The Times of India blitzkrieg for Volkswagen

By afaqs! news bureau , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Advertising | November 12, 2009
The German car maker made tyre impressions on The Times of India

Volkswagen, the German car manufacturer that has been in India since October 2007, has identified the need to make deeper inroads in the country. To this end, it has flagged off a huge campaign, which began by taking over all the ad space in The Times of India on November 11, 2009.

A cover on cover was also part of the newspaper. There were ads in Economic Times too, which directed readers to The Times of India.

& #BANNER1 & #All editions of the English daily on November 11 had only Volkswagen ads. Each paper has close to 16,000 square centimetres of print space. Though afaqs! could not put a number to the spends incurred for this roadblock; Lutz Kothe, chief general manager, marketing and public relations, Volkswagen India, said a few days ago that it was "highly competitive".

The idea of the roadblock in the daily was to familiarise Indians with the 70-year-old car maker. Mediacom, the media agency for Volkswagen, has carried out the activity. Divya Gururaj, managing director, Mediacom tells afaqs!, "Volkswagen intends to share its heritage and what it stands for with the Indian consumer."

Kothe says, "We need to build a brand foundation, now that Volkswagen will launch its others car brands as well."

The print ads are informative in nature, highlighting certain facts and detailing the history of the car manufacturer.

The creative agency for Volkswagen is DDB Mudra. Rajeev Raja, creative head, DDB Mudra tells afaqs!, "We had to convey the entire story of Volkswagen with a skew on innovation, through the pieces in the newspaper." The facts and details were written along with the team at DDB Mudra and Volkswagen.

A TVC, the first for Volkswagen in India, also premiered yesterday. It shows a young boy in a Volkswagen showroom, selecting the cars that he wants to 'book in advance' at various stages of his life -- one for his 18th birthday, one when he becomes the vice-president of a company and another when he eventually becomes the chief executive officer. The tagline says, 'German engineering. Made for India.'

Kothe says, "We want to convey to our customers and future customers that Volkswagen as a brand and company is here to stay."

The campaign will also use outdoor and digital to build familiarity.

In the two years that Volkswagen has been in India, it has launched the Volkswagen Jetta and Passat -- sedans targeted at niche upper segment consumers.

On the cards is the launch of the Volkswagen Beetle, better known as the People's Car; the Volkswagen Touareg, a mid-size luxury sport utility vehicle; and the Volkswagen Polo, a mid-size car.

With other models of the car driving into the country, Volkswagen's TG has also changed. Hence, the 360-degree campaign is aimed at a larger audience across segments.

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