OLX: More than just a transaction

By Sohini Sen , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Advertising | March 10, 2015
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The online classifieds site, in its new campaign, shows how a transaction is more than just money and goods changing hands. The two films portray the emotional side of a transaction on OLX.

Selling your old cupboard or bike may just seem like a trivial transaction to many, but ask those who part with their beloved items. That transactions on online market places are not merely an exchange of items and money, is the key theme in OLX's new campaign 'Keemat Bhi Kuch Keemti Bhi'.

"The common perception is that OLX is used by people when they are low on cash or need to get rid of extra stuff lying unused. But, reality is that people from all classes use it. There is a higher order purpose when you sell on OLX as well, which is what we are trying to show here," says Amer Jaleel, NCD, Lowe Lintas & Partners.

OLX's new film captures the friendship

OLX's cricket bat film

It is the higher order benefit that is showcased in both the films from the online classifieds site. One film shows an old car being sold to an interested buyer. But, while money changes hands, a hearty laugh and a handshake signify the friendship that has been forged.

Amarjit Singh Batra

Amer Jaleel

Meanwhile, keeping with the trend of long-format films, the second film is a tribute to cricket fans. With the ongoing ICC World Cup, this made for a timely story. It shows a young man - an ardent cricket follower - who has to give up on his dreams to help the family. After several years, he sells off his cricket bat on OLX, realising that it might be of more value to someone else.

However, the film takes an emotional turn when the man goes to watch a local match where the 'buyer' is now using his bat to score runs. While the first campaign shows blossoming friendship post a transaction, the second focusses on pride and worth. In both, OLX tries to give more meaning to what is generally believed as just a 'transaction'.

Amarjit Singh Batra, CEO, OLX India, says, "When we started out, we had the challenging task of creating the C2C market for used goods in India. As the platform started gaining popularity, we realised that there was something bigger happening which was more compelling and emotive than a mere transaction. People enjoyed OLX because it thrived on direct human interaction, which is becoming more fleeting under the pressures of a busy and stressful life, and is typically done through middlemen in marketplaces. The other user insight we gained pertained to the place our belongings have in our lives. The products we own are closely tied to our stories, passions and dreams, and OLX is a means to extend those dreams by way of extending the life-cycle of the product. Our 'Keemat Bhi, Kuchh Keemti Bhi' campaign is a tribute to not only all OLX users, but also everyone who has had to let go of a passionate dream because of circumstances."

The fact that many brands are coming out with longer films does not deter Lowe. According to Jaleel, "The easiest way to show a higher order purpose is to take a social issue. But to connect it to the character of the brand is where the challenge lies. We wanted to bring up the emotional peg and pitch the website as something where something bigger is happening than just selling goods."

A third film is being made under the same campaign which should hit the screens in a few days. The 360-degree campaign will also feature radio spots, outdoor and print ads.

OLX has recently come up with a variety of interesting campaigns - 'Phone Ko Banao Sellphone (Womaniya)', which highlighted the benefits of mobile classifieds especially for women, and the one featuring Kapil Sharma, where the comedian posed as unused items requesting to be sold off. OLX even turned its attention to buyers with a campaign earlier this year.

The OLX campaign stands in sharp contrast to the recent Quikr outdoor ads. While OLX tries to show meaningful transactions in its campaign, Quikr assures users that they can keep their details secure and private from buyers, if they wish to. Whether users want privacy or a more lasting friendship with other users, the online marketplace is surely abuzz.

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