Youthopia found

What do you do when you have a whole city as advertising space? When all the people in that city can be treated as your target market? Utopia? No. Youthopia? Yes. Pardon, the bad play of Moorian word here, but such Youthopia does exist, clues now
• It’s the 8th largest metropolis in India
• Also called as Oxford of the east
• Home to one of the largest most heterogeneous student populations

All rise, its Pune.

Imagine this, I’m a young graduate student in the Symbiosis Law college. It’s a Friday evening and i’ve spent most of the day online, a significant part on FB and now i’m heading out to some mall, grab a quick bite, pick up something, maybe and meet my friends in a club/pub.
Where would you as brand meet me? Traditionally, you’d be present on the TV in the common room that I’m not watching and the billboards that I catch a fleeting glimpse of on my way to the mall. At least that’s where you’ve put most of your money at.
Where in Pune should you be present (apart from online ofcourse) instead and how should you make that presence felt is what we’re taking up today.
So let’s go on this little city tour and find out where we young people are and why we’re attracted to these joints. It would perhaps tell us about who (brand) should meet us where and how a seemingly chance encounter can lead to a long standing relationship.

Moving around the city for the last 2 years I’ve observed dialogued and been open to Pune as a young person. So its responded rather well, also because I was open to popular opinion. You see we’re not writing a connoisseur’s account; it’s more an independent pop culture forum. So yes, people spoke about these places and the most favoured choices in terms of hangout options and the likes.

We made a list of our own where we’ve attempted to evaluate how youth brands could leverage these different sites (especially particular spots at these sites) in terms of a planning and communication mix.
Here we go then:

1.Meet them at these malls
Vimannagar-Inorbit and Phoenix Mall advertising:

“MOD is the reason why I would travel all the way to this place every weekend” – Raksha Pal at Phoenix

You have youth coming in not only from the colleges in Vimannagar (Symbi Vimannagar is one big residential campus with under grad, mass media and BBA colleges, so you have a big crowd coming in from these colleges) but also people from as far as Hinjewadi and Range hills just to check out these edifices. I know, the reason friends and I went to this mall was to hog on the donuts from Mad over Donuts as they’ve finally opened an outlet in Pune.
For most malls such MOD like pivots are Multiplexes but in odd cases such as the one about MOD where the donuts are nuts word of mouth travels fast.
These are two new malls which have opened up in Pune, situated right next to each other, Phoenix being the biggest mall in Pune as of now. In a city where malls are sprouting all around (42 malls on last count according to an online database)the reason these malls believe they have received such sprout of traffic is because their spending some traditional advertising money that the new kid on the block usually does. We wouldn’t say no, but far less than they think.

So How do you say hello in the mall?

You could perhaps do little standees and kiosks over a week to talk about the features of your insurance or you could make them jump from the top floors tied safely to a harness, the harness itself being the insurance. Get a copywriter to say something with effect to “Khul ke jiyo, hum aapke saath hain”/”with you at every leap of faith”. Point being whatever your budget be, you need to surprise them.
You could take the roof of the mall and project 3D images of perhaps RA.One/G.One jumping from one building to another ultimately creating the illusion that he broke through the roof and went into space like a proper superhero should.
What about the gaming arcade on the top floor next to the food court, it can be used to promote an adventure gear brand. Use the ticket counters, perhaps the gaming consoles to offer discounts for your brand.

Experiential being the name of the game in this space we came across an interesting one. A dance studio was promoting itself by bringing in 2 trained dancers from the academy who danced in sync to some peppy music. And then the promoter went around merrily handing out the cards to the hoard of people who came to watch the synchronized dance and listen to good music. Polite applause.
Other simple stuff one already observes:
• Escalator Branding (interestingly please)
• Food court tables (use that waiting time)

2.Go Watch a movie with them – At Multiplexes
E-Square – University Road

“A 3D movie for 80 bucks, need I say more? I once paid 360 bucks for Avatar (3D) at Mumbai, so this was a huge cultural pleasant surprise”- Puneet Brar at E square

E- Square has been THE multiplex to attract max crowd at all times of the day and for a long time now, primarily because of smart variations in ticket rates. Morning show tickets cost you as low as 50 bucks! Situated in the heart of the city, we chose this place because of the sheer number of young people it attracts. It’s at university road, so you have students coming in from adjoining areas mostly, we’re talking College of engineering(COE), Symbiosis institute of arts and commerce, Symbiosis Law College, Indian Law School, Chetna College, Symbiosis Institute of Management Studies. Just this proximity makes it easier for the young folks to land up as early as 8 in the morning for inexpensive morning shows. These kids who are penny wise, who wouldn’t want to spend too much money on a movie because their source of income is limited to the amount of pocket money they get (which can vary anywhere from 3000 per month to 7000 per month, since most of these colleges are from residential and students carry their own ATM/Debit/Credit cards)

How do you amplify this movie experience?

– Hall dynamics are such that once you’re in all you focus on is the screen. Buy the screen space during movie previews.So they have come to submit themselves to the big screen. Leverage. Recent local ad that comes to mind at E square was for Café chokolade, a new eating joint whose claim to fame was that they were re-naming Pune’s favorite choco dessert, CAD-B and providing it with its very own café. They came up with a series of ads which were shown during the movie preview. Well it was effective because all of us went to the café after the movie to try it out. If you’re advertising something which is within the reach and means of the consumers you’re looking to tap, they will be more than willing to pay. Access and relevance.
– Tie up with the multiplex on combos (say airtel surprises them by sponsoring one of the tickets and at the back of it saying “Kanjoos friend no more”)
– Washroom space is prime too. Can you make them beat the loo queue, or at least make the wait interesting

3. Find me on the street, on my street
Flavors at FC road

“I come here for the Mumbai masala sandwich and the chocolate toast. It can easily become my staple diet pretty soon” – Kriti Goyal at Flavors

Anybody who has been in Pune long enough, ought to have been to the famous Flavors at FC road, and anybody who has been to FC road ought to have had the famous, and I think patented chocolate sandwiches which you get at this roadside stall. Yes, flavors is a roadside stall, which just might be the busiest place at FC during the evening. The kind of crowd it attracts? Just our type, college going, we’re talking under grads from FC,ILS, SLS, and other nearby colleges to engineering and MBA colleges within a diameter of 3 KM.They come here for cheap but yum snack (which might give you a stomach bug sometimes, but that’s part of the thrill you see).This place is packed during evening on all days of the week.Its also one of the places to be as a brand because of its proximity to other joints such as Barista (which is right next to it), Chocolate room, Pepinos, Horn OK please, all of which are moderately packed with people during evening.

Ho do you stand out on the street and not look like the bufoon (unless that’s what your brand stands for)?

Be non intrusive, its one of those times where you should just be present and get registered in the subconscious rather than say “please see this demo”, or “would you like to buy my lie?”
Banners, little placards perhaps at best branded scooters (don’t be too noisy though) suggesting what after you’re done with the chocolate sandwich. Perhaps proliferate the event you’re sponsoring. Free tickets, why not here? The idea is to be part of the crowd.

4.Shake a Leg with them
Firangi Paani in Jewel Square

“You come here if you love dressing up and dancing . The crowd is good and so is the music. The place has got a vibe to it that makes you want to come here every other week” – Prakrity Bhatnagar at Firangi Paani

It’s a resto-bar in Jewel Square at Koregaon Park or KP (KP is one of the posh and hip places in Pune with a mix of everything, restros, bistros, clubs, pubs, malls not to forget, the osho ashram,you get the drift).
After 8 Pm most days of the week, especially , Mondays and Thursdays i.e. ‘ladies’ nights’ .This place is packed with them college kids looking for free booze and good music.

High spirits in ABC farms:

“You go to high for the spirit AND to get high” (what!) – Tuhina Singh at High Spirits

High spirits enjoys unmatched brand loyalty. They also organises band tribute nights, standup comedy nights, guest DJ nights, theme nights, packed house on Thursday courtesy ‘bladder burst’ basically mix those spirits up nicely to attract them if possible on everyday of the week. Raise your glasses we say.

How do you match their step then?
– Back of that free booze coupon held dear. (make them flashy and eye catching). I remember once going to Jewel square and being handed a pamphlet for the promotion of a dance come fitness center (Zumba fitness center). Now we all know how much attention we give to irritating pamphlets. So, instead of the traditional, Zumba could’ve gone for the coupon.
– Target those decked up ladies. Their there to receive compliments, oblige.
– Sponsor a theme night

Then there are clubs where only men dare –
Toons (MG Road) /Apache (FC Road) /Hidden Place (Koregaon park)

“It’s casual, informal and decently priced place with music ranging from rock to hip hop to retro. And it has cartoons right out of the MAD magazine placed on walls. It’s a fun place to be” – John Deric at Toons

“I come here for the music which varies from Slayer to Bob Dylan. That’s eclectic! And also for the Apache special ‘GO-2-Hell’ pitcher” – Parinay Diwan at Apache

“If the food AND the booze combined cost you less than 1000 bucks you don’t really complain about the lil cramped seating area” – Pranay Singh at the Hidden Place

More packed during game nights. Engage them, poke them, have a bit of fun – ask them why they arent with a girl tonight – the wackiest even the most chauvinist answer gets something, it could be bad. But its better than not being there though.

Most importantly, one must acknowledge using the same strategy at all the places is lazy and wasteful.
the parameters to measure impact have changed significantly (that for another time).
We’ve made life easier for you though, now hit us back if we’ve missed on any sitters. And then if you meet us there, drinks are on us.

To get more ideas on how you can reach out to your young audience drop us a line (thinkrasta@gmail.com). We’d be happy to show you around our neighborhood.



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