Mayur Hola on how Brand OYO Solved for India’s Lack of Space?

Mayur Hola talks about the celebrated ‘Come to OYO’ campaign and how it repositioned what a hotel room could be, in so doing convinced people living in the same city to come to a neighbouring OYO. 

‘Come to OYO’ Marketing Campaign that Transformed the OYO Business

he campaign won big at global awards for marketing effectiveness. It won big at Jay Chiat & WARC awards. It won 2 Golds, 2 Silvers at these most prestigious marketing effectiveness and strategy awards respectively in the same year AND a Grand Prix (best of show)

Explaining the context & background behind the ‘Come to OYO’ Campaign, Mayur takes us back to 2013 when Ritesh Agarwal disrupted the hospitality industry by offering a ‘Value for Money’ hotel room that was hygienic and comfortable. He & the OYO startup team organized SME Hotel Owners under a OYO platform that created tremendous supply, with over 10,000 hotels participating.

But the explosive growth of supply led to another problem – problem of oversupply in small towns.

OYO needed to create demand for these un-fancied hotel rooms. The traditional model of business travel or tourism would not be able to drive demand for these hotels. Because the bulk of hotels on the platform are located far away from major tourist attractions or business centers. They are located in town interiors, outskirts, bylines etc.If OYO platform could not create demand for these non-traditional locations, the SME OYO owner will not be able to benefit from the platform, and may not stay on it.

The OYO team realized that it was unlikely to get out-of-towners to stay at these properties. So how do you convince a frugal Indian middle class to spend money on OYO in their own city?

One chronic issue that the OYO team realized was that the Indian middle class faced (in congested cities and crammed homes) was a lack of personal space.

OYO decided to reimagine its business from ‘ Selling Hotel Rooms’ to ’Solving for India’s Lack of Space’ . And the justification for the frugal middle class was that this additional ’Space’ could could lead to progress in their life.

It was like a cloud-based model of owning a ‘personal space’ in your neighborhood which you could access for a few hundred rupees, whenever you felt a need for advancing your life’s business.

The Big Idea was to turn the ‘Value for Money’ hotel room INTO ‘on-demand personal necessity’ thereby creating ‘A PORTAL TO PROGRESS’

This was the Big Idea behind the ‘Come to OYO’ campaign. Through 11 multi-lingual films, OYO showcased to young India , how it can use the OYO room as a portal to progress – for preparing for exams, upskilling, interview preparations etc.

These 11 films were released across three years.

Year 1 positioned OYO as a quick ‘next door escape’
Year 2 positioned OYO as a ‘utalitarian space’ that solved for your special needs
Year 3 positioned OYO as an ‘enabler of progress’ by providing space to focus

To listen to full conversation between Mayur Hola & Jasravee Kaur Chandra on ‘ Transforming Brand OYO’ our YouTube Channel

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