For any medium to be an effective platform for advertisers, it has to provide ample scope for creativity and interactivity. The same applies to radio as well. One of the key discussions at the impact Roundtable on Radio, held in Mumbai on July 29, focussed on using the medium innovatively. Some of the industry players presented popular radio commercials to substantiate their points at the Roundtable. The event was presented by Radio City.
The speakers at the Roundtable comprised industry leaders such as Apurva Purohit, CEO, Radio City; Punitha Arumugam, Group CEO, Madison Media; Chandradeep Mitra, President, Mudra Max; KV Sridhar (Pops), NCD, Leo Burnett India; Sanjay Behl, Brand – Head, Reliance Communications; Sanjay Tripathy, Head – Marketing, HDFC Standard Life Insurance; Jeffrey Crasto, Senior Vice President and Head Buying, MPG India and South Asia; Manas Misra, GM, Mumbai, Mediaedge:cia; and Pradeep Hejmadi, Senior Vice President, TAM Media Research. Big River’s MD Sunil Kumar moderated the discussion.
Creativity in Radio
On using radio as an effective medium, Pops said, “If the content of the story is good, people will like it, otherwise if it is only poor RJ jokes then neither advertisers nor agencies can save it. The more creativity you use in improving acts, the more successful you would become. We don’t understand the kind of interactivity used in the medium, and unless one understands the medium, one cannot exploit it.”
Agreeing with him, Sunil Kumar said, “Radio has been doing its job well, and at some level creative agencies and media agencies, too, have done their job well. Together we can make the magic of radio happen, but only if we all do our parts well.” Sanjay Tripathy added here, “The advertising fraternity so far has not looked at radio as a medium. For utilising radio effectively, creative alternatives have got a big role to play.”
According to Sanjay Behl, “The fundamental approach to creativity is to stop meeting marketers as they would never buy you, instead one must meet the brand and the sales people.”
Citing examples of using radio as an effective medium, Sanjay Tripathy played a few radio commercials of HDFC Standard Life. Punitha Arumugam also played the Saffola campaign for the World Heart Day, which had bagged gold at the EMVIES 2008. Pops presented a very interesting mix of radio commercials done for brands such as Tide, Jo beauty soap, Reliance Mobiles and some social service ads, which have been very popular. He informed that while most of these commercials were produced at a normal cost, but the impact they had was remarkable.
The biggest advantage, and probably one of the best ways to use radio effectively, is to utilise these advertisements in other Indian languages as well.
Speaking on the future of the medium, Behl said, “One of the latest trends that is happening, or is likely to happen faster than we think, is visual radio. This is the next big step as this would bring the visual advantage to mobile radio. Technology can dramatically reduce the cost structure.”
Kumar concluded, and we agree, “Radio’s future is bright.”
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