How to make friends and win over people in the Digital Age

The world wide web, the internet or the big blue, no matter what you choose to call it; the ‘www’ can be a tricky place to navigate. If you are not careful, you maybe land-up in a dark alleyway and before you know it you are mingling with the wrong crowd. The situation can be tricky to get out of. So, as a product, how do you make sure that you are reaching the right (read relevant) people and not ending-up being “that annoying product I keep seeing on all my news feeds?”. The key is to understand who is it that you are speaking to. This is where Digital Marketing Analytics comes into play. Not to be confused with Web Analytics, Google Analytics is a tool that measures the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns across different platforms at each stage i.e. from acquisition to closing. As is evident, there are two ways in which you can get an insight into the minds of your consumers:

  1. Web Analytics: This type of data gives information about criteria such as page load speed, pageviews per visit, and time on site etc.
  2. Google (Digital) Analytics: This type of data can give you more holistic and all-around information about the nature, habits, demographics, and many other behavioral aspects about the audience that visit your website.

It is imperative that we understand that, it is finally humans and not machines that are buying your product or visiting your website. Humans are made of more than just numbers. They are made of routines, surprises, habits, rituals, flesh, skin, blood, and bones.


Once you can build-up the persona of your intended consumer in your mind, it becomes easier to tailor your communication to suit them. It is also important to note that we are all creatures of habit; if we have bought something at a certain time in our past, we are very likely to make the same purchase again during the same time. In the rapidly changing world of today, we often hide small stories behind huge numbers, data, and graphs. As social media marketers, it is our job to demystify these stories and help create newer ones for our audience. One of the simplest ways to understand the complex world of digital marketing is to draw everyday parallels and place them in a context that we can all understand.

Reading Google Analytics is very much like getting to know your favorite person:

Think about your best friend, think really hard. Won’t it be weird if you didn’t know what languages they can speak or which places they like to hang out at?

Well, Google Analytics works much the same way. Learning to make sense out of Google Analytics will slowly and surely bring you to a realization that you are gaining an insight into, what your end-audience looks like.
Targeting is like hanging out in the right circles:

Google AdWords, keywords and some other tools enable you to target your ads to a very specific audience, as does Facebook. You can not only select the demographics, but also the likes and dislikes of your audience based on their interests. For eg: If you are advertising for a musical concert and you are getting more leads from Viman Nagar (Pune), and you can independently verify that the majority population of the region is in the age group of 18-27; you can safely say that your end-audience is a student between the age group of 18-27 with music listening habits that are close to the artist you are advertising. Linking this data further with other social or real-time observations about their habits and mannerisms can help you build a character profile of your user. Once you know who it is that you are talking about, it becomes much easier to tailor your communication as the need may be. To illustrate this point further, let’s assume that you are the owner of a steel manufacturing unit, and you are getting more traffic out of the above-said region; it is safe to say that you perhaps need to re-orient your marketing efforts because this group is unlikely to make a purchase of a product like steel. The right targeting is thus like choosing your friends well – it helps you to be noticed in the right circles and ensures that you stay relevant.


Derive your strategies from personal experience:


Think of it this way, before becoming a social media marketer, a digital enthusiast or a business-owner; you are a human being. That means you also use the internet and that means that you too are the target of some marketing campaign or the other. Now, ask yourself this question: When was the last time that you felt like making a purchase or take any action for that matter after you saw something on the internet? For me, this happened as I wanted to choose some makeup products to go with my wedding dress. I clicked on the link of a Facebook Ad that eventually led me to a cosmetics website. I bought a lip tint, a blusher, and an applicator sponge. Thereafter, I was continually receiving prompts from the same site about make-up products that would complete my D-Day Kit such as primer, an eyeliner, and a mascara. In this particular case, relevance and timing was key. What was it in your case?

Chances are that what prompted your action was one of the following factors:

A. You were being continually bombarded with the message without you being conspicuous or irritated by it.

  1. The content (written or audio-visual) caught your eye with its creativity or precision.
  2. You have made similar purchases before.


Keep the above principles in mind and you are GOLDEN! Thus, the Mantra is: Know who your core audience is, know what channels they frequently visit, and know what kind of messaging gets an action out of them. This is precisely the data that analytics can provide you with. Once you start thinking as a prospective customer, tailoring your content becomes easy.


Learn basic social skills:

“On the internet, as in real life – manners are important. Once you get to know people it is easy to understand and fathom how they like to be spoken to.” 

The same is true with your audience. To elucidate the point further, let’s assume that you are with a girl you like. Once you start meeting her often, you start getting to know what phrases she uses, what places she frequents, what are the kind of friends she hangs out with, and what place she belongs to. This is exactly how you get to know your audience. It is also important to note that this does not amount to stalking! All the information shared by Google is volunteered by the audience themselves.


However, it is also important that you do not approach them constantly and become an annoyance. Try to keep your interactions limited to the websites they visit frequently, using the information shared by the web browser i.e. Cookies. Approaching your audience after they have left the site is called re-targeting. If you manage to recapture their interest, they are more than likely to make a transaction. It is a useful tool, but remember that it works better as a part of a larger digital strategy rather than a sole endeavor.


“Strategies involving content marketing, AdWords, and targeted display are great for driving traffic, but they don’t help with conversion optimization. Conversely, retargeting can help increase conversions, but it can’t drive people to your site. Your best chance of success is using one or more tools to drive traffic and retargeting to get the most out of that traffic. (Source:”




One of the best ways to make sense of digital marketing is to understand that you always need to put a face and build a profile of the person that you are talking to.


Once you have done that, you can go about building a personality too! It will take time and quite a few dead alleys to get to the right audience, but once you do the effort is definitely worth it. One of the greatest misconceptions about digital marketing is that – Through your messaging, you are talking to everybody. The golden rule of thumb is to keep it in your head that if you are talking to everyone, you are reaching no-one. On the other hand, when you are talking to one person alone and that person has the exact same attributes as you would want your ideal audience to have, your efforts are far more likely to yield results and ROI. And finally, simple manners and class truly go a long way. Keep these qualities constant in your messaging, and you are sure to hit the right note!

A glimpse into the HQ of the Social-Networking powerhouse- Facebook

Recently, I was at Oculus Connect 2017 in San Jose. During my stay, I got an opportunity to visit the Facebook Campus in Menlo Park, California. It was one most exciting experiences. The energy and open culture I experienced was highly infectious. The way Facebook has built a warm and engaging workplace for its employees is a great example of how an organisation can get the best out of its resources.

From an analog wall that allows an individual to calculate Facebook’s popular parameters of audience reach to the wood workshop where you can make your own wooden toys that promotes the idea of nurturing a hobby, everything is well-thought and fascinating. The ‘no cabins’ culture is something that’ll definitely be a trendsetter.

I’m happy to share some of my memorable moments from this trip.

Instagram’s new office looks like its App.  It has been designed by a Hollywood set designer. The three modular set is perfectly illuminated for mobile photography.


Impressive, 9-acre rooftop garden on Facebook Menlo Park, California HQ that overlooks the city’s marshlands.


IMG_2604Wood Studio to explore Hobbies on Facebook campus. 

The slogans placed around the campus give a revealing look at this atmosphere of change and innovation, “Fortune Favors the Bold”, “Move Fast, Break Things”, and “Hack Often”.

Facebook Analog wall that shows potential reach just as Facebook Adverts.


– Rugwed Deshpande  (Director of Setu Advertising)

Now playing, the anthem of kitchens across Maharashtra

It’s a well-known fact that since 1960, Suhana Ambari has been the leading spices brand in kitchens across Maharashtra. And in spite of its strong legacy and a well-established, extensive regional spread, the brand has never spoken about its leadership position and its impact on food and kitchens across Maharashtra.

Recently, the brand came out with its new packaging and an evolved identity. While the main motive was to communicate this change to its lakhs of customers, the communication had to live up to the brand’s personality and its thought leadership in this segment.

While the term brand campaign is a part of our everyday jargon, this opportunity seemed special. At Setu, we decided to transform this communication into a celebration of the brand and its presence across kitchens of Maharashtra. The message (crafted by us), ‘Gharoghari Ambari’ (Ambari in every home), saluted the brand’s popularity. A jingle and a TVC took this simple yet heartfelt message to homes across Maharashtra. While the thought process and execution gave us immense delight, what happened after the TVC hit the screens across Maharashtra, was what we hoped for – a celebration across Maharashtra.

This is what the custodians of the brand gave us as a feedback about this campaign –

We believe that the TVC, and more importantly the jingle, has been a milestone in the journey of Ambari. Usually, we look forward to sales numbers when our campaign hits the market. But this time around, we were pleasantly surprised. The jingle and more so the catch phrase (Gharoghari Ambari), has been a huge hit among people. In fact, going beyond the intended target audience, it has become extremely popular with our vendors, distributors and other people of the market, who are only obsessed with offers and numbers.”

“The TVC, and more importantly the jingle, has been a milestone in the journey of Ambari”.

As we tried to understand their perspective of what made the communication work so well, we got some interesting pointers.

“The warmth in the communication has been appreciated and has effectively delivered our message of being a part of Maharashtra’s every home. Without being boastful, it gives us and our loyal customer base, a chance to celebrate Ambari’s contribution to kitchens across Maharashtra. In today’s time, when people don’t think twice before giving a negative feedback in detail, but communicate appreciation through just likes, we felt happy when some of our customers from different cities of Maharashtra called us and praised the TVC. One memory that particularly stands out is when one of our customers called and told our representatives that the TVC feels like a complete family entertainer. We felt happy because this is exactly what Ambari spices have been doing for more than 60 years – entertaining the taste buds of people across Maharashtra”.

“Our customers called and told our representatives that the TVC feels like a complete family entertainer.”

In today’s age of analytics, there are instances when numbers alone don’t show the exact picture. The honest feedback that the brand received and the passionate manner in which they shared all the reactions with us, make us feel good about being part of a brand communication that has truly reached ‘Gharoghari’.

Crafting a reassuring brand promise in the era of RERA

With the core objective of not just building homes, but memorable lifestyles, Rachana forayed into creating developments at the most prime locations in Pune, 30 years back. Since then, these residential and commercial complexes have stood the test of time to embellish the skyline of the city. Along with delivering what suits the customers’ needs best, Rachana Lifestyle as a brand stands strong on its sound financial background and deep-rooted values of transparency.

While RERA was introduced to empower the homebuyer, there was a sense of anxiety among the buyers. At this point, it was important for a sound brand like Rachana Lifestyle to communicate the fact that home buying with them was and will always be peaceful, calm, and a delightful process. Where simple things like peace of mind when buying a home is rare, Rachana promised to make the customer’s life and world better through the lifestyles they deliver. It was important for the brand communication to embody this message.

With an objective to cater to this challenge we devised a corporate campaign highlighting how Rachana strives to make the home-buyer’s world better. This thought was based on the idea that simple joys always make the larger difference. In a clutter where everyone was making larger promises, Rachana was making a difference by delivering simple things like peace of mind, calmness, and delight. All these factors played the key role in making the world a better place. Be it through their charitable endeavours or transparent dealings!


We executed an extensive hoarding campaign across Pune. The thought of delivering a better world was highlighted through a clean layout and clear communication. By focusing on the three most important human aspects of calmness, peace, and delight, we created an unforgettable impression in the viewers’ minds. The serene yet expressive faces strategically placed and used as visuals, beautifully synced with our keywords. They added the right touch of warmth to make a better impact. Most of all, they reflected the philosophy of a ‘better world’ that Rachana Lifestyle works incessantly to deliver.

A brand campaign in real estate that spoke about the simple joys of life, was a refreshing change for the home buyers. This registered Rachana as an honest and believable brand in the hearts and minds of the people!  


Addressing the uncertainty of MOMs-to-be with care

The ONP group of hospitals are leaders for medical care in Western Maharashtra. Along with being pioneers of IVF and mother & child care in Pune, ONP is known for its expertise across India and the world. The brand goes beyond medical care by providing cutting-edge treatments combined with the comfort of experienced doctors. With a specialisation in mother and child care, they have always felt responsible for catering to the challenges of maternity, addressing them with care.

Recent surveys in the maternity sector had made it very evident that most of the mothers are advised to go through a caesarean delivery. The escalating costs and uncertainty of a normal or a Caesarean delivery, put an emotional and financial burden on many families. Be it a normal delivery or a caesarean, eliminating the emotional and financial uncertainty associated with deliveries was the need of the hour! That’s where a brand like ONP offering quality care at a fixed cost came into picture.

With an objective to cater to this challenge we devised the Master of Maternity (MOM) program for ONP. The MOM program offered uncompromising care at a fixed price of Rs. 29,999/- only. This program was made available at the ONP Tulip Hospital (Gokhale Nagar) and the ONP Meera Hospital (Shankar Sheth Road) with dedicated number of beds for the MOM initiative. We created a logo for the MOM initiative to give it a distinguished identity and caring appeal. For the full benefits of MOM, we had pre-enrollments and registrations for the moms-to-be.

Hoarding Mocks

With an agenda to make MOM reach the masses so as to fulfil ONP’s social duty towards women along with paediatric care, we created hoardings across Pune. The communication was clear and highlighted the benefits of enrolling for the MOM program. Along with outdoor media, we created excellent PR through a press release that established the objective of the initiative. A press kit was created to reach out in the best possible manner and make a mark. With good media coverage, we were able to create awareness amidst the masses through leading newspapers. This was accompanied by other print media in the form of letters, leaflets, and enrolment forms.

The MOM initiative and campaign generated a lot of buzz, and ONP received a good amount of registrations and enrolments for the same. Through this social endeavour, ONP was able to give their best care and support to women and their families.

Shaping the identity of Women Entrepreneurship in Real Estate

CREDAI Women’s Wing (CWW) is a vertical of CREDAI (Confederation of Real Estate Developers’ Association of India), and focusses on empowering women in this segment, which has been traditionally dominated by men. The CREDAI Women’s Wing aims to achieve this through training and engagement of women real estate developers, across India.

Real Estate and CREDAI have garnered a reputation of being male-centric or dominated, over the years. The first and foremost challenge faced by CREDAI Women’s Wing was to create an identity that would highlight it as an organisation run by the women, for the women.

An identity with a strong symbol can be a highly effective tool for communicating a brand’s motive and can create a lasting impression. We decided to understand the core values that strongly represent the personality of the CREDAI Women’s Wing. Through our interactions, we narrowed down on 3 key drivers –  confidence, leadership, and trust.


In India, a red bindi (a circular accessory on a woman’s forehead), is the most popular traditional yet cultural symbol for a woman. We used this red bindi to establish the woman-centric approach of CREDAI Women’s Wing. We complemented it with a free stroke that symbolised positivity and naari shakti (woman power). The font used in the identity, further strengthened this confidence and leadership values.

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Touchpoints 05-08RESULTS:
The identity formed an instant connect with the members of the CREDAI Women’s Wing. As it perfectly captured the brand motive and philosophy, it gave a great stepping stone for this new brand to impose itself in the minds of its target audience, and establish a strong connect with them.

Personifying a golden legacy across generations

A brand that is almost synonymous with being a Punekar – P.N. Gadgil is a name that stands for blind trust and purity in gold jewellery. A brand with a legacy of more than 185 years, PNG 1832 is led by Abhay Gadgil. While PNG 1832 takes forward all the core values of the pioneer brand, it also adds a contemporary twist to tradition. The location of the store – at Nal Stop – gave an edge to the brand and its promise.

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The brand PNG 1832 was to be unveiled to the people of Pune with its first store at Nal Stop. The primary challenge was to find that one crucial differentiator while staying true to the original legacy. The prosperous city of Pune is home to many jewellery brands that have a loyal customer base. Thus, the brand PNG 1832 had to be set apart from this clutter without alienating it from the pre-existing legacy of P.N. Gadgil Jewellers in Pune.

At Setu, we decided to package the longstanding legacy of the pioneer brand with an emotional hook. With the understanding that the brand has connected with families across generations, we came up with the concept of ‘Family Jewellers’. The core idea behind this thought was that the brand always took care of the customer’s interests honestly, above anything else.

The launch of the PNG 1832 store at Nal Stop was a grand success. The store was launched during the auspicious days of Navratri and thus, could align itself to the upcoming festive season in the most optimum way. The look and feel of the store set itself apart from the other jewellery outlets. However, the brand communication ensured that its legacy stayed intact.

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PNG 1832, while deriving its legacy from the pioneer brand, successfully carved a niche for itself in the hearts of Punekars. A fact that was evident from the astounding footfalls that it gathered during the festive season of Diwali as well as Dussehra.