Wednesday, December 18, 2013

AAP yahan aayein kisliye ?

The people seem to say “hum ne bulaya isliye”. AAP’s surprising victory appears to be a big case study in itself for the politicos, but it is definitely so for the Marketing guys. Right from the go, the product Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) had captured people’s imagination. POLITICS was something that everyone in India wanted a genie for. And AAP was on the scene. The ensuing scenes may not have been as rosy as the Alladin rubbing the Genie, but AAP was able to effectively summarize the collective angst, aspirations and that quintessential integrity & honesty which individuals often seek in their own self. In a market that was dominated by one clear leader, a challenger and a dozen local brands ( SP, BSP, NCP, Shivsena et al), AAP has carved out a niche for itself that appears to have a pan national market.   

Now that they have won the mind-share ( and a substantial vote-share), it remains to be seen how good they prove at governance. Arvind Kejriwal is an ex-IAS officer and will know the way to handle bureaucracy carefully, but his other poet colleagues and psephologists need to be really trained on this aspect. On many other counts like selection of candidates, raising of election funds etc, AAP has set in new trends. They can take “train the leaders” as another first trend that they will set for other parties to follow.  If not actual power, they are going to keep the quality of the leader & challenger brands (like Cong & BJP) on a "continuous improvement" path. On any other day, it would have been a cake walk for BJP to form a Govt. at Delhi. With AAP as the quality service provider in the market, any unethical move on the part of the BJP or Cong would severely dent their image and actually make AAP take a moral high ground. 

Overall, I can see the AAP having carved out a niche from an election that was left to the half-hearted efforts of “the others”. Right moves and AAP is bound to appear on the national scene with a bang. 

Monday, April 08, 2013

JWT, Ford Figo, Bobby Pawar and the silence of CII

Well, we all know the fiasco. So let me get to the point. What has happened in JWT ( Bobby Pawar exiting along with its creative team), is not something new. It keeps happening all the time in other industries albeit never getting into the 1st page of Economic Times.

The Management culture has become so fragile that it simply cannot stand the test of values and corporate governance. I am all the more surprised that corporate bigwigs who raise an eyebrow at the slightest slip of the Govt, are today silent, perhaps sending a message that all are in the same boat.

It is impossible to believe that Ford did not know anything about the ad (it seems they were not even supposed to see it !!). $2 billion is the annual advertising budget of Ford and without doubt the entire Management team at both JWT and Ford would be involved in the creative process.CII is quiet, as is ASCI. The people who took the real hit were the team of Bobby Pawar for believing in the creative process which the advertising industry so beautifully flaunts.  

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

The Pope Francis Tweets. A leaf for Indian Babas?

I say why not? The transition to Twitter appears so natural. After all it is so well stated in Hindu scriptures..."Kaalaya Tasmainnamaha..". Go according to the times. Tools like Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest only add arsenals to the communication channel for these traditional institutions. However, no institution can afford to stay aloof or they run the risk of getting irrelevant. Youth is not just a sweet target market for the big corporations but also for these Pontiffs, Mullahs, Swamies, Babas and Gurus. 

But social media is a two-way channel. As much as it can be used to communicate your thoughts, it has the ability to shape your own thought in the process and prove to be a pain for those intending it to use it like a newspaper. Many of the Indian Babas ( recently Asaram Bapu and Baba Ramdev) have already experienced this without even their own conscious knowledge. Their comments have been appreciated as well as dissected for sharp criticism. 

At a totally different level, the social media is a channel that has the potential to transform these traditional institutions from being closed systems to interactive systems, ready to assimilate new things and embrace opportunities for change. The Vatican has taken the first step towards it. Can our Babas afford to stay behind?