In the ever-evolving landscape of the advertising and marketing industry, Social Samosa has envisioned a publication that goes beyond the conventional, delving deeper into the new fundamentals of the advertising and marketing (A&M) industry. The result of this aspiration is 'The Pulse,' our first-ever digital magazine, designed to be a comprehensive handbook for navigating the complexities of the A&M world.
Launched on November 11, 2023, just in time for Diwali, the inaugural edition of The Pulse aims to capture the beating heart of the industry during the festive season. The idea stems from the need of stories that report facts, news and trends which are shaping the A&M culture, stories that impel professionals to look inward or outward, stories that have the potential to effect change.
The Pulse is not just about asking questions; it's about providing answers. To start, we engage in a conversation with the ad maestro, Piyush Pandey, as he revisits memories and unveils the roots of some of his most iconic festive campaigns.
Pandey reminisces what Festivals mean to him as a person and how ‘Apnapan’ and Emotions should take centre stage when it comes to Festive Advertising.
Here are the highlights from The Pulse festive edition.
AI illuminating festivities…Do’s & Don’ts
We explore the intersection of artificial intelligence (AI) and festive marketing, delving into the challenges faced during the festive season and how AI presents solutions. From optimising data synthesis to predicting customer behaviour, experts discuss the transformative role of AI in tackling issues such as ad spend allocation and resource optimization.
Udit Malhotra, Head of Marketing, MG Motor India
Arjit Sachdeva, CTO, VDO.AI
Arjun Bhatia, Chief Marketing Officer, Matrimony.com
Rushali Rastogi, Senior Account Manager at AliveNow
Missing Voices In Festive Ads Speak Up. Are We Listening?
According to the last recorded data, India is home to more than 2.5 million LGBTQIA+ people and over 21 million people with disabilities (PwD). Yet, during festivities, TV, OOH, social media and other marketing mediums have limited representation of this vast population. We amplify the voices of key industry stakeholders, including the LGBTQ+ community and neurodiverse members, addressing perspectives that need to be heard.
Rhea Laskar (they/she), Freelance writer-creator and a student
Shyam Konnur (he/him/his), Founder and Director, Mist LGBTQ Foundation
Patruni Chidananda Sastry (they/she), Drag queen, Dragvanti
Suhail Abbasi (he/him/his), Co-Founder and Chairperson, The Humsafar Trust
Rayyan Monkey (she/ her), Co-chieftess and Creative Director at Fatsmeagol Collective and Certified Diversity and Inclusion Consultant
Akshay CM (he/them), DEI and Talent Management, DDB Mudra Group
Nilakshi Roy (she/ her), A member of Sweekar, a parent of an LGBT child and a retired professor of English
When Global Brands Meet Traditions
We delve into the key considerations for brands seeking to establish a presence in the diverse Indian market showcasing examples of global brands like IKEA, Tim Hortons, and Aldo embracing the 'glocalization' strategy, blending their global identity with local adaptations to resonate with Indian consumers. Insights from marketing experts emphasise the importance of cultural relevance, authentic experiences, and striking a balance between global identity and local engagement, particularly during festive seasons.
Anna Ohlin, Country Marketing Manager, IKEA India
Vikram Pandey, National Creative Director, Leo Burnett India
Ravi Makwana, CMO, Tim Hortons India
Janhavi Iyer, Vice President, Brand Strategy, GOZOOP Group
Suchana Sarkar, Chief Brand Officer, Makani Creatives Pvt. Ltd.
The Rise of Monument Marketing
We scrutinize the CGI trend that has emerged as the medium for bold and effective messaging. Focusing on the innovative strides in the OOH space, the article highlights examples, such as Frooti's attention-grabbing digital banner during Maharashtra's Visarjan and the incorporation of CGI in campaigns by brands like Baskin Robbins and Netflix India. Experts predict the continued dominance of merged mediums, with CGI and monument marketing playing pivotal roles.
Elmer Dsilva, Founder, of BuzzOmni/ Wrap2Earn/ LytAds
Amarjeet Hudda, COO of Laqshya Media Limited
Sharan Pillai, Sr. Manager - Digital Media of Flipkart
Dipankar Sanyal, CEO of Platinum Outdoor and MRP
Raza Syed, Sr. Vice President, of ideacafe and an OOH media expert
As per a report by Qoruz, brands are allocating over ₹300 crore for influencer marketing during the festive season, as 80% of Diwali shoppers enthusiastically engage with influencer-led content. This surge reaffirms influencers' central role in shaping consumer preferences. This article explores the landscape of influencer marketing, delving into the reasons behind this investment by brands, the evolving dynamics between brands and creators, and the distinctive role influencers play during the festive season.
Sejal Kumar, Digital Creator
Ankush Bahuguna, Content Creator and Influencer
Mothi Venkatesh - Founding Member and Head of Growth at Qoruz
Shivam Arora, Content Creator and Influencer
Ankit Bathija, AVP Artist Management @Clout, Pocket Aces
Rahul Dayama, Head of Marketing, Urbanic
Mitesh Kothari, Co-founder of the digital agency White Rivers Media
Make D2C Festive Ready
Take a look at the insights into the various marketing mediums available to Direct-to-Consumer (D2C) brands, both online and offline, emphasising the importance of a holistic approach. Experts weigh in on the significance of platforms like Google and Meta while noting the experimentation with newer channels like Spotify and Sharechat. The article also predicts emerging trends in the D2C segment, such as the use of virtual reality (VR) and artificial intelligence (AI) to enhance the online shopping experience, particularly in the beauty industry.
Hrishita Monga - Website Lead, Swiss Beauty
Swati Nathani, Chief Business Officer of Team Pumpkin
Vikas Chawla, Founder and Director of Social Beat
Building A Retail Journey Beyond Transactions
Shwetal Basu, Customer Care Associate and Chief of Marketing and Communication at Shoppers Stop, provides insights into elevating the festive shopping experience beyond transactions and infusing retail into the journey. Emphasizing the importance of immersive experiences during the festive season, Basu illustrates how vibrant decor to in-store events reflects the spirit of local festivities. The article underscores the significance of personalisation and customer engagement, utilising data analytics for tailored promotions.
A Festival For Me
In his discussion on the evolving landscape of festive advertising, Anirban Mozumdar, Chief Strategy Officer at Havas Worldwide India, introduces the concept of the ‘Me-conomy’ and its relevance in the festive season. Traditionally, festive ads focused on goodness, kindness, and values, often aligning with broader social causes. Mozumdar argues for a shift toward a more personal and individualised approach, where brands contribute to improving individual lives rather than distant macro-causes. In the Me-conomy, the emphasis is on brands making a personal impact by simplifying lives, providing greater control, seamless experiences, and addressing individual issues.
Responsible & Culturally Sensitive Festive Marketing
In discussing responsible and culturally sensitive festive marketing, Bodh Deb, Founder & Chief Content Creator at Bodh Entertainment PVT LTD, presents his top five Diwali ads that exemplify best practices in advertising during the festive season. Each ad is highlighted for its cultural insights and sensitivity, aligning with the deeper emotional connections associated with Diwali.
Unwrapping The Potential of CTV This Festive Season
Media experts discuss the vast potential of Connected TV (CTV) during the festive season, particularly amid the cricket World Cup in India, which has significantly increased viewership. The GroupM Finecast and Kantar report indicate that two in three households prefer CTV as their primary mode for accessing TV content. Advertisers can leverage this by incorporating precision targeting, retargeting, and immersive content tailored for CTV. With CTV adoption expected to double by 2025, opportunities include integrating e-commerce functionalities, creating interactive ads, and tailoring messaging for a more immersive experience, enabling brands to connect with audiences on the biggest screen in the house.
Prabhvir Sahmey, Senior Director, Samsung Ads India
Nikhil Kumar, VP, India & SEA, mediasmart
Karan Anand, SVP – Strategy, Interactive Avenues (the digital arm of IPG Mediabrands India)
Priyam Dadia, Head of Media Planning, Schbang
Siddharth Dabhade, Managing Director, MiQ India, China and SAARC
Bankable Festive Celebrity Endorsers
The TAM AdEx report for the first half of 2023 indicates that 28% of ads were celebrity-endorsed, with Akshay Kumar, Amitabh Bachchan, Vidya Balan, Alia Bhatt, and Ranveer Singh being the most visible. We analyse the significance of celebrity endorsers during the festive season, shedding light on top influencers and their impact on various brand categories.
Campaign Playlist: Iconic Festive Campaigns
In the realm of festive campaigns, certain advertisements transcend the typical and embed themselves in our memories, resonating with audiences long after the season concludes. In conversation with industry experts, dissects some of these iconic festive campaigns.
Mukund Olety, Chief Creative Officer, VMLY&R
Pallavi Chakravarti, Founder and CCO, Fundamental
Ashish Bhasin, Founder, The Bhasin Consulting Group
Shivani Kamdar, Associate Creative, SoCheers
Rahul Mathew, Chief Creative Officer, DDB Mudra Group
To explore the depth and breadth of the advertising and marketing landscape during this festive season, dive into the inaugural edition of The Pulse here. The pulse of the industry beats within its pages, and we can't wait for you to experience it.