How Visa is using its ‘cashless confidence’ campaign to promote digital payments

Brand’s marketing head Sujatha V Kumar talks about the campaign, its media strategy, and how it can promote the growth of digital transactions in the country

e4m by Mansi Sharma
Published: May 20, 2022 8:43 AM  | 4 min read
sujhata v kumar

The pandemic paired with solid efforts by the government to digitise the economy has led to massive growth in cashless transactions in India. As per an RBI report, the payment systems in the country recorded a robust growth of 26.2 per cent in terms of volume during 2020-21 on top of the expansion of 44.2 per cent in the previous year. As consumers adopt newer ways to pay, Visa has been promoting the digital payments ecosystem with its ‘cashless confidence’ campaign, launched initially in 2020.

The payment processor has recently launched the newest TVC in the series called ‘The Blissful One’, developed by Publicis APAC and adapted for the Indian market by Wieden + Kennedy India, to motivate people to break their cash habit and drive preference for Visa. The brand’s head of marketing Sujatha V Kumar, in a recent interaction with e4m, talks about the campaign, its media strategy, and how it can promote the growth of digital transactions in the country. Edited excerpts follow.

About ‘Cashless Confidence’

Kumar shares that Visa launched its digital payments campaign in India in 2020 with the idea to support the government’s agenda of going cashless. She adds, “We continued with this integrated marketing campaign promoting Visa India’s key priorities of driving contactless and e-commerce payments in 2021-22. The key insight driving this campaign was that with the pandemic, the need to evolve from cash to cashless became a necessity for consumers, due to health concerns and the extended lockdown period in India.  This change is continuing post lockdown as well, and consumers are more open to adopting new ways to pay.”


How ‘The Blissful One’ Drives the Campaign Message

‘The Blissful One’ consists of three separate films showcasing e-commerce and F2F payment situations, which connect everyday moments where cash usage is evidently cumbersome vis-à-vis paying with Visa – which is fast, secure and convenient. The first two films, ‘Forgetful One’ (showing the Tap to pay by phone modality) & ‘Tired One’ (Click to Pay modality), developed by Wieden + Kennedy global team, were released earlier in March this year. 


Kumar notes, “We have launched the film ‘Blissful One’ which showcases the Tap to Pay by Card modality a more convenient way to pay. The campaign aims to focus on driving preference for Visa over cash by showing that Visa provides access to a fast, secure and convenient way to pay and motivating people to break their cash habit by showcasing the shortcomings of cash and the benefits of paying digitally, on the Visa network.” 

Creative Brief to the Agency

With evolving modes of digital payment, cash is no longer the fastest or most convenient way to pay. In fact, it can often be more time consuming, cumbersome, hassling and unsafe to pay by cash. And part of Visa’s purpose is to be best way to pay and be paid. The brief to the agency was to leverage this insight and craft communication that clearly demonstrates the effectiveness of using Visa to pay vs cash,” Kumar shares.


Media Plans for ‘The Blissful One’

The brand is being supported by Publicis Groupe's Starcom for the media duties centered around a high-burst ATL activity that will reach 800M+ of the Indian population in the shortest possible time via TV, Cinema, Online Video (YouTube and OTTs); Social Media (Instagram, Facebook and Twitter), Digital Roadblocks and AI-based partners like Zappr.

Kumar elaborates, “We were breaking media for this campaign during IPL, which is the largest viewed event on TV. Basis historical findings, we have also observed that IPL season impacts prime-time viewership on non-sports channels. To offset this drop in viewership, we have a two-fold approach: maximize reach on non-sports TV channels and include AI-based partners to identify audiences who missed our ads on TV and target these audiences on digital platforms.”

Therefore, for TV, Visa is pushing its ads on all long-tail channels across key genres (GECs, Movies, News and Music) through more than 30,000 FCTs and a 60:40 non-primetime to primetime split. The campaign will be live until September 30, 2022.

Shedding more light on the digital strategy, Kumar quips, “At Visa, we build a data-driven marketing strategy. Using proprietary Visa tools across online and offline media channels, we identify audiences, optimal frequency & their media touchpoints and thresholds. Our digital strategy is then calibrated to meet this unified objective. Specifically for this campaign, digital media is structured to drive reach and product awareness. The channels selected are YouTube, all Indian OTT platforms, Facebook, Instagram and Programmatic. These channels are supported by digital roadblocks and rich media ads to ensure frequency and recall.”


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