Marketing Featured South Asia

Ayatiworks snares digital and creative mandate of retailer Naga Foods

India – Naga Foods, the largest retailer in Chennai in India, has awarded its digital marketing mandate to Ayatiworks, digital marketing firm based in Chennai. The agency is tasked to manage its campaigns to drive more engagement and digital and creative solutions for the brand.

Naga Food has served as the corporation that represents Naga throughout its existence. Naga is established as a farm-to-fork company and is proud of its state-of-the-art production facility.

According to the agency, Ayatiworks will seek to improve Naga Foods Group’s entire brand visibility on digital and social media platforms. The agency will be in charge of developing original content as well as data-driven social media campaigns as part of its mandate. 

Ayatiworks further revealed that it already has two advertising campaigns planned for Holi & Ramadan. With increased exposure and the implementation of a solid brand strategy, the agency aims to ensure that the brand reaches market leadership. 

Furthermore, monitoring customer interest and aiding the brand in starting a conversation across all accessible integrated marketing channels are some of the duties assigned to the agency.

Upendran Nandakumar, AyatiWorks’ Founder, commented, “We’re all prepared to implement [360-degree] digital solutions to [disrupt] and drive campaigns for the brand to help it fly to new heights. Through our all-encompassing strategy, we hope to help clients create more successful narratives and stronger connections with their audience. 

“We are convinced that [by] using best-in-class tactics, Naga Food will maintain its lead in a fiercely competitive sector. We would adopt the strategy of creating meaningful discussions for the brand and elevating their presence,” added Nandakumar.

Meanwhile, Monaa Kannan, director of marketing of Naga Limited Consumer Division, expressed excitement about the partnership. “We are pleased to have Ayatiworks on board as our digital partner. With the growing digital world, we plan to connect with each and every consumer through [the] digital medium to keep them updated with our [regularly] innovated products.”

2017-founded Ayatiworks offers 360-degree digital media solutions. It offers planning, buying, and programmatic solutions for digital media. In addition, the agency has also dabbled in 24-hour e-commerce, multilingual marketing, and in-house influencer marketing.

Marketing Featured South Asia

This campaign takes a figurative ride on ‘standing out’ to showcase top stationery highlighter

India – Indian stationery brand, Linc, has released its new illustration-based ads for one of its most popular products, the Deli Highlighter. The ads were made in collaboration with marketing communications agency Wunderman Thompson.

The two spots featured bird’s eye view illustrations of Kumbh Mela, the world’s largest gathering of devotees, and Dharavi, Asia’s largest slum, to emphasise how the product “makes one stand out in a large crowd.”

Speaking about the campaign, Deepak Jalan, managing director at Linc Pens, said, “Linc, as a company has always stood for uniqueness, both in the way it designs its products, and the way it reaches out to its consumers.”

He added, “These stunning illustration-based ads for Deli Highlighter is yet another such campaign to create [top-of-mind] awareness of the brand, in a creative way.”

Arjun Mukherjee, executive creative director and vice president at Wunderman Thompson Kolkata, also pointed out, “To demonstrate how easy it is to spot anything using this highlighter, the need was to show overcrowding of epic proportions.”

He also said that while Kumbh Mela and Dharavi were obvious picks, the challenge was to recreate an ‘unimaginable hustle, bustle and chaos’ as the canvas for the ads through detailed illustrations and crafting.

Soumya Chowdhury, VP and CSD of client servicing at Wunderman Thompson Kolkata added, “We have been partnering Linc Limited for quite some time and creating clutter-breaking communication for them. This time, the particular product needed something extraordinary to ‘highlight’ its benefit in a simple, impactful way, and make consumers take notice.”

Last month, Wunderman Thompson has also collaborated with Australia-based frozen food brand Birds Eye to launch the brand platform ‘An Eye For Good’ to showcase the sustainable work they do in order to bring high-quality food products to its consumers.

Marketing Featured South Asia

TBWA\India appoints Ranjeev Vij as executive director for North operations

Mumbai, India – Advertising agency TBWA\ India appoints Ranjeev Vij as executive director for its North operations to further drive a growth strategy for the agency. Simultaneously, Vij was appointed as managing director of Nissan United 3.0, the dedicated marketing agency for the Nissan brand by TBWA\ to further elevate the impact of the team.

Vij brings with him a strong background in advertising, digital, data and PR working across the markets of United Kingdom and India. In his last stint, he was with Adfactors PR as digital evangelist where he led the digital-first integrated creative mandates and helped in scaling up its digital practice.

He has also worked with marketing and advertising agencies Ogilvy, McCann, BBDO and information technology consulting company Cognizant amongst others. 

Govind Pandey, chief executive officer at TBWA\India said that Ranjeev’s expertise will further accelerate the agency’s ambition to be the leader in total brand experience and disruptive thinking.

Meanwhile, Vij said that the success of brands will be achieved if there is an ability to harness various aspects such as creativity, data, design, technology, experience, commerce, and advertising. 

“I look forward to utilising my diverse experience and propelling our clients’ business forward,” he added.

Aside from Nissan, TBWA\’s global clients include adidas, Apple, Gatorade, Henkel, Hilton Hotels, McDonald’s and Singapore Airlines.

Last month, TBWA\ India has also appointed Russell Barrett as its chief creative experience officer.

Marketing Featured South Asia

Indian marketing comms Laqshya Media Group expands to Gulf region

Dubai, United Arab Emirates – Local marketing communications group Laqshya Media Group (LMG) has announced its expansion to Dubai and the Gulf region. It has also appointed Elie Hankash as its new head of its Dubai office.

The new Dubai office will serve as a hub for Laqshya Media Group’s operations in the UAE and Gulf region, offering a full range of services, including out-of-home media planning, buying, digital solutions, and experiential marketing.

Prior to his new position, Hankash was previously LMG’s general manager for Dubai and the Gulf region. He will report to Atul Shrivastava, group CEO of Laqshya Media Group. Elie brings a wealth of experience, having worked in the advertising and media industry for 35 years. 

He was previously the regional buying director at MCN Group for 15 years and has held senior positions at Leo Burnett, Y&R, McCann Erickson, and Memac Ogilvy.

Hankash said, “I am eager to bring my skill set to Laqshya and help drive the company’s growth in the UAE and Gulf region. We believe that the Middle East region is an important market for us, and we are committed to building strong relationships with clients and partners in the region.”

Meanwhile, Shrivastava commented, “We couldn’t be more excited to welcome Elie to the Laqshya Media Group family! His extensive background in related fields is a game changer as we grow our presence in the UAE and Gulf region. Our expertise and experience make us confident that clients will warmly receive our tech-focused and innovative approach to out-of-home media and partners alike.”

LMG’s move into the UAE and Gulf region is part of its wider strategy to expand globally and offer its services to clients worldwide. Laqshya is already executing a number of campaigns in global markets through its alliance with some OOH agencies in Europe and the USA. 

Its public relations arm recently ventured into the news distribution service, launching ‘‘ in May 2022.

Marketing Featured South Asia

India’s ad regulation reveals lack of brand transparency amongst influencers major drawback for consumer support

Mumbai, India – Lack of transparency by influencers in India in regard to their brand affiliations is a key reason why they are most likely to get distanced from by their followers, a recent report from the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) has stated.

According to said data, 43% of the respondents agree that it is worth distancing themselves from the brand if they fail to disclose their brand affiliation. Other reasons include repetitive content (42%) and over-promotion of a product or service (41%).

This then leads to a high proportion of Indian consumers yearning for transparency and honesty from influencers, which was mostly agreed upon by 79% of the study participants. 

Meanwhile, reasons for influencers to gain that trust would be having relatable content (57%) and injecting personal stories (53%). 

Moreover, the report showed how simply being interlinked with each other renders a positive return in consumer sentiment. Around 64% of consumers felt the brand became more trustworthy when influencers endorsed it and vice versa— 58% of those surveyed thought that the influencers became more trustworthy when they endorsed the brand. 

Manisha Kapoor, CEO & secretary general of ASCI, shared that they have long helped push forth the huge rate of transparency and honesty amongst influencers through its guideline implementations in 2021, where authorities from the Central Consumer Protection Authorities also now require disclosure of material connection between brands and influencers.

“Hence, non-disclosures are potential violations of the law. An important aspect of the dipstick is the revelation that non-transparency was among the prime reasons why influencers lost the trust of their followers. On the other hand, transparency in their communication significantly built trust,” she stated.

The new ASCI data comes right after a recent study made by the ad watchdog regarding top brand violators in the advertising scene, which saw personal care products drawing the most red flags.

Marketing Featured South Asia

Richa Dholi appointed as new VP for strategy planning of Wunderman Thompson India

India Wunderman Thompson India has appointed Richa Dholi as its new vice president for strategy planning. With an extensive experience in marketing and digital ecosystem of businesses, Dholi will lead the strategic efforts specifically for the Unilever brands that are handled by the agency.

In her last stint, she was a senior brand manager at the microblogging and social networking service Koo India. She also worked at advertising companies Ogilvy, Lowe, and McCann, and information technology company Capgemini where she engaged with FMCG and lifestyle brands. 

Anurag Tandon, managing partner at Wunderman Thompson Mumbai said that the agency needs to adjust its mindset towards brand management and customer experience, given that customers engaged differently with the brands in the post-pandemic world.

He added, “With Richa on board, we get the right blend of understanding business and strategy. We are excited to have her as part of our team and wish her the very best in her new role.”

Commenting on her new role, Dholi said, “Being part of Wunderman Thompson is a privilege and a testament to the agency’s cutting-edge approach to blending culture, creativity, and technology. As a planner, I am eager to continue growing and evolving in this dynamic environment.”

Marketing Featured South Asia

This campaign for clean air turns pollution by-products into pencils

Bengaluru, India To help improve the air quality for India’s underprivileged school children, nasal health brand Otrivin has launched an initiative called ‘Otrivin Pollution Capture Pencils’ where the brand distributes the ever-essential pencils to young students in Bengaluru. A pretty normal sighting – but with an incredible tech behind it: they are created from pollution by-products. 

The project is in collaboration with Wunderman Thompson Singapore, and in the initial phase of it, Indian innovation company Panjurli Labs was engaged to develop twenty-two specially designed purifiers. These were installed inside and outside school buildings, and for two months, were able to wipe out up to 74% of airborne pollutants and clean over 2 billion cubic feet of toxic air, said the agency.

The process of creating the pencils involved residues being gathered and then mixed with graphite. In the end, the project was able to create 10,000 custom-designed and non-toxic pencils. These were distributed to students and will similarly serve as a fundraising tool to add more air purifiers in local schools.

Farhad Nadeem, global marketing & digital director of Otrivin, shared that the Otrivin ‘Pollution Capture Pencils’ pilot in India is one such action that attempts to convert air pollution into positivity. 

“We hope that this initiative, while not solving India’s pollution challenge, inspires people to take simple actions to make the world a better place to live in and breathe,” Nadeem added.

Meanwhile, Mateusz Mroszczak, chief creative officer of Wunderman Thompson Singapore, commented, “We’re really proud to have partnered with Otrivin to take a small, but meaningful step to help bring cleaner air to India’s children.”

Wunderman Thompson revealed that Bengaluru was chosen as the city to focus on due to its air quality which is considered to go over WHO’s threshold of healthy air. Based on WHO’s data, 98% of Indian children breathe toxic air not just outdoors, but also in their classrooms where they spend almost 8 hours a day in their classes. Furthermore into the project, three low-income schools within the city’s industrial areas of Peenya, Hegganahalli, and Mallasandra were selected. 

In addition, the packaging of the pencils was designed by Indian multidisciplinary artist Gautam Dutta. Dutta said that in conceptualising, he had to visit the schools to find inspiration. Seeing how the children managed to smile despite their situation birthed into the joyful designs by Dutta that aim to represent the children and capture their imagination.

Marketing Featured South Asia

Ex-BBH Russell Barrett joins TBWA\India as chief creative experience officer

Mumbai, India – Advertising agency TBWA in India has appointed Russell Barrett as its chief creative experience officer to further the agency’s commitment to delivering disruptive brand experience solutions for its clients.

In the newly created role, Barrett will be setting the creative vision and delivering TBWA\India’s total brand experience approach to the agency’s portfolio of clients. He will likewise be working closely with the agency’s key management team in India and its global creative leadership to drive the global ambition for TBWA’s creative product.

Prior to joining TBWA, Barrett was managing partner and chief creative officer at ad agency BBH India. He also has 27 years of experience working with brands like Abbott, Google Chrome, Red Bull, Audi, and Uber, amongst others.

On his new appointment, Barrett said, “TBWA is a brilliant brand globally with a sharply defined culture of creativity and innovation. The opportunity to create brand experiences rather than just another campaign speaks directly to my own creative ambitions. Through conversations with the TBWA leadership, it is clear we’re chasing the same goals.”

Govind Pandey, chief executive officer at TBWA\India, also commented that Barrett will be helping elevate the agency’s disruptive creative thinking that its clients demand.

“His depth of experience and varied skill set will sharpen our creative thinking and deliver ongoing value across the entire brand experience for our clients,” he added.

Meanwhile, Sean Donovan, president of TBWA\Asia, also said, “With Russell on board, we will be accelerating our collective mission to provide category-defining solutions that defy convention while delivering meaningful business impact.”

Ben Williams, chief creative experience officer at TBWA\Worldwide, also shared his excitement over Barrett’s appointment. 

“A changed world requires a changed approach to creative work. With Russell joining the\ collective, I look forward to seeing him bring his unique perspective and experience to the table in crafting disruptive work with brand experience at its core.”

Previously, TBWA\India has also appointed Amit Kekre as its CSO to elevate its strategic approach across its planning department.

Marketing Featured South Asia

Influencers, D2C brands make personal care amongst top three violative sectors in ads, discloses ASCI

Mumbai, India – In its latest report titled ‘Objectionable ads in the Beauty & Personal Care category and the rising impact of influencer marketing & D2C brands’, ad watchdog for India Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) has revealed that the personal care sector has emerged amongst the top three violators.

According to ASCI, the personal care sector contributed to 12% of all objectionable advertisements it examined. The regulatory body processed complaints against 1,126 advertisements in the said sector from 2021 to 2022 and from Q1 to Q3 of 2022 until 2023.

The report has further unveiled that 5.7% of ads in violation of the ASCI Code were from the personal hygiene category, 30.3% from the skincare category, 24.7% from the cosmetics category, 19.4% from hair care, and 17.5% from multiple categories.

Social media influencers were responsible for 68% of the ads processed in the personal care category, out of which 92% violated the ASCI Code and required modifications. Of those, 77% were not contested and the voluntary compliance rate stood at 91%.

Meanwhile, 84% of violative ads belonged to D2C brands, which have a significant presence on social and digital platforms The platform split for violative ads in personal care was also divided amongst Instagram with 55.3%, YouTube with 25.9%, Facebook with 11.3%, and websites with 4.8%.

Speaking about the report, CEO and Secretary General of ASCI Manisha Kapoor said, “Personal care, particularly on digital platforms, is a high engagement space for consumers, and it is important that their interests be protected. Over the past few years, ASCI has constantly strived to update its guidelines to extend consumer protection to many emerging sectors and platforms.”

Kapoor likewise mentioned that the organisation’s AI-based digital monitoring made it possible to efficiently identify violations and drive compliance.

Moreover, the other top two violators mentioned in the report were education at 26% and healthcare at 15%. The launch of influencer guidelines in May 2021 along with ASCI’s AI-based tools has also added to the increased number of ads under scrutiny.

The report follows the amendments in ad disclaimers the ASCI has made last month.

Marketing Featured South Asia

DEPT enters India, acquires Adobe specialists Tekno Point

London – Global digital agency DEPT has announced its expansion in India with the acquisition of Indian Digital Experience Platform (DXP) services provider Tekno Point. The latter’s 500-strong team of Adobe specialists is expected to accelerate DEPT’s DXP service offering for its global client base.

The team will also be augmenting DEPT’s current engineering capabilities, with plans to double the size of the team within the next 18 months.

As part of the agency, Tekno Point will also be rebranded as Tekno Point/DEPT and will continue to operate under the leadership of Himanshu Mody, founder and CEO, and Yash Mody as CTO.

“Tekno Point’s proven Experience Engineering approach combined with deep Adobe DX expertise empowers enterprise customers to realise faster time-to-market and deliver hyper-personalised experiences across channels,” said Himanshu. 

Philip Cronin, senior director at Adobe Partner Sales APAC, also added that they are looking forward to working closely with the team from DEPT to drive even more success in India.

“India holds enormous potential as a domestic market and is host to a truly world-class talent pool. Our culture is ‘big enough to cope, small enough to care’, and we felt that same connection with Tekno Point when working together on several European and US clients,” Dimi Albers, DEPT’s CEO also explained.

Founded in 2000, Tekno Point has been offering an in-depth understanding of Adobe technology across several industries for clients including IDFC Bank, Tata Capital, Bajaj Allianz, Asian Paints, Rosewood Hotels, and Tata AIA.

On December 2022, DEPT has also launched its 300-person team called WEB3/DEPT targeted at optimising Web3 experiences for its clients.