the OOH industry in the country, Ribeiro said that the industry as a whole was perhaps lagging behind in comparison to the West. But he was confident that the market was poised for growth. “Also, with the entry of companies like Clear Channel, JC Decaux, etc, and with the introduction of more formats and newer technology, we are likely to witness more professionalism and objectivity in this space,” he added.

Some of the noted works from Portland India include the Balancing Act done on a lake in Ahmedabad for Tirupati Oils, where a boat carrying a heavy glow sign signified the balance between taste and health for a good cooking oil; Maruti Swift, where a mould of the car was balanced on a bright hoarding right outside Mumbai’s domestic airport.

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