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Scoreboards used to communicate poll results

By Rohit Nautiyal , afaqs!, New Delhi | In OOH News | May 20, 2009
UTVi created a buzz with an OOH campaign using a live scoreboard at Mahim Causeway

With the results of the General Elections out and those of the IPL about to be revealed, scoreboards have become the flavour of the season. UTVi, the channel that recently aired a special lineup of election programming, came up with an OOH innovation to culminate the polling season.

Contextual to the Indian Premier League (IPL), UTVi presented the Indian Political League to the people of Mumbai and weaved a serious outcome of the General Elections. As part of the outdoor campaign, three hoardings were placed together on May 16 at Mahim Causeway in Mumbai. Each hoarding carried a manual scoreboard showing the number of seats won by the United Progressive Alliance (UPA), National Democratic Alliance (NDA) and the third front.

The manual live updating format of the election result was chosen very carefully to give a scoreboard feel to the hoardings and ensure accuracy. The synchronisation of the real-time information on the channel and that of the hoarding ensured that every passerby is updated with the information.

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The hoarding was conceptualised internally and the creative was prepared by 11 Brandworks. Vivek Malhotra, vice-president, marketing, UTV News, says that the chosen location imparted the message with a grand size and could address huge traffic from both sides. Malhotra adds, "If the power of TV had to get transported to outdoors in real terms, it was vital to go live with all the interest, action and the excitement.

"With a caption like Indian Political League, we knew we had an innovation that breaks clutter, extends the channel to a new medium and relates with the viewer instantly. While a typical news service would seem restricted to the medium of TV and print, we believed that India's biggest countdown merited something beyond the usual."

Malhotra is quick to mention that with the global economic meltdown hitting the country, the nation has been perceiving business and economics as central to the political agenda. He says, "Our elections campaign - Vote for Growth - captured this spirit and moved the spotlight on corporate India, small businesses and other clusters that held the key to an upturn.

With the view to create touch points, the channel put together a Vote for Growth contest across Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru. Visitors at Barista coffee outlets were asked to predict the poll results. Their guesses on the seats to be won by the UPA and the NDA enhanced the elections experience with a cup of coffee. Also, a promotional alliance was forged, with Cinemax encouraging movie goers to come out and vote.

For the record, UTVi has spent approximately 20 per cent of the campaign budget on outdoor. Malhotra adds that the OOH campaign has given a fantastic return on investment and the response has been tremendous.

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