UjayaShakya has over 18 years of diverse experience in the field of strategic 360-degree communication, branding and social communication development. He is the recipient of the prestigious Flame Leadership Award 2018 from Rural Marketing Association of India (RMAI) in Mumbai last May. He has authored book on branding and advertising called ‘Brandsutra’, which was published in the year 2015. A regular columnist for international publications on Nepal advertising and is proud to have started the first regular advertising column in Nepal called ‘Brand Basics’. He is also frequently invited as a jury member for global advertising & brand awards across the globe. This year, he is part of the jury at Festival of Media Global, Rome, The One Club New York/ Young ones, Ad Stars, South Korea, ECI Awards, Beijing, Flame Award Asia, Mumbai.
He established Outreach Nepal in 2003, which is the most awarded agency group based in Kathmandu with dedicated verticals specialized in Media Planning & Buying, Contemporary Creative Solutions, Experiential Marketing & Activation, Rural Communication & Visual Merchandising, Digital & Social Media Optimization, PR & Event Management.They have been winning awards not just within Nepal but also in many global forums across Asia for some of their outstanding work. Thus, giving recognition to Nepalese advertising in the international arena. They are one of the largest and most reputed agency group in Nepal.
In an exclusive chat with BharathViswanath, the COO of Fourth Dimension Media Solutions, Ujaya Shakyahad delved deep into the Media and Advertising Landscape in Nepal:
Q. What is the landscape of Nepal as a media market?
A. Ours is the growing economy, with an impressive GDP of 7.5% for the last fiscal year and continuous stability for last few years, accelerating business growth to both local and global companies who are operating in Nepal. This is also boosting advertising industry, which I assume has an annual growth of about 15%. Our media options are expanding across print, television, radio and of course, rapid rise of digital media as well. Traditional media still is the major contributor with about 90% market share, of which print is still the largest business contributor in terms of value. The latest data shows that we have around 110% mobile penetration of which almost 52% is smartphones giving opportunities to multimedia contents.
Facebook is massive penetration with over 10 million people registered from Nepal while the country’s population is about 30 million; that means every third person is registered with facebook now. Though, things might change in future, as of now, traditional media is quite strong and impactful, and will remain strong at least for couple of years, unlike other developed markets.
Q. How big is your local market in Nepal and how much of dependence do you put to the global brands on the advertising platform in your path.
A. There hasn’t been any study to indicate the contribution of global verses domestic brands in terms of their advertising revenue, but, I assume it must be between 50:50 ratio in the recent few years as domestic brands have also started to aggreesively promote their brands specially with the new generation at the helm, who has had the exposure of foreign studies, and now having joined their family businesses. Also with heavy investment in infrastuture in the country, there are many cement and steel brands which have taken aggressive approach in promoting their brands. There has also been lots of investment in financial and insurance sector in the recent times, who still need to invest in their brand recognitions as they are still in the introductory phase.
Q. How many of Indian brands have an exposure to Nepal ?
Q. What sort of platform do they choose to reach out to the audience in Nepal ?
A. Major FMCG brands are concentrating on television channels and print media. In case of automobile and consumer durables, its majorly in print. Few of them also have good presence in social media now.
Q. We could see you in many media events like Cannes, Festival of Media , Goafest and so on, how much of your company has an exposure to the Indian market or the outside Nepal market?
A. As a group, we have a exposure of successfully launching many global and Indian brands in Nepal market. We have had long term relationship with these brands for Nepal as their true brand custodians, and have worked together to make many of them the category leaders today. As a home-grown agency group, we are well versed with good consumer insights of our market, which becomes very relevant not just to produce award winning work but also effective for our market. Having said that we as a agency group have won many awards for our work, not just within Nepal but also beyond Nepal. We have won maximum recognition for Nepal in the global forums, thus being pivotal in giving recognition to Nepal advertising in the international arena.
Q. Could you please explain to me the kind of portfolio that you handle as a company on the media platform in Nepal?
A. We work for some of the largest and key global brands in FMCG, Automobiles, Financial sectors and consumer durables.
A. The future is already changing, and one of the reasonswe participate in these global seminars is to learn and keep ourselves updated. We are continously pushing our team and getting ourselves ready for the future revolution that will help us to work with our clients, and give them competitive edge over their competition.
Q. Currently when you talk digital revolution in Nepal is it restricted to searches in social media or are you also getting into content in terms of creating content for the Nepali market?
A. ‘Content’ is going to be the next big thing in marketing. Hence,storytelling will be at the heart of it. With digital gaining precedence, storytelling aspect is going to become much bigger in future. Of course, we are also exploring ideas to get into the content space. But as of now, social media ecosystem and search will also play a key role in our growth in the future.
Q. Could you talk to us about Nepal as a market whats the population, the penetration of television, whats your media landscape so that it gives the brand a better understanding about what that market is as far as an Indian perspective is concerned?
A. The national dailies in terms of print have claimed print circulation of 2 million plus everyday and in the case of television the reach is above 70%.
Q. This is share between how many Television channels?
Q. How about the publications?
A. In terms of national dailies that willl be over 12.
Q. How about the radio stations?
A. We have many radio stations. In my estimate, around 300 plus registered FM stations pan Nepal. Every key town in Nepal has around 3- 5 FM stations, Kathmandu valley alone has 30 plus FM stations.
Q. How big is your outdoor business in Nepal ?
A. Outdoor as of now is not very organised but I see some good efforts being taken up by younger generation, who has started looking into the outdoor as a lucrative medium. Innovative bus stands, Light boxes in the street light pole across Kathmandu valley and also traffic posts are a case in point. Hopefully this sector will get more organized in the near future.