Thursday, February 24, 2011

In praise of cute kids

People have an unreasonable liking for children and dogs and nowhere else does that liking make itself apparent more than in television commercials. Remember the McDonalds “swing’ commercial where the child smiles and cries with every movement of the swing as the signage keeps appearing and disappearing?

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Let the games begin!

Thankfully all the pre-World Cup hype, hoopla and spin are over and it is time for the actual cricket to take centre-stage. All the former World Cup-winning captains have done their promotional bit and will give way (reluctantly perhaps) to the winners of the 2011 World Cup. Since I believe in the wisdom of the statement “Forecasting is difficult, particularly of the future” I will not stick my neck out (as I did before the Ashes) and stop with merely saying that both my heart and head say that this is perhaps India's best chance to win the cup.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Software frowns while the rest of India smiles

Brands makes waves, headlines and more often than not profits. Not so long back software was king and it took Bangalore along with it. Bangalore preened itself, without really doing too much, on the spawning of words like “Bangalored”. When Infosys was listed on Nasdaq it certainly and deservedly made it to the front pages. When Narayana Murthy's driver was declared a crorepathi the news made waves as did a host of other bits of news which in hindsight are no more than trivia like the Murthys not using domestic help. Then hipper sectors like retail, infrastructure and venture capital pushed software from the front pages and often even the business sections of the newspaper. They were no longer “breaking news” after all there were not too many scams there! NR Narayana Murthy whom media loves, moved out of an active role in Infosys and Nandan Nilekani moved on to handle the prestigious UID project. Suddenly the brand did not seem to have high profile spokespersons. Students of engineering colleges held appointment orders which had everything except a precise date of joining. The detractors and the cynics kept reminding us about the inability of Indian software to move up the value chain and the recession saw a number of people being laid off though PR companies working like beavers kept the bad news out of the media.