India could be called a country of festivals. The amalgamation of different cultures, languages, and religions ensures that there is a festival being celebrated at every nook and corner of the country. As the mainland invites the cool winter breeze, Indians gear up to celebrate the much-awaited approaching festivals of the season. It’s that time of the year where people find joy in planning and celebrating the festivals that bring families and friends together over the winter tide.
Every year, the festive season leads to the sales of goods in humongous amounts across categories. Because sentiments are high, advertising revenue sees a huge jump during this period.
However, 2020 was like a time like no other. The lockdowns caused by the pandemic had significantly shaken the supply chain arms of the print industry, making it challenging for businesses to serve customers as they had always done. The pandemic caused a considerable drop in print advertising spending by advertisers in the market.
Finding a silver lining
Amar Ujala rose above the challenges to find opportunities in such unprecedented times. We launched an initiative called Shubh Labh 2020 Mahotsav to ride in on a festive wave. This initiative brought together local retailers on one common platform and attracted potential customers by offering value add-ons to both the seller and the buyer.
Through a series of articles in both print and digital platforms as well as Webinars, we provided retailers with the right marketing mix for leveraging the festive season and created a positive market sentiment. We offered them profitable festive deals with a lot of value additions that helped secure our market share. That included creating sales opportunities in the form of date- and occasion-centric advertising. A drawing for Amar Ujala readers who shopped from our participating outlets further helped create a strong affinity toward the brand.
The road to success
The campaign generated an excellent response in terms of engagement with both advertisers and customers. Campaign promotion was done through print advertisement and hyperlocal social media, and we offered extensive digital promotion with a microsite on amarujala.com. We enlisted local influencers and PR to urge people to shop from their city stores and included outdoor campaigns and branding of participating outlets.
For the ease and convenience to participate, a reader could participate in the campaign by giving a missed call only. This meant that they could call a number that would cut off automatically and send them a registration link via SMS. Exclusive benefits were offered to the consumers to encourage them to be a part of the campaign:
- 51 silver and 5 gold coins were gifted to the participants on the auspicious day of Dhanteras — a propitious day to buy gold or silver items.
- Customers won a lucky draw coupon on shopping from any of the participating outlets and got an opportunity to be the winner of the respective city. They won hundreds of attractive gifts like cars, motorcycles, electronic appliances, etc.
- Winners were featured in Amar Ujala print and digital platforms.
The campaign results were exhilarating for the organisation as the revenue generation jumped 15% over the expected percentage. It also created a strong buzz on social media and boosted offline engagement. The results were impressive:
- Total missed calls received: 11,121.
- Total registrations: 2,761 from 21 cities.
- Social media presence: 1.2 million overall reach and 2.3 Lakh (230,000) video views.
Seeing the market trend, where the business was at 43% of the annual operating plan, the objective was to take the revenue achievement to 60%-65% in the festive period. Due to Shubh Labh, the achievement went to 80%.
Amar Ujala also had the highest market share in regional business at 37%, whereas Dainik Jagran was at 30% and Hindustan, Dainik Bhaskar, Excelsior, and Punjab Kesari were at 33%.