Woe is the online advertising- Indiaby John Benjamin
A lot has been said and being said and done about the online marketing sector in India. While there is visible excitement about this, parallely a lot of agencies have also mushroomed trying to get the market share or the first mover advantage.
In my view, I don't see much going on, except for well seeing a couple of start ups mushrooming all over the country boasting the same very clients. True, India is being seen on a global scale as it is catching up with the bigger players in the field namely the US & UK. However, dig around a few sites and all one gets to see are the same ads with more or less the same message, not to forget the big player in the market, Google with it's AdWords/AdSense model.
I believe, online advertising doesn't just start and end with getting an eye catching creatives and a few clicks here and there. Let's not forget, just a few years ago, India was one of the countries flagged for click fraud. And the very fact that the markets are still growing in terms of the internet penetration. What am I saying? You have the same agencies doing the same things for the same clients and targeting the same audience.
Maybe i'm wrong in saying this but what I see here is a rush of competitors trying to get their share of the moolah. True that the biggies such as Yahoo, Google, MSN have showed interest and continue to show interest in the local markets and from their point of view, the more connections they have with the so called agenices and local ad networks, the more their chance of better reach and revenues. But is justice being done?
The so called over hyped mobile marketing has hit the town. But how often do audience really react to it? The only ads seen all over are perhaps from the biggies who have the financial strength to test out these various avenues. I believe the market just doesn't revolve around an ICICI or a Monster or Shaadi.com for that matter.
The more lucrative market lies in the SME sector, where business owners still have no clue on how to go about this. With agencies all across the companies setting shop and eyeing for the bigger piece of the slice, what is quite often not taken into consideration is the prospective customer and the much larger share of the market which quite isn't justified.
India is often refered to the hub of information technology, adding two plus two, I fail to wonder why this so called hyped up market has not yet delivered a competitor to the likes of Performics or even a CJ.com? It's a totally different playing field when it comes to ground reality. The so called interactive agencies run behind the same set of clients. Why look locally when the playing field is global?
In a way I could relate this whole rush to the time when SEO was a big hit in India (and it still happens to be the piece de resistance for many an online agencies) You have had all these hitherto unknown companies take shape in a hurry to get as much business as possible resulting in leaving a bad taste in their client's mouth.
What we need in my view is a company that focuses not on the same old tried and tested paths, but do something more revolutionary in terms of connecting the adverts with the customers. It has been reported that innovative, humourous creatives see better conversions compared to the usual junk. What are we waiting for? Perhaps some more time before it becomes an accepted norm, cos face it, most start ups sure think twice before treading new grounds.
I am of the opinion that Internet Marketing is not just about creatives, ad networks, clicks and SEO. There's a lot more to this just waiting to be discovered. Maybe we will keep waiting while the biggies slowly move into the market and we have the same old cycle repeating itself all over again.
About the Author
John Benjamin has 4+ years of online marketing experience having handled the various verticals in the business.
Also writes on his blog, http://www.johnbenjamin.net/blog
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