Mirchi appoints Farhad K. Wadia as ‘Head-North America’. Wadia, a proficient media, live entertainment, and recording industry professional, is responsible for the expansion of the brand’s footprint in the United States of America and Canada.
In an exclusive interaction with Media Infoline, Mr. Farhad K. Wadia talks about the brand’s challenges and expectations in a new zone. Read the full interview here:
Q) What are your roles and responsibility for Mirchi’s expansion in the USA and Canada?
My role very simply put is to launch, develop and successfully run Mirchi’s Media & Entertainment Platform offerings in key North American cities that we have identified as markets that have a sizeable Indian/South Asian population and constitute our audiences.
Q) How will this expansion help the brand Mirchi?
Mirchi’s brand has become synonymous with the South Asian population and diaspora around the world as a quality provider for media and entertainment across multiple formats and platforms. The brand Mirchi is an aggregator of these audiences for our corporate customers, thereby helping them connect to their target customers and achieving their core advertising and communication objectives. Thus, the more markets that Mirchi conquers, the better its reach amongst our target segments.
Q) What are your expectations from these markets in terms of listenership and consumption?
We want Mirchi to be the GO-TO radio, music, and entertainment platform for South Asians in these markets. We aim to bring entertainment, community news, and education on issues that matter to them like, immigration, women’s Issues, updates from India, etc. As long as we can entertain, inform and educate our listeners they will consume our varied content across platforms and thus we will be well placed to offer our clients an audience and niche customer base for their goods &services.
Q) What are your plans for content creation within these markets?
We have multiple plans to create local content via on-air programming, entertainment events, concerts, talent hunts, community and family-based socio-cultural events that are festival-centric, amongst others. We also plan to import some of Mirchi’s biggest Indian properties like the Mirchi Music Awards, The Great Indian Food Festival, etc. to these markets.
Q) What are the branding and marketing challenges in North America during these tough times?
Branding and marketing on a mass scale using traditional media like print, outdoor advertising, and TV is an expensive proposition in a country as vast as the US or Canada wherein our audiences are not only diffused and scattered but also are not the ethnic majority in any city. Moreover, the pandemic, local gathering restrictions and slim budgets make marketing in North America a challenging proposition. However with the intelligent use of targeted social media – paid and earned- via our viral programming clips is the marketing tool of choice for Mirchi in the US.
Q) What are the difficulties of making a presence in entirely a new country?
There are many challenges to launching a media platform in a new International City. These challenges range from small execution teams, slim budgets for advertising/activation, and a diffused target audience that is in the minority in these International markets. Having said that, Mirchi has created a strong impact in the NJ market, and become the market leader for radio in and around the Indian majority hub of Edison. Our web broadcast in NYC and also the NJ feed has a huge listenership that is growing every day with the download of our US Radio Mirchi Digital app. This market, to us, is a growth market as Indians & South Asian immigrants are more often than not educated and affluent folks. They constitute the core audience that we aggregate for our clients.
Q) Tell us a little about your immediate competitors. How are you planning to compete with them?
The way we at Mirchi operate is that we don’t waste our time and effort worrying about competition. We invest that time, energy, and effort in churning out a superior entertainment product that cuts across various media platforms in broadcast, entertainment, and via the web that entertains and regales our audiences. By doing this we ensure brand loyalty that is unparalleled in the business. This, therefore, helps us achieve our client’s an advertising and communication goals. When one provides a superlative product and offering, competitors become irrelevant. A short answer, thus, is we will concentrate on consistently improving our product offerings and that will ensure Mirchi’s dominance.