IT’S an agency that prides itself on its ability to deliver and so build a long term relationship of “trust and dependability” with its clients. The agency was the brainchild of proprietor Ganesh Shanbhag, who launched this venture after he was advised to get into the communications business because of the ease with which he could communicate and make his point. Thus, was born Forecast Advertising in the late 1980s. However, its real milestone came in 1993 with an INS accreditation.
Agency: Forecast Advertising
Clients: IndusInd Bank Ltd, Paramount films, Kansai Paints, Ravin cables, The New India Assurance Co Ltd, MGL etc.
Head of Agency: Ganesh Shanbhag
From the time of its inception, the agency had always been skewed in favour of core operations, like design and media related work, drawing clients for that specialty by itself. But today, with a world of opportunities in a media landscape that is changing and growing, Forecast is into the market to do and deliver much more.
“Today we wish to be seen as a full service integrated communication service provider. The same basket of services we have started, in a very small way, our own PR service, we have also started an agency that looks into and advices clients on their CSR initiatives,” says Shanbhag.
The agency in fact, already has some big names for its CSR initiatives like, Tata Consultancy Services, IndusInd Bank Ltd, Mahanagar Gas Ltd (MGL) and Aavantika Gas Limited (AGL), among others.
Shanbhag says that client loyalty has seen them through the slowdown in 2008, the year in which the ad industry was hit badly. “Sixty per cent of our clients have been with us for over seven years because they trust us as dependable partners,” says Shanbhag. The agency has done a lot of BTL work with its various clients spread across sectors, including IndusInd Bank Ltd, Paramount films, Kansai Paints, Ravin Cables, The New India Assurance Co Ltd and MGL.
Shanbhag recollects how his agency worked with Ravin Cables, manufacturers of industrial cables, and helped transform them from a commodity business to a full-fledged brand.
Also in the late 1990s, the agency did branding and promotional work for Pepsi in tier 2 and tier 3 towns.
Forecast aided the Pepsi brand to seep down to these towns. “With good communication, combined with promotions, we were able to open out 1,500 outlets for Pepsi in these areas,” says Shanbhag.
For Shanbhag, innovation is a must. “Today if you want to survive, you have to expand your deliverables to add more services to your portfolio,”
He says, adding, “an agency should not be a vendor, but must be looked upon as a dependable partner who can offer solutions and upsize the value chain.”