MediAvataar's News Desk

MediAvataar's News Desk

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For many it’s just a toy. For some, it’s an incredible puzzle. And to a select few, it’s the ultimate tool with the power to beat time, time after time. The world knows them as speedcubers. They may seem ordinary and extremely poised in their everyday life. But, put a Rubik’s cube in their hands and they become beasts. As fast and furious as one can be.

Exide, a brand that believes in the power of relentless passion and inner spirit, celebrates these dynamic human values under its newfound #WhatDrivesYou ideology. And in its journey of upholding such people with extraordinary drive, EXIDE came across the curious and ingenious Siddhikant Mishra, from Bhubaneswar. A math major by qualification, and a speedcuber by passion. An ordinary guy who holds unbelievable records in speedcubing. Solving the most complex patterns of Rubik Cubes in a few flicks of his fingers. At times, even without looking at it.

Commenting on this web video, Uttio Majumdar, Chief Marketing Office, EXIDE said, “For a brand as dynamic and driven like EXIDE, it’s always great to celebrate the relentless spirit of people who take their passion to extraordinary levels. In Siddhikant, we discovered yet another ordinary person driven by an extraordinary pursuit.”

Arjun Mukherjee, VP & ECD, J Walter Thompson, Kolkata who conceptualised the video and the idea of featuring Siddhikant, says, “The challenge for us is to show the incredible spread of the “Whatdrivesyou philosophy through each film. Like speedcubing, which isn’t just another puzzle solving technique. It’s an unbelievable sport that takes an incredible medley of pace and calculation every millisecond. And it’s only who are #DrivenBySpeed that master it, and inspire us with their extraordinariness. “

The recently released campaign created for Exide, by J Walter Thompson, #DrivenBySpeed has already garnered over 1.3 million views and 1000+ shares across digital platforms. Along with this, the video trended on Twitter with a reach of 56,34,672 and a native platform reach of 1 Lac+ with the numbers increasing day on day.

It’s a drive that’s gathered pace like never before!


Vijay Jacob - Senior VP & Managing Partner, J Walter Thompson, Kolkata

Senthil Kumar – Chief Creative Officer, J Walter Thompson

Arjun Mukherjee - VP & Exec Creative Director

Tania Sinha - AVP & Client Services Director

Anurag Acharya - Creative Director

Neha Srivastava – Account Director II

Abhishek Sinha – Production house, Made in Calcutta

On September 28, Morden Chen, General Manager of Alibaba UC Ads, will reveal their short video ads platform at The MMA Forum being held at Taj Santa Cruz in Mumbai.

This is an initiative by Alibaba UC Ads to start the revolution of short video ads in India and strive to become the largest one-stop content marketing platform. It is reported that UC Ads has maintained long-term co-operations with Amazon, Flipkart, PayTM Mall, Tokopedia, Lazada and other top e-commerce platforms in India and Indonesia. Other important partners include mobile phone brands, operators and FMCG brands, etc.

UC Ads will launch a revolution of short video ads in the Indian market.

"We've noticed that people in India were used to watching TV together with their families while more and more young people prefer to be with their phones and browse what they like, no longer confined to TV programs," Morden said. “With the popularity of mobile devices and declining mobile internet service charges, people are more accustomed to diverse contents on their mobile phones and reading is becoming fragmented. Short video features short time and can be viewed on the move, which is getting more and more popular. Many short video platforms have emerged against this backdrop, with information consumption upgrading from pure image-text to image-text + video.”

He continued, “People's attention span is reducing. According to a survey by Microsoft in 2015, after a habit of using mobile devices is developed, people's attention span dropped from 12 seconds in 2000 to 8 seconds which is shorter than that of a goldfish. This calls for the digital content on mobile devices to be more refined with more selling points.”

For brands, the short video ads not only cater to the consumers’ new habit of favoring fragmented contents on the mobile phone over long videos but also coincide with the memory pattern of users in the mobile phone era. The short video ads are well received by mature markets, however, their potentials have been underestimated by brand marketers in India where mobile device ownership has skyrocketed. Tomorrow at the MMA Forum, Morden Chen will introduce the practices of marketers in mature markets. They replace the strategy of brand videos with mobile first strategies and determine the presentation of video ads based on the demand of mobile clients to make ads more suitable for the application scenarios of mobile devices. UC Ads offers a variety of short video ads solutions, including the pioneering splash video, in-feeds video and in-article video and has facilitated brand marketers to implement the mobile first strategy for short video marketing, rendering more opportunities to effectively reach users.

The first one-stop content marketing platform

With hard-sell advertising flooding the marketplace, brands need new ways to reach consumers. A brand with a good reputation is more likely to be chosen by consumers, overshadowing its counterparts. The value of internet celebrity marketing has been verified as internet celebrities have stable followers and are able to generate much more data consumption. The products promoted under the celebrity halo are easily accepted by followers and quickly converted into orders. Internet celebrities can spark discussions in the community, creating a ripple effect of getting the consumers’ attention to a brand.

However, existing platforms providing buzz marketing solutions with limited resources either focus on content creation of We-Media or targeted content releases. Advertisers need to reach We-Media on platform A to complete content creation, and then search for the appropriate media depending on the attributes of TA and media to issue ads. The problem is that content and platform do not match during the process.

By directly connecting We-Media resources with technology platform of UC, UC Ads establishes a smart integrated content marketing lab providing one-stop buzz marketing solutions. In India and Indonesia, UC Influencer Pool is home to more than 100,000 We-Media from a dozen fields such as fashion, 3C, automobile and sports, etc., capable of creating buzz contents for brands. Through operating its information flow, UC understands the users' interest so that the brand content matches with the most relevant users according to their interests on UC platform and push the relevant buzz created by the internet celebrities. UC has completed the whole process from organizing We-Media to content creation, crowd matching and targeted content releases, avoiding the resource mismatch of each link.

The competition for users in the Indian market gradually expands from the first-tier cities to the second, third and fourth tier cities and rural areas. All applications and brands are trying to attract the increasing number of emerging class in these places as the newly-arisen users start to have the internet access. UC Ads resources are from UC browser, UC News and 9Apps with the information flow of browser reaching 130 million monthly active users in first-tier to second, third and fourth tier cities in India. This is conducive to the country’s consumption upgrading.

Thursday, 27 September 2018 00:00

The Impact of Technology on the Travel Industry

New Study Reveals the Impact of Technology on Travel Intention, Selection and Timing

If you are one of the hundreds of millions people worldwide who will fly this year, your travel choices and selections are being influenced by the connected economy. Whether you are a smart and well-informed travel planner, a “relaxed nomad” ready to roam without stress or strife, or a deal-seeker on a budget, technology is transforming your travel experience, findings show, in a way that makes it even more accessible and frequent.

According to new research – entitled “What’s Changing the Way You Travel Today” – undertaken by the CMO Council’s GeoBranding Center and AIG Travel, today’s diverse leisure travelers are smarter, more informed and better prepared than ever before. Beliefs, values and interests are influencing where, how and why people travel. Technology and service innovations are making it easier and cheaper to discover, reach and enjoy travel destinations. While deals, specials and promotions are driving desire and action, visually enriched and personalized digital content channels are making travel experiences more alluring and exciting.

The research, centered around a survey of more than 2,000 leisure travelers by Pollfish this summer, yielded some notable statistics. Nearly half of those polled say the Internet and device connectivity makes travel better. A further 42 percent believe technology innovations and advancements across all modes of travel have improved the experience, and 38 percent say these tech advancements have helped them find deals, discounts and destinations more easily.

More than 51 percent of travelers surveyed say great deals and discounts are what prompts them to make a travel booking. Easier, do-it-yourself travel planning is also a major factor for 32 percent of travelers. Other influences are referrals from family and friends (29 percent), exciting images or video (21 percent), and interesting stories or articles (21 percent).

“We’re in the thick of a monstrous growth in global travel,” notes Donovan Neale-May, executive director of the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) Council, which operates the GeoBranding Center. “The message from today’s leisure traveler is clear: Travel brands from airlines and resorts to destination and location marketers need to be digitally empowered and data-driven in their go-to-market practices. The impact and influence of how people find, select, book, secure, share and rate their travel experiences in the connected economy has brought on record travel numbers that are not likely to slow.”

When asked to identify the top travel planning innovations and developments in recent years, 49 percent of those surveyed pointed to online travel booking sites and booking assurances, including insurance coverage. An equal percent highlighted deal or discount availability. Other marketing strategies and inducements that also rated highly by respondents included:

• Loyalty programs with upgrades, privileges, and travel benefits (34 percent)
• New ways to discover, source and receive personalized travel deals (33 percent)
• Promotional incentives and options (28 percent)

A notable 46 percent of respondents said online travel aggregators and booking sites (Expedia, Travelocity,, etc.) did the best job of assisting and satisfying travelers today. They outperformed travel agents (32 percent), lodging and hospitality sites (hotels, resorts, B&Bs, etc.), as well as travel deal and savings sites (Travelzoo, CheapTickets, etc.), which both received a 19 percent share of the vote.

“Advancements in technology have revolutionized the way consumers can now customize travel to better suit individual trip preferences and budget, including how travel insurance is researched and purchased,” said Jeff Rutledge, CEO at AIG Travel. “As consumers take more control over their travel booking process, all members of the travel industry must step up to deliver a seamless booking experience which, for the travel insurance segment specifically, means guiding travelers to the right products and services for their particular trip.”

Factors most influencing travel choices tended to be more about passions, self-interests and destination appeal, rather than travel issues or concerns:

• Special interests, hobbies and diversions (43 percent)
• Security, stability and friendliness of destination (36 percent)
• Adventure, recreation or sports pursuits (30 percent)
• Culture and history of the local people (29 percent)
• Destination geography and diversity (29 percent)
Surprisingly, only 15 percent relied on their social media networks to help shape their travel choices,
and just eight percent pointed to political ethics, human rights practices or prejudices in travel locales as
a consideration when choosing travel destinations.
When asked to characterize the type of traveler they were, most respondents selected more informed,
relaxed and deal-seeking to best describe their approach to travel. Most prevalent travel types included:
• Smart, well-informed planner (31 percent)
• Relaxed nomad – easygoing and flexible (25 percent)
• Deal seeker on a budget (22 percent)

Less common were those that felt nervous, stressed and anxious when traveling (13 percent) and fewer yet thought they were thrill-seeking and adventure-bound (5 percent). Topping the list of reasons why survey participants did not travel more frequently were:

• Too many distractions or obligations in my life (19 percent)
• Don’t like crowds or discomforts of travel (17 percent)
• Lack time and a compelling reason (14 percent)
• Too much anxiety, stress and danger (10 percent)
• Hassles and headaches of travel (8 percent)
• Difficulty and complexity of planning for travel (7 percent)

The Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) Forum India returns for its seventh edition on 28 September 2018 at The Taj Santacruz.

The Forum will see brands, agencies and publishers gather to share successful ideas on mobile-integrated campaigns. This will be followed by a celebration of India’s best in mobile marketing at the SMARTIESTM India Awards, the only global mobile marketing awards programme that honours innovation, creativity and success in the industry.

The number of mobile internet users in India was at 456 million in December 2017, a 17% increase from December 2016, according to a study conducted by the Internet & Mobile Association of India. With this growing number of mobile internet users, mobile marketers have to constantly keep up and think of new ways to engage consumers with their marketing.

From navigating the complex marketing landscape, to discussing issues around data privacy and security, the MMA Forum India 2018 will delve into how mobile is changing the way companies interact and engage with their consumers.



The following are the speakers at this year’s Forum:


Anant Rangaswami, Journalist, CNBC – TV18
Anupama Chopra, Founder & Editor Film, Companion
Ashutosh Srivastava, Chairman Asia Pacific, Mobile Marketing Association
Avinash Kumar, CGM and Marketing Head, Patanjali Ayurved Ltd
B. Sridhar, Chief Digital Officer, Diageo
Clyde Nunes, Director, Sales – West & South, Truecaller, India
D Shivakumar, Group Executive President – Corporate Strategy and Business Development, Aditya Birla Group
Dhiraj Gupta, CTO and Founder, Mfilterit
Dilip Mistry, Vice President, Digital Business Building, McKinsey & Company
Dolly Jha, Executive Director - South Asia, Nielsen
Gowthaman Ragothaman, Chief Development Officer, Mindshare, AMEA Global Client Lead, WPP, TeamPepsiCo
Guneet Singh, Head Marketing & Creative Solutions, APAC, Google
Hemant Mehta, Managing Director, Kantar IMRB Chief Strategy Officer, Kantar South Asia
Mahip Dwivedi, Head Mobile & Performance Marketing,
Meheer Thakare, Head of Digital Solution, Kantar Milward Brown
Morden Chen, General Manager UC Ads, Alibaba Digital Media and Entertainment Group
Narayan Murthy Ivaturi, Vice President APAC, FreakOut
Neena Dasgupta, CEO and Director, Zirca Digital Solutions
Pallav Jain, Co-CEO, Performics.Convonix
Pankaj Singh Parihar, Vice President & Head - Digital Marketing & Transformation, Godrej Consumer Products Ltd
Partho Dasgupta, Chief Executive Officer BAR,C India
Prasun Basu, President, South Asia, Nielsen
Rajiv Singh, Head – Ad Sales, Revenue and Monetization, SonyLIV
Rohit Dadwal, Managing Director, Mobile Marketing Association Asia Pacific Limited
Rohit Sharma, CEO and Co-founder, POKKT
Sahil Deswal, Head - Growth & Marketing, Times Internet
Shabana Badami, Head of Search Solutions Google India
Shamsuddin Jasani, Group MD, Isobar South Asia, Isobar India
Shashi Sinha, Chief Executive Officer, India, IPG MediaBrands
Sidharth Shakdher, EVP & Chief Marketing Officer, Hotstar
Sourav Shah, Head E-Commerce, Trent Limited
Uday Sodhi, Business Head Digital, Sony Pictures Networks India
Vasuta Agarwal, Vice President and General Manager, India, InMobi
Vinodh Bhat, Co-founder, President & Chief Strategy Officer Saavn
Vishikh Talwar, Managing Director South Asia, Kantar Millward Brown

As the future of mobile defines the future of business, the Forum will focus on the effective channels that mobile marketers could be used to transform businesses across all sectors. This requires looking into the future and establishing a vision and strategy to get there. With a marketer-led agenda, this forum will deliver tangible marketing strategies to drive business growth and increased ROI.

Rohit Dadwal, Managing Director, MMA Asia Pacific said, “The role mobile marketing plays today is greater than ever, and marketers should continually explore new ways to incorporate mobile marketing into the existing marketing mix. MMA Forum India 2018 will serve as an avenue for marketers, brands and agencies to connect and share ideas and experiences, and the SMARTIESTM Awards will celebrate the best mobile campaigns. I’m delighted to see hundreds of new and innovative campaigns for this year’s SMARTIESTM Awards.”

Moneka Khurana, Country Head, MMA India said, “Marketers should tap onto the fast-growing mobile industry in India, which has opened up endless opportunities for mobile marketing. With mobile penetration set to increase exponentially over the next few years, marketers have to figure out new ways to remain relevant to consumers. Whether it is through disruptive technologies like AR or a non-intrusive advertising. At this year’s Forum and SMARTIESTM Awards, I look forward to hearing of the different experiences and successes brands have had in the mobile marketing world.

Thursday, 27 September 2018 00:00

WPP creates new brand experience agency VMLY&R

WPP announced the creation of a new agency, VMLY&R, uniting two leading brands to deliver a contemporary, fully integrated digital and creative offering to clients on a global scale.

VMLY&R’s proposition will combine brand experience and brand advertising, drawing on the complementary expertise of VML and Y&R to create connected brands that drive value for clients.

The new agency will be led by Global Chief Executive Officer Jon Cook, who is currently Global CEO of VML. Jon will report to Mark Read, Chief Executive Officer of WPP. David Sable, former Global CEO of Y&R, will continue to support Jon, VMLY&R and its clients as Non-Executive Chairman as he transitions to a new role in WPP.

Y&R is one of the industry’s iconic agencies, known for building many of the Fortune 500’s biggest brands. Its renowned strategic approach, married with innovation and creative talent, has led to some of the most famous and culturally transformative campaigns around the world. Y&R developed the world’s first and largest brand management tool, its proprietary BrandAsset Valuator, which fuels both strategic and creative decisions with data and insights. The agency’s work has consistently driven the bottom line for its clients and is continuously recognized at every major awards festival, including Cannes, D&AD, the Effies and The One Show.

VML has established itself as one of the most forward-looking agencies in today’s marketplace — blending award-winning creativity with deep expertise in digital marketing. The agency has been recognized at all international creative award shows, including being named Entertainment Agency of the Year for two years in a row at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity; has been noted as a digital leader by Forrester and Gartner; and was one of the first agencies to be certified by the 3% Movement, an organization that champions female creative leadership, diversity and inclusion.

Mark Read said: “VMLY&R will be a powerful brand experience offering and a core agency brand for WPP. VML and Y&R have distinct and complementary strengths spanning creative, technology and data services that make them a perfect match. This is an important step as we build a new, simpler WPP that provides clients with a fully integrated offering and easy access to our wealth of talent and resources.”

Jon Cook, Global Chief Executive Officer, VMLY&R, said: “I’m thrilled for the VMLY&R team as we start this journey together and harness the best of each agency to deliver culturally relevant world-class work. The landscape of our industry is changing rapidly, and we are committed to being an invaluable partner to CMOs around the world. I look forward to leading this unprecedented unification of two exceptional agencies.”

David Sable said: “VMLY&R has been nearly 18 years in the making as we have worked to build two successful brands and develop partnerships together with clients such as Colgate-Palmolive, Dell and the U.S. Navy. I’m proud of this pinnacle moment as we are now able to provide clients one robust, seamless offering. I look forward to supporting Jon and our VMLY&R client partners as I take on my new role within WPP.”

VMLY&R will be an agency of more than 7,000 people, and one of WPP’s principal brands. It will be fully operational in early 2019.

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