Paytm: Simple steps

By Saumya Tewari , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Advertising
Published : August 04, 2014
In its new series of ads, online recharge platform Paytm plays the convenience card.

Mobile commerce company Paytm has opted for the 'quirky route' in its new campaign which features absurd, yet hilarious ways to recharge one's phone.

Shankar Nath

Mayur Hola

Executed by Contract Advertising, one of the ads has a young girl tapping a man's bald head to get a recharge done, the other ad film showcases a young man who puts his phone under his cat's legs to get an instant recharge. Both end with a voiceover "Shayad recharge karna kabhi itna aasan ho jaye, tab tak Paytm hai (recharging phones may become that simple in future but till then there is Paytm). The campaign seems to have struck a chord with the target audience, on social media platforms.

Quirky and simple

Defining the 'quirk' element in the TVCs as a sign of simplicity, Mayur Hola, executive creative director, Contract Advertising, says that when you make something look too simplistic it might be seen as childish. "We have shown the effortlessness within everyday life. And the campaign shows how Paytm can be used within everyday life without going out of your way," he explains.

Hola believes that since the youth forms its largest consumer base, meeting their expectations was the acid test. "However, because the market is universal, the situations have been kept as everyday as possible," he adds. This round of the campaign is primarily led by TV, and complemented to an extent by digital and radio.

The decision to go for a TV campaign came about because a mass brand needs the kind of incremental reach that only TV can get, reveals Shankar Nath, senior VP, Paytm. "We needed to create awareness about the convenience offered by Paytm on recharges/bill payment amongst an audience that might not have been exposed to online offerings," he adds. The brand is looking at creating increased awareness about Paytm among students, young office-goers and anybody else who has a need for a convenient online recharge option. The core target group is SEC A/B.

The platform claims to have over 20 million registered users, clocking more than 10 million orders every month. "Currently, 60 per cent of our transactions are through the Paytm app or through our mobile site. We are seeing explosive growth in the mobile segment," notes Nath, adding that the company had received 8 million app downloads across platforms. The mobile commerce company has also extended its offerings across various categories like men's and women's apparel, electronics & accessories, books, sports and fitness and home décor to the web. Paytm had started off by offering mobile recharge and utility bill payments. It is owned by mobile internet company One97 Communications that has investors like SAIF Partners, Intel Capital and SAP Ventures.

In the online mobile recharging space, it competes with players like Freecharge, Rechargeitnow and mobikwik. Interestingly, telecoms like Vodafone, Airtel and Tata Docomo also have their own online recharging platform.

Rajiv Dingra

Saurabh Uboweja

Whackiness quotient

Our experts believe that the Paytm campaigns are whacky enough to catch the attention of young consumers in the metros. But the brand will need to go multi-lingual and highlight its features if it is to penetrate Tier II cities.

Rajiv Dingra, CEO, WATConsult, believes that the campaign has both 'shock and surprise value' which will work for the youth. These ads, he says, will be shared and discussed a lot, building good recall value. If the choice were his, says Dingra, he would have shown even simpler actions like whistling or just shaking the phone to recharge it.

Paytm, Dingra notes, is one of the brands that first got its product and service right and now is working on unique ads to get noticed. He suggests more branding would be important to capture older audiences and the Tier II market. For Saurabh Uboweja, CEO, Brands of Desire, the Paytm recharge experience is simple, clutter-free, fast and non-intrusive and in his opinion the ads do justice in setting the expectations. "It breaks away from not so inspiring campaigns being created by other online brands," he adds.

For feedback/comments, please write to


Sign up with your email address to receive news and updates

We respect your privacy.

© 2014 afaqs!