STAR World cooks up a storm for MasterChef on Facebook

By afaqs! news bureau , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Digital | July 16, 2012
The app, created and conceptualised by Grey Digital, allows netizens to wear the chef's hat and create their own dishes to make the longest buffet table.

In an attempt to tap on the popularity of MasterChef Australia, Star World India has launched a Facebook campaign called the Social Buffet. The campaign has been conceptualised and created by Grey Digital.

Saurabh Yagnik

Sudhir Nair

Navin Kansal

As part of the campaign, STAR has launched a Facebook App Game which requires netizens to don the chef's hat and create their own dishes to make the longest buffet table, albeit with a MasterChef-like twist.

Fans are each assigned a virtual 'kitchen' and are prompted to create a buffet. The only way they can complete a dish is by inviting friends from their Facebook network, who become various ingredients that come together to form a dish on the buffet table. The participant with the longest buffet table stands a chance to win a return trip to Australia.

Saurabh Yagnik, business head, English channels, STAR India, says, "Our research and consumer preference mapping showed that Indian audiences for MasterChef Australia truly love the food, especially watching it being cooked on the show and are extremely involved in the journey of the contestants as well as the judges. Hence we sought to give them an opportunity to cook the dishes they love with the people they love."

Commenting on the drama of competition and the broadening of culinary horizons through the application, Sudhir Nair, senior vice-president and head of Grey Digital India, adds, "We Indians are social by nature. We are part of big families, we love eating together and we love drama in a TV show. This was the fundamental insight the team worked with and hence social media was the obvious choice. This is where the inherent social nature of Facebook came to life as participants used their social connections to fuel participation."

The result is the proof in the proverbial MasterChef pudding. Social Buffet has seen over 75,000 game plays, with more than 5,000 dishes being formed on Facebook. Navin Kansal, group creative director, Grey Digital India, says, "What is mouth-watering about these numbers is that players of the game alone were responsible for approximately 2,00,000 direct social connections, which resulted in an average connection request conversion of 22 per cent - a reflection of the high organic spread the campaign has effectively managed to achieve."

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