Visa Debit: Go for it

By Savia Jane Pinto , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Advertising
Last updated : July 23, 2009
The retail electronic payment network urges customers to use the Debit card more often

Visa, the retail electronic payment network, recently changed its global positioning from 'Visa Power. Go get it.' to 'More people go with Visa.' This change was brought about by Visa's global agency TBWA.

The global ad campaign was also released in India with a slight tweak. Post this worldwide release, the next campaign was for VISA Debit card. The primary goal of this campaign is to increase the use of the debit card among customers.

The first part of this was flagged off with a TVC that featured actor Vinay Pathak and was called 'Why go to the ATM'. The ad goes like this; a man comes up to an auto rickshaw driver at a rickshaw stand and asks him to take him to the nearest ATM (Automated Teller Machine). Pathak, who plays another rickshaw driver, explains to the man that when he already has a debit card with him there isn't any need to waste his time going to an ATM centre to withdraw money; instead he can directly use his debit card for his transactions.

Radio was part of this campaign and a similar radio spot (called Theme) was aired on major radio channels. Apart from radio, outdoor, print, cinema and consumer promotion activities were used.

As an extension to the earlier campaign another campaign has been launched. This one is titled 'Swipe and Save'. The main media vehicle used for this campaign is radio and print along with marketing collaterals at merchant locations by onsite agencies, branding at location and discount vouchers.

Three radio spots are part of the campaign. Visa is working with merchant chains such as Big Bazaar, Pizza Hut, Café Coffee Day and PVR Cinemas across regions such as Delhi NCR, Mumbai and Bengaluru offering different schemes to Visa Debit cardholders. Uttam Nayak, country manager, South Asia, Visa explains, "The company's focus is on increasing cardholder awareness for using Visa Debit cards at point-of-sale locations. We are using this campaign to remind cardholders that there is no need to go to the ATM or spend time queuing in lines to withdraw cash."

The radio spot titled 'Big Bazaar' is a dialogue between a mother-in-law and daughter-in-law in a mellow tone, but they are actually bad mouthing each other. The ad ends with the VO saying, that now on a purchase of Rs 1000 at Big Bazaar with your Visa Debit card you'd get two kilograms of sugar for free. Hence everyone will be very sweet. The artists for this spot were, Shagun Seda Sengupta and Rama. The final voice over is by Arif Zakaria for all the radio spots.

The second one is titled PVR where the offer is free popcorn and a drink on purchase of two tickets with your Visa Debit card. A woman approaches a man who is buying himself a movie ticket and very suggestively indicates that they watch this movie together, only to get the free popcorn and drink. Voices were of Namrata Shenoy and Namit. The final ad - Pizza Hut - a director is endlessly shouting at the actor who has just given a bad take. The spot ends with the VO (Zakaria) saying "Khaane ki aadat hai toh Pizza Hut mein khao" (that if you're used to eating (cuss words) you'd rather eat at Pizza Hut). Voices have been rendered by Rahul Sengupta and Ram.

The ads were recorded at GlamSlam and the production house that worked on it was Sound Good.

Though all the radio spots are directed at the same target group in terms of spending power, the demographics are different. That is the Big Bazaar ad is more inclined towards homemakers while the other two are skewed toward the youth. Shagun Seda Sengupta, creative group head, TBWA India adds, "Though there are demographic differences, the humour in all three spots is universal in its appeal."

The humour route is taken so as to enhance the repeat value of the spot. "It has to be like a job that becomes timeless," says Seda Sengupta.

The focus of all three spots is to get the characters, the story and the message across in a strong way.

Nayak explains the use of radio, "Radio is an important medium for this campaign as it enables us to reach out to many consumers simultaneously and allows a focused city centric approach." The radio stations that have been used are Radio Mirchi (98.3), Radio City (91.1), Red (93.5) and Big FM (92.7) during prime time in the morning and evening.

First Published : July 23, 2009

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