Guest Lecture by Mr Manish Kumar, Chief Digital Officer, Red Chilllies Entertainment and Kolkata Knight Riders

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The names – Red Chillies Entertainment and Kolkata Knight Riders buzzed in the TAPMI campus on 27th July ’14 when Mr. Manish Kumar, Chief Digital Officer, Red Chillies Entertainment and Kolkata Knight Riders arrived on campus to have a session with the TAPMI students which was like home coming for him, being an alumnus of TAPMI; batch of 2005. Mr. Kumar made the whole session an interest driven one since it was all about marketing movies of different genre and on the other hand, how cricket today has connected with Bollywood.

He began with a brief introduction on the much lesser known sector in the field of marketing i.e. Cricket and Movies. Not many producers were enthusiastic about “marketing” movies as it did not add any value to the movie per se and also didn’t contribute directly to the revenues. But within the last few years, both the movie industry and cricket had seen more of organisation, corporatisation and commercialisation.

He explained that although marketing of movies is an entirely different concept than promoting traditional products and services, the 4P’s of marketing and other concepts taught in the classroom are still relevant and very much in practice. And thinking along the lines of those concepts in real life situations become necessary in such an industry where in word-of-mouth, after a while of consuming the product (in this case, a week long after watching a movie), makes a huge difference. Also, price has made a huge difference now than earlier.

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Further in the session, he discussed how in movie marketing IVRS and VAS recorded a success in middle class segment – Tier 2 and 3 cities, leveraging on the deep mobile penetration in India. Another dimension was added to the movie marketing through gaming which aimed at increasing the top-of-the-mind recall. Other innovative alternatives to movie marketing are video blogs, online games, mobile apps etc. Krrish 3 was one of the biggest digital projects undertaken which took digital marketing of movies to an entirely new level – Gaming across different platforms, series of emoticons for Facebook Messenger, motion comics, official movie augmented reality app, innovative mask app on Facebook, Karaoke App, branded IVR portal, website, celebrity chats, motion poster etc. The movie successfully proved that digital marketing increased the longevity of the movie brand.

Mr. Kumar talked about his experiences; how he realised that taking challenges was important in this field to have to make this industry what it is today. He began his stint at digital marketing of movies with Billu and as of now, he has Oh My God!, Housefull 2, Kurbaan, Badmaash Company, Kambakkht Ishq, Aashiqui 2, Student of the Year, Son of Sardaar etc. under his name apart from bigger box office movies like My Name is Khan, Kochadaiiyaan and Don 2. He stressed on the point that a relationship with the movie and the product endorsed in it was necessary so as to involve the viewer in the brand. For instance, the movie Blue featured Samsung Corby which was the first waterproof phone launched, My Name is Khan featured Reebok since both the brand connected with “journeys” and so on.

In the final hour of the session, he pointed out that if movie marketing has reached to the levels of motion sensing games, trailers of games and engaging people in interactive promotions, then cricket is also not far behind. Walking along the lines of football, cricket has also indulged into stadium promotions, team merchandise, promotional and entertainment videos etc. But definitely, cricket marketing is in its nascent stages and on the path of evolution.

The session concluded with a token of appreciation from the college to Mr. Kumar and a lot of students aspiring to become a part of the Indian entertainment industry in future.

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