Nick puts mechanised puppets on a hoarding

By Surina Sayal , afaqs!, Mumbai | In OOH News | November 11, 2008
An outdoor campaign comprising mechanised hoardings draws attention to its new mega initiative

Children's & #BANNER1 & # entertainment channel Nick has launched a mega initiative, Nestle Munch Nick Kaun Banega Toon Jockey. The contest, which offers children a chance to become a toon jockey (TJ) on the channel, will last four weeks, from October 20 till November 16.

The USP of the show is that Nick will not stress kids with auditions, tests and a judging process. Every child in the country has an equal chance of becoming a Nick TJ by simply tuning into Nick and answering simple questions.

As part of the promotions for the show, Nick launched an innovative campaign on a mechanical billboard at Mahim Causeway in Mumbai. The ad, spread across three hoardings, resembles a large canvas.

The hoarding on the extreme left has a 3D cutout of a teenage boy, holding out a puppet of the cartoon character, Sponge Bob Square Pants. A teenage girl, with a similar cutout of Ninja Hattori, is on the hoarding on the extreme right. The central hoarding carries information about the contest. Both cartoon characters swing like real puppets with the help of a motor.

Kashmira Gandhi, marketing head, Nick, says, "The campaign is a cool visual representation of how toon jockeys can be the boss of Nick and make the Nicktoons dance to their tune. We wanted maximum impact in a very limited period of time and the 3D cutouts and mechanised hoardings were an innovation to break clutter and get people talking about both the campaign and TJs as a concept."

The proposition of the campaign is that by becoming toon jockeys, kids can not only be famous on TV, but also be the boss of Nick by getting the power to decide what shows run at what time.

Gandhi says that the TJ campaign is hugely aspirational for kids aged 10-14 years. The Mahim Causeway innovation aimed to create awareness for the concept and make it a talking point amongst older kids, parents (who are the key influencers with kids) and the trade. The idea has been replicated in Kolkata, too.

Gandhi adds, "Innovation is at the core of Nick's brand DNA and everything that we do has a 'keeda' element to it. Toon Jockey as a concept is being launched for the first time in India by Nick. The idea of taking a large and visible hoarding in Mumbai was to create awareness about TJ and it has helped in creating buzz about the concept."

OOH screens were used in key retail formats, targeting kids and families. Branding was done in malls and multiplexes and van activation carried out in smaller markets across 40 cities.

The media mix was devised to connect with kids across platforms and appear in all the spaces in which a kid would engage. The thrust of the plan was across TV (cross-channel), cinemas (PVR tieup during the movies, Roadside Romeo and Golmaal Returns), radio, cable, OOH, vans, kid-targeted print ads, on-ground partnerships and the Internet. The campaign took four weeks to be executed across media.

The creative agency for the campaign is Origin Beanstalk Thinkers, while the media agency is Optimum Media Solutions. The outdoor was by Alakh Outdoor Media.