By: Yohan P Chawla
While international OTT players such as Netflix and Amazon Prime Video have proved to be a formidable set of competitors for our Indian OTT platforms, Zee Entertainment Enterprises’ OTT platform, ZEE5, last month launched across 190 countries – clearly challenging the international biggies with some fierce competition.
Last week, the platform launched its international campaign, “Dil Se Desi”, targeting the South Asian countries. The video beautifully reminds the South Asians of their homes, and builds an instant brand connect using small nuances. Not only can Indians very well connect with “Dil Se Desi” but also the people living across Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nepal and UAE can relate to the campaign.
Here it is:
EMBED CAMPAIGN VIDEO:
To discuss the campaign and more. I caught up with Archana Anand, Chief Business Officer, ZEE5 Global.
It was an interesting conversation with the knowledgeable and extremely insightful leader who also exudes a wonderful aura of positivity. Time rewardingly well spent.
ZEE5 Global: ‘Dil Se Desi’
On the ‘Dil Se Desi’ campaign, Anand said, “If you look at the dictionary meaning of the word ‘Desi’, it means the entire South Asian diaspora, while we like to appropriate it as Indian. In that sense, it was very appropriate for us to go with Dil Se Desi.”
On the audiences that Zee5’s content resonates with, Anand said, “It’s not just the Indian audience, but the entire South Asian audience. It’s an insight that has come from the previous OTTs we have been running in these markets. We have seen the immense love for our content across the audiences of Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal.”
“We have got so much love for Dil Se Desi because of the fabulous connect it has. There is a new found resurgence about India in the world today. Whether it is SatyaNadela or SundarPichai or just the great work Indians are doing outside. There is a lot of pride and connect to our roots”, said Anand.
ZEE5 is operating on a freemium model across all international markets except Europe where it is completely on a SVOD model.
Speaking about the key target markets of ZEE5’s campaign Dil se Desi, Anand said, “Abroad, my catch-up content, movies and TV shows work beautifully. I have driven the campaign across the APAC and AMENA region. In the next phase of the campaign, we are going to create a specific TVC for the Bangladeshi audience because they just love our Bangla content, which won’t just be for Bangladesh but for all the Bangladeshis living across the globe — especially in Europe. We will also create a special TVC for the Pakistani audience, they too love our content and are spread across the globe.”
Marketing Dil Se Desi
Speaking on buzz creation strategies, Anand said, “We have worked hard with PR! Our social media handles are extremely active. In fact, as we speak, we have just closed a big sponsorship deal with Northern Warriors, a team at the T10 International League in UAE. The tournament will be broadcasted across the South Asian market. We are their title sponsors, so you will see us front and centre on their jerseys. We are pretty clear about quickly scaling up our presence in the global markets.”
Going Local Globally
On plans of going local with ZEE5 globally, Anand said, “Our approach is three-prompt. In the initial phase of the launch, I am going after the South Asian diaspora.” Smiling, she said, “because that’s our strength!”.
“Subsequently, in phase two, I will get the Indian content of ZEE5 dubbed into local languages such as Bahasa and Thai for the local audiences abroad.”
“And finally in the third phase, we will be acquiring and creating original content for the local markets abroad.”
“In India we are available across 12 languages, and as we go global more international languages will be added. We will be the largest language platform across the globe. And global citizens will get content in their own language, and not dubbed.”
One waits to watch when an Indian original series does supremely well abroad. Am I being Dil se Desi? Absolutely.