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Shalaka Kamat

GM - Marketing, Consumer Products Business | 07 Nov 2013

When using radio with other marketing mediums, the idea is to use an approach to optimise synergy and reach. In most cases, we use radio to render support to the primary campaign... Getting across to the right audience at the right time, effectively delivering a message that appeals to their ears and generates desired action is the main objective.

Shalaka Kamat, GM - Marketing, Consumer Products Business, Tata Chemicals heads the marketing function for the foods portfolio of the Consumer Products Division at Tata Chemicals, which includes the iconic brand Tata Salt and its variants and the Tata I-Shakti brand portfolio. The Tata I-Shakti brand has launched a range of unpolished dals and besan in the last couple of years. Kamat joined the Tata Group under the Tata Administrative Services programme in 2002 and has been associated with Tata Teleservices and Tata Global Beverages in the sales and marketing functions prior to joining Tata Chemicals in 2013. Kamat holds a Masters Degree in Analytical and Medicinal Chemistry and a Masters of Management Studies from JBIMS, Mumbai.

In conversation with exhange4media’s Simran Sabherwal, Kamat speaks about how Tata Chemicals uses radio effectively to promote its portfolio of products and more...

Q. As a marketer, what is your objective when you are looking at a radio campaign?

When using radio with other marketing mediums, the idea is to use an approach to optimise synergy and reach. In most cases, we use radio to render support to the primary campaign. It is used mainly for the following reasons:
• Amplification and frequency building of a campaign
• Support for an on ground event, where consumer response/ participation is required
• Pre-launch for a product. Build-up to buzz around any roll out
• Promotion of offers/ schemes
• To tactically target specific geographies or cities

Q. Please share one of your most successful radio campaigns so far?

We use radio frequently for the Tata Salt portfolio as well as for Tata I-Shakti unpolished dals on a nationwide and regional level. Radio has proved to be an important medium to generate awareness on health and nutrition by effectively engaging the audience on that subject. Our nationwide radio campaign on World Hypertension Day was well received and translated into people approaching our blood pressure check-up camps held at different locations across the country, thus enabling us to have a clear call to action.

Tata I-Shakti Dal has an ongoing campaign that ropes in very prominent RJs, such as Mallishka on Red FM, to engage people on the importance of consuming unpolished dals. The campaign is made interesting by adding humour and brings in engagement with the masses through contests/ quiz.

Q. What are the five things that one should keep in mind while investing on radio?

There are certain common cautions a marketer exercises for any media platform, and this holds true for radio as well. Getting across to the right audience at the right time, effectively delivering a message that appeals to their ears and generates desired action is the main objective. So, when investing on radio:
1. Clearly define the role of radio in your campaign - If radio is being used as a standalone medium for any campaign/ market, then the duration, creative, in fact, the entire campaign should be planned in great detail. We must, however, remember that this medium often works best as a media multiplier.

2. Create content specifically suited for radio - It is important to have creatives specifically designed for the radio, as the audience will not be visually engaged. The script and creative for radio needs to be crisp and catchy, and it would be ideal if it creates a visual imagery in the listeners mind. The potential of the radio can remain immensely under leveraged if the creative is not interesting and influential.

3. Choose RJs effectively and intelligently, based on their fan following. 4. Incorporating a “call to action” in the campaign helps to maximise its effectiveness.

5. One needs to keep in mind that radio is effective with the audience at a subconscious level as it tends to be on in the background, therefore, the right creative and frequency of the ad play an important role.

Q. Usually radio is used as a medium of frequency and for tactical purposes. How do you usually decide on the number of spots, frequencies and markets for a particular campaign?

This would entirely depend on the objective of the campaign and the kind of impact desired. Since the listeners would vary depending on the hour of the day and there are a lot of ‘drifters’, it may be a good idea to have multiple spots during an hour. For efficiency, select the peak listening hours for your target audience.

Q. Please share your marketing mix. What is radio’s share in Tata Chemicals’ marketing mix?

Radio is used for our consumer products business with clear objectives, and in most cases to render support to the primary campaign. We use radio heavily for product or service launches, promotions and to generate awareness on observation days such as World Hypertension Day.

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