Bhaskar Bharti Aala Re on Sony

By Sangeeta Tanwar , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Media Publishing | May 13, 2009
Bhaskar Bharti is the first offering from the new programming lineup of Sony as part of its makeover exercise following the Indian Premier League

Sony is going all out to promote its soon to be launched show, Bhaskar Bharti. A few days ago, the channel had announced its plan for a makeover, including the launch of new programmes in line with the times.

Bhaskar Bharti is a part of its new weekday prime time lineup. It is learnt that the show will be aired Monday to Thursday at 9 pm. The show is being produced by Deeya and Tony Singh of DJ's A Creative Unit. The duo have given Sony shows such as Jassi Jaissi Koi Nahin and Just Mohabbat.

The channel is promoting Bhaskar Bharti through a three phased communication plan. In an email interaction with afaqs!, Danish Khan, marketing head, Sony Entertainment Television, says, "The first phase - Bhagwan Kare, Bhaskar Ko - Kisi Na Kisi Ke To Lagegi Haai" is a teaser phase that establishes Bhaskar as a Casanova who has left a trail of numerous women cursing him for his philandering. The idea is to create a curiosity for the character, Bhaskar, and build a case on why so many women want to teach him a lesson, without revealing him in person."

In the first phase, various people warn Bhaskar that he should beware and his philandering ways cannot go on forever as some woman's curse will come true. The first phase is currently on across multi media including TV, radio (Bhaskar Ki Girlfriend No 56, Bhaskar Girlfriend No 66 and Bhaskar Ki Answering Machine), outdoors (Haddi Pasli, Ganja and Aansoo), digital (Squeeze, Heart Broke Insurance, Bhaskar Beware, Bhaskaritis, Bhaskar Chaap) and print (Bhaskar Haai).

The second phase of the campaign has been designed to create buzz about what will happen to Bhaskar and it is targeted at driving consumer engagement. The channel refused to share details for the third phase as the last round of promotions unravels the plot of the story.

The promotional campaign for the show has been created by Sony's creative agency Leo Burnett, whereas the TV commercial has been executed by the in house creative team of the channel. Campaign images have been shot by well known advertising photographer Avdhoot Hembade. The digital campaign for the show has been done by OgilvyOne.

The channel briefed its creative agency to built high buzz and curiosity for the show without revealing the plot and at the same time, engage the imagination of the viewers.

The team at Leo Burnett lists the challenges while coming up with the creative idea, saying, "We had to create a campaign which ensured 'starting of the serial even before the serial starts'," which meant building anticipation, intrigue and buzz, while familiarising the viewers about the new offering. Therefore, we had to focus on generating "talking points" amongst viewers, rather than a singular core idea as a wrap for the advertising campaign."

The team shares that the various stages were indented as triggers with the energy to carry forward the conversation in the viewers' minds and with others, so the executions were designed in a manner that provoked and fought for space with all the immediate interest levels of the recipient of the communication.

Talking about the media mix for the campaign, Khan informs, "Media application for the campaign has been governed by reach and impact. Thus, whichever media vehicle is being used - we have targeted both width and depth. If we talk about radio - we have taken all FM stations available; outdoor is spread across 10 cities; and print across all Hindi speaking markets (all key publication are part of the plan)."

As far as television is concerned - apart from the SET network, the channel has bought airtime across news channels, kids' channels, music channels and regional channels. Digital medium and social media will also be key pillars on which the communication is being mounted. The channel has advertised heavily on Yahoo.

The show targets individuals (males and females) aged 15-34 years in SEC A/B homes (C&S) across HSM/All India. The targeted audience is young and restless, people who are at the crossroads of their lives and careers. The viewers are educated, informed, empowered and ambitious; they form the India that is on the move.

According to the team at Leo Burnett, the promotional campaign reaches out to the upwardly mobile audience - who are confident of their identity and conscious of their tradition, having a global perspective and a local taste (the reason why McDonald's McAloo Tikki burger is a success); they are a happy confluence of the old and the new, the east and the west. They are optimistic about their future. They are passionately zealous of their roots, yet very tolerant and open minded about the new.

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