HT attacks Mumbai traffic

By Devesh Gupta , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Advertising | October 31, 2013
The English daily has initiated a multi-media campaign in the financial heart of the country, lashing out at the traffic problem of the city.

Mumbai is the financial heart of India and the land of new opportunities for a wide range of people from all over the country. However, the city's notorious traffic has been a sore point for most Mumbaikers, who regularly spend a huge amount of time commuting. The issue has caused uproars for a long time; English daily Hindustan Times (HT) has now taken up the issue under its campaign, Unclog Mumbai, which is a part of the larger campaign, 'Let's make news better'.

HT's Unclog Mumbai OOH campaign

HT's Unclog Mumbai OOH campaign

Nitin Chaudhry

It began in September, when the Mumbai edition of HT began publishing editorials on the poor traffic condition of the city. After a month, the publication has taken the OOH way to speak out about the problem, by booking over 500 touch points across the city such as gantries, auto backs, billboards, poles, kiosks and others.

Some of the catch lines are 'Declare linking road a no-parking zone', 'Install escalators at skywalks, reduce pedestrians on the road', 'Repair Potholes Reduce Traffic Jams', 'Share Autos. Unclog Mumbai' and others.

One of the strategically located outdoor innovations is at Mahim Causeway that symbolises what the causeway has become for Mumbaikers - a chronic bottle neck. The hoarding simply says, 'Unclog Mumbai'.

On the digital platform, HT has initiated the creation of the largest user-generated traffic map (, which invites citizens to share their commuting woes and suggest solutions. It aims to make it work both as a petition to the authorities to act upon and also a large platform for citizens to engage with one another on the issue.

On the radio platform, it is connecting with the audiences through Fever 104 FM, to further this dialogue.

Speaking about the campaign, Nitin Chaudhry, business head, HT Mumbai, says, "The vision as I said is to make a difference, bring a real change that positively improves the life of a Mumbaiker. Traffic is one of the biggest banes of living in Mumbai. It is the most debilitating aspect of the city and one that most people feel quite succumbed to. So we decided to take it head-on, by picking up arduous, arterial stretches in the city, investigating the conditions that are leading to congestion and tabling these issues with the authorities for action and commitment."

He further adds that HT has articulated its new brand proposition of being the catalyst of change in the city; taking up issues, solving them, joining hands with readers and impacting real meaningful change in the city. Unclog Mumbai is the brand's first mission in this direction.

The creatives for the campaign are designed by R K Swamy BBDO, while the media buying has been done in house under the banner of HT Media Banner. The OOH agency for the campaign is DDB Mudra Max.

This is an all Mumbai campaign. Editorially it has investigated the western, central suburbs and south Mumbai. Radio and digital have gone pan Mumbai and outdoors have been concentrated mainly in the western suburbs.

Hindustan Times claims to be the second largest, fastest growing English daily in Mumbai, with a readership of 8.17 lakh, a circulation of about 5 lakh copies, and a superior reader profile (74 per cent of readers from SEC AB).

Some of the previous campaigns that HT has taken up are 'You Read They Learn', and 'N0 TV on June 1', among others.

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