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The rise of drop-in audio apps: What do the brands contain? Agency heads are exploring

Representatives of Havas Media, DDB Mudra Group, Gozoop and Dentsu Webchutney weighs in to help explore the possibilities of drop-in audio apps located in the store for brands.

In the last year, a lot has changed for content production. Fighting fatigue, making internet connections and telecommuting, brands, agencies and creators have been driving forward and producing content on a regular basis. Due to these reasons, in addition to general trends, the consumption of live audio has increased significantly, giving rise to more live drop-in audio apps. It’s a step up to live video content, which had emerged as a major point of contact last year when lockdown first began. Whatever may await in the future, one can easily imagine brands as well as consumers to wonder how they can benefit from participating in live audio conversations on these apps.

It is important for brands to remember that drop-in audio apps are not just another point of contact in their marketing communications. They will have to spend on modifying and / or shaping their piece of communication to suit the formats that work on these platforms. Sound-focused apps have an inherent ability to break language barriers — something brands can look at exploiting. It can help them cut across demographics as well as make their communication inclusive.

Rohan Chincholi

The loneliness of the pandemic has helped increase the popularity of drop-in audio app people can participate in conversations they are interested in, filling certain gaps they experience in their current lives. “These platforms look like podcasts that you can join in. A user can go in, follow all affiliation groups, listen quietly or jump into a conversation. These platforms try to copy a good group discussion – pretty much! “Rohan Chincholi, Head – Digital Services, India,” says Havas Media.

Further, he talks about the importance of such apps to harness the power of word of mouth. “The platform can facilitate a discussion about an upcoming new product launch, category discussion, get product feedback on a new launch by selecting closed venues, testing audio pieces for a new ad campaign, interviews and anything contextually relevant to the brand.”

How can brands get the most out of it?

An ideal way to get started on such platforms is to work with an influencer and a fire moderator to get together in a meaningful conversation. The conversation at selected intervals is open for participants to participate in and share their views. This helps to some extent to steer the direction of the narrative. Planning around relevant topics is crucial. Eventually there will be challenges as these solutions go mainstream and can also result in misinformation passed on through groups.

What do the labels contain?

BFSI can run training series on how to value companies in the sector; Ecommerce-led audio accessory brands could talk about how a new series of total noise reduction (TNC) can improve productivity, and a consumer-oriented brand can talk about innovation in the product line and its impact on the environment.

What is cooking at Havas Media?

At Havas, we follow the content framework for significant brands that break online content across 6 buckets – Entertainment, teach, help, reward, inspire and inform. For each category, we create a network between the type of content the industry associates with and the type of content the user expects brands to deliver. This helps to map category to the relevance of the conversation.

Social networks are too often used as a statement. We try to embrace the richness of its forms and opportunities to help brands be diverse and competitive. Our team regularly reviews trends, platforms and changes in the digital marketing ecosystem.

We review all platforms based on – Connection (who the platform reaches), context (the essence of the platform) and content (the uniqueness of the format). For a platform like ClubHouse: Connection (millennials), Context (engaged conversation via audio) and content (quality and freshness). As they say – it filled the gap that the radio once made.

In addition, our team has an in-depth training in understanding significant brands and the associated 6 content bars, which helps us to map the most crucial content bars for the category and plan implementation around the same.

Clarity and purpose

Vishal Mehra

What role do clients and agencies play in sound platforms for the brand? The clarity of thought is super important, says Vishal Mehra, Digital Head – North, DDB Mudra Group. He lists key questions: “Is it a connection with the customers and discussing with them a specific topic? Does it build brand affinity and make customers feel like they are part of a community? Are they simply product placements that are more personal and customized in nature? Or is it to evangelize customers about the product and elicit feedback? ”

He further dwells on the roots of the popularity of these apps, saying: “During the pandemic, due to longer lockdowns throughout our country, brands have been trying to find new ways to reach consumers. We have also seen Indian apps like Leher and Bakstage get on the social audio band along with their more popular global rivals. ”

How can brands get the most out of it?

Indian brands want to be seen in trend and in sync with their consumer behavior and follow them to these new platforms to get social currency – and for global brands it would be more about how they will be seen cultivating personal relationships with Gen Z and millennial consumers , giving them a behind-the-scenes look at their global brand.

What do the labels contain?

Brands that use influencers, prefer word of mouth marketing as well as have the disadvantage of being in media dark categories, may well use audio apps. I see alcoholic beverages, fashion and beauty brands and upcoming brands that specifically adopt a D2C route – gain traction and attention. One of the brands in our portfolio also plans to experiment with it for internal communication.

What is cooking at DDB Mudra Group?

It is true that these social audio platforms have brought increased interest in the sound space, but in terms of upskilling and knowledge for our people, it started in late 2019 when podcasting started to get serious interest in the country and therefore we started exploring it for our brands. Besides that, one of our customers, Spotify, is investing heavily in podcasts, and it has been a huge period of learning and exciting work around the room.

Value and points of passion

Amyn Ghadiali

The question remains why a person should spend and time and energy on participating in conversations started by a brand. This is something brands need to investigate. What do they really offer their followers and potential community? “In order for a person to be patient, listen to the conversation and not disconnect, the content must either be displayed or add insane value. Why else would anyone follow you? The question we all have in our minds is – What does it have in me? “Amyn Ghadiali, VP – Business & Strategy at Gozoop tells us.

The next step for brands would be to figure out what aspects they want to cash in on when it comes to drop-in audio apps. They can assess their strengths and look for content options where they can turn engaging conversations around their products and the categories they want to build. Brands will have to stay under the umbrella of relevance and build compelling narratives that people want to be a part of.

How can brands get the most out of it?

I think the users on these platforms are globally vulnerable in general and have a more holistic worldview, otherwise they would not be able to understand most of the complex conversations. As far as India is concerned, I would feel that appeal much more to the audience would be effective storytelling interspersed with an emotionally driven narrative.

What do the labels contain?

Brands that have strong passion points or those that have a lot of ‘help’ content to deliver can really take advantage of the platform well. Effective storytelling packed with an emotionally driven narrative would appeal to the audience.

What does Gozoop cook?

Currently, we have measured the effectiveness and retention of these platforms before recommending them as a platform to leverage for our partners. However, our teammates are very active and understand the difficulty of it. As for the work from home, I think it can in itself be a topic to explore at the clubhouse.

Feedback Loop

Benedict Gershom

Benedict Gershom, Copy Supervisor, Dentsu Webchutney feels an important way for brands to build their presence on such platforms discourse and dissemination of information in a way that the user understands. Another important way is to use it as an instant feedback loop – you have a new product out there or a service and you want to know how people use it – get instant feedback, go back to your teams, repeat, republish it . The creation of this tight feedback loop helps build better brands without wasting time, ”he adds.

Reflecting on the difference in the ways brands in India and those globally can potentially use these platforms to communicate with their consumers, he says, “Brands have also used social sound to push culture forward. Sometimes moving culture can cost a price where you have to be vocal on more controversial topics like BLM. A few global brands like Kool-Aid, Ben & Jerry’s have made it beautiful and have used these platforms to talk about such important topics. In India it is different – while social sound has democratized and given us an individual voice, brands must be vigilant in the face of political backlash, be canceled, etc. “

How can brands get the most out of it?

The best way is to join one of these rooms or spaces – either lurking around, being a fly in the ointment or engaging in a conversation. Observe people in space, their emotions, responses. For a marketer, it is no longer a room – you are looking at a potential customer or a thriving community. It is imperative that we pay attention to these conversations. Once you have learned about the platform, observed its audience, make a move and experiment. Many brands out there are guessing this part and want it to be perfect. My suggestion? Be fearless and pilot it – but in a hassle-free way. For example: Paytm did a Twitter Spaces session around Stocks, Trading, Stocks, Investing, etc. Bang on!

What do the labels contain?

If your brand has a community of people messing around with you, you need to over-index these platforms. Use them to promote your brand – turn them into brand lawyers. Another example is these cryptocurrencies like WaxirX and CoinDCX – they have a large community that follows them. A lot of financial brands have also followed suit.

What to cook for Do you like Webchutney?

After a few months of patient waiting, I finally got my clubhouse invitation, I sent a few to my teammates, and we quickly jumped into a room to see what the hype was. We explored the platform, played with the features. One big hurdle: both of these platforms were available on certain mobile platforms (iOS or Android), so that was a hurdle, but from now on it is open to everyone. I personally think WFH played a small role in getting people to adopt this new platform. It was also packaged as a sound medium that could be used when you walked, trained – you could fall in, drop out – no active participation was required, making it a hit.

If you’ve wondering how to get started, here’s a guide on how to leverage Live Audio for marketing.


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