Akshit Pushkarna

Why News18 partnered with Swiggy to deliver news on Counting day

Aditya Tandon, VP (Head) - Brand Marketing, News18, speaks about the brand's motivation behind the collaboration that saw News18's TV news van deliver food on Swiggy. 

On the 3rd of December, India, the world's largest democracy, awaited the results of state elections for Madhya Pradesh, Chattisgarh, Rajasthan, and Telangana, turning the day into a significant weekend for the nation. Traditionally, households across the country are glued to their television sets on the day of the rollout of poll results, monitoring news channels for party seat count updates.

For news channels, these result days present peak viewership opportunities. Seizing this moment, media conglomerate Network18 employed a unique marketing strategy to boost viewership on its TV news arm, News18. 

If you ordered a meal from Swiggy on December 3, on the delivery tracker page of the app, you would have seen a News18 TV news van delivering your food. This was a result of a partnership between Network18 and Swiggy.

Aditya Tandon, vice president (head) - Brand Marketing, News18, tells afaqs! that the idea behind the partnership was to ensure a scale for their coverage. He believes that this is the first time something like this has been done by a news brand. He feels that the campaign has allowed them to stand out and stand apart on result day. 

"Our intent behind this association was two-fold – to create disruption in the category with an interesting and innovative campaign that will clearly drive recall for us as the preferred destination for Counting Day coverage. We wanted the imagery to rest on the pillars of speed, accuracy and comprehensibility."

"I must say that the campaign has really been noticed and generated quite a lot of curiosity and excitement and hence has delivered quite well on that goal. A second more tactical objective was to drive traffic for a viewer promotion that we were running for Counting Day - here again, we saw great traction – to give you a sense of the impact, there was a three times increase in the actual response submissions for the activity," he says. 

Tandon also remarks that elections are very important events for Network18 as a news brand and they plan to drive initiatives that help differentiate their brand.

"We felt that this collaboration would genuinely be something innovative and not something that has been seen in the category. From a brand fit point of view as well, we felt that food apps are built on the idea of ease of use, convenience and speed. From that standpoint as well we felt that the fitment was good since as a brand we wanted to own the idea of ease of comprehensibility of data, being on point and delivering with speed."

He also feels that this campaign sets them up nicely going into the General Elections in 2024.

With additional inputs from Benita Chacko.

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