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Has your brand created the right buzz yet?

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logo-Brand-50-AwardsWhat has your brand done recently to create buzz? Is it a differentiated product that can surprise and excite consumers? Are you thinking on those lines at all? If not, you might be left behind in the buzz stakes.While Pitch is on the lookout to find the five most ‘Buzzy Brands’ of 2013, it has shortlisted 14 most powerful candidates for the grand awards’ night of Pitch Brands 50 Awards – For Excellence in Marketing, presented by ABP News, in partnership with Percept, to be held on June 12 at Leela Kempinski.

While more than 20 brands made it to the shortlist after going through a comprehensive shortlisting process of Pitch’s editorial team, 14 were selected to go to the next level. As the awards night will decide the top five winners, here’s a quick look at the 14 names that went to the jury.

Ramesh Jude Thomas, President, EQUiTOR Consulting

Ramesh Jude Thomas, President, EQUiTOR Consulting

The winners will be decided on by a distinguished jury, chaired by Ramesh Jude Thomas, President, Equitor Consulting. The other jury members include marketing professionals and professors such as Rahul Sen, International Brand Advisor; Ramanujam Sridhar, Founder and CEO, Integrated Brand-comm; Subroto Chattopadhyay, Chairman, Peninsula Foundation; Sunil Gupta, Marketing Partner, South Asia, Results International Group; and Ashok Pratap Arora, Marketing Professor, MDI.

One of the brands that has made it to the shortlist is Idea Cellular with its catchy jingle ‘Honey Bunny’. This ad depicted the diversity, footprint, and seamless connectivity that Idea provides through its pan-India network.

Rahul Sen, International Brand Advisor

Rahul Sen, International Brand Advisor

Star Plus’ show ‘Satyamev Jayate’ finds a place in the list of Buzzy Brands. The show, which marked the television debut of actor Aamir Khan, highlighted complex social issues prevailing in India and became a big buzz at an unusual slot of 11 AM on Sundays.

Cricketer Virat Kohli has become a brand of his own. Apart from his ascent in the field of cricket, Kohli has become a popular face in a number of ad campaigns, including Celkon Mobile, Red Chief shoes, TVS Motors, and Cinthol, among others.

AP Arora, senior marketing professor, MDI said, “Every marketer’s dream is to create a catalytic market reaction. In this experiment, they need to ignite just the critical mass of customers. These initial set of customers then take over. Their buzz in the form of word-of-mouth spreads the marketer’s message across the rest of the market.”

Ramanujam Sridhar, Founder CEO, brand-comm

Ramanujam Sridhar, Founder & CEO, brand-comm

Arora further said that in order to reach out to the “buzz maker” customers, fine-tuned appeal and quite often the mnemonics can be the foundations of such a strategy.

The aspirational Apple iPhone 5 has made it to the shortlist. The brand became a big buzz due to its striking features such as 4-inch retina display, 8 megapixel camera, faster graphics and being 18 per cent thinner than its predecessor.

Ramanujam Sridhar, Founder and CEO, Integrated Brand-comm remarked, “Buzzy brands have managed to make the customer sit up and take notice. It could be a visible advertising campaign like the mobile companies have done on occasions. It could be something that people like, share and talk about when they meet socially or online. They would love to share it simply because it is interesting, captivating even.”

Subroto Chattopadhyay, Chairman, The Peninsula Foundation

Subroto Chattopadhyay, Chairman, The Peninsula Foundation

Airtel’s campaign ‘Har Ek Friend Zaroori Hota Hain’ became an anthem for friendship, and in the process established a strong connect with the youth TG.

Another brand in the list is Taiwanese mobile manufacture HTC. The brand rose to fame in 2012 because of its Apple-like look and smart features. Also, its availability in all price categories made it a hit with the youngsters.

Windows 8 is another addition in the list of buzzy brands. Launched on October 26, 2012, Windows 8’s performance improvements, security enhancements, and improved support for touchscreen devices got a positive response. About 60 million Windows 8 licenses have been sold through January 2013.

Another buzzy brand is Nestle for its brand Kit Kat. Nestle, through the campaign, urges youngsters to take a break from their busy lifestyles and avail some delightful moments in life.The idea was to highlight the rejuvenating role of Kit Kat in a situation with which the youth relate to easily — the classroom.

Sharad Sarin, senior marketing professor, XLRI

Sharad Sarin, senior marketing professor, XLRI

According to Sharad Sarin, senior marketing professor, XLRI Jamshedpur, “Hundreds of brands are launched every year and yet several of them are mere ships that pass you by in the night. Yet, there are a few that stand out due to a combination of factors. It could be the power of the idea itself that captivates or the force of the media that makes one see the communication time and again.”

Cadbury Celebrations innovated on every aspect to become one of the most popular gifting options during the festive season of 2012. The campaign – ‘Aaj aap kise khush karenge’ – and the positioning of the brand attempted to replace traditional Indian mithai with a box of Cadbury Celebrations.

Amid the various product categories is a politician, who is no less a Buzzy Brand than the rest. He is Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi. Gandhi campaigned extensively during the 2012 Assembly elections, especially in the politically crucial state of Uttar Pradesh, to help revive the Congress party’s fortunes in the state and was a very visible face for the party.

Sunil Gupta, Managing Partner, South Asia, Results International Group

Sunil Gupta, Managing Partner, South Asia, Results International Group

Samsung Galaxy Y Duos Lite is another mobile phone brand that finds a place in the shortlist. Priced at Rs 6,990, the Indian version of the Galaxy Pocket Duos has a 2.8-inch QVGA capacitive touchscreen, an 832 MHz processor, a 2 MP snapper, 3GB internal storage and 3G support on the primary SIM card.

Nokia Lumia has also made it to the shortlist. Nokia has been aggressive with the launch of its Lumia phones to become market leaders in the smartphones category. Having had five devices in the Lumia series previously, Nokia recently added Windows 8-powered Lumia 920, Lumia 820 and Lumia 620 to its existing portfolio.

Ashok Pratap Arora, Marketing Professor, MDI

Ashok Pratap Arora, Marketing Professor, MDI

Zee TV is a strong player, giving its viewers a completely new platform to engage with the brands and paving a new path in being a ‘buzzy brand’. Zee TV and Mobilox had partnered to create a mobile solution that would take brand-consumer engagement to the next level. A missed call and mobile app strategy was employed, which yielded outstanding results. The missed call campaign replaced the SMS voting platform for Zee TV’s reality shows with ‘Missed call voting’. In comparison to a mere 2 lakh votes a day through SMS, Zee TV and Mobilox were able to generate 15 lakh votes through missed calls.

Kingfisher Oktoberfest 2012, too, finds a place in the Buzzy Brands shortlist. In order to create an interactive ground activation based on the principle of attract, engage and connect, Kingfisher designed experiential zones featuring RFID social connect booths, portable AR photo booth, live streaming of the event on kingfisherworld.com, RJ interactions, and VJ interactions.

Continuing with the series of highlighting India’s best brands, Pitch has already unveiled seven of the 10 categories for Pitch Brands 50 Awards, which include Rechargers, Ageless Brands, Bottom of Pyramid, Social Marketers, Globetrotters and Impactful launches.

Watch this space for more shortlists.

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Neeta Nair

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