Publicis Groupe-owned Leo Burnett has launched LB Regional, an exclusive new service for the Indian market. The new division will offer three key services – research-driven strategy planning, creative solutions and film production – focused on serving clients' needs for regional markets.
Sachin Kamble, national creative director, Leo Burnett, will lead LB Regional and the agency is roping in creatives and writers who are experts in Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Punjabi, and Bengali. These are the first five languages that LB Regional has identified as focus areas.
The LB Regional team will collaborate with the agency’s national talent and a panel of local directors to make ad films that resonate with these language markets. LB Regional will also work with Prodigious, Publicis’ in-house production company. For strategy and planning on projects, the new division will tap into Leo Burnett’s talent pool.
In an exclusive conversation with Storyboard18, Dheeraj Sinha, CEO and chief strategy officer, South Asia at Leo Burnett and chairman, BBH India, says, for many years, marketers have been saying that “there are many Indias in one India”. He explains that Leo Burnett wants to guide its clients to go beyond the obvious observations and insights to create strategies that better serve regional markets, instead of imposing national campaigns in these diverse markets.
Sinha says, “Typically, brands think of national strategies first and then implement it locally. National copies and scripts are dubbed to go regional. That’s how marketing has classically evolved in India. There is no wherewithal to think of opportunities region up.”
Marketers want to go "micro" but they haven’t been getting enough inputs from their agency partners, he adds. LB Regional’s model is to design strategies and solutions that are informed by the nuances of local markets and what truly differentiates them. The launch of the new division comes on the back of several conversations with clients like P&G India, PhonePe and Spotify India, among others, says Sinha. The agency worked with music streaming platform Spotify India for its multilingual 15 film IPL campaign this season.
LB Regional is also set to release a quantitative consumer survey in collaboration with YouGov across 10 states - Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, West Bengal, Karnataka, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Chandigarh, Kerala and Delhi. The report indicates the opportunities that business leaders have by going deeper into the pockets of India and shares actionable insights, with focus on six key categories of businesses – food, fashion, health, money, mobility and relationships. It is meant to present a multi-dimensional perspective of India for brands that are looking to grow their business and/or make an impact within states.
Marketers building pan-Indian brands can no longer use a blueprint of a changing image of India that revolves solely around what is happening at a national level. LB Regional is Leo Burnett's attempt to provide a more defined and nuanced service within the network and help rewire how brands approach the other Indias. And also, perhaps, rewire how the agency crafts advertising and communication strategies for these large markets.