Indian advertisers embrace digital

16 October 2009

MUMBAI: An increasing number of advertisers in India are turning to digital media in an effort to connect with consumers in the country, according to a new study published by Sapient Interactive.

The company surveyed the chief marketing officers of 52 Indian firms in categories ranging from the automotive and airline industries to consumer goods and financial services.

It found that 88% of this panel had included digital platforms in at least one of their previous media plans, while 92% intended do so for a campaign in the next 12 months.

Some 33% of participants also argued they were currently spending too much money on print advertising, a figure that fell to 22% with regard to television.

Digital currently takes a 17% share of marketing budgets in the Asian nation, with a lack of established measurement tools among the main reasons why this figure isn't higher at present, Sapient reported.

In spite of this, a majority of the contributors to its poll agreed that where new media had played a role in their communications, it typically delivered against pre-established objectives.

Where that was not the case, most suggested this result could largely be attributed to their agency's inexperience with the medium.

Among the sectors that are making most effective use of digital platforms at present are travel, airlines, financial services and information technology, according to Sapient's analysis.

The growing number of mobile phone subscribers and a higher rate of broadband penetration in India could help drive revenues upwards in the future, the digital agency added.

Karandeep Singh, managing director of Sapient Interactive, suggested "the survey reinforces our assessment that marketers in India are increasingly thinking digital."

He also argued that the "addressable digital market" in India could be valued at around $150 million (€100m; £92m) at present, a total that is growing by between 45% and 50% a year.

Earlier this year, Webchutneypredicted that online adspend will rise by 44% in India this year, with mobile advertising revenues also reaching six times the level recorded in 2008.

Data sourced from Campaign India; additional content by Warc staff