April 9, 2020

Why every Indian brand MUST have a Multilingual Digital Strategy and Vernacular Communication


“Hello!”
(In Hindi, Punjabi and Tamil) Welcome to Digital Bytes Doesn’t it feel good to hear or read contents in regional languages, if not native? If you look at the top 20 publications in terms of newspapers, according to a recent IRS survey, …you will notice that only one English publication is there in the Top 20. The remaining 19, including the top one, are multilingual. It varies from Malayalam to Tamil to Hindi. India is consuming contents in so many different languages. It is not just in English. However, it is very surprising to see that the digital content of most brands is still in English. It is primarily because when the internet first came into being in India, …the primary users or initial users were in English. However, that is not the case today. According to a study by KPMG & Google India, …by 2021, 75% of the Indian internet user base will be users using regional languages. And this is because of affordable smartphones, cheap data plans… …and deep internet penetrations, especially after the launch of Jio. So, if your users who are online are multilingual, then which platforms are they on? There are various digital platforms today where you can leverage multilingual, …ranging from the Google ecosystem, which includes Google Adwords, Double Click, YouTube. Then there’s Facebook, Adgebra, which is a native ad network through which one can advertise… …on publishing platforms like ABP news, Rajasthan Patrika, Amar Ujala etc. Then there’s Daily Hunt, another platform which aggregates regional languages news… …Saavn, Yahoo and many more. Now that we have had a look at the platforms, …let’s have a look at the companies that have leveraged multilingual. I would like to share two examples with you, …as to how we leveraged multilingual for a brand for a social media campaign… …which resulted in the video being viral. And second for a brand for a lead generation campaign, …which resulted in 90% higher volumes of leads. So the first example is a video we created for Chola Finance. Since the brand mostly caters to small business owners and entrepreneurs in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities, …we decided to create an animated video featuring the life lessons that one can learn from an ant. The video was initially made in English, which got us a reach of 4,00,000 views and 3000 shares. Seeing the numbers, we created the same video in Hindi, which went viral. The Hindi video got us 2.2 Million views, 94% of which was completely organic. And this resulted in 80,000 shares, compared to the 3000 shares of the identical English video. These stats are a clear testimony to the fact on how the Digital Ecosystem is evolving, …and why Vernacular is important for brands to take. Initially, brands used to translate content. But eventually, they will have to create contents for their audiences in their languages, …as cultural nuances differ
and worldviews are different. The second example is of a lead generation campaign for one of our real-estate clients Casagrand. We identified that the Tamil speaking audience is the primary target audience for the brand, …since most of their real estate properties are located in Chennai. Based on this, we created ads in Tamil to target audiences in the language they are comfortable with. Based on a recent research by Google, …88% of the local language internet users are likely to respond to an advertisement more in their local language. It is extremely important that the whole online multilingual journey of the consumer is in the same language… …right from them seeing the ads to coming on the landing page, …to even the customer executive calling them up. This is when the whole multilingual online journey is complete. This approach delivered impactful results, higher leads and a CPL that was 60% lower. Again, this reiterates the fact on how
vernacular plays a key role in reaching out to
the next billion users on the internet. If you want to know more, the links to the case studies are provided in the description below. Today, vernacular content can be leveraged from a branding campaign on social media to an influencer campaign. However, it is very important for brands to understand their primary customers, …the kind of content they are consuming, …the languages they are consuming this content in, …plus the platforms they are on, to begin their multilingual online journey. So when are you starting your multilingual online journey? And which are the platforms that you will be leveraging your brand for? Leave them in the comments below. And thank you for watching this video.

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