Mahindra launched the Supro line of small commercial trucks in 2017. Infact, Mahindra Supro trucks are the first small commercial trucks to provide air conditioning. They also feature higher fuel efficiency, power steering and an improved suspension.As a new entrant into the market, several challenges lay ahead of Mahindra.
How to introduce a new small truck in a market dominated by the TATA Ace?
The Tata Ace had been in production for more than a decade when the Mahindra Supro was launched. In this decade, the Ace had completely dominated the small commercial vehicle segment, both passenger and cargo. To break into this segment and establish a new brand against the momentum of a decade old competitor was a mighty challenge.
How to explain the fuel efficiency of Supro trucks, without complex mathematics?
The Supro line of trucks is extremely fuel efficient compared to its competitors. With its superior technology, the Supro trucks could help owners save lakhs of rupees in fuel costs each year. Explaining these savings and the Supro fuel efficiency wasn't an easy task for sure. Without using Mathematics, it was difficult to explain how Supro would help truck owners save on fuel costs. Mahindra needed a simpler way to explain these savings.
How to make buyers feel the difference of a Supro suspension?
The Supro introduced a new, better suspension. On long bumpy rides, the Supro suspension ensured a smooth and comfortable ride for the passengers and a safe transit for cargo. However, explaining the ride comfort and convenience was a difficult task for Mahindra. Words alone aren’t enough, Mahindra needed the buyers to experience the difference with a Supro suspension.
How to establish brand identity of Supro as a Profit Hub?
Supro is focused on increasing profit for the truck owners. The brand identity of Supro positions it as a “Profit Hub”. Mahindra needed an innovative, experiential marketing campaign that would effectively communicate the brand identity and the profit potential of owning a Supro truck.
Mahindra wanted to conduct an 'On the Ground, Below the Line' experiential marketing campaign. In order to reach out to its target demographic across multiple cities and towns in rural as well as urban India, Mahindra needed a compact and robust mobile marketing setup.
When Mahindra approached us, we immediately identified the two primary experiential marketing challenges ahead of us.
How to make product communication non-intrusive, interesting and relatable?
We were tasked with communicating product features, without resorting to complex mathematics, verbal explanations and boring activities, it needed to be more than just an activity. Making sure that the buyers understood the value proposition offered by Supro without getting bored or feeling overwhelmed was our primary goal, not to mention the entertainment factor.
How to conduct an activity in limited space?
The marketing activities would be conducted out of a mobile vehicle, traveling to over 100 cities and towns over the course of a 45 day long campaign. There was no scope to design an elaborate marketing setup. We had to design a solution that would function in a limited space, in a mobile setup.
Understanding the Buyers
To effectively reach out to Supro’s customers, we put ourselves in their shoes. Based on our previous experience working with similar products and audience, we identified several problems that a small truck driver/owner faces.
- Typically, he undertakes long journeys over multiple hours to his destination.
- He travels without air conditioning, battling sweltering heat in the summer and bone chilling cold in the winter.
- He travels on bumpy roads, with a rusty old truck suspension. His riding experience is anything but comfortable.
- He has to stop for multiple refuelling stops on the way. These refuelling stops eat into both his time and his savings.
- "Kitna deti hai?" An Indian buyer always wants fuel efficiency in a vehicle. For truck owners, the fuel efficiency of the vehicle contributes directly to their income.
- Supro is the first small truck with air conditioning. The marketing campaign was to be held in the summer months of April and May, making it an ideal time to sell an air conditioned truck to the buyers.
- Truck drivers drove on long journeys, on bumpy roads, with many refuelling stops along the way to their destination. A similar journey inside an experiential marketing game would mirror their experience.
Keeping in mind the above ideas, we designed an experiential marketing solution. The solution was an interactive mixed reality game with the following features for the players (small truck drivers).
- The players would experience their journey to “Profit Pur” – an imaginary destination they would reach at the end of the game. This journey to “Profit Pur” was done with the “Profit Hub” truck – the Mahindra Supro.
- The players could customise the Supro suspension and see tangible difference in the interactive gameplay. The truck’s ride inside the game became way smoother, after choosing the superior Supro suspension.
- The players could see how much they would save with the fuel efficient Supro trucks.
- The idea of controlling anything without direct contact with that medium is a big WOW and magical amongst rural population. So we used full body movement and gestures to control the mixed reality game - which itself excites the target customer.
Highlights of featuresPlayers used the following gestures to control the game:
1. Hover and Hold Gesture
Players hovered their hands over an on screen option, and held it there to select the truck for gameplay. They also used the gesture to choose any features for the Supro trucks.
2. Power Gesture
Players brought their hands up and flexed their biceps to start the game. The gesture was inspired by the physically intensive nature of truck driving.
3. Swipe Gesture
Players held their palms up, and swiped left or right on the screen to reject refuelling stops and service stations. This helped Mahindra demonstrate the fuel efficiency and low servicing requirements of Supro trucks.
Learning Experience for WOWSOME
Designing the solution for Mahindra Supro was of immense learning, both, technically and creatively. Our past products have used different components for Interactive Experiential gameplay. We have created other products with Excitometer (Full body excitement – for Royal Challengers Bangalore), and gesture controlled game (For BPH Pexalon).
For Supro, we combined these features to create a power packed gameplay, which involved excitement and gesture based control. Creating this interactive solution was a fantastic learning experience for us, and significantly contributed to our growth.
The marketing campaign was very successful. We reached out to thousands of potential customers, generated hot leads, and even closed bookings on the spot.
- More than 100 towns and villages were covered during the campaign.
- We reached more than 16,000 potential customers.
- 8000+ people provided their contact information.
- 4000+ Hot Leads were generated.
- 100+ on the spot bookings were done.
With the Mahindra Supro campaign, we set out to design an experiential marketing solution for a new product in a competitive market. Our solution needed to sell the customers on the new comfort features introduced. With the target audience’s problems and needs in mind, we designed an experiential game controlled by gestures and excitement, allowing the potential customers to physically participate. Our mixed reality marketing solution mirrored the day to day experience of the customer and let them feel the Supro advantage, in a context familiar to them. The marketing campaign was a nationwide success where we generated 4000+ Hot Leads and 100+ bookings for Mahindra.