Ready or not – here I come..

Ready or not – here I come – This is what I hear when I watch Gen Z playing hide-n-seek..

Gen X used to ask “Are you ready,,, should I come?”

Now that’s a change!

Where Gen X was more Brand loyal, Gen Y is more loyal to medium than Brand. They want to engage/interact with Brands on their own terms. They have favourite Internet stores and networks where they spend time..till they chance upon a better option.

For them, Self expression takes over Self Control

So how does one engage with them? Some consumer companies have figured out a way to keep in touch with Gen Y.. on their own terms.

The idea is to interact, engage and keep an element of surprise, humour and suspense! Let the consumers engage with you in entirely new and innovative ways – using the medium they are loyal to.. though not being limited by it.

Here are some examples of how airlines have used social media to engage using elements that were executed on-ground and on-air.

TAP Air Portugal

On Christmas day, the staff of TAP Portugal and Aeroports de Portugal launched into a spontaneous dance routine which brought a cheer to the Christmas travelers. The performance included a number of popular English songs the staff gooved to, and even  Bollywood number! The dance followed an airport announcement for “Flight 000, where only happiness was allowed on-board.”

This was recorded and posted on their official YouTube channel. The video received over 210,000 views on Youtube in just 4 days. Till date, it has  been viewed 1,747,487 times  (5 months)


“Fly Girls” – Reality TV show featuring VA crew members


Weekly roundup (22-26 Feb 2010)

1. Google real-time search adds status updates from Facebook Pages

It’s the first time the search giant has indexed content from the world’s largest social network in its real-time results.

The key thing to remember, however, is that Google has much more limited access to Facebook’s real-time data than its competitor, Bing. Microsoft has deeper ties to the social network, as an investor in Facebook and as a search provider for the site.

Microsoft has the ability to index public status updates, while Google’s access is limited to updates from Pages, which are vehicles for marketing rather than personal content.


2. – Doctors Get Own Social Networking Space

My opinion: I don’t see this model to be successful soon in India. There are many “yellow” pages that have profile of doctors.

Few questions:

  1. Would I go to a doctor reading about him/her on social networking page?
  2. How feasible is it for doctors to continue answering to queries by patients – for free
  3. How much time would busy/well trained and popular doctors spend on this?
  4. In presence of sites like NDTVdoctor that have specialized advisory panel of doctors, how credible would this site sound.

 Having said that, I tried this new feature that I have not seen on other sites – Search by Symptom. It is basically a doctor(specialist) search depending on symptom that you choose from an interactive application. Something that could be a selling point!

 3. Government finally gives approval to the 3G auction

 It is widely being speculated that in most circles three slots would be on sale while a few areas may have enough air waves to accommodate four players. However, Delhi area can have only two slots – thanks to extreme spectrum saturation.


 4.  Sports fever goes online!

–          Comscore Media metrics has announced statistics for sports websites in India which has seen a huge jump in visitors and time spent in January 2010.


–          After scoring 200 runs in an ODI innings against South Africa, Sachin became a twitter master too owning 3 out of the top 10 trending spots on twitter.  Most trended keyword was #sachinisgod – for almost 4 hours all through South Africa’s second innings.

–          Another good news is that youtube has bagged a 2 year exclusive deal with the IPL for streaming matches live. They have also roped in a sponsor for online series.

Source:, Comscore

5. DOCOMO – did the new! 

By giving away completely free access to Major social Networks like – Facebook, Twitter, Orkut & LinkedIn through its Buddynet Plan. The plan will also offer free usage of Nimbuzz chatting app on its network by Buddynet subscribers.


6. Maharashtra Police Launches ePortal

King of clones

Do we need more than 1 touch-point to reach the same place? Or better still duplicate websites?

When you think of news, what comes to mind? – NDTV/IBN or If ties-up with NDTV/IBN to provide “their” news in a co-branded way, will it become a success? Or would it stay as “good to have” feature with no future planning?

So what is a better approach? To offer a bouquet of services in related genre? Or expand in all possible directions – related or unrelated?


Network 18

As long as one take ownership and is not based on just tie-ups. The way Network 18 has expanded in all possible segments – by investing in them – not just tie-ups.

A great thing that NDTV has created is NDTV Social. Personally, I am a big fan of it. I believe the team and leadership at NDTV have created a good product and have tried to bridge the gap between anchors and audience. Something that IBM had also done successfully be being fore runner for “audience anchors”.

Still, despite having tasted success in something that they own, why did NDTV decide to go in for a tie-up again –for Property.  

NDTV Property 

Will I go to NDTV for property lookup? Not unless they come out with their own strong product and yes promote it heavily to get my mindshare.

A memorable decade..

Last day of a decade.. and what  a decade it was.  Still remember those initial internet and online marketing days when “But who will see it on internet” was such a difficult question to answer. . I remember struggling with data to justify a merge 1.5-2.0 lac spends on online.

Client, and probably rightly so, were very apprehensive of the medium..  those days with dial-up connections, only animated gif banners and emailers were possible.

However,  few clients had that vision and they utilized online marketing and paved way for innovations.  Citibank, Incredible India campaign (Ministry of Tourism) come to mind not only as they were top spenders, they were open to new formats.

Now with the kind of broadband connections, internet penetration and interactive media units, social media and networks mushrooming every day, we surely have come a long way..  

And with so many options available, we now have problem of plenty..  How to target right audience without being intrusive or spreading ourselves too thin..

What would you do with “brought friends”?

This service will guarantee you a slew of new followers in the time stated or we’ll provide you with a further 20% at no charge. In other words, we’re so confident that we’ll deliver on our promises or you’ll get 20% more followers than you’ve paid for in the end


Will this help? With Dell story, people have started viewing Twitter as money making machine instead of a communication tool.

Is this the future? How do we measure popularity with such bought/brought “friends”?

Social media networks like Facebook and Twitter are communities that thrive on conversations and personal interaction. I do not go to facebook to become fan.. I go for interaction, I might become a fan, but that is a personal choice.

If community too becomes a number game where someone can pay money to get 10,000 twitter followers/facebook fans, where is the personal touch?

Are we at the verge of Social Media bubble burst?

Our Idiot box is online

Television serials online – started probably with Hulu and have now reached India with sites like Star TV and Zoom streaming complete programs online. 

Star TV has introduced Star Player on their site ( – a great online video entertainment tool that streams shows of the Star Network (channel V included).  Though I have accessed the site from home broadband only (I work in office :P), its interesting to see quick streaming, good quality video along with social media networking elements – allows you to rate/comment/chat/search similar shows.

What also adds to their advantage is the fact that they have created small capsules of the programs with mouse-over write-up.  So, if you have missed or want to view a part of the program, this helps. 

And best is that the site is not overcrowded with ads! That gives a clutter-free and premium look to the site. 

Overall, I found this very impressive! 

What can they do better? Well – few things for sure. Instead of using the main area on homepage for one program promotion, they can create a small video/slideshow of new programs – that could help them promote more than one program. All genres would find interesting programs being introduced and so, pardon my saying, but Star TV’s “saas-bahu” serial image could be improved.

Compared this to Zoom – I think they are in different space all together. While Zoom is a channel website – showcasing schedule, image gallery, news and gossip, celebrity pics and video as well, startv site is focused towards online video entertainment.

Both have their niche defined, but if you ask me, I liked startv website more.

Personal PR – Blog or Networking sites?

When, out of sheer selfish motive, I search for may name on Google, I was surprised to see “Rediff connexions” appear even before my own blog posts.. and to add to it my Rediff connexions is an empty profile. I had deleted contents from this almost an year back..


Google organic results

Google organic results

I fail to understand this ranking metrics. What is more important? Personal Blog? Or just being present on a networking site? How it is that blog posts are less valued than an empty profile on social networking site?

The blog which I write (though the frequency is low), is still more populated and relatively recently updated comes below Rediff connexions.  Though I agree SEM does the magic, but I always thought that Google crawlers focuses on Content as well.. but that doesn’t look like it, atleast not in this case.