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With any mammoth event, comes a mountain of responsibility: Nupur Jain, Co-Founder & Co-CEO, XP&D

In an interview with BW Applause and everythingexperiential.com, Nupur Jain, Co-Founder & Co-CEO, XP&D shared the agency's association with Auto Expo, top trends in experiential marketing, collaborations with other brands and much more.

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XP&D is an experiential agency that uses talent from across the industry. The aim for it is to ensure that their clients get the best possible business solutions and make the entire process more transparent, which has been a persistent challenge in the experiential industry. Despite coming into existence recently, XP&D executed multiple big-ticket projects for brands including Asian Paints, Hyundai, and Kia Motors. 

In an interview with BW Applause and everythingexperiential.com, Nupur Jain, Co-Founder & Co-CEO, XP&D shared the agency's association with Auto Expo, top trends in experiential marketing, collaborations with other brands and much more.

Excerpts:

This is the 15th year of Auto Expo, how has it evolved over the years?

The auto-expo is a look into the future of auto-industry and auto-makers have been at the forefront of the massive technological change in the past few years. It’s not just an auto-show anymore, it’s also a tech show. The brands are not just launching cars and two-wheelers and MUVs, each vehicle is a story and a problem/community addressed. And the core of this narrative is all about next-gen technologies. This Auto Expo in Delhi is an example of how far we have come in terms of evolution. On the other end, the car-makers have ensured a more experiential engagement with consumers and attendees. The attractions are not just the stars & big-launches but custom experiences that make the attendees take back a positive image of the brand. The tech experiences speak for the technological edge that brands have embedded in their new age products. From the perspective of consumers, auto-expos have become deeply experiential.

This is the first year XP&D is managing two pavilions at the Auto Expo. What unique experiences can we expect?

XP&D, a new age experiential and digital platform, is the experiential partner for two of the top auto-brands: Hyundai & KIA. The team managed both the pavilions and ran the show along with the partners.

At the Hyundai pavilion, the brand took its audience on a literal ‘virtual spin’ with the new 180-degree selfie at their Pavillion. Leveraging associations with the BCCI cricket championships, World Rally Championships and FIFA amongst others, Hyundai wanted to share a sporty experience at an unbelievable scale. Guests were enthralled with the 4D Theatre where the adrenaline of the World Rally Championship was palpable; 'The Perfect Header' and 'Super Shot'

Football and Cricket games through VR with Haptic technology had sports buffs anticipate their turn excitedly. The auto-makers also displayed Blue Link Wall - an interactive multi-touch wall with world-class technology embedded in it.

KIA brought in their digital game with real-time, augmented reality, X-Ray visuals synched with an automated sliding display, animated content with mammoth touch screens, a powertrain engine that has a 6-screen object identifier interactive display system with information showcasing various engines developed by KIA.

When it comes to experiential, what are some of the top trends defining this space?

Auto-shows used to be about photo-ops, selfies and big launches, however, auto-brands have moved fast to make auto-show a more hands-on, interactive, DIY experience for attendees. Combining AR, VR, Gaming, Social Media & custom hardware & software, brands are leaving no stone unturned to give a vivid sensorial experience to attendees. This ensures the attendees take back a more personalized experience & memories of the auto-show. Additionally, brands are also creating O2O (online to offline, or vice-versa) platforms where attendees at the event can engage with the brand beyond the physical space, and those who haven’t been able to physically visit the auto-show can still be a part of it. Finally, while content was always a part of such mammoth events, the quality of content and the ways to consume it, are constantly being innovated to create superior images in the minds of the attendees.

What are the big challenges that you have faced?

India auto-expo is a highly anticipated international event and that’s why brands leave no stone unturned to bring the international experience to it. With any mammoth event, comes a mountain of responsibility. While it is a great feat to pull off a large-scale event in an international format, the devil, as they say, are in the details. These technical challenges arise when adapting and adopting an international format on an Indian landscape in a very limited span of time- but again, experience is key to overcome these.

Another challenge is management itself. Behind the scenes of the on-ground execution, there is a core team that runs the show and thus shares the end experience with the consumer. That entire process must be flawless and that's why our collaborative model wins out. We associate and partner with the experts in the industry who have foresight, experience and the wherewithal to overcome the bumps on the road.

Who have you collaborated with for this expo?

We firmly believe in getting the right Human Resources to manage the event- that, in a nutshell, is what our collaborative mode of operation is about. In fact, our business model has paid back in spades in terms of good management and seamless efficient performances at this Auto Expo. We have a core team of 60 and collaborations with our trusted partners - Orange Productions, WYSIWYG, Vantage, Vani International Services, 1 Lab that are industry veterans in their own right. A successful event requires the perfect fit in every aspect - especially the management.

What can consumers expect from auto expo 2020?

Consumers can expect to have the experience of a lifetime! Besides the international lineup of cars (which is the central idea of an expo) consumers will also witness futuristic concept models that we are all propelling towards. One of the biggest trends that they will see is that buzz words such as smart, clean, connected, shared are no longer farfetched concepts- they are a brands’ call to action. It illustrates that our reality is inextricably linked to technology. People will see how auto manufacturers are adopting the role of providing mobility solutions that are clean, technologically forward and shared. Brands see value in showing off their innovations to customers and leaving them with the experience.


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