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Guest Column: Digital becomes a quintessential delectable in 2015: Haresh Nayak

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Guest Column: Digital becomes a quintessential delectable in 2015: Haresh Nayak

Engagement & Measurement – Flavours of 2015

Although we believe in being rationalists, in us live silly little superstitious roots that secretly read horoscopes, get fascinated with tarot cards and have that lucky coin or symbol to carry. As exchange4media asks me to cast predictions for 2015, I happily let the rationalist in me take a back seat and indulge in a bit of crystal ball grazing. As I gaze into the crystal ball called Out-of-Home, 2015 in all looks exciting. Here are some predictions I make:

Digital becomes a quintessential delectable:

Quite recently Gandhinagar witnessed a huge event called Vibrant Gujarat Summit 2015, wherein one of the focus sectors was Digital Gujarat. The Modi Sarkar since its advent has made ‘Digital’ an integral part of its vision. This is a clear indication that going Digital no longer remains a luxurious choice but it is becoming a quintessential delectable. Weaving digital interventions in the overall OOH plan is becoming necessary for brands, and this no longer means DOOH screens at malls and cinemas. Digital OOH is widening in its definition and spread. Technologies like RFID (Radio Frequency Identification), NFC (Near Field communication), Projections, Augmented reality are elements that are being used in creating meaningful Digital OOH campaigns. There is vast potential, for DOOH advertising to interact and have an impact on consumers in their daily lives. The key is to employ these opportunities in a relevant way. The increase of global smartphone-users and the increasing time people spend online using social media means DOOH advertising can reach millions of consumers daily. The potential for DOOH is exponential, watch this space as DOOH changes the way we perceive brands.

Content with a Context is the Key:

Content today is a make or break factor when it comes to any kind of communication. No longer do narcissist messages like ‘We are No. 1’, ‘We are the Best’ work with consumers. To connect with the consumers, content needs to be attached to a relevant context; it can’t just be a random claim. It has to be informative, educative, and enriching. Content needs to be from the point of view of the consumer, it should address their issues and provide solutions. In fact a need for having a separate content division is being discussed in the industry. Branded content is becoming a trend which is picking up really fast. Here the context emerges from the life of the consumer and acts as premise for content building. This calls for a deep understanding of consumers’ lives and requires sophisticated insights. Also there are talks of user generated content too. this strategy leads to more involvement and brand affinity.

Engagement, a hygiene factor:

It is believed that as of today a human being’s attention span is lesser than that of a gold fish. We as a species are increasingly being distracted wherein we suffer from an overload of information. Thus, simply ‘telling’ doesn’t work; to engage is essential. To create campaigns that not just attracts but compels consumers to be a part of it, has become a hygiene factor.

Measure your worth:

While you do all this, one thing you cannot afford to miss is measuring your worth. The client is craving for numbers and we need to provide that to them. We need to quantify our ability to deliver. Only then will our medium be able to take the next big leap. So let’s create a currency and crunch some numbers. We need to tell our clients How Much we love them!

Be Ambient:

Let us not forget the blessing in disguise, the ambient environment that surrounds us and offers a sea of contextual communication opportunities. Here we don’t have to create a property. We just need to weave an idea around an already existing physical dimension. Why are we not exploring this medium to its fullest? With infrastructure development on the fast track ambient will be re-explored.

Mobile, the necessary evil:

If you aren’t on the smart-phone screen, you are playing dumb. Smart-phones are an evil we all need to worship, because there are chances that the consumer will miss out on your innovative, painstakingly made billboard while driving, but they don’t miss a chance to see their mobile phone screen even if they are driving. An obsession that will be exploited as an opportunity! So please include that screen in your media plans and see how you can get up-close and personal with your consumer through it.
So, this is what 2015 looks like to me!

Enough of indulgence now. Time to get rational now. I need that Mahim Junction wala 40*20 for this client anyhow. “Isn’t indulgence making more sense, a rational part of me whispers to my senses."

The author is Haresh Nayak, Regional Director, Posterscope Asia Pacific and Managing Director, Posterscope Group India.

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