In Conversation with L.S Krishnan, Business Head, Amagi Media Labs

What are few of the best practices to follow when scouting for partnerships?

While scouting for partnerships, brands should have a proposition and target segment fit. Needless to say that business partnerships should be mutually beneficial and open new profitable opportunities; either open a new customer segment/market or leverage an existing customer base for solving a unique customer problem, or gain new ways of making the product/or solution accessible ( distribution), or simple to gain from positive brand imagery. Moreover, brands should keep in mind that partnerships are meant to add value to the end consumer and they should be able to see the power of such partnerships and at the end be commercially viable.

How does brand partnership give a fresh lease of life to the brand?

Brand Partnerships are meant to do that only while achieving a commercial goal. They give brands not only fresh customers but also new ways to solve a customer problem. The kind of partnerships and partners also reflect brands’ strategic direction and how it wants to position itself.

Can you share an example of what you think has been a successful brand partnership?

If we look at various brand partnerships, one of the best examples would be the long-term partnership of MTV & Coke Studio in which each brand leveraged the brand value of each other.

On a tactical side – the joint communication between Olx and Flipkart where you could sell used products on OLX and buy new products on Flipkart was an interesting partnership.

What is your advice to partnerships that are ruled by the `hotness’ quotient of a brand and not necessarily the fit?

Such partnerships may not have a sustaining effect on the business, though this will give have an effective impact from an outer visibility point of view. For example; “Ariel — recommended by LG” helped Ariel strengthen its distinctive and authentic cues in the market. In this case product category is completely un-related but both brands leveraged on each other’s brand credibility and imagery.

In terms of metrics, what do you suggest brand partnerships should look at?

As mentioned earlier, the partnership objective should fit among one of the business objectives described above. One can evaluate its effectiveness by looking at the parameters for success both before and after the tie-up.

Profile:

L.S. Krishnan, Business Head, Amagi Media Labs

He is also a speaker at Brand Partnership Meet 2016. #‎brandsmeet‬

L.S. Krishnan, popularly known as L.S., is a media and advertising professional with more than 25 years of experience. L.S. joined Amagi as the Business Head in 2012. Prior to this, he was the Business Head at Sakal Group.

A graduate from Delhi University majoring in Economics along with a Master’s in Marketing Management from Jamnalal Bajaj, L.S. is known for his expertise across diverse media functions – ad sales, digital media, client servicing, media buying, and P & L management – which stems from his rich experience of working with some of the largest blue-chip media companies in India. At The Times of India Group, where he started his career, L.S. established an understanding of media from a sales perspective. His stint as the head of buying at Fulcrum, JWT’s dedicated media buying arm for Unilever brands, gave L.S. an in-depth and well-rounded understanding of the media from an investment and buying perspective. Given his quest for challenges, L.S. familiarized himself with the online media space when it was at a very nascent stage in India. In his role as Vice President (Business Development) at Mediaturf Worldwide (an e-Ventures & Euro RSCG company), he was responsible for
creating an ad network on the lines of Double Click. With managing media investments being his core passion, L.S. subsequently moved to Rediffusion DY&R where he was head of the Tata Group AoR, managing over Rs. 200 crore of media investment. Later on, shifting his base to Delhi, L.S. moved on to GroupM (WPP), India’s largest media buying house, as General Manager of Maxus. Here, he set up Matrix, WPP’s first foray into the sales and content management side of media. Later, L.S. joined Mudra Communications as President of the media division, Mudra Max. His last assignment was with Sakal Papers Limited, as the Business Head, where he was responsible for the P&L of the company with a turnover of over Rs. 400 crore and an employee base of 2,200.

About the author  ⁄ Tuhina Anand

Tuhina Anand

Tuhina thrives working in an entrepreneurial environment. In the past, she has worked with both digital media start-ups and leading publications. She has been writing specifically on advertising, media and marketing. With more than a decade of experience, she enjoys creating and curating content and understanding brand complexities. Follow @TuhinaAnand

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