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Ads on the move: Now, branding on backlit mobile chargers in Meru Cabs

By Surina Sayal , afaqs!, Mumbai | In OOH News | October 06, 2009
Charging the mobile has become easier through public charging services

With mobile phones becoming the major medium of business and personal communication, charging the mobile has become easier through public charging services. Such public mobile chargers are already available in coffee shops, malls and multiplexes. Now, they make a debut in Meru Cabs, the radio taxi service present in a few cities.

Atin Promotions and Advertising has developed the technology and offers the 'backlit cell phone charging units' inside Meru Cabs as a new advertising medium as well. The conceptualization, designing, manufacturing and installation of the chargers were done in-house by the company.

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Atin Gupta, managing partner, Atin Promotions and Advertising, claims that this project is the first of its kind in India. "It involves the coming together of two basic needs -- charging units for people on the move and branding for telecom players."

The backlit mobile chargers were launched towards the end of September in 550 Meru Cabs in Hyderabad. They will be introduced in Meru Cabs across Mumbai, Delhi and Bengaluru in November. For the space provided, Meru Cabs makes a fixed amount from Atin Promotions.

The units carry chargers for all popular mobiles, with five docks that allow charging for all major models of Nokia, Samsung, LG, Blackberry and Motorola.

Gavin D'Abreo, vice-president, marketing and sales, Meru Cab Company, says, "Customer feedback suggested we provide them with services like a mobile charger, in-cab entertainment and magazines, among others. For an advertiser, the mobile charger is a great way to build saliency with the Meru customer."

For advertising, the mobile phone charger station has a LED light box advertising display. For now, Vodafone has come on-board to explore this medium and has taken up 350 cabs in Hyderabad. Gupta shares that Aircel has also shown interest for Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru, and is likely to sign up for November.

He adds that the advertising rates depend on the number of cabs and time period; but the cost is approximately Rs 650 per charger (cab) per month. The advertiser also has to take up a minimum of 250 cabs per city. Thus, if a marketer chooses to advertise on the minimum number of cabs, the cost would be about Rs 1.62 lakh per month.

Besides these mobile charger docks, Meru also offers exterior wrapping of its cabs, including doors and rooftop, and also seatbacks inside the cabs.

For the record, Atin Promotions and Advertising offers clients innovative mediums at airports, including conveyor belt branding, Jet Airways bus grab handles, airport coach wraps, backlit medians, promotional kiosks, AccuRide AdBikes, Look Walker, digital video screens, e-ticketing counters, standing backlits and scrollers.

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