The Daily News & Analysis (DNA), from Diligent Media, the Zee-Bhaskar combine joint venture, is steadily moving towards its launch. The current phase of DNA’s marketing campaign revolves around subscriber bookings for the paper. DNA officials inform that the daily is targeting August 15, 2005 as the day to mark its entry in the Mumbai market.
“There are various factors that have to be in place before that, however,” said Suresh Balakrishnan, Head, Marketing, DNA. “For instance, we have a certain circulation target with which we want to launch and we have to do trial runs for the paper as well. We are working towards an August 15 launch, but there would be more certainty on the date as we move closer to the launch.”
Bookings for the paper began on June 1, 2005, marking the new phase of the marketing campaign, wherein Mumbaikars are being encouraged to book DNA. The new campaign began with a ‘will book’ and ‘won’t book’ choice that tried to communicate the target that DNA is looking at. While the ‘Will book’ shows trendy, upscale readers, the ‘Won’t book’ shows a different kind of reader.
However, the present stage of the campaign, which broke on Monday, is a tactical one. It enumerates various choices like “Mirror Image - Original”, “Follow the rules - Make the Rules” and “Lonavala – Las Vegas”, amongst others.
“The objective is to support the booking and to keep the brand saliency, which is of a paper representing the people’s choice,” said Balakrishnan. “In the first set we have ticked the options of `will book’ and `won’t book’, but in the present sets, we are not ticking the options – we have left it open for the Mumbai reader to choose.”
The paper has taken approximately 60 hoardings for the booking phase. Balakrishnan explained that the paper has always concentrated on two aspects in its marketing – the share of voice and the attempt to invoke interest and curiosity. DNA had kicked off its initial advertising with a two-stage teaser campaign – one with people from different walks of life with their mouths taped, and the second, with similar creatives, but with a tagline ‘Speak Up – It’s in your DNA’. This was followed by communication that supported the survey the paper was conducting, finally leading to the bookings.
“We have raised issues relevant to the Mumbai consumer, used subtle humour and sarcasm to represent people’s opinion,” Balakrishnan observed. Has the strategy worked with the reader? “Going by the initial response to the booking, it has,” Balakrishnan remarked.
And has the Mumbai Mirror print campaign, which claims to be a paper that ‘Mumbaiites have created’, had any impact on DNA’s campaign? “Initially it could have confused the reader to some extent but the Mumbai reader is a very discerning one; it really hasn’t caused much damage,” replied Balakrishnan.
While DNA is moving steadily towards its launch, the Mumbai Mirror from The Times Group is already fighting for reader’s attention. And Hindustan Times is expected to be in the market next month. The real battle is round the corner.