About INgene blog : First ever Indian Youth trend Insights blog

About INgene : First ever Indian Youth trend Insights blog:
This blog explores the detailed characteristics of Young-India and explains the finer & crucial differences they have with their global peers. The blog also establishes the theory of “adopted differentiation” (Copyright Kaustav SG,2007) and how the Indian & Inglodian youth are using this as a tool to differentiate themselves from the “aam aadmi” (mass population of India) to establish their new found identity.

The term youth refers to persons who are no longer children and not yet adults. Used colloquially, however the term generally refers to a broader, more ambiguous field of reference- from the physically adolescent to those in their late twenties.
Though superficially the youth all over the world exhibits similar [degree of] attitude, [traits of] interests & [deliverance of] opinion but a detailed observation reveals the finer differential characteristics which are crucial and often ignored while targeting this group as a valued consumer base. India is one of the youngest countries in the world with 60% of its population less then 24 years of age and is charted as the most prospective destination for the retail investment in the A. T. Kearney’s Global Retail Opportunity Report, 2007. With the first ever non-socialistic generation’s thriving aspiration & new found money power combined with steadily growing GDP, bubbling IT industry and increasing list of confident young entrepreneurs, the scenario appears very lucrative for the global and local retailers to target the “Youngisthan” (young-India). But, the secret remains in the understanding of the finer AIOs of this generation. The Indian youth segment roughly estimates close to 250million (between the ages of fifteen and twenty-five) and can be broadly divided (socio-psychologically) into three categories: the Bharatiyas, the Indians & the Inglodians (copyright Kaustav SG 2008). The Bharatiyas estimating 67% of the young population lives in the rural (R1, R2 to R4 SEC) areas with least influence of globalization, high traditional values. They are least economically privileged, most family oriented Bollywood influenced generation. The Indians constitute 31.5% (A, B,C, D & E SEC) and have moderate global influence. They are well aware of the global trends but rooted to the Indian family values, customs and ethos. The Inglodians are basically the creamy layers (A1,A SEC) and marginal (1.5% or roughly three million) in number though they are strongly growing (70% growth rate). Inglodians are affluent and consume most of the trendy & luxury items. They are internet savvy & the believers of global-village (a place where there is no difference between east & west, developing & developed countries etc.), highly influenced by the western music, food, fashion & culture yet Indian at heart.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

the viral music video and internet swarming : Kolaveri di

In a multilingual country like India, its not easy to break the social and semiotic barrier to become viral. For long, the north south division of language and culture made a huge barricade on promoting local-lingo influenced videos across Bindha mountain (a mountain which is in the middle of Indian subcontinent). Various reasons can be cited for this. The pronunciation of southern languages are very different than the north as well as the meaning and expression of the words. Interestingly, the "Kolaveri di" broke this barrier smoothly and became instant hit among the younger population in India. The words in this song are simple, easy to pronounce and emotional (the love-break-hate is very catchy theme among youth). The singer used Tanglish (quirky mix of Tamil and English) which is very popular way of communication (bengali+english, Hindi+english, punjabi+tamil etc.)among the youth (read my earlier posts on language innovations among the youth in India). Also, the tune is simple to adopt into any language or sing.

(Original video)

(Punjabi version)

(Garhwali version)

(Gujrati version)

(female version)

'Kolaveri di', a song from the upcoming Tamil movie '3', sung by popular Tamil movie star Dhanush has become an internet rage. That Kolaveri Di, which will feature on the soundtrack of the forthcoming Tamil film 3 starring Dhanush, has found success beyond anyone’s expectations is obvious. Almost a month after its release, it is still being given more airtime than Anna Hazare! According to 18-year-old composer Anirudh Ravichander, the director Aishwarya Rajinikanth Dhanush (who is the wife of the actor Dhanush) wanted a "light-hearted" song about failed love. Ravichandar quickly composed the tune. Dhanush then began work on the lyrics, which he completed in about 20 minutes of playful singing and writing. In an interview to The Times of India, Dhanush said "When I was writing down the lyrics, I kept in mind all the English words that are used in the Tamil vocabulary. Words like I, you, me, how, why, cow.. I just framed them into sentences and thats how I came up with the song." The promo of the song, which was released on November 16, became an instant hit on social networking sites for its quirky 'Tanglish' (Tamil-English) lyrics. The promo features the actor-playback singer Dhanush, son-in-law of superstar Rajinikanth, singing the song in a studio, and composer Anirudh at the piano, while wife & the director Aishwarya Rajinikanth and co-star Shruti Hassan watch along and give suggestions.

"Why this kolaveri di. 24 hours 83000 you tube views. Thank you guys. For making it the most viewed you tube video in music category yesterday. God bless," Dhanush tweeted on the day of the release of the song. The song Kolaveri appeared as the number one Indian trend on Twitter on November 21. The lyrics of the peppy song are simple and since it is a live recording, Dhanush keeps firing instructions while singing, making it more endearing. "yo boys I am singing song soup song flop song why this kolaveri kolaveri kolaveri di why this kolaveri kolaveri kolaveri di rhythm correct why this kolaveri kolaveri kolaveri di maintain this why this kolaveri..di.." goes the song.

Last weekend, the viral video of the song reached two milestones that confirmed its arrival in the YouTube hall of fame. It reached 15 million views—the target that Ashok Parwani, the associate director at Sony Music, which promoted the song, set for it on 25 November. It also got its own “Hitler gets angry about...” video—an essential accolade for any Internet meme and also the first for any Indian music video. (For the uninitiated, Hitler gets angry about is a series of videos featuring a scene of Adolf Hitler ranting in German from the 2004 movie Downfall. Subtitles are changed to make it seem like the subject of his rant is the meme in question.)

According to social media analytic firm Social Hues, the song was being talked about up to two weeks before the video appeared on YouTube on 16 November. A fan from Chennai, with the Twitter handle @arundanush, alerted both Dhanush’s sister-in-law Geetanjali Selvaraghavan and the composer of the song, Anirudh, to the fact that the song had been uploaded to YouTube on 31 October. His tweet, which read “Kolaveri song from 3 again uploaded in YouTube, pls inform Dhanush”, suggested it was not the first time such a leak had taken place.

Over the next few days, people began tweeting about the lyrics of the song and other details of the film. The publicity was global. Between 1 and 10 November (even before the official launch of the song), there were 43,800 mentions of Kolaveri in the US, 7,000 in France and 4,000 from the UAE. Tamil movie fanatics (mostly male) and non-resident Indians drove most of the traffic in the US and the Gulf, and students studying abroad made up the majority of mentions in Europe.

"Kolaveri di" Flash dance at Auckland

Kolaveri already had a significant following days before the official video appeared on the 16 November.

"Kolaveri di" Flash dance at Bangalore

(Kolaveri dance in urban India)

Aishwarya Dhanush said she was alerted to the leaked version via Twitter. “Even now I do not know the source (of the leak),” she said. “Initially I was upset, but since I felt that people needed to hear the right version, I wanted to bring out an official video. In two weeks (we) put together the video as there was no time for CD covers or publicity. Something of this magnitude cannot be planned. It just happens.”
That might be so, but even if the leak wasn’t planned, it’s clear that Sony Music India was quick to capitalize on it and turn it into a marketing advantage. Parwani told NDTV that the video accompanying the song was recorded at 2am, the night before the release on the 16 November, and edited the next morning.

But he also insisted that “we wanted this song to go viral in cyberspace. We marketed aggressively to make the song a national rage”. Parwani said that his team had been posting the song on Tamil, Hindi and international Facebook pages to drive traffic. From 16 November on, according to Social Hues, the rate of Twitter mentions of Kolaveri increased by nearly 200% every day, starting at 179 and peaking a week later at 14,907 tweets on 24 November—the day after it became the first Tamil film song to be played on MTV and Bollywood star Amitabh Bachchan had tweeted about his admiration for the tune.

It is not easy to send a video viral, despite the claims of myriad Web pages touting lessons from Kolaveri on how to make a viral video. The publicity has to be spread across all forms of social media. In Kolaveri’s case most traffic was driven by Facebook, which accounted for nearly 80% of social media mentions of the song, followed by Twitter and YouTube, according to Social Hues.

Dhanush’s song had something else going for it. The novelty of the word kolaveri was a great driver of interest. Twelve per cent of all conversations on Kolaveri were about the meaning of the word, generally translated as murderous rage.
Then, a series of serendipitous news events drove the #kolaveri hashtag (a hash sign followed by a tag word to indicate importance). When agriculture minister Sharad Pawar got slapped by a youngster on 25 November, tweeters cheered Kolaveri and a Punjabi version of the song known as the Sharad Pawar slap song appeared on YouTube the same day. It has logged over one million views of its own. The following week, when bail was finally granted to Tamil Nadu member of Parliament K. Kanimozhi in the 2G spectrum case, the felicitous assonance of her name with Kolaveri did not go unnoticed.

Overseas, the selling point seemed to be the Tanglish lyrics; the Huffington Post tweeted: “Adding a ‘u’ sound to the end of English words is the latest trend in India.” London radio presenters Sunny and Shay raved about the novel lyrics to the song on air when they broadcast it on BBC Radio 94.9 on 26 November.
Nearer home, Sony Music was trying to decide how to encash the Internet buzz. It hadn’t originally monetized the YouTube video, because, according to Shridhar Subramaniam, president of Sony Music Entertainment India, “We initially wanted to release it through Vevo, which is a video platform owned by Sony, but there was some delay because of Thanksgiving weekend, so we decided to release it on YouTube.”
In order to make money out of the swarming viewers, Sony needed to become a content partner with YouTube, which it eventually did on 30 November. Since then, Sony has taken 50% of the revenue generated by the video, Subramaniam said.
Viral popularity might be great publicity for the song, and, therefore, for the film, but it isn’t necessarily an immediate money maker. The nine million odd views that had accumulated before Sony monetized the video would remain unharvested, but the loss would only be an estimated $4,000, he said. “It is a $1 CPM here. The same on Vevo would have been a $40 CPM.” CPM is short for cost per thousand impressions, a term used in digital marketing.

Still Kolaveri’s popularity online must be attractive to marketing gurus looking for inexpensive ways to promote movie songs. Kolaveri marks a tipping point in the industry, after which the social media will emerge as a mainstream option alongside the television and radio, says some analysts.

It is only fair to point out that Kolaveri is not the first movie promotion to be launched on social media first—makers of the movie Peepli [Live], the hit song Sheila ki Jawani and music band Euphoria, among others, have in the past experimented with releasing bits and pieces of their work on Facebook and other social networks.

Nothing on this scale has, however, been attempted before. Don’t be surprised if you find film makers hoarding social networking sites trying to recreate the buzz and popularity of Kolaveri, says one analyst.

“If something is a hit on social media, then your fans become your ambassadors and it goes viral in no time,” said Jehil Thakkar, executive director, KPMG India. “No one can really say what works, so replicating it (success of Kolaveri) is next to impossible.”

Seeing the popularity and far-reaching appeal of the song 'Kolaveri Di', the police have decided to capitalize on its fame to ask motorists to remain calm on roads - a step that might help in bringing down road accidents.

Chennai Police has already brought out posters asking 'why this anger' with the words 'Kolaveri Di' painted in bold. The same poster was added to Delhi Police's Facebook website by a member and became an instant hit.

The idea has got the thumbs up by hundreds of Facebook users - it has 130 "likes" - and the site is awash with suggestions to replicate the same campaign in Delhi. Even joint CP (traffic) Satyendra Garg was taken with the idea and added his comments. He seconded the thought that "murderous rage" (meaning of the Tamil word 'kolaveri') is a contributing factor in road accidents in the city.

"Going by the national obsession with the song, Chennai Police rightly utilized its value for safer traffic measures. This applies to other cities including Delhi. Why this kolaveri? Just drive without anger...'' Garg posted.

In another post, the joint CP emphasized the need for "restraint'' during driving. "Let there be restraint and disciplined behaviour. It isgood for the safety of everybody,'' he wrote on Facebook.

However, not everybody was as optimistic. A central district officer told TOI that everybody in Delhi won't understand the Tanglish version of the song, so the idea will not find resonance with some. "However, we have always welcomed help of any sort to ensure discipline on roads and any effort by the citizens is appreciated," said the officer.

However, that has not stopped youngsters from showering praise on Chennai Police and urging Delhi Police to follow suit. "Well this is now imaginatively cool,'' commented Ankit Nauriyal. "Imaginative, intelligent thought...now this song has been used for better causes,'' commented Vishnu Panicker.

various brands and retailers started using the phrase as their ad-taglines innovating new "meanings" of "kolaveri".

(Ad for "discounts" at a furniture shop)

(Ad for "fruit shop" a juice joint)

(Amul butter ad)

This soup song has become an anthem for the future managers of the country too! The Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) are treating the popular song Kolaveri Di from an upcoming Tamil film '3' as a classic example of viral marketing.

IIM Ahmedabad (IIM-A ), for instance, plans to dedicate a session to Kolaveri Di as part of its course on Contemporary Film Industry: A business perspective. Bharathan Kandaswamy, faculty and co-ordinator of the course, says, "I will discuss Kolaveri Di as part of a session on social media and online tools when my class starts in December. Kolaveri Di is a perfect case of viral marketing,http://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gif which has created a huge difference in the world of publicity."

Why this Kolaveri Di, which means 'Why this rage towards me, girl' has actually become a rage across IIMs with faculty of marketing playing the song during class.

Professors of IIMs - Bangalore, Rohtak and Lucknow - have played the song in class and later discussed its strategy. The institutes have also made videos of the entire class singing to Kolaveri Di and posted them on networking sites. "Kolaveri has been screened in many classes in IIM Bangalore . The professor sits along with the students and enjoys-... Real Rage," posted Ramya, a student at IIM Bangalore on a social networking site.

(this one is "ladies version" of the same song!)

for more information about this viral video: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Why_This_Kolaveri_Di


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