I am looking at large strategic partnerships, says Jaideep Singh

MUMBAI: A new mobile handset brand, Vivo, is set to enter the Indian market. And helping it have a presence in the already cluttered mobile market space in the country is the two year old Viacom18 Integrated Network Solutions (INS).

Both Vivo and INS have forged a strategic marketing and communications partnership. “Through this partnership we are giving them all the services required to launch their brand in India. This includes advising them in the first phase about the youth insight, the media market of the country and the overall brand space,” informs Viacom18 Media INS senior vice president Jaideep Singh.

Since the audience the handset is catering to is the same as that of Viacom18, INS will also select the right broadcasts and the right digital social media platform which Vivo can choose from the Viacom18 portfolio. “We have some of the best brands and properties to target them,” adds Singh.

So how did INS bag the partnership? Answers Singh, “Well, in a phased manner, we did an exercise with Vivo, which involved making them understand the insights about youth, then profiling all the assets we have, from broadcast to live to digital and social media and then creating a package for them, telling what it will take to launch a brand in India.”

As for the marketing strategy of the new brand, INS has created a package, which is a mix of broadcast, live, digital, social media, PR communication, media planning services and a big brand launch event.

This apart, all the creative ideas to be used and executed through the launch is what INS is working on. Singh informs that the deal with Vivo is a long term one and this is just the first phase. “The first phase is till June-July and we are working on it. The discussion of the phase post July is ongoing and we will come up with a plan for that,” he says.

As part of the first phase, INS will be promoting the brand through properties like ‘Roadies’, ‘Comedy Nights With Kapil’, ‘MTV Bollyland’ etc. It is also exploring other fun ideas on the digital front. “We will also be creating the TVC for the brand,” informs Singh adding that currently it will use the global TVC of Vivo, since there is not too much time before the big launch. “But as we move forward, the TVC will also be created by Viacom18,” he says.  

INS has got a dedicated team to service Vivo. This comprises digital experts, marketing experts, creative experts and operations experts for ground activations. “It is a sizable team, which has been taken both internally as well as externally from the partners we work with,” he adds.

According to Singh, the deal with Vivo helps the company leverage its consultancy services and in-house strong marketing capabilities for launching a brand in India. “A deal like this also opens up a new avenue for us in terms of having long term strategic partner, rather than trying to find many small partners on regular basis,” he says.  

“I am looking at large strategic partnerships which will be of sizable ticket size and covers the sizable assets we have on the network and create more assets,” Singh further adds.

So what’s the marketing budget for the handset? Says Singh, “Vivo is a major brand in China with 8 per cent market share. Presently the size of the marketing activities is substantial, but as we go in the second phase, it will be equal to the scale of any major handset in the country.”  

Singh also informs that while as a digital strategy for Viacom18’s large content library, it will be looking at being present on multiple handsets, but currently there is no such arrangement on exclusive content sharing with Vivo. “They could have access to content on the properties they are partnering with us. The content partnership can happen in the later stage. It is the core to our heart and can be explored,” he further adds.  

Talking about the integrations, Singh says that as part of the soft play, while integration with ‘Roadies’ has already started, the TVC will break in end of December and ‘Comedy Nights With Kapil’ will begin  from January.

INS is positive about the feedback the new entrant will get from the consumers in India. “The brand film is looking good and so is the product. From the Chinese market perspective it would be the best product to enter the market. Once the film comes out and the product is integrated and the features are shown, the brand will have an appeal,” he opines.

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