Airtel asks people to Shazam its interactive TVC

By Satrajit Sen , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Advertising
Last updated : January 21, 2013
The TVC promotes its 'SmartBytes' service for data plan subscribers and captures the importance of mobile internet in the day-to-day lives of the young.

Taking its 'Har Ek Friend Zaroori Hota Hain' campaign forward, Bharti Airtel has launched a new television commercial that asks users to 'Shazam' the video for more content related to the campaign. UK-based Shazam is a mobile phone-based music identification service. It captures a piece of music being played on the radio or anywhere at all and provides related information about it on the user's mobile phone.

Shazam uses a mobile phone's built-in microphone to gather a brief sample of the music; this is then matched with its own database. If a match is found, information such as the artiste, song title, and album are relayed back to the user. Shazam is a free application that runs on Android devices, Apple iPhone, BlackBerry, Nokia and Windows Phone.

The TVC, titled 'House Party', promotes Airtel's 'SmartBytes', a top-up service for its data plan subscribers. Conceptualised by Taproot India, it opens on a house party scene, where a group of youngsters are using mobile internet to stream online music. When the music suddenly stops, they realise that the data plan has been exhausted. One of the group eggs on a naive friend to get the wifi password of their grumpy neighbour. As he rings the neighbour's bell, the others leave him in the lurch, since one of them has managed to top up the connection using 'SmartBytes'. The TVC ends with Airtel's thematic music, Jo Tera Hai Woh Mera Hai.

The Airtel Shazam screenshot

Airtel asks viewers to Shazam this video and win Nokia Lumia phones; however, the prizes are only meant for Airtel users. Non-Airtel users have the option to share the campaign on social platforms such as Twitter and Facebook, along with email and SMS. This is Shazam's first association with an Indian brand.

Besides, Airtel users are also provided with options like Mobile Movies, Cricket Mobile Magazine, and a view of Airtel campaigns on YouTube. They can also download the 'Jo Mera Hai...' ringtone on mobile.

This partnership enables Shazam to push its music identification app through the Airtel network in the country. Airtel, on the other hand, can leverage Shazam to generate additional revenues through downloads.

To reach out to the target audience on the virtual platform, Airtel has created a microsite ( where it asks users to participate and submit their own party ideas and win house party kits that include Cafe Coffee Day vouchers and Domino's food coupons. A lucky few will also get a chance to attend a real house party hosted by Airtel. Besides, according to the company, the TVC will be followed by a series of outdoor campaigns in several cities.

Mobile internet services like BBM and WhatsApp, along with Facebook, Twitter and YouTube have gained popularity among the Indian youth through handheld devices.

First Published : January 21, 2013
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