MUMBAI: 11 February, 2009 was a really busy day for Shah Rukh Khan. The actor – producer was seen hopping from one event to the other all on the same day to promote his forthcoming home production Billu.
Khan has teamed up with Tupperware, Century Plyboards, Gitanjali and Hungama Mobile for the co-promotion of Billu, which is made under the Red Chillies Entertainment banner and is directed by Priyadarshan.
Khan first met the winners of the Tupperware contest at his bungalow, Mannat, after which he attended the press meet of Gitanjali where he also interacted with the winners of the D’damas contest. After that he attended the press meet of Century Plyboards and last of all he was seen at the Hungama press conference.
This is the first time a film has formed an association with the direct marketing and plywood industry. The brands mostly seen on the big screen so far have been cola brands like Coca-Cola or Mountain Dew or mobile phone brands like Nokia.
A co-branded TVC has been created using relevant footage from the film Billu and the commercial with the tagline of ‘Tupperware hai sabke liye’ has a direct connect with the movie’s story line. With this TVC, the brand will make its presence felt on television for the first time. The Tupperware contest promo has relevant film footage along with the brand products. Besides an opportunity to meet SRK, Tupperware also gifted the winner free couple movie tickets and a Tupperware gift hamper worth Rs 10,000. The next 10 winners through lucky draw got Tupperware gift hampers worth Rs 2500.
Tupperware India marketing director Anshu Bagai said, "Tupperware’s association with a Shah Rukh Khan starrer is a unique way of spreading brand awareness as the film directly appeals and reaches out to our potential customers. We also feel that this association will set precedence for direct selling companies to seek Bollywood as a mass appeal platform to connect with their customers."
Another TVC has also been created with Century Plyboard, which was telecast on earlier this month titled ‘Sab Sahe, Mast Rahe,’ which also has a connect with the story line of Billu.
Century Plyboard joint managing director Sanjay Agarwal said, "We are extremely happy to join hands with Shah Rukh Khan in promoting his film. Bollywood has the power to touch billions across the nation, and this maiden venture from Centuryply breaks new grounds in marketing in the plywood industry. With the slowdown doing the rounds, such an association helps a brand get better returns, gives it star leverage. The slowdown has been a boon for the entertainment industry as it has given these brands and the entertainment industry an opportunity to partner and leverage the entire situation and make more noise about themselves, which will give them better value for the money spent, Bollywood and cricket are the only two mediums, which connect the country through out and majority of corporate are going blind with cricket. We being into the life style segment have decided to move on with glamour industry."
Additionally, Gitanjali’s D’damas jewellery brand had organized a nationwide contest "Meet and Greet SRK – Valentine contest." The contest ran from 8 – 10 February, 2009 and could be entered by purchasing D’damas jewellery and calling up a toll free number.
Ten winners of the D’damas contest got to interact with Khan at an event organized by Gitanjali. The event opened with a performance by Sandip Sopparkar’s troupe and a grand entry made by Khan through a big cut out of a heart to go with the theme of the contest. Out of the 10 winners two were chosen through a lucky draw after which Khan picked up the card with the final winners name – Deepa Jain.
Hungama is creating a collision of the film world of Billu and the digital world of social networks. Just like the film Billu is about two worlds coming together with some special moments between two friends, Hungama Digital has created an application called Billu "Dosti Ke Rang, Shah Rukh Ke Sang" where one can create a group photograph of their gang with pictures that one uploads or from social network profiles and Khan will be a part of the picture. He will also sign each photograph besides picking one lucky gang himself and attending their actual reunion, hosted by Hungama Digital.
Hungama Digital Media Entertainment managing director and CEO Neeraj Roy said, "With the film Billu, Hungama has taken the theme of the movie and created a relevant product for the digital platform. Today, digital marketing has moved beyond just movie websites and blogs, to using the medium to get a connect with the stars and movie concepts."
Khan added, "Internationally all that is written on the Internet is accessed and used so it helps." Besides this Hungama has also developed other products as part of the digital promotion for Billu for the digital and mobile space like Billu’s Official makeover Salon, Billu Digital Contests and a karaoke application on WAP.
Khan seems to have left no stone unturned as far as the promotion of Billu is concerned. Besides promoting the film via these activities, he has also been promoting his film by putting up banners of Billu at the barber shops and salons all across the city. Khan’s television production company Red Chillies Idiot Box produced show Ghar Ki Baat Hai on NDTV Imagine also had a special appearance last week by the movie’s lead actor Irrfan Khan, wherein the barber shop was integrated with the serial’s plot.
Apart from Irrfan, Billu stars Lara Dutta and Rajpal Yadav and is slated to release on 13 February, 2009.