Nope, It’s Not Twitter

The Indian Market with its one billion plus population, is quickly become a worthy market for bran21499v1-max-250x250.pngds to promote or increase product awareness.  The use of cellular phones in India is proving to be a profitable tactic to reach its large population.  With over 400 million mobile phone users currently, and 10 million more added each month, India is the world’s fasting growing cell phone market—with India’s youth substantial contributing to their usage according to the Huffington Post.  

 In order for brands to position their products better to the Indian population, they will need to market themselves through the use of cellular devices and micro-blogging sites such as SMS GupShup, a Twitter-like service that quickly reaches the 20 million users they serve in India.  SMS GupShup added advertising to text messaging three months ago and already they account for 400 million monthly text messages, which according to Techcrunch.com average out to around five percent of the total Indian market.

 The power for brands to target Indian audiences through this SMS-based service is influencing their recognition and increasing200804_decorated_indian011.jpg sales.  For example there are billboards in India that describe how easy it is to buy multiplex movie tickets by SMS or text messaging.  So, just image if this were a product you were trying to market for your company.  On the SMS GupShup there a few options I want you to be aware of that companies can use to promote a product or brand to their users.  1.The ads/message you market out to the public aren’t coming from an unreliable source to the user’s cell phone, as you would see in other versions of social media.  The ads are used as an extension to the personal message which increases the mobile user’s response to read it.  2. The ads/message can be placed according to geographic regions of India—depending on the area you want reach in India—they can be targeted around the interest of the mobile user.  For example, if you are an art company and you have a user who is an art lover, your ad can be place in that particular group.  3. The cost of advertising is extremely beneficial in comparison to other traditional means of social marketing.  The ads/message associated with mobile phones remains longer than print or broadcast options.BLP0086489_P.jpg

 There are about 40 million personal computers in India but the use of cell phones is still 10 times higher than PCs.  For brands the use of social media tools such as blogging, emails and Instant Messaging does not communicate to users as great as microblogging for advertising, publishing or self-expressing.  Cell phone users are more prone to use the SMS text messaging service since there are many areas throughout India that still received limited reception. As for micro-blogging, it could be very advantageous for companies using SMS GupShup to target audiences.

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2 Responses to Nope, It’s Not Twitter

  1. SMS GupShup helps you to make your point about the potential uses of SMS advertising in India. The numbers certainly support making this a core part of a particular campaign. The way the service is set up, they appear to place ads at the end of personal messages, much like Yahoo does with email. Upon looking at the site, it is clear they are offering a service for individuals to create groups and serving ads along with them. I’m interested to know if you see any potential danger of turning people off in that model of if you think it might work as well as they promote it to?

    Your examples of potential ways this could be used are good ones, but be careful of making sweeping statements without offering enough links or proof points to give us insight into your thinking and sources. For example, your points about mobile phone ads remaining longer than print ads, or calling SMS GupShup a Twitter-like service need more explanation. There are clearly sources where you bring these points from, but making your point with them puts you in a much stronger and more believable position than if you don’t. (3)

  2. mintybeth says:

    I am curious as to whether you tried out SMS GupShup as part of your learning process for this blog. I know that I personally would be bothered with ads attached to my SMS messages. I expect these ads in email because they are buried at the bottom, but SMS messages have very few characters and take up less space. THis would lead me to think that the ads would overwhelm the message. I would be curious as to whether Indians would want the SMS advertisements if given the choice.

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