SCMHRD- Insecurity?

Me-too-Branding- Symbiosis-Pune

I happened to see this advertisement in Outlook, when they carried a story on B schools and their unexplainable rankings. I always thought SCMHRD was a decent B school, but it looks like they seem to have dug themselves in a hole with their name, which has positioned them as a HR B-school. They are trying to reverse that by spending a few lakhs on re-branding themselves, but what is tough to swallow is the way they are doing it. Showcasing that their students won some random case study contest, and thus saying that their B school is intelligent in other aspects also, is a bad case of I-want-attention- syndrome that lower rung B schools like IIPM resort to. I once saw a B school advertise that their school won 3rd prize in debate and 2nd prize in Rangoli at some local college and that was advertised as one of the USP's. Schools like XLRI are also largely percieved as HR B schools but the brand is so strong tha despite that, their grads get placed in other functions to(especially people who've taken the BM discipline instead of PM&IR). Private B school positioning is an interesting aspect in a largely cluttered market. How do u decide which B school is right for you. IIPM and its likes tries to show boys and girls in a self important pose and usually plug a long message from its dean, and puts some attention grabbing techniques like "IIPM-dares to challenge IIMs". Now that SCMHRD has done such an advert, I hope these guys get serious about their Brand equity and get an ad/branding/PR agency to manage their brand, else the serious Snap aspirants may give it a miss, as the ad sounds pretty IIPM like. ( Nothing against IIPM, just that their advertising makes me fall from my seat every time). I am sure SCMHRD is a decent B school, and they just dont need this insecurity feeling, to go splurge on print media advertising in such a manner.

On Train Advertising

Airtel Express?

Big Mac riding on the "Deols"

Happened to come across these ads in Mumbai. With so many people taking the train during peak time, trains are a great place for a mega splash. I hear that having your brand on the handle, which commuters hold on to, in the local trains cost 1.5 lakhs for one train for a month. Actually pretty inexpensive when you compare it to a hoarding or any other public place.

Yesterday McDonalds have launched a campaign in Mumbai around their happy price menu featuring cartoons of Dharmendra and Sunny Deol. I am not aware of them being brand ambassodors for McDonald, but who knows it may even be a spoof.


Indian Real Estate starts to Tweet

I came across this rather nice way of tweeting. My batchmate(At GL) Shriram, who is with MARG Constructions, has set up a tweet account, which seems like the SEZ giving you "did-you-know" bytes. Check the MARG twitter page here

I had been to a sumptous dinner at a place called Mani's lunch home in Matunga. Matunga in Mumbai, bears a huge resemblance to Chennai's good old Mylapore and Triplicane, with temples and Tam Brahms all around.

Need to check a few good places to eat in my Mumbai Food Guide. Have my cousins coming on Sunday. I might take a short trip to Baroda this saturday to watch the Irani trophy match, time permitting.


Naaku Mukka Anyone?

Came across this advertisement, in the regular mailers from agency faqs. It's got a catchy tune. This was the advertisement done for Times of India.

Irani Trophy

Its that time of the year, that the Irani trophy is played. To know more about it, its history and a speculation on its future, I'd suggest you to check my latest article


Bhelcome to Sajjanpur

Last night, as soon as I came back from work, after munching a quick dinner, I went to Gaiety theatre in Bandra Talkies for " Welcome to Sajjanpur". It was a nice, simple movie that went on like a passenger train, or a town bus. In essence, the slow pace of the movie and the well etched out characters made it a lovely movie to watch. The movie had only 2 songs, and both of them were lovely and melodious to hum. The movie is worth a watch, as it transports you to a village and the way the story is told, you feel as if you were also part of the story.

The movie reminds of slow moving, immensely enjoyable rustic movies with simple happy-g-lucky characters that one had seen previously in a Basu Chatterjee or Hrishikesh Mukherjee movie. Its like an extended re run of Malgudi days or Byomkesh Bakshi. I've heard that the other two movies that released yesterday were duds( Saas, Bahu and Sensex- You dont mess with Zohan).

Time for a rural holiday to escape from the madness of the fast life in the city that's constantly on the love. Heading to open my Lonely Planet and Outlook Traveller for some searching!


Advertising in the Mumbai Local Trains

Talk about advertising in the Mumbai Local Trains: This one takes the cake over the rest of the ads. Aimed at frustrated and tired men who get into the train like a herd of unattended cattle. Wow! Looks this 'Namrata' just got her customers at a very less acquisition cost:-)

I notice that in Mumbai, the daily soaps, programs and reality shows finds its way into trains and buses. The whole of Mumbai(atleast the working population), on an average travels 40 minutes-60 minutes a day one way, so they are bound to come across some TV promotion or channel promotion. When IDEA launched its media promotion, it plastered all the Mumbai trains yellow. Now thats one way of announcing yourself with a bang and whenever there is a splash in Mumbai, the Mid-days and Mumbai Mirrors add to it, by spreading the word.

Some of the other ads in the compartments more so look at generating hope in the mind of the traveller who is looking at the next best step to grow in life or to make money. More so temporary-aspirational-money making advertisments .Most of the other Ads in the local train border on instant loans-no questions asked, part time work that can 'guarantee' 90000 rs a week,Money making oppurtunities by investing just "2 Lakhs" and finally social messages for business networking from frustrated souls.(like the one below)

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Back to School?

A couple of weeks back, my mother wanted me to accompany her to her school in Vile Parle(Mumbai), so that I could click some pictures and also see the school and house my mother had lived during the 60's in Mumbai. So on a Sunday morning at 8 am, I was out on the roads and we went to Vile Parle(E) to see the school. The photo above was the school my uncle had studied, so that was the first stop. I had a glance inside the school and remembered my days in school in Chennai. Those days any building seemed big because we were tiny tots, and today thanks to too many structures, a school is sometimes just looked at as a building. Inside every school is a treasure of history, moments of innocence that has shaped us, teachers who moulded us in the wonder years of our life. The last time, I went to my school was way back in 2005 July/August. Must make a visit to Bala Vidya Mandir, when I visit Chennai next time.

My mother was way too excited when she entered the airport quarters, as she went about showing me the playground she played and once lost her slippers. It didnt matter much to me whether Chaddha uncle lived in that house or Narayan Mama was in the adjacent flight, but the least I could do was listen to my mother, as she rattled stories of her days as to who lived where and how she liked one aunty more than the other. But it was interesting, seeing the enthusiasm in her voice, as she told a story about each house that she saw, her friends in that colony and instances from the 60's

Seemingly, this was the flat my grandparents lived in

This was the school my mother went to. Though this is near Vile Parle(e), the school is on one end of the Airport quarters and is more so closer to Chakala in Andheri. I must admit that the guards at the school were a really nice bunch of folks, who said " Jao, Bindaas Dekho" when my mother requested permission for being let in, as she was an old student. It was a nice poignant moment. More than that, it was a Sunday well spent. When we were on our way back, I learnt that my grandparents moved to Chennai in 1969, and when I heard that, I just thought, if only Bryan Adams had composed the song earlier, My mother could have vouched just as the famous number goes " The Summer of 69, Those were the Best Days of My Life"
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Sports Marketing- Can We Look Beyond Cricket?

That's what my latest article explores. Read my article here


Zindagi Train Hain, Waqt ke track pe!

A few minutes back, as I boarded the train from Bandra to Lower Parel, I was listening to the audio track "Zindagi Train Hain, Waqt ke track pe " from the movie "The TRAIN" on my mobile, and with each passing station in Matunga,Mahim,Dadar and Elphinstone Road I felt as life was passing away like the Mumbai Western Line. Suddenly with the over cast clouds and wind in the air, as it swept across the western line, I asked myself, why is that central element of contentment missing in life. The anxiety increased with each passing station. It was like each station was a junction in life asking me to get down and do something, and I was mutely travelling in the train. Each station seemed to say, you may not be cushily travelling, but there's a lot that you can do to be content in life. I have never felt this lump feeling as the stations passed by and the song playing on my earphones reinforced the thought even more.

As I got down from the station amidst the industrial revolution of masses getting down and walking at neckbreak speed from the platform to catch the taxi to work, I asked myself what were the things that could make me happy, or in Management Lingo, what was Brand Kartik standing for?

1) Being somebody who just had holiday trips like that on impulse
2) Somebody who could find some amazing places on earth and be fortunate to have holidayed there.
3) Somebody who does something as an alum of school, engg, and b school
4) Somebody who got lost in an amazon jungle, and lived the life of a robinson crusoe. Tired of watching re runs of Jurassic Park and Anaconda, time to live moments like that.
5) Somebody who keep in touch and meet up regularly with the circle of close friends, irrespective of geographical distance.
6) Somebody who could just talk at length about cricket and analyse it with an intelligent bunch of folks.
7) Somebody who never had to dance according to falsity of the people in the corporate jungle.
8) Somebody who could attend music fests on impulse
9) Thinking...........................................................................


Mumbai- Ganpati Bappa-Visarjan

Ganpati in the AIR(tel)

Colourful elephants add to the element of celebrations in the street leading to the idol

Some Images of last evening. I was walking to the Lower Parel Railway station enroute the epicentre of the Lalbaugh Ganpati Visargan.


Ramayan Finally!

Ramayan meant only thing for me- Rama DEFEATING Ravana and on a similar Note India conquering Sri Lanka. Somehow It never happened in a bi lateral series over the last 3 decades. Finally Dhoni's men paved the way for a Ramayan script. What was different this time around?

I suggest you check my latest article which explore more of that. Click here to read the article


Mumbai Gearing up for ' Ganapati Bapa Morya"

I see huge pandals and cut outs all over Lower Parel, and even bigger Vinayaka idols being carried out. I guess tommorow the Siddhi Vinayak temple would be converted to a mini Tirupati, and my friend Arunachalam, plans to visit the temple at 4 am tommorow. I have no such plans, will come out and witness the procession for a while. Got a few things to set right in life, so will be attending to that.

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