BTL Baatein: Abhay Mokal, Vertoz… Powered by VISCOMM

20 Jan,2017

An infotech and management graduate, AbhayMokal has five years of experience in the media industry and a rich B2B experience in marketing of industrial products from working with brands like Kingfisher Group – United Breweries Limited, timescity.com, carwale.com and Alfaa UV. Mokal is currently Marketing Manager at Vertoz, a leading programmatic company that offers and monetising solutions to advertisers. We present to you the ‘BTL Baatein’ of the week which is powered by VISCOMM with Santosh Jangid speaking to AbhayMokal about Below The Line (BTL) advertising, the focus of the company in terms of the type of promotions and the balance between ATL (Above The Line) and BTL.

 

How important is BTL to your overall marketing plan?

Vertoz is a complete advertising and monetisation suite, where our receiving audience is mostly B2B businesses, brands and agencies. Targeting such people with ATL mediums like radio, TV, print, or outdoor is very difficult. The messaging and communication is purely B2B, hence BTL mediums are preferred to reach the target audience. To target the audience at a micro level, Vertoz prefers BTL mediums more because of the results, reports and ease of calculating ROI.

 

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

Vertoz prefers BTL advertising to connect to the customers. We participate in over 8-10 well known industry relevant events and exhibitions across the globe to develop new relations and touch base with old customers. Exhibitions are an excellent platform to showcase your technology and services to the right audience as people attending the exhibitions are there to understand and know more about the industry’s latest trends. Vertoz highly relies on digital marketing for branding activities. Emailers and monthly newsletters work best to connect with our subscribers regularly. You can inform your customers about the latest offers and share company updates by sending them emailers. People love to hear from the company they are associated with.

Vertoz uses its own RTB enabled programmatic self-serve platform along with biddable media and paid social media to generate quality leads and brand awareness. Promoting a video or a highly engaging display advertisement is the best way to generate brand recall. We like to share our ideas and knowledge through blogs and social media. Vertoz as a thought leader believes in keeping its audience updated about the industry trends, latest changes in the market and new technology.

 

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

Vertoz majorly spends on programmatic digital advertising and trade shows in BTL. The beauty of digital advertising and BTL is that, everything is measurable, and we can choose the targeting to reach the right audience. Generating business leads and brand awareness with ATL is a little challenging compared to BTL.

 

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

As one of the leading programmatic advertising companies, Vertoz suggests clients to consider expert BTL agencies as they know the latest trends in the market. Considering the current digital era, advertising companies are coming up with new technology and innovations in the advertising industry. Programmatic, header bidding, innovative & engaging ad formats are trending in the market, and only an expert agency can leverage these mediums and vehicles to give best results to customers.

 

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

ATL always has had an upper hand when it comes to generating brand awareness. However, having said that, with ATL, it is challenging to track or calculate the effectiveness of the advertisement. You might end up generating lesser buzz or brand awareness, if ATL mediums are used for very short duration or with low budgets. It is always suggested to use ATL mediums only when you have very high budgets and want to run campaigns all the time. BTL advertising mediums are precisely targeted and because of that it is very easy to track the spending and results. In most of the BTL mediums, you get reports and data about the campaigns in real-time; whereas in ATL activities you can track campaign reach and ROI only after completion of the campaign. If any BTL campaign is not yielding results as per your goals, you can always optimise the campaigns as per the data collected in real-time.

 

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?

Major advantage with most of the BTL campaigns is that, it is data driven. Consider a tradeshow or a mall-activation campaign, it is easy to calculate the footfall and the ROI. With BTL activities, the advertiser is always sure about reaching the right audiences. Success of BTL activities depend on various factors. Calculating reach of your advertising communication can help you to understand brand reach. Customer interactions such as footfall to the stall, clicks, likes and comments on the ad, can tell how good your marketing communication and ad copy is. Tracking your returning customers can help you understand the brand’s loyal customers. Like all advertising mediums, success of BTL campaigns is highly dependent on the sales team. Unlike ATL campaigns, customers’ interaction or connect with BTL is very limited. The sales team must connect to the customers through calls, emails or messages before the customer misses to recall the brand.

 

There are many organizations that often do new launches almost entirely on BTL aided with an outdoor and/or digital blitz? Your views on this. Given rising media costs, do you see BTL managing on its own, without ATL?

To create the right marketing mix, companies always go for the multi-channel marketing mix. Brands prefer to take the ‘ATL plus BTL’ approach. It helps companies to reach greater brand penetration which in turn improves brand recall. But as trends are changing, marketers are increasing their BTL and digital marketing budget. Considering consumer oriented brands, it is difficult for them to shift totally from ATL to BTL. For them ATL will always be preferred because of brand and product awareness power that it possesses. However, maximum brands are shifting from ATL to BTL simply because of the real-time results and targeting options.

 

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