labels: Brand Dossier, Marketing, Advertising / branding, Media
Idea Cellular's Mumbai launch branded as world's 'largest single-city launch' news
22 August 2008

Mumbai: Bringing up the dozen on the scoreboard for Idea Cellular in terms of service areas, the cellular service provider's rollout in the city is being hailed as the world's largest single city launch, ever.

The launch covers an initial network of well over a thousand cellular sites, notching up an outlay of more than Rs800 crore. Idea's Mumbai network will utilise the 1800 Mhz frequency, a pooled core switching network that has 2.75G capabilities and Edge services.

Ideas everywhere: The 'inclusive' ad campaign
Idea Cellular's out of home advertising campaign, which broke in parallel with the launch, focuses on individual's cellphone number being linked to his identity, or where he is from. 

Mumbai, with its population of over 13 million, can arguably be called a city of migrants, having grown on huge population influxes, with the first being back in the 1600s when the city was first founded as a port city, and swelling to one million by 1906. The spirit of the city has been brought forth in the campaign, as the common notion for the city as a melting pot that weaves all people into one cosmopolitan fabric.

Praveen Kumar Vadhera, country head of out-of-home Services company 141 Wall Street Bates, which is the OOH  arm of Bates 141, said the campaign capitalises on the spirit of Mumbai and its unity in diversity, by defining the Mumbaikar's identity. Using a simple rationale, the campaign seeks to strike a chord with Mumbaikars using a single premise – if you have a Mumbai number (cell number) how can you be from anywhere else?

The campaign is in stark opposition to the large decibel anti-north Indian campaign by two prominent political parties, who seek to build their political fortunes basis the ethnicity of sons of the soil. 

On the other hand, Idea's campaign is an inclusive one, which seeks to include each and every Mumbaikar into its target market by appealing to their sense of belonging to the nation's commercial capital. 

Idea's OOH campaign questions the rationale behind being a Punjabi, Malayali or Bengali, while actually living in Mumbai, and being part of the great Mumbai story. It seeks to place Mumbai above all else, and brand Idea's 'Mumbai number' as an identity for every Mumbaikar.

During the teaser phase, hoardings, cantilevers, and bus shelters pictured images of people from different cities and walks of life with tagline that read – 'Yeh Delhi ki hain, Mumbai ki nahin', or 'Yeh Hyderabad ka hai, Mumbai ka nahin', or 'Yeh Punjab Ka hai, Mumbai ka nahin', or 'Yeh Calcutta ki hai, Mumbai ki nahi', stressing the Mumbaikar's identity.

Unveiled in parallel with the launch on 20 August, the campaign shows the same people and Idea's brand ambassador Abhishek Bachchan holding Idea mobile phones with the new tagline, 'Mera number Mumbai ka, toh main Mumbai ka, What an Idea!'

The OOH campaign is also supported by an on-air campaign on Mumbai's FM radio stations, and the television commercial is scheduled to go live within the next few days. Like the images of the OOH campaign, the television commercial too has been shot exclusively in the back drops of Mumbai, capitalising on the city's unified, all-inclusive cosmopolitan fabric. Moreover, the commonality of the back drop takes the brand communication of the OOH campaign to a more interactive level.

23 August would also mark another event in Idea's Mumbai campaign, with south Mumai's landmark Air India building at Nariman Point being the venue of a special light show at 2030 hours.

Speaking at the launch of Idea Cellular in Mumbai, Kumarmangalam Birla, chairman of the Aditya Birla Group said, ''Mumbai is the commercial capital of India and merits world class mobile services. From today, Idea will set the mobile telephony standards in Mumbai. This is a landmark day for Idea. The Mumbai launch bolsters our position as a leading telecom player in India. We have aggressive growth plans for Idea.''

Host of services
Idea's Mumbai customers can look forward to a suite of services such as data services, high speed Internet, dialer tones in 19 languages at the press of a button, the Idea Music station that draws from an expansive library of over one lakh songs in 21 languages, and the Idea portal for a range of wall papers, games, animations and mobisodes.

Idea also has plans for a voice portal with subscription packs of the latest stock prices, ticketing services, horoscope, etc.

Sanjeev Aga, managing director of Idea Cellular Ltd says that Idea ''will set the bar, and raise the bar for Mumbai.'' Echoing the same note, Sashi Shankar, chief operating officer of  Idea Cellular, Mumbai said, ''To Mumbaiites, it is my privilege and pledge to present a service that combines a legacy of trust with a bold promise for the future. Idea is committed to provide its customers in Mumbai, a world-class network and service. At 'My Idea' centres, the customers will feel at home with a variety of products and services to suit their individual needs.''

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Idea Cellular's Mumbai launch branded as world's 'largest single-city launch'