Portals go all out to woo the young

Monday, 17 March 2014 - 10:10am IST | Agency: dna

Taking a cue from IT companies, ecommerce portals in the country are going all out to engage with students and young crowd. From hosting fashion shows in colleges, promoting academic books online to holding debate competitions in schools, online portals are doing all it takes to increase their recall value.

With an increasing number of startups coming up every month in this space, besides increased competition from global players, companies are doing everything it takes to have high recall value.
Myntra, for instance, has tied up with colleges in Bangalore and Delhi as part of the Myntra model hunt called the 'Myntra Hot Stepper'.

The winners get a contract from Myntra to become their models. "The platform provides an opportunity for students to experience our brand. We thought this is the best way to engage with young audience," says Vikas Ahuja, chief marketing officer, Myntra. The competition, he says also helps in brand recall.

Flipkart some months ago conducted an activity in four colleges in Bangalore to promote academic books online. They created a customised laser design where the participants had to cross the laser area to reach the finish and win rewards.

"In today's world, there are many companies out there to grab a share of the pie. For customers, it is difficult to differentiate one from the other. The brand, which has the maximum recall value, is the one which gets the highest sales. Hence, there is no harm in capturing them young," says brand expert Harish Bijoor from Harish Bijoor Consults.

Many agree that it is important for a brand to keep innovating to break away from the clutter. Traditional way of promoting a brand does not create as much of an impact as direct engagement with target audience.

"Today in the internet space, with social media becoming mainstream, its imperative to engage with the customers and not limit the interaction to transactions only," says Vikrant Khanna, CMO, HomeShop18.
In fact, like many tech companies, online portals are also conducting hackathons. Besides hiring fresh talent, hackathons also act as a marketing and below the line advertising tool as you create brand saliency among the youth/college students, who add up to a good chunk of online shoppers, remarks Khanna.


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