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UT Ramprasad

Marketers today are cashing in more on the emotional quotient to connect with customers by either using celebrities or by campaigns involving social issues, talking about myths, stereotypes, etc.

Stepping into the shoes of customers and telling their stories through advertisements has become a common practice. With multiple options available to customers, it has now become difficult for brands to directly target a community and to reach to them, and hence content has started shaping up via storytelling and other formats.

“Advertisements bombarding customers on all platforms have made the whole scenario seem like a fish pond, keeping the customers floating from here to there and confusing them,” said UT Ramprasad, Head Marketing and Brand Communications, Commercial Vehicle Business Unit, Tata Motors. Content gives an emotional edge in such cases and helps customers buy a product, he said.

In an interview with, Ramprasad said content always has an impact on customers. If a customer is not emotionally involved with a brand, he/she won’t consider buying anything of that particular name. “There has to be an emotional connection with customers. They buy what seems relatable to their mind and emotions. Then come their instincts, rationalisation, peer reviews, where content tries to convince customers,” he said.

Ramprasad said the customer experience of any brand should make sense with the content it is providing. Marketers have to be careful of the content and need to ensure it is relevant to customers and goes with the brand and its ethos, he said.

On the other hand, it has become difficult for marketers also to directly reach and approach customers. Big data has become critical for marketers because of its scattered and unorganised nature. Marketers have users, but they don’t exactly have them, he explains.

“Users bar themselves from watching advertisements on any medium digital, TV or print. Advertisements with celebrities’ faces help to cut through the clutter, ensuring the brands get noticed. An ad with a normal face isn’t noticeable. People find a connection and perspective with celebrity being an ambassador of a brand, to connect on emotional level as well. Brands maintain a status with such associations,” says Ramprasad.

Quoting TOI’s Sindoor Khela campaign, he said any activation that brands do — like getting involved with campaigns related to social issues or trying to break stereotypes — should also sync with the brand’s value and image. People feel good about such brands, he said.