Missing Meter campaign – Good idea but lacks the punch

It’s not easy to come by an integrated campaign in today’s times when every other business is going online. What doesn’t help is the fact that starting a digital campaign takes less in terms of time and investment. Therefore, when a well-rounded campaign, in terms of platforms, comes to your notice, you do sit up and give it your attention.

The Times of India, a popular national daily in India, has initiated a campaign in Chennai to bring back auto meters that calibrate your fare and distance of travel. On Day 1 of the campaign, the entire front cover of the daily was dedicated to it. While the bulk of the print space was focused on explaining the campaign, a significant portion also played up on the multiple touch-points.

So what you have is print coverage through the newspaper, apart from web through missingmeter.com, social media via Facebook and Twitter, radio via Radio Mirchi channel, mobile via SMS and video via YouTube.


What’s good about this approach?

1. It is multi-pronged and targets a different audience through each platform.

2. While each platform has a similar objective, there is a unique agenda to each too. For instance, the website’s agenda is a signature campaign.

4. It has roped in endorsers for the campaign in the form of Priya Anand, an actress and Venkat Prabhu, a director. Works well in India, where brand endorsements make a difference.

However, there is scope for improvement too.

1. The campaign hasn’t created as much buzz as it could. Offline initiatives need to touch people on the streets as that is where the absence of a meter will strike the most.

2. The website seems redundant as there isn’t much that it does apart from getting people to sign up for the signature campaign. Content is missing. In fact, it is the same for two of its pages – About and Buzz.

3. The YouTube video has the potential for virality but so far has received less than 4,000 views. Could better promotion help? Perhaps, yes.

4. The social media pages on Facebook and Twitter lack a punch. Humor is missing and so is the local flavor. Boring is what defines it. Could a contest help? I bet, it would.

An integrated campaign is a good approach but lack of proper execution can mar its potential. The initiative is perhaps well-thought out, but seems like a half-hearted effort when it comes to implementation. Figuring out this missing piece is key to its success.


8 thoughts on “Missing Meter campaign – Good idea but lacks the punch

  1. I am 72 years old, living in Saligramam. I undertake frequent journeys within city. Auto drivers demand exorbitant fare. So,I travel in bus, which are always crowded and I face many hardships. If only meters fixed in autos and charge reasonable fare, I will not risk bus travel. .

  2. the idea is fine,but the auto drivers must be educated to do the work,at the same time ,no tampering should be done.

  3. Auto are mode of commuting for short distances ,where pariking is difficult.Autos come in handy when required at emergencis,with extra ordinary payment The drivers take a ride on the situation and demand and obliged.The consideration entirely left to the discretion of auto driver.
    The move to bring back the metering the charges is a welcome move.Every time when bargained for price ,the drivers refs to increase in fuel cost.
    The other metros has a good system of card showing meter reading against pyament to be made.The card shows emergency nos,dispute referrals,contact non of ownerrs and card no related with RTO reference.If this is intorduced appropriately negotiating with auto union leaders,and traffic personals.
    More over if this meter is with that of ticketing ,no argument is warrented with rhe drivers upon reaching the destination.
    I personally welcome this move.

  4. Recently I had been to New- Delhi. most of the autos are fitted with electronic Meters,.
    The tariffs are Rs.19.00 for first two kms and suusequent are Rs.6.50.per km.
    Looks like a story,but it is a fact.

  5. its a great idea.chennai people need some relief from this auto drivers ..they just kill people by charging huge sum of amount for small distance….

  6. K.R.Srinivasan, T.Nagar
    I am 78 yrs and my only means of commutation is by auto. Being a non-pensioner, it is difficult to pay exhorbitant fares in Chennai. I was at Bombay for 26 years and the autos there charged reasonably. They also return the balance amount without our asking. In Kerala too they charge Rs.12 minimum and Rs.8 for subsequent kms. Then why not Chennai? Do they get the backing of influential section of people? If necessary, all all all of us come together and file a PIL to enact a suitable law to control auto fares

  7. this campaign is good….hope there will be a positive result at least this time for which ordinary people in Chennai are yearning …….

  8. There should be political will to control these auto men and strict punishment should be enforced by the traffic police.Name and address of the driver should be displayed in that auto as in Bangalore.Police officials should be allowed free hand to # hold f the erring autofellows who are rude and behavig like dhadhas .

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