BTL Baatein: Siddharth Banerjee, Vodafone India …. Powered by VISCOMM

14 Oct,2016

An MBA and economics graduate, Siddharth Banerjee is an experienced consumer business leader across Telecom and FMCG for the past 16 years and is currently Senior Vice President (SVP) – Marketing and Head of Brand, Insights, Media, Activation & Digital at Vodafone India.

In his 15 years of FMCG / CPG experience, including the last 13-odd years in Unilever, Banerjee has worked across country P&L roles and global/ regional brand marketing roles, with exposure across developing and emerging markets. His last role in Unilever was as the Country Marketing Director / CMO and a member of the Management Committee at Unilever Sri Lanka. He has lived & worked across India, Singapore, the UK & Sri Lanka.

We present to you the ‘BTL Baatein’ of the week which is powered by VISCOMM with Santosh Jangid speaking to Siddharth Banerjee about Below The Line (BTL) advertising, the focus of the company and the balance between ATL (Above The Line) and BTL


How important is BTL to your overall marketing plan?

BTL is an integral part of our 360-degree marketing approach. Vodafone as a brand has always been active on the BTL front and indeed has been the one to set benchmarks in terms of creating landmark OOH media properties, creating visibility and stature through the medium. We continuously track awareness created by various mediums and OOH is amongst the biggest sources of creating awareness for our brand as well as product messaging.


Can you also specify the range of activities that you undertake as part of the below-the-line advertising and promotion?

Some of the recent BTL initiatives undertaken by Vodafone:


Durja Puja Pandal-Hopping for Senior Citizens: Vodafone India celebrated this Durga Puja in Kolkata with a difference, by spreading cheer in the lives of senior citizens from the Tollygunge Home and Nabanir Old Age Homes. Legendary danseuse Tanusree Shankar flagged-off a special bus which took the senior citizens pandal-hopping on the auspicious day of Shashti to the five most popular pandals in North Kolkata including Chalta Bagan Durgotsav. For the senior citizens it was an overwhelming experience to meet and interact with Tanusree Shankar.

Rainwater Harvesting Billboards: To help the drought affected farmers in Maharashtra, Vodafone in association with Kinetic India, had installed 5 Rainwater Harvesting Bill Boards along the New Airport Road in Pune. Rainwater was harvested using the billboards, by creating a U-curved aluminium sheet as a rain water collection funnel on top of the billboards. This funnel was then channeled through a tube to a big tank installed at the bottom of each hoarding, which stored the collected rain water.

In order to keep a check on the water level in the tank, each tank was installed with a unique Vodafone sim card based water sensor technology. Once the tanks were full, an SMS was automatically sent out to the administration. The water collected in the tanks was then transferred to water tankers and taken to the farmers. We have been able to donate more than 20000 litres of Water to the farmers of Wadebolai Village, Maharashtra.

Vodafone SuperAlbum – Vodafone SuperAlbum, one of Vodafone’s marquee initiatives for IPL 2016, invited Vodafone customers to click a picture with their favourite mascot – the ZooZoo and become a part of the Guinness World Record.  Cricket lovers and Vodafone customers participated enthusiastically in the Vodafone SuperAlbum by posing with the ZooZoo at IPL cricket stadiums, Vodafone stores, IPL Fan Parks or at nearby malls. Following the stringent parameters set by Guinness World Records, over 75, 000 photographs were uploaded on the specially created portal

IPL Campaign- Vodafone SuperFan:  Vodafone SuperFan is yet another engaging customer connect initiatives undertaken during IPL.  It has become a platform to fulfill dreams of many cricket enthusiasts to watch the match live from the stadium and meet their sports heroes.


The Vodafone SuperFan contest offers once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for Vodafone customers to take centre stage on a global sporting platform like the IPL. The Vodafone SuperFan flies to the Vivo IPL match in style, is driven to the stadium in a luxury car and watches the match live from the Vodafone enclosure in the hospitality box. Getting the match ball autographed by the winning captain on Live TV is a moment Vodafone SuperFan’s cherish for prosperity.


Can you give a broad idea of your spends pie of ATL v/s BTL?

We allocate spends depending on various factors such as desired reach, importance and relevance, etc.


Do you prefer to do this through BTL agencies directly or via your existing creative/media agency?

Vodafone as a brand works basis an integrated marketing plan and Maxus – our agency works according to the overall plan.


In terms of generating results especially from consumers and in B2B, do you find BTL a more sure shot avenue than ATL?

The marketing activity depends on the marketing objective to target audiences. Hence, there are some cases where BTL does the job (localised messaging, etc) and some cases where ATL is an absolute necessity (rapid awareness creation)


While sales and salience are good indicators of its success, what are the attributes you look at to measure the success of a BTL campaign?

For salience visibility in BTL, we consider the brand’s requirements in specific markets and plan campaigns accordingly. Vodafone does not need customer awareness or brand recall in most markets, which means that extensive visibility for the brand logo is not the criteria. We try and ensure that any OOH visibility can be stretched to include engagement, where possible, and aggregate the presence generated by store signage, retail assets etc as well.


For tactical campaigns, the first thing to consider would be who you are targeting, and what you aim to deliver via the product / service. We then choose media based on available data about consumers’ media consumption patterns for that TG.


For example, Vodafone U, our lifestyle proposition for youth, created the platform of Million Fun Experiences for the youth to engage and enjoy. Under this umbrella, Back to Campus, a month long campaign in 400 leading colleges across top 50 cities was driven through campus engagements and promoted via social media. Vodafone U is also associating with the much awaited musical drama Rock On 2 to offer exciting experiences to its customers and music lovers.


Vodafone marked the launch of Vodafone SuperNet 4G with the return of its iconic mascot-The Pug. Considering the overwhelming response to the campaign, Vodafone in association with Petfed organised a unique Pug- Parade in Delhi and other key markets. The activities included a host of exciting fun engagements like Fashion show, merchandise like customised T-shirts, Leashes, Collars, Bandanas for all our pug friends, Exciting Photo booths, free pet Grooming session, Free Vet check-up, Games, etc.


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