Zapak.com, the cash-rich gaming portal from Reliance ADA Group, has regularly used the OOH medium for promoting its several initiatives. Arun Mehra, CMO, Zapak Digital Entertainment Ltd, has pointed out that brands have begun to use this medium with clutter breaking activities in order to stand out from the crowd.
“We have a budget of about a million dollars for presence in the OOH sphere including outdoor, ambient and other innovations," noted Mehra. Observing that Zapak has utilised the out-of-home media effectively and targetted its audience at the outdoor points where they frequent, be it outdoor hoarding, the ambient media or college festivals, Mehra feels that Zapak has been successful not just in grabbing eyeballs everywhere, but also extending a brand experience.
Talking about the growth of OOH advertising in India, Mehra said, “Outdoor, as a means of advertising, has existed for a long time. However, brands have always looked at it as a conventional medium to communicate to the audience. Recently, with many brands continually invading the market space, there has been an increased need for them to stand out in the clutter, among the other brands, and talk to the target audience. This has led to brands looking at this medium to advertise in an innovative manner and catch the audience while they are relaxing, distressed and open to any communication by the brand, and the most significant of all, they can’t change channels.”
Elaborating on some of the activities undertaken by them, Mehra cited the examples of several hoarding innovations, college activities and ambient media initiatives that the portal has deployed over the past few months of operations.
In Mumbai, Delhi and Bangalore, a mountain was erected as the main outdoor visual, and a mountaineer climbed up and down the mountain, with ropes and safety harnesses, during peak traffic hours, to encourage people to get into gaming.
Commenting on the deployment of ambient media activities for promotions, Mehra explained that while there is a media clutter in the marketplace and tonnes of brands flooding the market trying to vie for the customer’s attention, the marketers are looking at exploring newer avenues to grab the customer’s mind space, and not just eyeballs. “Advertising, as a mode to reach out to the consumer, is definitely significant. But the challenge is to make them experience it. This is where experiential marketing has created a space for itself,” he added.
“We have grown to be known for our innovative use of the ambient media, at loos and escalators at malls and multiplexes," added Mehra. An example of this was the Pissoirs, and inside of loos where branded stickers, depending on the campaign, were put up.
Zapak had tied up with college festivals, as youth is their core TG. At last year's IIT’s Mood Indigo, they had recreated a jungle terrain of over 8,000 square feet for the Paintball contest. Noting that Zapak.com is the Official Internet Partner for Malhar 2007, Mehra said, "Zapak will showcase ‘Virtual Cricket’ for the first time to a college fest in India. Along similar lines, the portal has organised different contests and games to engage our audience."