The 5th P of Electoral Marketing

Superstar Rajinikanth addresses after casting his vote during the South Indian Artists Association’s SIAA Election in

Let me admit this, this post has been long overdue, and procrastination has had an undue effect on this and I thought what better topic than the voter as a consumer. This is the season of election where I am living and my neighbouring state of Kerala.

My professional assignments have taken me to see how the political parties see these voters as consumers and fool them into buying their promise and come up trumps.

So I went back to see how these have evolved in the last few years and how one last election has changed the landscape to a different plane of activity as far as election is concerned.

How do you actually define your consumer. Work backwards, that might be the philosophy.

A party looks at the voter as a consumer. And the best part is the market or the target that it is all about. The product here is a 5-year government that is being sold to a very heterogeneous set of population.

The parties used to profile the market and differentiate in their own way not until the matrix of social studies came into play.

The matrix of 4Ps in play in elections is quite evident from the way they start announcing the candidates. Price, Place, Packaging and Promotion.

First P : Price
The Price here refers to the amount the candidate is willing to pay for the Party quite easily becomes the preference which they think can make up for the rest of the next three Ps. Quite obviously, this took a different dimension in Tirumangalam in Tamilnadu where each voter was given a price say ranging between 1000 – 2000 rupees to cast his vote in favour of a party. This was significant because it was also a bye election. This later came to be known as Tirumangalam Formula and was widely used by the opposition and won elections handsomely.
So what’s a little few crores when you can earn as much and more when you get to power in the next five years.

Second P : Place
The next P is the Place, its actually a suggestion by the Electin commission that makes it a reserved category seat in some cases. But otherwise the candidate needs to be a local. The national Parties are very strict about this sometimes, they believe the son of the soil card can be played to the advantage. So clearly in Kerala when Sreeshant was announced a candidate the opposition which no real issues picked on him as an outsider.

The Place factor also can be historical, say the DMK Stalwart contests from his hometown a bit of psychology and emotional appeal as if the constituency is going to be changed to a capital anytime soon. Mind you need to fool all the people only for that few days when the electoral code is in force.

Third P : Packaging
Let’s move to Packaging, what’s a product without the real deal – packaging, the inherent psyche of the consumer is that however good the product may be it is enhanced to the next level with some packaging and we see how important it is when it comes to FMCGs, I would rank the votes under the same category except that its once in five years.
The Packaging these days have now come to be done by professionals who can crunch data for you and give you a presentation that will floor you down and make it look like a book titled how to win elections by engineering a social divide across caste, community and religion. Again the closest the parties come to is the packaging of the castes, communal and religious overtones in subtle and sublime way that people think its ok for us to be hoodwinked and a sense of righteousness fills them when they are told that they belong to a clan of warriors or fighters or sometimes they will be known for their hard-line stance on caste or community lines.

Fourth P : Promotion
Now let’s talk about promotion. Those were days when you can actually do paid advertising but then today Election Commission thinks it’s got the rights to enforce at least some of the important statues and try to get an un influenced by media election. Of course you can discount the party owned and other media outlets, especially with reference to Tamil Nadu where I belong, I still wonder how Election Commission will be able to ideally have them accounted as a cost.

The last Parliament election made Social Media the darling of every party and the way Narendra Modi used it apart from his whirlwind tours made it an important instrument in his victory.

So we have digital making a great impact and there are different patterns appearing even Meme’s making it to the forefront. Whatsapp, Facebook, twitter are all used extensively to create touch points for communication. Ofcourse there are apps too which are making it happens. The digital with its targeting is making it a wonderful instrument. Even SMSes are being used across.

Fifth P : No guesses Its Prashanth Kishore
Now the post 2014 has given birth to a new P. It’s called Prashanth Kishore and that P has been able to make waves after Mission 2014 Its been easy till now with the Bihar elections in his bag The 5th P in election marketing is on a roll. Time will decide how it will fare in the near future.

The winner needs to get these 4Ps together in appropriate measure according to the place he is working on the ground. Not to forget the 5th P.

Urban has a social media edge meanwhile rural has the other side of offline marketing which also includes bribing with liquor, biriyani and money.

Now you might be asking me what will the consumer here aka the voter get. He gets to be laughed at for another 5 years. :P

Now in case you are any of the state are in election mode and reading hope you did your sacred duty of voting!

Senthilkumar

PS: Incase you are asking me about the Picture its about an election but yeah nothing to do with the article, as much as citizens plight for the next five years

The Joy of Building with TATA TISCON

tiscon-profile

‘So Dad what was here before you built this house?’ Asked the Kid, an innocent question

‘It was a parched land son.’ the father answered.

‘From a land to this beautiful house, how did you build it?’ the kid again asked.

‘That is a joy of building my son especially the home for your beloved ones!’ the father replied.

Like in the anecdote above, a home is a dream come true and there is a certain emotion attached to building homes. Not for the same reason that they call it home otherwise every building would remain a house.
There is an inherent dream that is passed by in families or Indian families to say. Owning a house is a dream that everyone has and it’s a basic trait, a country where millions live and look to make their own roof, the ones who accomplished this enviable task would be relishing the joy of building that dream, however small that may be its his Taj or Antila for sure.

Now looking back, there are times when we would have known who are behind those building that we raise to build those nest for ourselves. Apart from the masons and the workers we have pretty much the cement and the bricks. On the concrete it’s the iron bars that hold the dream in literal sense.

Quite often the director in a movie is the man who holds the script together and extracts the performance but he remains in the background obvious to the star attraction the lead gets. Something like that is the role of the iron bar and there have been brands and brands but TATA the name which speaks trust and confidence has been in the business since long and has been the strength of some of the iconic structures that have been built in India.

delhi-metro lotus stock

On a personal level, the tryst with TATA happened when I was a part of Narain Karthikeyan’s F1 team in India in 2005. It was TATA which catapulted him to the F1 world with its sponsorship for the year. The year that followed and that preceded has taught me the value of trustworthiness, integrity and responsibility.

Each iron rod come with all these for TATA knows that you are not building a house, it’s a dream that is being built. And there in all these they know the joy of building.

TATA Tiscon is the result of some of the best technology being put to use. The technology extends to manufacturing Super Ductile (SD) rebars that are specially designed for construction in seismic prone zones. TATA TISCON 500 grade is the one in case you are building heavy-duty structures.  They provide superior strength even while reducing the quantum of steel required.

You have the Fe 500 D grade of steel, which ensures minimum sulphur and phosphorous content leading to fewer harmful impurities in the steel. TATA TISCON corrosion resistance steel (CRS) is made to a unique chemistry – which helps in resisting corrosion and is the used best in coastal areas, or where groundwater is brackish and areas where toxic gas emissions seriously impact the environment. As much as the challenges are given there is a solution that TATA Tiscon delivers.

We all know the joy of building and seeing the house completed is an emotion probably unparalleled… I can relate to it with house that was being built when I was young, I had the privilege of playing in the sand and spraying water to every little wall that was raised, the concrete and the final whitewash though it was in stages and to the place that we call home.

Today, we have a choice to make it with something that is known for its trust worthiness and make it an integral part of the building or rather the building blocks for the home.

An yeah the house has been built on a vacant space of land and home is imagination taken shape to include everyone and that’s all the more better when wireframed by ofcourse TATA Tiscon.

“This post is a part of the #BuildingBlogsOfJoy activity of TATA TISCON in association with BlogAdda.com

Beauty is a wound by Eka Kurniawan #bookreview

beauty-is-a-wound-400x400-imaegfghsek9hcpc

BOOK DETAILS
Publisher Speaking Tiger
ISBN-10 9385755684
Edition 1
Number of Pages 480 Pages
Publication Year 2016
Language English
ISBN-13 9789385755682
Binding Paperback

Beauty is a wound is a fantastic novel which revolves around a character who we would not even take it our stride for her profession. But the way the author has woven a satire of life and history of nation as much as you can think about it. There is an eerie sense of humour that best describes the way the characters are presented by the author.

There is a way to describe things of the nation if you think about a narration of the history from the characters. The story is also about how you can mix the history and fiction in a classic way to get you the best of storytelling.

There is a rawness in the language and that translates to making it more authentic in a way and the author turns no stones to get you smell the land and get you close to the environment.

There is a momentum with the characters and also the story and it has all the ingredients to make you laugh within. Sometimes there are big sarcastic statements blurted out as if nothing has happened. The weight of the argument is to be seen within the context, there are social messages some modern take on the long customs and then radicalism presented with a simplicity that exudes charm.

I am also in awe of the translator who I am sure has held the story in its entirety and we can see the way the words being explicitly used or abused (you can choose them). A book of this calibre is enhanced when it reaches out to the world population and the stories gets told in multiple languages.

This is the second time in recent days getting to read a translated work with a charm that you can easily identify with the original language and how impactful it would be.

I could see a Salman Rushidique narrative with the history as a backdrop and the characters being woven around the events that shaped the country. Quite possible a history – story best woven with a dose of fiction added to it.

I am sure you will be left with the stories of Dewi Ayu for quite a while after you keep the book down.

Go here to buy the book: http://www.flipkart.com/beauty-wound-english/p/itmegfg5xwburhwy?pid=9789385755682

This is a part of Flipkart Sponsored Book Review Program.

Senthilkumar

EVC announces $50m fund for Indian startups, plans to invest in IoT, ad-tech and e-commerce

Entrepreneurship & Venture Capital (EVC), a global venture capital firm has announced to invest a fund of $50 million in India. The organisation aims to build and support technology ventures in sectors such as the Internet of things (IoT), mobile space, ad-tech, e-commerce, gaming, wearables and education.

Entreprenuership

The venture capital fund also operates EVC Accelerators in the United States and India where it provides capital and mentorship to help entrepreneurs turn ideas into unicorns.

EVC is likely to invest between $100,000 to $5,000,000 from its fund EVC II in exchange for equity in growth-stage companies that fit its investment criteria.

Anjili Jain, Managing Partner, EVC said,

Today, India has emerged as one of the most assuring entrepreneurial landscapes. We have launched the fund looking at the opportunities that Indian ecosystem has to offer. We also aim to bridge the existing gap in the ecosystem by supporting new businesses that can put India on the global entrepreneurial map.

The VC firm says that it sees IoT, ad-tech, e-commerce, gaming and education are the main sectors where the business growth lie.

According to a report by IDC, the global IoT market is expected to grow to $1.7 trillion by 2020. Devices, connectivity, and IT services are expected to account for two-thirds of the IoT market by 2020. Google has also shown keen interest in this space. In 2014, the search engine acquired smart thermostat maker Nest Labs for $3.2 billion.

Gaming is another potential industry which is waiting to take a giant leap. According to a report, the gaming industry earned a total of $10.5 billion in revenue in 2009. In 2014, that figure quadrupled– the gaming industry had raked in over $46 billion.

The VC firm says that e-commerce is one of the sectors which holds the largest business potential; and it’s impossible to avoid this sector. Besides, various studies have also predicted the potential growth in the e-commerce sector. Recently, as per industry body Assocham, the e-commerce industry in the country is likely to be worth $38 billion by 2016, a 67 per cent jump over the USD 23 billion revenues for 2015.

Early investment

During February this year, EVC supported Telecom Centres of Excellence (TCOE) with $ 4 million for its Innovation in Mobile App Development Ecosystem (I-MADE) program.

Innovation in Mobile App Development Ecosystem (I-MADE) framework is a 5 year program in which one hundred (100) institutes will be selected to be a part in Phase I of the program. Phase II will include up to 3000 institutions. The goal of the program is to help Indian entrepreneurs build 1 million mobile app start-ups which can eventually become Indian unicorns.

This post is cross posted from YourStory.com / with lead from EVC.

Ramayana The Game of Life – Stolen Hope by Shubha Vilas #bookreview

cover page with back page_stolen hope

 

Publisher Jaico Books
ISBN-10 8184958242
Edition 1
Publication Year 2016
Language English
ISBN-13 9788184958249
Binding Paperback

This is indeed a great pleasure personally for me to be reviewing the book. As usual the book is replete with lot of insights in ways of stories from all the versions and make for a great read.

The best part is we get to see a lot of folk tales also very well embedded and weaved in to the story and the rhythm of the story goes one step notch more with those inclusions.

On the other side its reflection of our way of getting our life organised in a way that is harmonic with ourselves, the family , the society and more so the nature around us.

This is the third in the series of Ramayana – Game of Life by Shubha Vilas, a retelling of the epic with life lessons that it gives in every page that you read through. Continuing his work of getting the meaning out of the words to get them close to reality, the author gives an insight into how the epics actually gives a taste of the real life.

The reading of this Series had evoked a great interest into the original works of Ramayana – Valmiki Ramayan, Tulsi Ramayana, the tamil original Kamba Ramayana etc. The gathering of stories and the life lessons that it offers to us in real time is what Shubha Vilas brings to the table in a easy to underst

and and appreciate format with references in case you want to look up.

In fact on a personal level I have been lucky to be reviewing these books and I am sure this is a part of the design if I may call it that. This is a must read and I am sure this will help us understand life and its mystical nature and also make us more proactive individual than a reactive individual that we are.

Stories can be just stories just that, but here the author elevates the story to a life transformation mode for those who seek it, and Ramayana and the story of Lord Ram is in full glow and the way his relationship to Lakshmana, Sita and his brothers are all so beautifully  engraved in words for us to enjoy.

The world out there is a bit of deception the maya at work. The way we look at it and how we react makes our life success or failure. Life is about relationships, those relationships that are sometimes ephemeral to the core and yet we need to preserve the aura and work to keep it live.

Even in business relationship we tend to have the loyalties and ethics close to the heart and work it accordingly. It is also a test of managing our conflicts within and come to solutions.

Inner Peace is guaranteed for sure. Pick this up and unravel the Ramayana in a new way, the easy to digest way and also help yourself with some tips to implement the learnings on the go.

Thanks to the author for sending me a nice autographed copy with a message. Will cherish them Shubha ji.

Go here to order this book : Flipkart | Amazon

Senthilkumar

Omega launches the world’s first master chronometer and only tested Anti-magnetic watch – the Globemaster

Los Angeles, March 9, 2015: Swiss luxury watchmaker, Omega, has launched the world’s first master chronometer, the Globemaster. The revolutionary watch is the only tested anti-magnetic innovation which has emerged from the depth of 8 rigorous tests over a period of 10 days. Mechanical watches without anti-magnetic innovation can suffer long-term effects in their accuracy when exposed to magnetic fields. The Globemaster has combated a magnetic force of 15,000 Gauss to pass tests by METAS, the Swiss Federal Institute of Meteorology, and has maintained the optimum accuracy. With this watch, Omega has reached new standards of precision and now have a double certification for all their master chronomenter watches i.e. COSC and METAS.

deviation of daily precision after exposure to 15000 gauss magnetic filed

 

To ensure optimum accuracy, the Globemaster has successfully withstood a magnetic force of 15,000 Gauss

To simulate real-life conditions, the Globemaster is examined in 6 different wearing positions and contrasting power reserves. The watch spends 30 seconds in each position with the audio of average precision being recorded. The power reserve is then reduced by two thirds to guarantee precision between 100% and 33% of power reserve. It has been also climate tested at 22 and 33 degrees Celsius both on and off the wrist. With the most advanced mechanical movements, the watch has been subjected to more pressure up the point of its stated water resistance.

Unveiled by Oscar winning actor and Omega’s brand ambassador, Eddie Redmayne, the watch has set new benchmarks of excellence by crossing COSC’s standards. Photos of the watch were taken every 24 hours to check for accuracy against UTC time.

In Other Words by Jhumpa Lahiri #bookreview

In_other_words

 

BOOK DETAILS
Publisher Penguin Books Ltd
ISBN-10 0670088897
Imprint Hamish Hamilton
Number of Pages 224 Pages
Publication Year 2016
Language English
ISBN-13 9780670088898
Binding Hardcover

A translation by Ann Goldstein of the original Italian work by Jhumpa Lahiri.

One of the most personal relationship books I have ever come across, simply the best since it outlines the way the relationship is taken forward, quite a few times it looks as if this is the way love works, may be courtship too.

It’s the growing of the bonds between the seeker and the one which is sought perhaps, here its the language which is being learnt by the author, the language is Italian!

It is quite a revelation at a very personal level for the author the way Italian language grasps her attention and how she wants to live the language like no other. It becomes all the more interesting that Italian has never been a part of her upbringing in a way as to experience this kind of approach to language.

Over the years she feels an intimate connection as if this was the call the soul has been waiting for. The way she takes it up learning and the travails and travels in literary world is an nice journey that she takes the readers with.

And when you know this is a translated masterpiece, it makes it all the more alluring and when you read the explanation I think she has put the right perspective. And when we complete the book we know what she meant and she meant every word of it. Probably that is the relationship that she has been nurturing with the language.

There is an air of romance in the way the language is treated as a person, trying to know him or her, the fulfilment of having achieved the goal of possessing the other person or seeing yourself in the other.

Kudos to the translator, we can feel that the justice has been done the way the book progresses in short but sure steps, sometimes looking back to stories that will augment the theory that she holds forth, and sometimes stop to listen to the inner rumblings and sometimes to the practical difficulty in getting to know the perfect grammar and the translator has the pulse and does an excellent job of giving us the feel.

Its a nice book and well its a non fiction and that makes it a must read title. If you are interested in literature this will surely give you an idea of how language can be looked at as an extension of you.

Pick it up in case you see it at the book store or click here.

This was a part of Flipkart Book Review Program! Thanks Flipkart for the book.

Senthilkumar R

The New Wave of Entrepreneurship

There is a multi-trillion dollar economy opening up to technology faster than ever. It has been driven by trends that have changed the nature of how entrepreneurs will be characterized going forward; specifically, industry executives will be the next wave of in-demand startup CEOs.

In April of 2007, Apple changed everything with the launch of the iPhone. It is hard to imagine that it has only been 8 years since the release of the first truly pervasive smartphone, but there is no denying its impact has been world-changing. Beyond the creation of a new dimension of industry-driven, by location-based, services (and with it, a myriad of billion dollar companies), an equally significant phenomenon emerged. By creating technology that was intuitive to the consumer masses, every person around the world started to embrace technology as more than just a work tool. Lawyers, doctors, car mechanics and people from every sector of the economy not only had a tool for productivity, but a piece of technology in their pocket they embraced as an intimate part of their lives.

Furthermore, these new consumers could now point to a standard for usable technology. Cumbersome, enterprise legal software that won’t allow a lawyer to search cases from outside the office is no longer acceptable. For those outside of the Silicon Valley silo, conversations can be heard from construction workers sitting on a lunch break saying “Wouldn’t it be nice if there was an app to …”. Unfortunately, these conversations are often too far away from Silicon Valley’s ears, which are still dominated by the talk of what will be the next WhatsApp or Instagram. Even so, a new breed of entrepreneur is emerging who see firsthand the challenges in their industry, and with that the opportunity to make a world-changing impact, and these entrepreneurs do not fit the founder archetype that many Silicon Valley investors look for.

Previous decades saw similar shifts in entrepreneur characterizations. The late 90s were about Harvard MBAs applying traditional management techniques to leverage brand new Internet technologies. The “aughts” brought on the “22 year-old Stanford Computer Science” graduate applying technology to a low hanging industry. Now, in this decade, we are seeing a new wave of entrepreneurship driven by industry executives with deep product backgrounds leveraging technology to disrupt a traditionally non-tech industry.

For the past 2 years I’ve had the opportunity to see this shift firsthand as the managing partner of Silicon Valley Software Group (SVSG), a firm of CTOs focused on helping companies with their technology strategy. SVSG has seen entrepreneurs ranging from movie producers, lead singers of platinum album rock bands, travel executives, and hedge fund managers all trying to figure out how to leverage their domain expertise through technology. After a number of similar engagements, a few observations have emerged:

  • In each venture, a product-focused entrepreneur saw the adoption of technology among their peers in a particular industry and, with that, the opportunity to create a product focused on that industry.
  • None of these entrepreneurs had notable tech experience.
  • Hardly ANY of these high profile individuals had relevant connections with the Silicon Valley community.

This last observation is of particular importance!

As tunnel-visioned as Silicon Valley might be, there is a reason that it has produced so many world-changing companies.

The combination of growth capital, multidisciplinary talent, and mentors sharing best practices around how to create hyper-growth businesses are often taken for granted by those who are part of the ecosystem. However, the disconnect between Silicon Valley natives and outsiders is shocking. Many of the companies SVSG has come across have no ability to raise strategic capital at first because their businesses are too risky when considering common pitfalls they are more likely to fall into compared with their Valley peers. Concepts as commonplace as the lean startup methodology are welcomed as sage insight to these new entrepreneurs.

What is missing for these new founders is a bridge into Silicon Valley. To date, this has been stymied by a narrow mindset from the Silicon Valley community. However, the forces of capitalism will eventually prevail and these new entrepreneurs will find their own community to center around. Keen investors will lead the herd and take advantage of existing markets ripe for change. Incubators and accelerators will emerge with afocus on entrepreneurs with deep industry experience. We are in a tech boom right now and there are countless ways to apply technology to industries that haven’t changed in decades. For those sitting in the corner office, the time has come to venture out, there are markets to disrupt.

BY MATT SWANSON – MANAGING PARTNER @ SILICON VALLEY SOFTWARE GROUP

(This article was originally published on Toptal)

Photos from http://www.ablogtowatch.com, http://securityaffairs.co, http://geniusapp.com, and http://www.rakenapp.com

On Wordsworth’s ‘To The Cuckoo’

Dideric-Cuckoo-0010

That’s his name Wordsworth;
Each line of his – gold in worth.
Every reader will rejoice,
At this simple natural choice!

It is his greatness of course;
To make a poetic source,
Of a cuckoo – a common bird,
In its sublimes I have ever heard.

His profound love for nature;
The poetic definition of its stature,
All mixed perfectly in a blend,
To celebrate it would never end.

To me it opened the door,
To a new world a floor,
That a cuckoo – the spring singer,
Can be a subject to linger.

For me seeing the nature so keen,
To laud the creator to be seen,
Those lines of his proved that
A poem can be written on a black cat.

Yet to see, what other cant;
And  try if you want.
That’s the secret of the great poet
William Wordsworth!

Senthilkumar

(Circa – 1995 post reading the poem To the Cuckoo )

Stone or Statue

A stone lay there on the roadside,
None would care to look,
Nor was there any sculptor who took;
It to his imagined world aside.

It lay still for days unseen,
A burden for the earth it had been.
For all who saw it black and hard,
Had never tried to become a bard.

Time did pass, till one day a man;
Saw this large stone as everyone can.
But he saw something more in,
That into his dream world he took the stone in.

Then day and night he worked on,
Till he felt tired and torn.
And for days did he toil,
Like a farmer who does for his soil.

He carved and carved till,
It did his picture fill.
Then, one fine day when he finished-
The people gathered there were astonished.

All gazed and gazed, yet one
Curious, and worthy of none,
Asked the sculptor how he had been,
Able to see the form in the rock hardly seen.

Answered the humble sculptor “I see,
Also the Almighty Lord in thee”.

Senthilkumar R

(Based on stories – Circa 1993)