Technology

Focus creates online edutainment platform for kids

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MUMBAI: While kids are increasingly spending time online there aren‘t many platforms that offer content tailor made for them. It is to fill in this need gap that advertising and digital media agency Focus Circle Group is looking to fill.

Focus has launched Worldoo (worldoo.com), a unique platform that offers a blend of entertainment and education from the most popular content from a kid‘s world of interest, through an interactive experience.

Worldoo, according to Focus, is an ‘Ever-evolving Online Ecosystem‘ for kids in the 6-12 age bracket. The aim of Worldoo is to offer kids an interactive experience.

Worldoo has around 16 content partners including ZeeQ, Cartoon Network, Shemaroo, Sony Pictures and National Geographic. Kids can consume the content from their world of interests and earn virtual currency (Stars) by doing so. Stars are earned depending on the amount of content they consume.

Focus Circle Group MD Monish Ghatalia reveals that the site took two and a half years to create. The company has invested Rs 90 million and is hoping to achieve a break-even in three years.

"Our promise is to deliver something new, always. So far 600 kids have registered. We have invested Rs. 90 million and expect to breakeven within three years. We have a revenue sharing arrangement deal with our content partners for ads. Worldoo is an audience focused engagement platform for brands on the internet. With conventional activation mediums, it is challenging for brands to reach out to a large chunk of target audiences at a single point, and even more difficult to sustain the engagement," he explains.

Ghatalia adds, "We are confident that Worldoo will provide an edge for brands, to engage with the right target audience. It offers the right platform for brands to achieve much more than just impressions and clicks. Worldoo creates engaging experiences for kids as it offers activities, interaction and content, all in one place. Our aim in doing content deals was to have content that imparts both excitement and education, all in a single platform."

There are seven content sources (landmarks) in the site including Game Den that has games segmented by genre. Companies like ZeeQ and Cartoon Network have their own landmark within Worldoo.

Ghatalia adds that the second phase for the company starts in a few months time. That is when it will look to be available on digital devices like the mobile as well. It will also have regional content. By the end of the year it could have 50 content partners. "We are looking to create content on our end as well. There will be comics, stories, games. The vision for us is long term and we want to touch upon diverse aspects that concern kids."

Turner International India VP ad sales South Asia Juhi Ravindranath commenting on the content partnership with Worldoo said, "At Turner, our aim has always been to push the boundaries and deliver innovative and entertaining content/experience across various platforms. Worldoo is a unique idea and we are happy to partner with Focus in a bid to create the right brand experience for consumers."

ZeeQ programming head Aparna Bhosle noted that technology is central to consumption of content. "content consumption is becoming increasingly multi-platform. TV, internet and the mobile phone should together allow greater opportunities to watch your favourite show at any time in any place and on any device. It is keeping this in mind that ZeeQ are excited about partnering with an innovative concept like Worldoo. It is a mechanism through which our shows can be sampled via the internet."

Shedding light on the ad strategy Worldoo head experience and brand Harsh Wardhan Dave said, "Advertising for kids online has always been restricted to banners, contest pages, micro sites. There is no innovation in this space in terms of customer engagement. The launch of Worldoo is a very proud moment for us, as we fill this gap for brands to think out of the box and create a real life engagement with kids through our digital platform. With all of this we are about digital engagement and not just digital marketing."

He adds that since Worldoo has a blend of social and engagement, brands can live with kids in Worldoo. Kids can follow brands, make friends with them, get tips from brands etc. Also creatively, they can seamlessly become a part of a user‘s journey as the brand can be present while kids spend their time in their world. For example a breakfast brand can place a bowl of cereals in a Kids Home at Worldoo or a car brand can be driving through the roads of Worldoo and more such tailor made innovations."

He added that the aim of Worldoo is to reassure parents who are unsure of what their kids are looking at online. "The pre-launch research conducted by IMRB gave us immense confidence that what we are creating is the need of the hour. Kids research told us liked the website as they get so many things in it. They are excited about the various types of games that are there. According to mothers the site has everything that a child needs and so there is no need for their children to go anywhere else. Mothers also feel that it the site is good as only kids will be there.

"So children will interact with other children of their age. Mothers also feel that the point system will give children some business sense, about how to earn for themselves and then spend wisely. 1/3rd of mothers feel that the site is for 13-15 year olds. More than 80 per cent of mothers surveyed feel that Worldoo is an edutainment site. Our research also showed that Google is favourite site for kids followed by Cartoon Network, Facebook, Yahoo and National Geographic".

What is interesting about this survey is that two iconic kids brands Disney and Nickelodeon both ranked below National Geographic.

The content that Worldoo offers includes:

- Games from miniclip, the gamebox, zapak.

- Cartoons from Cartoon Network and Chota Bheem

- Animals and Environment and Conservation from National Geographic and JeffCorwinConnect.

- Movies and Trailers from Warner Bros., Shemaroo, Sony Pictures, Reliance Big Flix.

- Edutainment from ZeeQ,

- Books and Comics include Amar Chitra Katha, Crosswords, Landmark, Dreamland, Britanica Books, Robinage, Champak.

- International destination includes Sentosa.

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