The Mass Act for the Masses

As India mourns the loss of YSR, its pertinent to remember him as one of a rare kind, among politicains. YSR was among the last of a rare breed of leaders. Leaders with Mass following.

YSR burst on to the political scene with an act that was an iconic mass act. The Padayatra. That was the scorching summer of 2003. What's remarkable about what he did was the fact that he used a tool that may not have found takers in a world of technology to his advantage, to reach out to people to whom technology means nothing. People sans technology. People who are called the masses. The only people in India who can pilot you to political victories.

In India the mases are where there's nothing else. To have them on your marketing radar means abandoning tools that are urban and irrelevant to such masses. It means rethinking almost everything that's otherwise a taken for urban consumers. It means rewriting the classic Four Ps. The product has to drive and demonstrate functional value. Aspirations built through communiques have to reek of regional flavours. Distribution would mean hitting the dusty non-existent roads. And prices have to fit into tight purse strings.

In short, it means embarking on a different journey. A journey called the Padayatra.


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