Saavn's Impact currently caters to 50 major advertisers in India: Vinodh Bhat, CEO

By Satrajit Sen , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Digital | April 08, 2013
Launched in December 2012, Saavn's ad platform Impact contributes about 80 per cent of the company's overall revenue.

Popular online music streaming service Saavn (South Asian Audio Video Network), which launched its digital and mobile advertisement platform called Impact in India in December 2012, claims that currently the service contributes about 80 per cent of the company's overall revenue.

The company further adds that there are about 50 major brand advertisers such as Vodafone, Pepsi, Samsung, Chevrolet, Hewlett Packard, Bose, Verizon and Western Union that are currently working with Saavn in India, along with US and Canada.

US-based Saavn, which delivers licensed Bollywood, Indian and regional South Asian music, had launched Impact to provide advertisers access to all advertising units on the Saavn website and mobile apps.

Vinodh Bhat

Speaking to afaqs! about the uptake of the advertising service among Indian brands, Vinodh Bhat, CEO and co-founder, Saavn says that since the launch in December 2012, the agency and brand community has accepted the Impact model because of its many benefits as compared to the traditional display models as well as other forms of traditional advertising media such as television, radio and out of home.

"Music has always been of tremendous interest to brands as a way to create positive associations to their products and services. Historically, digital has been avoided because of rampant piracy and the risk of exposing brand assets in illegal environments. As a legitimate digital music service, Saavn's Impact model has created a premium environment for brands to effectively engage consumers' point of passion around music. Given the value we have created for these advertisers, we are excited to see them work with us as recurring clients," Bhat adds.

Saavn claims that its service boasts of more than 10.5 million unique listeners in India and overseas, and the platform will enable brands to identify, connect and engage better with users on web and mobile.

Commenting on the various measuring metrics used by Impact to measure a brand's effective ad, Bhat says that fundamentally, traditional online advertising models like CPM (cost per mille) and CPA (cost per acquisition) are not aligned with brands looking to reach and engage.

"When our team created this model, we decided to align around this core concept. We charge on the basis of the number of unique users we are reaching out in a day and it's a fixed daily rate by country," he informs.

Recently, Saavn had announced that it will partner Shazam to allow Indian listeners to discover new artists via Shazam's music-identification mobile app in conjunction with Saavn's library of over 1 million South Asian songs. Saavn is available in Gujarati, Hindi, Marathi, Tamil and Telugu and last year, it added an English language version of the service.

Speaking about other product offerings, Bhat informs that Impact's units are nearly sold out on a monthly basis. "In addition, we just released our paid subscription product that allows for offline play and higher quality audio files. While our paid product also removes ads, many brands are interested in sponsoring paid subscription for their users. We are figuring out how to entertain their request," he informs.

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