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Ad firms on trail of Terracan account

Calcutta, June 23: Advertising agencies Saatchi & Saatchi, Grey Worldwide and Bates India have all started pitching for the ad campaign for Hyundai Motor’s Terracan which is expected to be rolled out in early August.

Sources said all three agencies have made formal presentations to the company.

Terracan, a seven-seater sports utility vehicle (SUV), has been positioned in the European market as the ‘king of the land’. According to the company ‘can’ has been derived from khan which means ‘king’ and ‘terra’ means ‘of the land.’

When contacted, the official spokesperson of the company said, “We are holding discussions with some ad agencies. However, we cannot name them. The deal will be finalised in another two weeks.”

In India, the Terracan will be positioned as ‘a true off-roader’. The campaign will be based on the theme ‘throw some bends and the Terracan goes rocking, rolling, jerking and bouncing in an unseemly fashion’.

“It will be placed as an upmarket car comparable with the Pajero,” sources said.

India is a different market as far as positioning of cars is concerned. Even the automobile makers have to brand their vehicles in a different manner. Hyundai had positioned Accent in an altogether different fashion. It had to brand Accent as Accent Viva to give it a different look for the Indian market, advertising industry officials said.

Hyundai Motor spends Rs 80 crore on advertising and promotional campaigns. Saatchi & Saatchi had introduced the Santro to the Indian public. It had won the Hyundai Motor account in 1997 in a fiercely-fought multi-agency pitch.

The Santro campaign — which revolved around a series of interactions between actor Shah Rukh Khan and a certain ‘Mr Kim’ of Hyundai — successfully introduced the Hyundai corporate brand in India and reiterated its leadership in the international automobile industry.

This campaign helped to establish Hyundai and Santro as very strong and successful brands in the domestic automobile market and went on to win national and international awards. It won Saatchi & Saatchi the prestigious Advertising & Marketing Effectiveness award in the product introduction category at the New York Festivals in 2000.

The tie-up between Hyundai Motor and Saatchi & Saatchi came to an end after a three-year stint. The tie-up was again resumed to position Santro as a ‘Sunshine Car’. The Santro Xing, Sonata campaigns are also being handled by Saatchi & Saatchi. The Accent account is with Grey Worldwide.

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