afaqs!

Amar Ujala to float BTL agency

By Chhavi Tyagi , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Advertising | August 12, 2009
The Hindi daily plans to float a separate BTL agency, Amar Ujala Impact, by mid September

Hindi daily Amar Ujala is all set to launch its BTL (below-the-line) agency by mid September. Christened Amar Ujala Impact, the agency will seek to provide not only event based solutions to its clients but will also roll out on-ground brand solutions to build brands.

Amar Ujala Impact will be based in Noida, with the creative team leading from there and two more servicing stations operating from Mumbai and Bengaluru. The process for selecting the head of the new agency is still under way.

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Sunil Mutreja, president, marketing, Amar Ujala, speaking to afaqs! on the new development, says, "Clients are increasingly looking for solutions beyond print and this is the reason why the demand for BTL is increasing. Though we have been doing activations for our clients for quite long, it was unstructured till now. Considering the demand, we thought of coming out with a separate SBU."

Revealing the reason for the selection of the name, Impact, for the new agency, Mutreja says that "BTL is making a good impact for brands and that's why the name".

The newspaper has worked on quite a few on-ground activations such as Wheel Smart Shreemati and Laqshya 9 for its clients but the absence of a proper business format was keeping the agency from handling the ever increasing demand from the clients.

Mutreja shares that Amar Ujala Impact will initially seek to serve the daily's existing clients and operate in only those cities where the print brand already has a presence. By 2011, the agency plans to increase its client portfolio and start operations in other cities, too.

Clients such as HLL, Godrej, Taza Tea and CavinKare are already interested in the agency's proposition. The agency will operate as a full-fledged agency with an in-house creative team and operations department, with initial team strength of 15 members. However, according to the norm, the agency will hire traditional event agencies to execute the activations.

The agency aims to touch revenue earnings of Rs 10 crore in the initial year of its operations and will build on that year after year.

Talking on BTL as a platform, Mutreja observes that the problem with the media vehicle is not the absence of the right attitude of clients, but the absence of good creative ideas. "If the agencies come out with good ideas, clients will lap it up as soon as it is out," he says.

The new agency plans to establish long term relationships with its clients, instead of getting into short term commitments with brands. Also, Mutreja shares that the agency will not bundle its print services along with the activation offerings, as is usual for media groups, but will treat its print vehicle as a separate organisation.

"There will be no discounting on print ad prices through the agency. If the client wants print support for the on-ground activations, the agency will suggest print publications based on the readership and rates of the different publications," he says.