Youth Quotient: "Nike's 'Just do it' is no more a brand tagline, but a way of life"

Rahul Upadhyaya of MediaCom, in a candid conversation, talks about his philosophy towards work, brands he would like to work on & passion for riding, among other things...

e4m by Deepa Balasubramanian
Updated: Oct 30, 2013 7:21 AM
Youth Quotient: "Nike's 'Just do it' is no more a brand tagline, but a way of life"

Rahul Upadhyaya has been with the digital team at MediaCom for the past three years, and currently spearheads digital and creative innovations for P&G brands in the mobile and internet space.

His professional journey began as a digital ink and paint artist at a Kolkata-based cartoon animation firm – Dawson Infotech. After his post graduation, the world of media planning beckoned and in April 2008, he joined Mindshare Fulcrum to work on offline and digital media for Unilever Brands – AXE, Pepsodent and Close Up.

Upadhyaya saw digital marketing as the next big sphere of communication in the media industry with unprecedented scope for creativity. This motivated him to specialise in the field of digital marketing. A large part of his technical understanding of the digital field came from Techshastra, wherein he executed multiple digital media solutions (mobile as well as internet).

Working on Pepsi, Nestle and Unilever has helped Upadhyaya understand and explore creative solutions that could be scaled up using mobile and internet media.

Some of the awards that he and his team picked up include Gold for Best use of Media Digital Display for Duracell and Bronze for Best use of Media Digital Social for Pampers at EMVIES 2013, and Silver for Best use of Media Digital Social for Pampers at Goafest 2013.

In a candid conversation with exchange4media, Upadhyaya speaks about what he loves about his job, philosophy towards work and passion, among other things…

How does your work day look like?
My work day comprises a lot of thinking, scribbling and talking! The creative mind constantly wanders in search of ideas and inspirations...the appealing ones get scribbled on my notepad and the relevant ones get talked about with my team and our clients. As media strategy and planning professionals, we live by Excel sheets and PowerPoint decks. This is how a typical work day pans out for me.

What excites you the most about your work?
Just the way a child's mind is intrigued and excited by imagination, my mind is excited by imagining the endless creative and technological possibilities that my work sphere has to offer. Be it about presenting an idea or a post campaign report – I constantly look for different perspectives to gain the maximum from a project. This also ensures that my level of eagerness never diminishes.

What is that one thing that you love to do apart from your daily work?
Long distance rides on my motorcycle is one of my passions – I have already covered over 10,000 kms on my motorcycle, doing rides like Mumbai to Kolkata, Runn of Kutch, Mumbai to Udaipur, Konkan belt, etc. It just helps me unwind and be with myself.

Which is that one project you are proud to have been associated with?
Every project has its own set of challenges and learning points, allowing for different levels of creative thinking and application. Having said that, the two projects that I think have made a special place in my career so far would be the ‘Pampers – Missed Call’ and ‘Shiksha – Unlearning to Learn’.

What is your philosophy towards work?
We spend more than half our day (or at least more than half the time that we are awake) at our workplace on a regular day. So I believe that our approach and attitude towards work contributes significantly towards who we are as a person. Therefore, I try to make the most of every opportunity that presents itself to me – be it work or play.

Do you believe in working towards awards or creating an award-winning project?
Always believe in harnessing a great idea that can help the client achieve their objective. Achieving this for our clients results in our growth as individuals and as an organisation. When this happens, it becomes a potential award-winning project.

Who is the one person you look up to?
I look up on anyone who can inspire me to go a bit extra; anyone who challenges the normal and attempts doing the different. Anyone who does not benchmark success with other's success and is content with what he/she has.

Brand that you love the most and would like to be associated with…
Nike – its tagline ‘Just do it’ inspires me to forget everything and move ahead. As a media professional, it inspires lot of ideas. It is no more a brand tagline; it is a way of life.

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