Piggybacking on Comics

Friday, March 05, 2010 Posted by Raghav

written by Janani Kandaswamy

Imagine Asterix deriving his strength from Maggi soup in-stead of druid‘s potion, or Calvin playing with a Lego toy instead of Hobbes. Sounds preposterous? Maybe not. With a lot of fore thinking and planning, marketers are targeting a huge segment of customers by capitalizing on the unique place that comics hold among various age groups.

Using comic characters to reach across to children allows the advertisements to become a part of their world. Bubba the cat, for instance is the mascot for Cadbury India‘s bubblegum brand Bubbaloo. Chandamama also figures in Parle‘s strategy of promoting the multi-coloured confectionery Poppins.

What is so attractive about comics as a marketing media for children?

Comics are an integral part of childhood. The intensity of children‘s engagement with comics is very high.

Comics brands such as Tinkle, Amar Chitra Katha and Double Digest are contemplating the idea of tying up with automobile and consumer durable brands. ACK Media, the owner of these comics has already churned out comics featuring LIC India, Kirloskar Brothers Ltd and the National Stock Exchange. An-other brand called Virgin comics is keen to extend its services to a lifestyle brand and a consumer products company. In the coming years there is bound to be more marketing oriented companies following the comics route of attracting young consumers.

On the other end, adults are also being targeted by advertisers. The best example would be Google who marketed their internet browser chrome through an online comic book created by Scott McCloud. The book explained the inner workings of chrome and was de-signed as a printed comic for journalists and bloggers. With good presentation, thought, useful information and easy language it created the awareness which led to a firm entrenchment of Chrome in the minds of its potential users.

With the arrival of comics as a reliable means to garner attention for a product, the marketers have to refine the groundwork they do before zeroing in on a particular medium (web/print etc). There is no single comic for everyone. So creators need to initially identify the type of people who are likely to enjoy it. Once the general audience is identified, they have to deter-mine the influencers in that group and what social media they tend to gather around.

Keeping in mind the success of comics as a marketing medium, we might just get to see our favourite comic characters assuming the roles of brand ambassadors. Now wouldn‘t that be refreshing!!!


Post a Comment