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Brands work hard to crank up the ‘pester power’ factor
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Brands work hard to crank up the ‘pester power’ factor

debarpita-newif-the-resultsA lot of categories look at children as influencers since they do not have any purchasing power of their own. A case in point would be the health food and drinks category. Yes, they do not have the power to buy but they can always say ‘no’. Hence, a lot of brands in this category work on the ‘pester power’ factor. The kids pester the mothers to buy a certain brand and it’s easy for the mother to ensure consumption of the same.
However, there is a big difference between targeting children through advertising and using children in advertising (as models). When it comes to using children in advertising, a lot of categories that are not really talking to them still use them – such as real estate developers or automobile manufacturers. They are primarily used for the ‘cute’ factor. ‘Hutch’ launched their brand with a child and a pug. That does not necessarily mean they are targeting children. One excellent example of a brand that uses children extensively, but does not necessarily want vodafonethem to vouch for the product, is Surf Excel. Children are not interested in detergent brands. This is considered as a pro-parenting commercial rather than a kid-centric advert. The singular targets are the mothers despite the widespread use of children in the campaigns. The children are used to make a point about parenting.
Apart from brands directly targeted at kids, one easy way to understand whether the marketer is using children as influencers is to observe its media mix and the kind of touch points it has used to reach out to its target group. If it is present in kids-heavy footfall channels, then it is targeting them. One such brand that targets both the mother and the child is Parle-G. Its visibility is high on kapart-fromids’ channels as well as on general entertainment channels.daag-lagayenge The execution of the ‘Roko Mat, Toko Mat’ campaign is more adult-ish in nature. It focuses on the aspect of ‘childhood se badi koi curiosity nahi’. When a brand targets the parents and the children both, it makes the media mix more appealing and neutral to both target groups.
So if you really think about it, every category can involve the child to crank up the ‘pester power’ factor. Because children are not just aware, they are extremely adamant and demanding. One would wonder why they have a lot of say. But the reality is that they do. They often decide on the kinds of snacks you are bringing home or whether the sofa covers in your living room are bright enough. Their kind of crisps or noodles is important no matter how much a mother tries to prepare something healthy.
The National Geographic channel does not make content specifically for kids. However, education is one of the key pillars of the channel. Whether it is about people and culture, science and technology or exploration and education, all shows are meant to inform and entertain at the same time. We are aware that a lot of our wildlife shows are very popular with both children and parents. Upcoming shows like ‘Brain-Games’ and ‘Science of Stupid’ will engage both children and adults alike. The network has also been successfully involved with school-contact programmes across the major metros with more to come in the near future.
To reach out to children, it is important not just to understand what works with them, but also to find out how to reach them. Hence, finding the touch points becomes important. Festivals, bus stops, schools, parleonline usage, telephones, books – all can be a step towards reaching the kid. There is also a lot of scope in content creation for children. Advertising Funded Programmes (AFP) can be designed specifically for children and a brand can be well integrated to create communication that can give hours of engagement rather than just a 30-second commercial.

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