Can viral advertisements make a difference in Indian telecom market

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Virality of videos brings an unprecedented amount of attention that if used in a correct manner can be beneficial to the content creator. Be it the success of the movie 3 after Kolaveri Di or the singing sensation Psy after Gangnam Style, virality of the videos has played a huge role in their success. Now it is seeping down into the Indian telecom market as well and the latest MTS Dongle advertisement is a result of the same.

MTS 3G baby
MTS 3G baby

The advertisement with the caption “Born for internet” shows a baby coming out of his mother’s womb by seeing a tutorial from the nurse’s phone and the kid goes on to click a selfie to post on social networks. The advertisement wants to showcase how technology friendly the next generation is and how fast its 3G services are. The advertisement became the centre of attraction and went on to attract 3 million YouTube views in the first week itself and total views now have crossed 7 million.

The result: MTS witnessed a 10 percent increase in the dongle sales. "The campaign has managed to break the clutter and start conversations both online and offline.

Can viral advertisements make a difference?

They surely attract a lot of attention and coupled with services that back the claim, they can surely make a big difference. A very small percentage of advertisements go viral but when they do, the creator or the sponsor stands to benefit in a big manner, just like MTS.

But there are legal issues as well that come associated with it. ASCI (Advertising Standards Council of India) which is an independent regulatory body has asked MTS to stop airing the advertisement as it considers it to be unethical and obscene for women as the woman is shown in labour. On top of it, Delhi High Court has stayed the order issued by ASCI.

As per reports MTS has has spent over 4 million dollars on it and the advertisement has won applaud globally. MTS didn’t want to showcase obscenity (and actually didn’t) and what they did was a work of creativity. Legal issues haven’t bogged down the sales so that is a good thing. But now we know something for sure which is that viral advertisements can surely sell products in the Indian telecom market provided the companies back their claims well.


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