afaqs! news bureau
Marketing Initiative

Mastercard and Citi India seemed to have cracked the Diwali campaign code

The video is the perfect cue to welcome the season of festivities.

Citi India and Mastercard have a unique way of incorporating the festive season into their communication- something most brands do not. It would be safe to say that a song and dance routine is something that is uniquely, if not exclusively, Indian in nature. Our culture, combined with the nature of the content we consume, sets our standard for content apart. This is what makes the Citi Mastercard collaboration stand out so much.

Here are 3 reasons why the Citi -Mastercard campaign is one like no other.

1. Instagram as a dominant space for Communication

Instagram was at the forefront of the campaign. Stories from various influencers like Shivesh Bhatia, Sakshi Sindhwani and many more were put up across social media to stir up the conversation around the idea: Celebration Uninterrupted. Then the core campaign piece was put out: a music video featuring Hrithik Roshan and music by Shankar Mahadevan. The video is the perfect cue to welcome the season of festivities. The video was posted by the brand pages, as well on Hrithik Roshan’s page.

2. Personalized Focus on the Artists

What made the campaign really stand out is the fact that it integrated Citi India Mastercard as the enabler of good times, in a way that was personalized and unique to the characteristics of the influencers. For example, Shivesh Bhatia, baker extraordinaire and influencer, had the campaign idea of ‘uninterrupted’ woven into his feed post for the campaign- the video also featured his dog, Yoda, which helped his audience connect even more with the content. This personalization was followed through and through with the long list of influencers attached with this campaign: including Kamiya Jani, Rohina, Arjun Kanungo. Employing the unique characteristics of these influencers helped the brands grasp on passion points most of us could relate to: be it about retail or travel, food or fashion. The relatability factor brought the viewer closer to their own experiences with respect to what they were watching.

3. Standing Out Makes All the Difference

By integrating a Bollywood style music video as the leading piece of the campaign, Citi and Mastercard did something that made the overall campaign a more relatable piece of content. The track created by Shankar Mahadevan for the campaign had characteristics of the Mastercard sonic weaved into it. This is how the campaign is trying to incorporate the sonic into the veins of our popular culture.

This is what Arnika Dixit, Business Head - Credit Cards, Digital, Data and Marketing, Citibank India had to say about the campaign and it’s music: “This festive season we bring back the fun, by fulfilling those overdue commitments and spending quality time with our loved ones. This being a special year, we went all out by creating our very own festive anthem to the words and music of legendary Shankar Mahadevan and the moves of Indian superstar Hrithik Roshan shot internationally. Our campaign is live across multiple platforms and we are excited to bring this unique collaboration exclusively for the festive season to our clients.”

“Music is a powerful way to create an emotionally and culturally relevant connection with consumers. This being the biggest festive anthem of the year, Mastercard in collaboration with Citi brings you an experience that is truly Priceless. The distinct and memorable Mastercard melody, Sonic, will bring an additional layer of assurance to consumers about the safety and security that comes with their Mastercard. Owing to the credibility and authenticity these renowned personalities bring, our campaign narrative aims to resonate with the audience at a personal level,” added Manasi Narasimhan, Vice President, India South Asia at Mastercard.

It is not the most obvious way of marketing the offers of the season, but one which made the difference. The campaign was not only exclusive to videos; it spread across multichannel promotions- be it OOH or print, Digital or OTT. It helped the track created by Shankar Mahadevan truly become an anthem of the season.