Indian consumers are in sync with their global counterparts: CEO, American Express, India

Manoj Adlakha of American Express talks about the new campaign that targets those whose work and personal lives are intertwined

e4m by Dolly Mahayan
Updated: Aug 2, 2018 8:59 AM

American Express has unveiled a new global brand platform and marketing campaign in India. The brand campaign showcases how American Express supports its customers in life and business.

The company, which has existed in the Indian market for 90 years, has for the first time launched a campaign  that resonates with the country and reflects the new-age highly-integrated lifestyle. The brand has adopted a 360° marketing approach for the 'Powerful Backing of American Express: Don’t Live Life/Don’t Do Business Without It' campaign. 

With the new brand platform, American Express is drawing on its heritage of service, security and trust, and modernising many elements of its brand iconography, including a modern articulation of their famous tagline, refreshing its Blue Box logo & visual identity, and introducing a hand-drawn version of its famous card design that features customers at the centre.

We spoke to Manoj Adlakha, CEO of American Express, India, for insights on the campaign, the consumer trends in the banking sector and more.

Watch the video here, or read below: 


How is the campaign relevant to Indian consumers?

The Indian consumers today are totally in sync with their global counterparts. Our campaign is aimed at people who are driven to get more from every aspect of their lives. They have strong passion-points which find expression in the way they lead their lives.

All over the world, the way people work and live has transformed – there is greater interconnection in both their personal and work life, as well as real and virtual interactions. This blended, hybrid lifestyle is the new norm across the world, and India is no exception. Our campaign celebrates this new reality that life and business are increasingly interconnected, and highlights the role played by American Express in supporting people to live hybrid lives.

What would be the marketing mix for the promotion of the campaign?

The advertising and marketing elements include a heavy focus on digital content, online video, high-impact out-of-home advertising and social influencer engagement. We are focusing on communications channels that are at the intersection of life and work. The campaign is designed to meet people at the places where life and business intersect, both online and offline. Whether travelling, going to work, heading out to have fun, engaging with digital content or connecting on social media, Indians will be continuously reminded that American Express has got their back.

American Express has always been considered an elite bank. How are you going to take your brand to masses?

American Express operates at all ends of the market. While it is true that we have strict checks and balances and only offer cards to prospects with existing and good credit rating, the perception that we are only for the ultra-affluent is incorrect. We have a MRCC product that is our entry-level card for first-jobbers.

As a brand we are all about relationships. Through this campaign, we are reiterating our commitment to building long-term relationships with our customers in an increasingly short-term transactional world.

Do you think banks in India are leveraging the full potential of digital marketing? What exactly does American Express do to reach out to its customers?

At American Express, we are rethinking every customer touch point with a 'digital first' approach to ensure that we can meet our customers, whenever and wherever they need us. The smartphone penetration among AMEX card members is almost 100%, hence it is imperative for us to have a 'digital enablement' strategy to serve them optimally.

We ensure that our staff is continually trained in new age digital capabilities, such as AI, analytics and personalization capabilities. Through our machine learning capabilities, we have predicted customers’ spending patterns and needs, and are able to pitch customised offerings or upgrade even before the customer anticipates the need. These capabilities have helped to prevent credit losses on the card members’ account.

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