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Online auto marketplace Droom to spend Rs225 crore in ad blitz

LiveMint logoLiveMint 04-07-2017 Saumya Tewari

New Delhi: Online automobile marketplace and services platform Droom Monday said it will spend Rs 225 crore in an advertising blitz in the next 12 months to create a national footprint. A Rs100-crore television campaign made by advertising agency Contract and GroupM-owned media agency Motivator will begin by the end of the week.

Droom offers a range of used as well as new cars, motorcycles, scooters and cycles, and provides car rental services.

A total of three television ads are planned to connect with consumers and create awareness on the benefits of online automobile transactions. The campaign will also have print, below the line (BTL), outdoor and digital legs.

Sandeep Aggarwal, founder and chief executive of Droom, said in an email response, “We have decided to spend money on mass market now because we are ready to showcase the Droom experience and the automobile ecosystem we built ground up to mass audience. We have the largest base of listings, auto dealers and number of cities with buyers and sellers that we must take our platform and services to mass audiences.”

Aggarwal said in the last 30 months, Droom has become the largest auto portal in India with 65% market share. “During this time, we built many important ecosystem tools that are important to buying and selling, instantaneously available and free. So, with the mass market budget, we expect mass adoption of these products as well,” he added.

Ashish Chakravorty, national creative director at advertising agency Contract said that upcoming campaign shows how Droom put buyers in a position of advantage by equipping them with science and data.”When a used car changes hands, the entire transaction is skewed towards the seller. The buyer is forced to trust the seller’s word and his own instinct. We picked up these simple observations and buyer pain points.”

Interestingly, e-commerce, which was one of the largest advertisers in 2015 with 10% share, contributed only 4% to overall advertising spends which stood at Rs49,480 crore in 2016, according to a Pitch Madison report dated 15 February 2017. The investment by e-commerce category decreased by more than Rs500 crore across television, print and radio in 2016. Apart from big players like e-commerce marketplace Amazon, online travel agents like Yatra and MakeMyTrip, online firms continue to play safe on media spends.

Started in 2014 by Aggarwal, who also founded e-commerce marketplace ShopClues, Droom has raised $45 million till date from early-stage technology fund Beenext, Lightbox and Japan’s start-up investment and incubation firm Digital Garage among others. It offers a range of used as well as new cars, motorcycles, scooters and cycles, provides car rental services and a host of other services around vehicle loans and insurance, roadside assistance and tools to determine the fair value of a pre-owned automobile. Droom competes with online classified portals like OLX and Quikr and discovery platforms such as CarDekho.com and Carwale.com.

Headquartered in Gurgaon, Droom employs over 250 people and claims to have a 1,50,000-strong auto dealers network and a presence in over 500 cities across the country.

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