Live in California Once, But Leave Before it Makes You Soft"
- Baz Luhrman, Everybody is Free to Wear to Sunscreen
This blogpost is nothing but a request...its a cry to tell you people reading this that "WE CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE" and only "WE" can make a difference...We in India see soo much happening around us that we have become stones and stones that are unmoved by anything.
My Personal Favorite : India is known for the spit stains lined up on the walls in our streets just as much as we are known for our cultural or ethnic diversity. We see people spitting all around us and all we can do is ignore them. WHY? WHY?
What happened to our voice...what happened to the fact that we can make a difference...All we have to do is stop people from spitting...you dont need to shout...you dont need to abuse...all u need to do is ask him "would you do this in your house"...social embarassesment in India is the way to make a difference.
We need to believe that we can make a difference...we can...its just that we think that small differences dont count...a person thinking about what you said the next time he is about to spit is a difference...
So please lets not be heartless...we are looking at India being an International hub...so lets make sure that atleast our house is neat and clean...and i dont think that this is something too much to ask for...Give your country or city something in return for what its made you...
To wrap it up...even though its a cliche
"Ask Not What Your Country Can Do For You,
Ask What You Can Do For The Country"
- John F Kennedy
I won because i blogged and tweeted about the event and i also asked a question that the Panel liked.
So my question was:
"If you look at the ad spend figures for India keeping in mind Internet and Mobile combined, they stand at 4% - the combined figure for ad spends with respect to print and TV are at 70%+. The adoption of the Internet and Mobile mediums are obviously much more than the amount of money that's spent on them so is ubiquity the only guarantee for Indian Advertisers? And if ubiquity is the only guarantee for Indian advertisers then how are we going to achieve that ubiquity? If you take into account the ubiquity of the internet all over the World (from a country perspective) then the Internet Boom and subsequently the rush of investor money to create services and more importantly deploy hardware by the laying of undersea cables actually led to most of the World being connected. Once the bubble burst - these cables were available at throwaway prices which empowered a lot of businesses the World over and changed the business scenario. So for ubiquity of digital services in India, will we go this way? Will we need this kind of a frenzied over investment in digital in this country to really make it reach everyone's mindspace or will we learn from that kind of an episode and be extremely overcautious? And how will that affect ubiquity?"
By the way - the question wasn't worded exactly in the same way but it was something to this effect.
More about it here.
When i was randomly searching for a potential client on Facebook today, something came up. It asked if i wanted to search the web or only search Facebook.
The results appear within Facebook. So its not redirecting to Live.com. As i see it Live.com has no real tangible benefit. No ads are being sold, no Live.com logo on the search page.
The only benefit is the association of Live with Facebook (Microsoft has paid a hefty sum for that!) which may make Live seem a little sexier. They have repeatedly tried to get more users stick into the Live.com search platform but no luck so far.
This again indicates that the guys at Facebook want Facebook to be the center of the average internet user's (and indeed PC user's) universe. It started with the start tab kind of application tab and now search. Applications have already ensured that users do more inside of Facebook and now with Facebook Connect becoming stronger along with Data portability into Facebook, it clearly shows that Facebook is looking to provide the user with everthing it can from 1 destination. A Facebook browser has been spoken about - they may do that at another stage only after looking at the success of Google Chrome. Till then they may be looking to capitalize on as much functionality for Facebook across browser to deepen user involvement.
The other thing that comes out of this is Facebook and Live together may be experimenting with social search where users recommend contextuality of results and recommend and rate things over time. No indication of that yet, but we may see that. Facebook already has the community - now they can create a search eco - system around it.
Probably my second post about my trip to Pilani - the train journey taught me a lot.
One of the things i noticed was the sampling being done by Orbit Chewing Gum on the Rajdhani Express. On the way to Delhi, the placement was of another kind while on the way back to Mumbai - something else took shape.
On the way to Delhi the sample was provided at the end of the Journey - just before arrival. Along with that came a questionnaire asking if the Chewing Gum was provided with the meal tray (which was the desired placement as opposed to at the end of the journey). It also asks the standard stuff wanting to gauge customer involvement with the product. (a particularly funny question asks consumers if the Indian Railways is a good communications medium).
Obviously a lot of people would have ticked that the gum did not come with the meal tray as a result of which the railways would have been pulled up. On my way back to Mumbai - 3 days later, the gum was given with the meal tray.
I actually think that Orbit has got the placement wrong. The earlier placement of distributing it loosely and distributing it is 'free courtesy Wrigleys' works much better. It makes the gum stand out, gives it more goodwill, and etches the product in the consumers' mind. If it comes as a part of the tray, one can often mistake it to be something that is being provided by the railways - a part of the package (on my way back it came with the tray - and no questionnaire followed it).
I also noticed that this gum competed directly with the mouth freshner already being provided. So most people stuck to the mouth freshner and either discarded it or put it in their bags (for their kids maybe?)
It would be better if they had underlined the value of that original 'mistake' and continued with it. I felt that the railway ushers hold great weightage in the passenger train eco system. Why not capitalize on that and buy markets (not sell products).
Out of the 8 colour ads in The Hindu (Delhi edition)- 6 were by the government (21/9/2008). And all the governments ads were larger than the 2 private ads (not considering small classified ads).
Why is the government advertising so much? Are private institutions not as interested or is the govt providing a higher rate? So many questions - maybe the media guys will know better.
I wont speculate; leaving you with a glimpse of all the govt. ads