BTL Baatein: Anil Bhamre, Ariston Thermo… Powered by VISCOMM

13 Jan,2017

With a Master’s degree in sales and marketing from the Department of Management Sciences (PUMBA), Pune and a Bachelor of Engineering in Production from BharatiVidyapeeth, Anil Bhamre brings with him 14 years of experience across brands like Franke Faber India, Tata Autocomnp GY Batteries, The Alchemists Ark and Mahindra &Mahindra, Bhamre, is currently General Manager – Marketing at Ariston Thermo India Private Limited. We present to you the ‘BTL Baatein’ of the week which is powered by VISCOMM with Santosh Jangid speaking to Anil Bhamre 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?
BTL plays equally important role in our strategic marketing plan. It gives a pinpoint reach to stakeholders/target audience who are critical for our business so be it channels partners, influencers or end consumers.


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

We use BTL as both strategic as well as tactical tools in select marketplaces as and when needed. Main pillars for our BTL activations are in shop branding, outside brand visibility measures, on ground activations, influencer meets, exhibitions, demonstrations etc.


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



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

There are many BTL elements and each has its own pros and cons to do directly or through implementing agency. Elements which are very strategic and core with lesser volumes, we prefer to do it on our own (to have direct control) but mass BTL elements spread across the country we prefer to do it through execution partners. All our creatives are still done through creative agency.


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

Yes, when it’s about pinpoint marketing or reaching the exact audience BTL is a more sure shot avenue than ATL.


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 us BTL is all about execution, placement, visibility & reach. It’s about visibility share / counter share when it comes to dealer led BTL activates. So it means its success is also upon how well a brand is placed visibly in that particular town/area/counter vis-à-vis competition. BTL in many cases is also measures on leads generated, sales pipeline created etc. e.g. Exhibitions, channel partner meets, local activations etc.


There are many organisations 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?

Yes many organisations have started working on same but many of these are ahead of curve when it comes to penetration level of the product/service category they operate in and also scales at which they operate (marketing investments in absolute rupees).


For a category like us with less than 6% penetration and industry which is less than US$0.5 bn scale is an issue. For a diverse and larger spread country like India for any brand to cover through BTL effectively is very expensive. One needs to be focused, prioritise and put in investment in different stages over a longer horizon to make it a success. But definitely yes in long term for many organizations BTL will be more fruitful and directly measurable investment rather than ATL when it comes to new launches.


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