Aishwarya Ramesh

“Our target segment for commercial vehicles has special affinity towards radio, local languages”: Shashank Srivastava, Maruti Suzuki

Maruti Suzuki’s latest campaign for commercial vehicles attempts to communicate the different services that this branch has.

Maruti Suzuki Commercial has launched a 360 degree media campaign titled ‘Tarakki Aapki, Saath Hamara’. The campaign aims to spread awareness about Maruti Suzuki Commercial as the one-stop solution of customers business needs and its wide product range of both goods as well as passenger carriers.

The campaign recognises that customers need a reliable and trustworthy partner to guide in their decision-making. The Commercial channel customers are primarily a mix of ‘owner-cum-driver’ and fleet owners. While the ‘Owner-cum–driver’ seek a stable income, the fleet\captive owners seek increased productivity, improved earnings, expansion of business and recognition.

Based on this insight, the Maruti Suzuki Commercial was launched in 2016. This first-ever media campaign highlights the need for customer support and guidance during their purchasing decisions and post-purchase support. The ads also highlight that Maruti Suzuki Commercial assists its customers at every step of their purchase and post-purchase journey and provides the necessary expertise and guidance required to choose a mobility solution for their businesses.

During a conversation, Shashank Srivastava, Senior Executive Director (Marketing & Sales), Maruti Suzuki India explained that when the team was researching about the target customer segment, it found they were using the vehicles mostly for transporting commercial goods. “They were either owner drivers, who owned a transport business working on a daily sort of earning; or there were fleet owners who owned more than one vehicle and for them, it's like a slightly larger business,” he elaborates.

<div class="paragraphs"><p>Shashank Srivastava, </p></div>

Shashank Srivastava,

He adds that the brief to the agency was to educate the business-owners about the value proposition that Maruti has to offer in the commercial vehicle segment.

“We are now present in 250 cities and we have almost 350 outlets. We also wanted to communicate that we provide all the requirements that the cars in this segment might have, for example, the owners may be looking for financing, we can help with that,” he says.

"Our target segment for commercial vehicles has a special affinity towards the radio and the local languages it is available in."

The campaign is a 360 degree one which interestingly, pays attention to radio as well. Srivastava recalls that during the first wave of the pandemic, radio and OOH were affected, but he expected both these mediums to make a comeback in the upcoming months. “Our target segment for commercial vehicles has a special affinity towards the radio and the local languages it is available in.”

“We are planning to increase our network going forward so that we can actually reach out to a larger number of customers and these consumers are spread across the country. So it's not just limited to larger cities or tier I, tier II cities, but to the smaller cities as well. Our endeavor will be to establish and expand our network, because that is also a major help for growth in this segment,” he explains.

He mentions that as far as the auto industry is concerned, the TG has a high affinity for news, sports and GEC channels; these are the genres that Maruti advertises in. “Even when the ratings for news stopped, we continued to invest in it because the medium made a difference to us from an engagement perspective to reach the TG,” he says.

He predicts that there could be a change in investment levels when the ratings come through within the news genre, across channels. He adds that investment levels from different advertisers will recalibrate once the ratings are out.

“Coming to the toxicity of content, - irrespective of whether the ratings were there or not their advertisers and consumers both have become quite sensitive to the nature of content of the news channels. As a brand I can say, we are also very conscious of our brand safety and the association with the content, if possible. So brand association with particular news or channels or news programs, is also a matter of which advertisers closely watch before they decide to invest,” he signs off.

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