Niranjan Das(Reigning Outdoor Marketing with Clarity) story in entrepreneurship should serve as a great inspiration to people breaking free from the archetypal job culture and giving wings to entrepreneurial dreams. Das(Reigning Outdoor Marketing with Clarity) was bitten by the outdoor advertisement bug when he was on a training program at Coca Cola. Fuelled by an intense desire, he founded Torrent in 1993.
Today, Torrent has catapulted to be the largest outdoor advertisement agency in Odisha with six branches across the state. It boasts of a strong team of over 50 professionals with a sound understanding of local and national festivals and seasons.
The team also has a flair for transforming failure into success with its unswerving commitment to work. He opens up in a freewheeling chat with The Interview Times.
When did you start this company? And how did you define the concept of outdoor advertisement in the 90s?
I started this company as an ad agency in 1993 and we introduced outdoor marketing after two years. Back then, outdoor marketing was based on the traditional concept like a tin board, wall paintings and there was very little scope in outdoor marketing.
What inspires you for innovative advertisement marketing?
After completion of my MBA from the Institute of Business Management, New Delhi, I(Reigning Outdoor Marketing with Clarity, Confidence & Commitment) visited a trade fair where I have seen the scope of the outdoor marketing concept and also during my internship at Coca-Cola with specialization in marketing and advertisement, I found vast outdoor promotion of Coca Cola.
Then, Sachin Tendulkar was the brand ambassador for Coca Cola. I made my mind to start something like this in Odisha.
Tell us something about your initial marketing journey in Odisha…
A journey for a successful endeavor will never be smooth. It is quite challenging when no one is aware of the concept of outdoor marketing. Convincing people for this new concept of advertisement is very difficult and I faced many ups and downs in these two decades.
Starting with the speed of cycle, the business which I have started can now match the current digital pace. In our initial days, we banked on the traditional mode of advertisements like wall paintings, teen boards and then big size hoardings as an outside advertisement.
To whom do you give the credit for your success?
What I am now is only possible due to the contribution of my father. My father was working as a School Head Master. All of my family members were government jobholders, so when I(Reigning Outdoor Marketing with Clarity) wished for doing business, my father advised me to focus on three Cs.
Maintain CLARITY, keep CONFIDENCE in you and always try to fulfill the COMMITMENT. And, he also advised if you reached the peak of success never forget the first ladder; don’t be over-excited for your present achievements and never break down for your loss.
These few lines boosted my confidence and whenever I faced any problematic situation, I always remember my father’s precious words.
What are the major challenges you faced in expanding business?
When the 1999 super cyclone pounded the entire state, I also faced a major setback. That time, I recalled the words of my father that if profit comes in our path, we should not worry about this huge loss. Don’t look down, just move ahead to achieve more than what you lost.
What were your takeaways from this major setback?
Work hard with commitment, never step back and always believe every work is your priority. No work is small and big. Learn from each and every one. Whatever you are doing and whichever business you are stepping in, just make it number one.
During1993-95, there was no such obsession for outdoor marketing. What spurred you to create your own identity?
That time, only two to three players were there in our field and the scope for was limited. I(Reigning Outdoor Marketing with Clarity) always believe in innovation and I introduced tri-vision in Bhubaneswar for the first time where one can see three visions in one hoarding. Then rooftop hoarding, advertisements on a single-pole, backlit hoarding and LED advertisements in Bhubaneswar Railway station.
What is your future business strategy?
In the coming years, there will be stiff competition in media marketing, the only solution to existing players in the business is the Innovative media. The traditional media campaign will not work for a longer period and a unique campaign with a clean concept will captivate the consumers. We have to match the taste of the consumers.
Outdoor marketing will always be the first choice for the promotional industries and digitalization has no impact on it. As per the survey report in India, digital advertisement has only a 10 percent market share.
What are the major sources of your advertising?
Consumer and Brand imaging is of vital importance. Be it a city, town or even in a small place, Billboards form an integral part of every high way as well as State & District Roads.
Torrent Advertisers is the sole Advertising right holders for 10-Railway stations of Odisha under East Coast Railway’s jurisdiction- Puri, Berhampur, Sambalpur, Balasore, Rajgangpur, Panposh, Kalinga and Bamra. It has also Sole Advertising rights of four Municipality of Odisha & has been awarded Bus shelters in Bhubaneswar & Cuttack.
The company has the mandate for Branding option on Traffic Signal post at Bhubaneswar, Sambalpur & Rourkela. I got an award for the operation and maintenance for the Bus Bay of the Bhubaneswar Smart City managed by Capital Regional Urban Transportation.
How do you deal with your fellow associates?
I am open to all my staff members; I am always standing by them. My success in the company is possible only because of the major contribution of my fellow associates. They are like family to me.