Airtel hopes to create magic in the pre-paid segment

By , agencyfaqs! | In | October 10, 2002
Airtel is set to launch a television campaign starring Shah Rukh Khan and Kareena Kapoor for its new pre-paid card

Airtel is not just guarding its post-paid cellular territory from existing and future competition; it is simultaneously consolidating its market presence in the pre-paid market. Of the current 8.5 million users, 65 per cent are pre-paid customers, where, Airtel has a market share in the vicinity of 30-35 per cent. If the pre-paid market is estimated to reach 25 million users in the next two years, growth prospects for cellphone operators are tremendous.

No wonder Airtel is hungrily eyeing this segment. As part of its market expansion strategy in the pre-paid category, Airtel plans to launch a television campaign starring Shah Rukh Khan and Kareena Kapoor for the Magic brand of pre-paid cards. The message - 'Magic Hai To Mumkin Hai'. There are four films (made by Percept Advertising, Delhi) in the series. While the first ad, a 50-second theme ad, is to debut on October 14, 2002, two product ads are slated to break thereafter. The fourth, a longer edit of the theme ad, will be shown only in movie theatres.

Here's the theme ad in a nutshell. Rahul (Shah Rukh Khan) and Princess (Kareena Kapoor), two complete strangers, are travelling in a bus. While contemplating a turn in his life, Shah Rukh Khan spots Kareena. The first glance kindles the fire of romance. The two soon get into a romantic dalliance when suddenly the bus breaks down in the middle of nowhere. Kareena gets jittery, because she has to make it to her show in time. Shah Rukh comes to her rescue. He spots an Airtel Magic (pre-paid) vendor, purchases the card and makes a call somewhere.

Kareena is really worried by now, but Shah Rukh assures her that she will make it to her show in time. He then asks her to close her eyes and say, "Mumkin Hai". Which she does, and when she opens her eyes she sees a car approaching her. The rest is well, Magic.

The Magic campaign strives to make a special connect with target group (young adults in the SEC B and C category) at two levels. First, by giving the potential customers a mantra that everything is possible through Airtel's Magic. Second, the proposition attempts to bridge the gap between the expectation and the reality for bulk of the middle-class consumers. Thus, at one level, the campaign infuses a kind optimism for life, on the other level, it addresses the first question before the potential consumer: Why should one avail of the pre-paid service?

While the former is established through Magic's theme advertisement, the latter is done through the two product ads, which individually talk about two interesting features of the pre-paid service. For a middle-class consumer the prime concern is value for money. The new Magic pre-paid card, which is available for Rs 300, offers two useful facilities. The user can check the balance on the screen and can enjoy the benefits of the roaming facility (in the north, west and south of India).

Talking about the genesis of the brand idea 'Mumkin Hai', Hemant Sachdev, director, marketing & corporate communications, Bharti Enterprises, says, "The aim is to be relevant to the masses and make all their dreams, hopes and desires come true instantly, at Rs 300 per month."

However, arriving at the brand idea 'Mumkin Hai' entailed a huge dose of insight from Rekha Nigam (who quit as vice-president, programming and production, Sony Entertainment Television, in October 2001), who is working as creative consultant with Percept Advertising. "The challenge was to bridge the gap between the reality of the consumer and his/her aspirations. Since people wish their dreams come true instantly, the creative idea was to make people believe in the possibility of things happening that way. So 'Mumkin Hai'," explains Nigam. © 2002 agencyfaqs!

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