By Malay Desai
From: Beijing, by JWT
For the Chinese New Year, electronics retailer Gome has launched an activity at its outlets which helps its customers record personal messages to send along with the gadgets they buy. Targeted toward parents, the activation encourages customers to say ‘I love you’ to their parents from a ‘delivery box’ i.e., a special cabin that ensures privacy. Their audio message is recorded on a chip, inserted in the gift box and delivered. When the recipient, in this film, aging parents, opens it, the message plays out loud.
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From JWT Mumbai’s web film last week, we incidentally pan to the agency’s interactive work in Beijing, which has kicked off Lunar New Year festivities from last Friday. The New Year brings with it traditions that we Diwali revellers are aware of, such as gifting one’s near ones. And this activation has tapped an emotional side we Indians know of too, of not being able to tell our parents that we love them. Yes, it’s a trait among many of us 20, 30 and 40 something Asians, isn’t it?
Brands promoting emotional gifting come by every season; watches, phones and cars are the usual suspects while one Cadbury here repackages our festivals roughly every two months. But the idea here is local in nature, perhaps touching far less people than a TV ad, but creating substantial loyalty and word-of-mouth publicity. Adding a personal touch to inanimate electronic items could be done through cards or letters, but a recorded message has its own impact. Surely a video message (delivery man opens clip on tablet, steps out) would’ve been more effective but we assume this one still works on a budget.
The act of buying gadgets and flaunting them socially may be easy but we know the feeling of not wanting the world to know how much we love our parents. The ‘delivery box’ in the electronics store is thus simply a dark chamber, the only way a customer would feel secure to record an emotional, personal message. And if the people (and sub-titles!) in the film are to be believed, many of them did pour their heart out.
Another aspect, and one marketers often overlook in macro perspectives is that in-store activation has a significant place in the mix. Here, it added unprecedented value to a customer’s experience and as the deed is free, we cheap Asians would happily participate too. For a retailer chain, in-store activations have to constantly be out-of-the-box to increase and sustain footfalls. Your task for this week: go confess your love to your parents, don’t wait for a nudge from an electronics brand to do it!
(To watch the film, feed this link into your browser: ‘bit.ly/ViewTubeFeb3’or to watch it on your phone or tablet, scan this QR code -)
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