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Suzuki will increase spends on Print for a pan-India campaign only: Sajeev Rajasekharan

05-February-2018
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Suzuki will increase spends on Print for a pan-India campaign only: Sajeev Rajasekharan

For a brand like Suzuki which dedicates around 30 per cent of its annual marketing spends on Print medium, the IRS 2017 findings have clearly come as a shot in the arm. Sajeev Rajasekharan, executive vice-president for sales and marketing at Suzuki Two-wheelers talks about what changes and where the status-quo is maintained as far as the brand’s marketing mix is concerned.

Excerpts:

Print media is clearly on a growth trajectory as per IRS 2017, what do you think about the survey?

Overall, they have used a base of about 3,20,000 respondents which makes it as close to the reality on the field as possible. I don’t think there is any other report that matches the scale of IRS when it comes to the number of respondents. So, it’s a good one and we would definitely look at using the findings.

Would you consider increasing your spends on Print now, especially in the case of Hindi dailies which have seen a 45 per cent growth in readership in the past four years?

The growth clearly has happened in the rural market which has gone up by around 50 per cent when compared to the previous IRS survey. Urban however has increased by 27 per cent and both put together has gone up from close to 30 crores to 40 crores. So, our spends on Print will depend on what kind of product we are advertising or launching, if it is a mass product category and we are looking at a pan- India reach then we will definitely think more of newspapers. At the moment we spend over a thousand million rupees annually on marketing, 30 per cent of which goes to Print.

Also in the top 10 dailies, there was not a single English newspaper that got a mention. Will that compel you to localize your marketing now to suit regional requirements?

Yes, that will be one significant change which we will consciously make. Earlier our focus was on the National Dailies along with a mix of regional. Regional dailies as it is outnumber the English dailies in readership. So, from that perspective perhaps we can start looking at going regional alone when it comes to Print in markets where it matters.

What about magazines, they have also shown an impressive 75 per cent jump in readership from the previous IRS survey, will that play a big role in your Print strategy henceforth?

But that growth is only when compared to the earlier survey, the fact remains that the overall magazine penetration still stands at around 5 per cent. So, the percentage growth in terms of readership will not get us to give more weightage to magazines in our Print mix, it would more or less be the same.
TV ownership has seen a 14 per cent increase in Indian households, how will you cash in on that development?

We will look at newspapers for a pan-India reach clearly, but if it is a for-metros-only product that we want to sell then we would go with our current routine. It involves a heavy use of Television. If only the reach of Print had gone up, then it would have been an easier decision to make but an increase in the ownership of TV shows that it is still the highest penetrated medium. So while newspaper reach has gone up by 8 per cent or so, that for Television has shot up even further. So our media mix may not change much unless it is a Pan-India campaign where we can spend a little more on Print than we did earlier.

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