Marketing Tussle: Netflix’s 'Dhamaka' & Amazon Prime Video’s 'The Wheel of Time' hog OOH

According to industry estimates, both Amazon Prime Video and Netflix have spent close to Rs 6-7 crore per campaign across India

e4m by Sonam Saini
Published: Nov 23, 2021 8:49 AM  | 5 min read
Netflix’s 'Dhamaka' & Amazon Prime Video’s 'The Wheel of Time'

Last week, Amazon Prime Video rolled out a Digital Out Of Home (DOOH) 3D campaign in London to promote its latest fantasy series- The Wheel Of Time. The campaign created a lot of buzz and was an instant hit across the world. The OTT platform has left no stone unturned in promoting the series and going aggressive through the OOH medium, even in India. For instance, one can find billboards/ hoarding all over Mumbai along with Netflix’s latest offering- Dhamaka. Netflix India too aggressively promoting its latest film Dhamaka across all media sections.

Exchange4media has learnt that Netflix has also used DOOH to promote the film. However, both offerings are different in many ways but one can’t ignore the clash of timings. For instance, Dhamaka is a feature film directed by Ram Madhvani. It's an official remake of the 2013 film The Terror Live. The film was slated for a theatrical release but early this year, the producers decided to go for direct-to-digital release through Netflix. On the other hand, Amazon Prime Video’s Original- The Wheel Of Time is a fantasy saga. The first season, consisting of eight episodes, premiered on Prime Video on November 19, 2021, with the release of the first three episodes. The remaining five are set to be aired on a weekly basis until December 24, 2021. 

According to industry estimates, both Amazon Prime Video and Netflix have spent close to Rs 6-7 crore per campaign across India. A former COO of a leading OOH Advertising agency shared that the industry saw a lot of traction during Diwali. “We had a good festive period and even post-Diwali the momentum has continued. The market is super active with full occupancy.”

He further noted that during lockdown industry witnessed a slowdown period which was slightly better than the 2020 lockdown period.  “There were strict norms in the metros but in small cities, we were on. As the market is opening, a lot of new categories have come on board and brands have started investing again in OOH in a big way. Therefore, as the new series/ movies coming up, the digital platforms have started using OOH actively.” 

As per the Pitch Madison Advertising report 2021, in 2020 OOH adex de-grew by as much as 63% to a low of Rs. 1,292 crore and its market share dropped by as much as 3% points from 5% in 2019 to 2% in 2020. The report stated- OOH has gone back to the value it had achieved 13 years ago in 2007. In the last decade, transit media has outpaced the growth of conventional OOH given the modernising of airports, new airports and arrival of metros but 2020 saw a reversal of this trend when the conventional OOH market de-grew by 56% but transit media grew by 82%.

In the pre-COVID times (2019), Consumer Services which included OTT spent contributed Rs 522 crore to the overall OOH adex and Media (excluding OTT) contributed Rs 227 crore. Whereas in 2020, the Media categories including Print, TV Channels, Radio, DTH and OTT spends contributed Rs 126 crore to the overall adex. “The OTT industry has started advertising on OOH but it is still 15-20% less than the pre-COVID times. However, the good news is that this year has been better for the industry as compared to the previous year. The budget might have declined for several players but OOH is back in the media mix,” said a senior executive of a leading OOH agency.

According to the FICCI EY 2021 report, the industry is expected to reach Rs 31.8 crore (INR31.8 billion) by 2023. The sector is expected to achieve its 2019 revenues by 2024 or after. In the OTT segment, Netflix and Amazon Prime Video are leading the charts in terms of ad spending followed by Disney+ Hotstar. According to experts, SonyLiv too spending a considerable amount of money on OOH.

Aman Nanda, Chief Strategy Officer, Times OOH noted that the OTT players did a host of things for brands exercising around the OOH platforms. Also, a lot was thought about the subscription packages but now it's all about their upcoming web series and movies.“They are doing promotions of their upcoming series or movies which is an ongoing exercise as every three weeks, we see a new series or movie launch by the platforms. There is increased competition and that’s has become a new trend.” On the budget front, Nanda said, that he expects the category to spend more. “I would like to believe that spending from the category will increase since there has been an increase in the subscriber base of these OTT platforms, he added.

He also spoke about the festive period and shared, “The festive period was good for the OOH industry and we are seeing positive trends in November as well. October was almost double of September in terms of revenues and primarily the reason is that the people have started moving out. Be it airports, roads and metro stations are fully crowded and therefore the advertisers were also there.”  

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