BlackBerry Messenger: Try it out

By Devesh Gupta , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Advertising | December 17, 2013
Blackberry launched a month-long activation to drive downloads and trials for its Messenger service on iOS and Android platforms.

The launch of BlackBerry Messenger for Android and iOS supported handsets was well received across the globe. According to the company, more than 20 million downloads for the service took place in the first week of launch. To carry the momentum forward, the company has launched an activation across different cities of India to drive download and trial.

College and CCD activation

College and CCD activation

College and CCD activation

Ashish Gupta

The company has reached out to the youth across 36 colleges in four cities (Delhi, Mumbai, Pune and Bengaluru). Instead of a vanilla activation, it came up with two small activities, Pin Mania and Pin2Win.

For Pin Mania, BlackBerry put up a casino style slot machine, a circuit-based device which randomly threw up a prize from a set of four options when the student downloaded BBM and entered the PIN. The prizes included branded sling bags, T-shirts, sippers and key chains. According to the company, there were 14,000 downloads through this activation.

For Pin2Win, the student, after downloading the messenger, had to text the BlackBerry PIN to a certain number to automatically receive a top up equalling to the sum of the BlackBerry PIN numerals. According to the company, there were 23,000 downloads through Pin2Win.

The consumer insight behind the activation was that most students use a prepaid number instead of a post paid.

In another leg of the campaign, BlackBerry tied up with café chain Cafe Coffee Day across 500 outlets in 13 cities. The month-long activation had a tent card placed on each table of the outlets, offering a free cappuccino on the download of BlackBerry Messenger. Users had to message their PIN to get a free e-coupon for a coffee. BlackBerry had offered 40,000 such coffee coupons, which were all exhausted.

On the digital front, the company requested the youth to invite their friends to try BlackBerry Messenger. They had to share their BlackBerry PIN numbers to get a unique QR code printed on a T-shirt or a sipper shipped to their homes for free. BlackBerry targeted to send 20,000 such goodies and expects to finish them shortly.

It also initiated heavy promotions on radio platforms to reach out to a large number of youth. The partnership was spread across radio stations in six cities, with RJs sharing their BlackBerry PIN and inviting listeners to be friends and message their song request using the BBM. It also came up with some tongue in the cheek creatives aired on the radio platform.

According the company, the spends around the campaign were Rs 1-2 crore.

Speaking about the innovation, Ashish Gupta, director, marketing, BlackBerry, says, "The campaign has been built around the download and trials of the BBM. It is aiming at those who have not tried or experienced the power of BBM. The consumer insight behind the campaign was that once people use BBM, they realise its strength and continue using it."

He adds that the company has targeted the youth for the activation because they drive a large number of downloads and attract families and extended families to the group.

According to the company, India has shown a high growth rate in downloads for the BlackBerry Messenger services. It adds that the downloads for the iOS platform were slightly higher than that of the Android platform.

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