What's missing in the experiential activities by Indian brands? OOH displays...


In the last 5 years, the world has witnessed the internet exploding with social websites and apps that have revolutionized the way we accessed and shared content with each other. With the explosive popularity of social sites like Facebook, Twitter etc., every mainstream brand wants to get on the bandwagon and lead the change. It is only recently that new job titles like 'social media manager' started to make rounds on job portals, a job profile that is primarily targeted by young graduates who are savvy with web 2.0.

It was time that everybody thought traditional mediums of brand communication can soon be found only at a graveyard. Then came the statistics, TV is not dead. Traditional mediums such as TV is still powerful and social media is not going to replace it anytime soon. In reference to this new understanding, a term was coined - 'tradigital', which combines traditional and digital together as a strategy. This means, displays still offer not only an effective way to display ads but they can engage people too.

Only recently, India is witnessing high-quality displays popping up across cities, especially in malls, both outdoors and indoors. Without realizing it, many electronic stores in the city inadvertently been engaging masses whenever there was a TV coverage of an important event or sports. Just think about all those days when there was a big breaking news on TV or a high intensity cricket match between India and Pakistan, it would have been a common site in India to see people flocking outside stores with glass windows, with multiple television sets playing the events. Although, the electronic store isn't intentionally engaging people, but from this phenomenon, we know that content that generates curiosity, content that is good and content that generates interest can draw people's attention.

When we imagine huge, high quality LED displays showing attractive commercials and engaging ads, New York Times Square intersection is what comes to our mind. The buildings across the intersection are littered with bright and beautiful displays showing latest commercials and interactive videos. Times Square Dunk Tank is one clever interactive campaign that Clear Channel Spectacolor did to showcase how advanced their products and services were. To do this, they utilized a huge display that would let people passing-by see themselves on the screen, to get their attention. Then a male and female protagonist appear on the screen encouraging people to tweet live and vote for either of them. This follows by an interactive game with motion sensor - 'Dunk Tank' in which, people have to raise their hands and hit a ball towards a target. This followed by online engagement where people would discuss, share and even upload their photos to get featured on the screen as next protagonists.

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India may be far from such initiatives but marketers can always be the first to back such bold experiential activities using displays. Similarly, creative agencies can device something unique using high-quality displays that Indians don't generally find in the public. Although outdoor high-quality displays may seem improbable in India at the moment, some malls have already started to use them for indoor localized advertising.

Ambience mall in Gurgaon, Haryana has a running display that shows brand advertisements. The long, lean and stretched display is bright and captures people's attention. However, this probably isn't the ideal display to do something experiential. But for high-quality displays in India, this can be a start.

The mall also has another display that is relatively bigger than the stretched display.

Provided, the display is backed with audio and a compère is able to pull the crowd in, this could become a medium for an engaging campaign by a brand. Like the Dunk Tank experiential game, some of the other ways a brand can engage people could be a motion sensing games like what we used to have in India when some of the first webcams arrived here. Brands like Compaq introduced add on software with their Presario desktop computers, which turned the web camera that came with it, into a motion sensing device that would let users hit a ball on the desktop screen with their head. Other interesting engaging activities can include asking participants to take part in popular games like 'Just Dance' that involves actual dancing by people on motion sensing floor pads, while the video gets projected onto a huge screen for people to see and cheer them. They could also have live quiz competitions that can involve people tweeting answers live to questions that gets projected on a huge display, giving out instant results that they can share with their friends and so on.

When EE reached out to an outdoor and indoor panel supplier, Ashok Kayada of S K Impex, he said:

"There is a healthy demand for large display panels by brands, especially indoor panels for various activities. The business is good and we expect it to grow."

The ideas are limitless when it comes to displays. Visual display is already an effective engagement tool that humans are accustomed to. All that a marketer needs to do is device a way to make engagement experiential, using modern tools that people already carry, and with the right content they can get people brand activated.

Tags assigned to this article:
big displays experiential india indoor large marketing news OOH Outdoor

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