Komal Mehra, USHA's Events Head Reveals Strategy for Sponsorship of IPL and Other Platforms
by Rakhi Jerly Marketing | April 4, 2016 | Interview
Usha International IPL Mumbai Indians
Believing in the brand ethos ‘Play’, Usha has always been supportive of numerous sporting initiatives in the country and is committed to promote a fun, active, and healthy lifestyle. The leading household consumer durable company will be the official partners for the Mumbai Indians team for the 9th season of the Indian Premier League. This 3rd consecutive year of association with the IPL franchise, comes at a time when USHA is looking to expand their presence in Western India.
Read: Usha Back As Official Partners To Mumbai Indians @ IPL For The 3rd Time In A Row
Komal Mehra, Events Head at USHA International spoke to EVENTFAQS about the continued success in partnering with Mumbai Indians and the brand’s experiential marketing journey focussed on promoting active lifestyle, fun and healthy living.
Take us through Usha's experiential marketing journey.
For the last 25 years, USHA has been working relentlessly towards helping people improve their quality of life across all demographics through sports and skill development activities. We support a wide variety of sporting initiatives and encourage youngsters with interest in sports including Marathon, Golf, Ultimate Flying Disc, Cricket for deaf, IPL, and football.
At USHA, our focus is to promote active lifestyle, fun and healthy living; therefore, all our initiatives strategically combine product experiential initiatives seamlessly. For instance, our most popular initiatives include campaign launches during IPL that promoted fans through ‘Air Play Challenge’ and our kitchen appliances through ‘Work feels like Play’. Also, Meet & Greet events are organized for the winners of our campaigns, giving them a chance to meet their favorite cricket stars.
USHA strongly believes in its brand ethos ‘Play’ and work towards developing a sporting ecosystem in the country. Hence, the brand has been actively involved in taking its initiatives to the grass root level in India and provide opportunities and encouragement to talented sports players across the country. Case in point, the new sport that USHA International has been associated with since 2012 is popularly known as ‘Ultimate Flying disc’. USHA has conducted several Ultimate flying disc clinics nationally, where trained professionals spread awareness about the game among school children, college, universities, in slums and also national championships. In addition to the metro cities, we are now expanding its outreach to rural India.
For the last few years, the company has been supporting cricket through IPL association and also supported the All India Cricket Association for the Deaf (AICAD) for the inaugural edition of the USHA Deaf IPL.
How has the partnership grown over the consecutive 3 year association with Mumbai Indians?
USHA is a mass brand, our long-term commitment for 3rd consecutive year with the champions of year 2015 was a strategic brand initiative towards connecting with people across all age groups, genders and income groups.
Facts empirically state that Mumbai Indians is the leading team among all other teams which is widely supported and followed in India. The team and its talented players enjoys huge fan following, which has only grown over the period. We have successfully engaged our consumers and trade partners highlighting our product portfolio and its key differentiation, and would continue doing the same this year also.
Further, we were also working towards expanding our brand presence in Western India and this has proved itself as an apt platform to progress in this direction, leading to strengthening our hold in the market.
What are activities being executed in association with Mumbai Indian, during this IPL season?
It’s too early to share final details for this year’s association. However two key engagement campaigns that are focused on consumer, trade partners and employees engagement will be rolled out by USHA.
For consumers, we are launching a digital campaign #MIActive (Mumbai Indians Active) that will trigger conversations around active lifestyle and further help us instill the culture of being active and healthy among masses. Whereas our campaign for trade partners’ and employees will be a performance based engagement initiative that is focused to improve their productivity. The achievers in the groups will be given an opportunity to meet the MI players in a special Meet and Greet session, resulting in motivation for better deliveries and brand connect.
Additionally, our brand initiatives to include product launches will be unveiled soon. Further, to support mass visibility for the brand across categories, we have planned for outdoors and TVCs roll out too. Details will be shared closer to the campaign launch.
Apart from the IPL, what are the areas of interest for Usha, within sports as well as other segments?
With the focus on grass root level engagement with talent, we are successfully connecting with school students, college youth and other professionals across demographics. Catching talent at a young age and spreading enthusiasm for Ultimate Flying Disc at an early age, we successfully connected with Universities in Chennai and are exploring the same in other cities as well. To benefit this sport, we are regularly organizing national championships in the country where teams from different cities and clubs participate to win the title.
USHA has been an unwavering supporter of golf for the last 25 years. We are associated with the Ladies Golf and junior Golf tournament, which takes place every year.
Association with Cricket for Deaf and Caddies Welfare Trust Tournament (Golf) are some of our initiatives to support the unprivileged and differently abled people of the society for their skill development as well as economically empowering them.
Apart from sports, we also supported Indian Science Fair to connect with the school students and
enlightened them about science behind home appliances, sewing machines and fans among other
What are the focus points of the brand when it comes to branding/marketing events?
India is witnessing increasing consciousness on well-being and fitness. Hence, the key for the association is brand connect with all the initiatives that supports active lifestyle, fun and healthy living. All our initiatives weave our brand and product offerings that encourage healthy living. For instance, our launches include InfinitiCook 360R, On the go blenders, air coolers with ionizers, My Fab Barbie sewing machine to name a few and all of these promote staying physically and mentally fit and active. Additionally, our continued efforts are to strategically engage our target audience at various platforms for building brand connects.
Brand Launches, Activations, Integrated Campaigns, Brand Experiences.. Click here for the full list of categories in Experiential Marketing at WOW Awards Asia 2016.
USHA International's Events Head speaks about their 3rd consecutive IPL association with Mumbai Indians and the brand's experiential marketing journey.