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Archana Mahadevan creative thinker indian

free spirit



brand strategist



What’s inside?

My resume

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Me... so far

#1 ad school by creativity

Who is Archana Mahadevan?

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I get a little narcissistic here

Top global business/design program by the BusinessWeek magazine Top advertising School by 4 As #1 digital media and marketing program by Ad age

Human Trafficking

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Cause related marketing campaign

A segmentation study

Lays Creative Brief

Creative Brand Management curriculum combines the fundamentals of a traditional MBA, the strategic elements of business and marketing with the real-world experience of working with creative teams to develop brand strategies that solve business problems with a heavy emphasis on team collaboration.

Culture Shock Board game concept

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Brand Strategist | Creative Thinker | Free Spirit


Archana Mahadevan

Virginia Commonwealth University, Brandcenter, Richmond, VA Master’s candidate in Creative Brand Management - 2012 Mudra Institute of Communications, Ahmedabad, India Post Graduate Certificate in Advertising Management & Public Relations - 2008 MOP Vaishnav College for Women, Chennai, India B.S. Visual Communication - 2007

300 W Franklin Richmond, VA – 23220


214-864-5390 Freelancer, Online Advertising [] Chennai, India | September 2009 to July 2010 Worked with 13 clients from various industries to improve their online presence through aggressive SEM techniques. Senior Optimization Specialist, Google India Pvt Ltd Hyderabad, India | May 2007 - September 2009 ‣ Maintained high productivity levels and consistently delivered high quality work in my core function. Received an average rating of “Exceeds expectations” during my tenure.

‣ Played a key role in developing online advertising strategies for top clients such as Ford, Gucci, eBay and

‣ Designed and delivered Google Adwords mentoring programs for new incumbents as the designated “Online


Advertising Guru” of my team. Certified as a Google Advertising Professional (GAP) having achieved 89% in the GAP test Freelance Trend Reporter, International Trend Central [] June 2006 - till date As a freelancer for an International trend reporting agency based in California, I produced several detailed reports analyzing patterns and changes in the Indian lifestyle market. Creative Trainee, JWT May 2005 - June 2005 ‣Assisted in generation and creation of advertising campaign for the launch of Ford Fiesta ‣Conducted marketing research for Reynolds


Business: Brand Auditing, Competitive Review, Situational Analysis, Consumer Research, Exploratory Research, Brand Positioning, Communication Strategy, Creative Concepting, Presentation Skills. Qualitative/Quantitative: Simmons, Mintel Report, Focus Groups, Surveys, Personal Interviews Software: MS Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint), Adobe Photoshop, Mac Programs (Keynote, iWeb, iMovie)

I was two when I made up stories about an ice-cream vendor who gave away rainbows to children When I was six I started learning music, karate and gymnastics By the time I was eight, I realized I was good at none My first time on a stage, I was asked to act like a 'rock' The stage, the spot light, the audience and the vibe has never ceased to fascinate me since Soon I scripted and directed my own play When I was ten, my dream was to be a superhero’s girlfriend

The world that exists around you is the power of your imagination.

I was 19 when I moved out to work at Google At Google, I learned about online advertising and more about life in general I craved for a life with creativity and risks I woke up one saturday morning and quit my job I started over Later, I freelanced as an online advertising strategist and became good at it I got bored, applied to the VCU Brandcenter on an impulse, not knowing what to expect

When I turned thirteen I refused to pay attention to text books and learned some of the best lessons in my life

Three months later, I moved 8000 miles from home to pursue my passion, leaving everything familiar behind

My mom wanted me to be an engineer. My dad wanted me to do something “safe”

Ironically, I finally felt at home

I took up advertising I directed two short films I spent my college days talking about brands and ads. On my first day as an intern, I learned I knew nothing I started over

I started over Today, I am a result of everything I have done and everything I haven’t Tomorrow, I might just start over

+ A global cause-related initiative to tackle the issue of Human Trafficking

Our key learning: There are a lot of organizations to rescue human trafficking victims but very few to protect them after they are rescued. Human trafficking survivors lose their right to live during the trafficking process. Right now, a few law schools and NGO’s are trying to help the survivors, but they have trouble raising funds and getting help from lawyers voluntarily to offer professional legal help.


Our Mission : We are PS. We are here to Protect Survivors of human trafficking by raising funds for school law clinics and NGO Projects; engaging people who have law skills (lawyers, law students, etc) to offer legal assistance.

Challenge: Create a new, global brand to help stop human trafficking. This brand must stem from a partnership with a charitable company of our choice. Problem: Human trafficking is the third most profitable nefarious activity after the drugs and the arms trade. It generates $32 billion per year. Around 800,000 people are affected every year. Right now it is happening in 127 countries around the world. 70% of them are female. 50% of them are children. The big question is : How can we help?

Raising funds to get professional legal help to support the survivors

The two most important and high-priority legal issues for trafficking survivors are getting a visa and employment in the country they currently are in (if it is different from their home country).

How are we doing this? By partnering up with UPS, we created UPS packaging that bears our logo and messaging. When shippers choose the PS shipping option, they donate an extra dollar to us. In our campaign, we provide ways for people to contact law clinics and NGO programs to offer their help.

Our Target : People who use express delivery service- including online-shoppers, in-store and catalog shoppers, business shippers and lawyers.

What’s in it for UPS? Gives UPS the decisive edge over the competition; Improves its presence in legal community; Becomes the shipping brand that adds meaning to gift giving.


Ambient Advertising

Print Ads

Morning Routiners 20% - Twice as likely to make coffee at home - 95% have at least one cup every day - Are currently Folgers’ core market

A segmentation study

Challenge: Folgers is losing younger consumers to cafes and energy drinks. 75% of 45-54 year-olds drink coffee once a day, but only 27% of 18-24-year-olds do. Folgers must capture this younger market before it’s too late At-a-glance: Folgers coffee provides an afternoon pick-me-up like energy drinks, but the brand only focuses on the morning in its ads - Missed opportunity to capture those who don’t drink coffee in the morning, but reach for it mid-day for energy Research methodology -Secondary research, personal interviews, online survey -Segmented young coffee drinkers by their main motivations or drinking coffee

Addicts 9% - 38% of them started drinking even before they turned 15 - View coffee as a source of comfort - Cannot get through the day without coffee

Relaxers 12% - View the experience of coffee as a treat - Only about a third have a cup every day - Would rather buy than make it at home

Socializers 9% - Most drink coffee few times a month or less - Only segment to try new flavors and care about aroma - More likely to drink in cafes than make at home

Rechargers 50% - On-the-go, don’t have time to brew a cup - More than half have a cup at least once a day - Most price sensitive segment

W hy s h o u l d Fo l g e r s go a f t e r t h e rechargers? Rechargers represent a huge opportunity for Folgers. Folgers has a strong hold on the Morning Routiners, but they represent only 20% of coffee drinkers. To Rechargers, coffee is not about the experience. They don’t care about the aroma, or families gathering around a pot of coffee—as many of Folgers ads show them. To them, coffee is simply a power nap replacement. It’s a way to get through the day

Strategy: Don’t skip a beat To Rechargers, coffee is an enabler that keeps their momentum going. With this strategy, we are telling them that they don’t have to miss a beat and can keep going at their work. This kind of message will make coffee more relevant and useful to these Rechargers

Tactics: More than half of Rechargers reach for coffee first when they need extra energy. If it’s available, they’ll drink it. But coffee isn’t always available. Our tactics work to solve this issue. We developed two tactics using Folgers Singles, which are single-serving, instant coffee bags.

Folgers Branded To-Go Cups

Vending Machine Cups

- real to-go cups (not disposable) - external pouch for Folgers’ Singles packet- just fill with water and drop bag in

- disposable branded cups with Singles bag - Folgers is where energy drinks / soda areconvenient: won’t have to go to cafe

Our insight: “Lay’s is for somebody else.” Lays Creative Brief Challenge: To bring back the luster that Lay’s classic has lost due to other variants introduced in the market. At-a-glance: To communicate that its potato chips are healthy, Lay’s classic has been emphasizing the naturalness of its products through campaigns such as ‘Happiness is Simple’. Also because of the other variants introduced in the market, Lay’s classic has lots its identity among potato chips lovers

People buy Lay’s classic for other people rather than for themselves. They consider buying Lay’s only when they are taking it to a social gathering, potluck, or a picnic. It is a safe snack to take to a party because nobody really has an opinion about it. When buying it for themselves they would prefer the special ones that have a distinctive personality. They buy the ones that they think defines them (organic, fresh, kettle-cooked)

Our target: Shameless potato chips lovers. Young male adults who value taste over calories. How do they feel about potato chips? - I love potato chips and don’t care who knows it - I don’t really care about the calories; only taste matters - I snack on potato chips when I am watching football or when I am hanging out with friends and chilling with a couple of drinks.

Strategy : What do we know? - 62% of people eat Lay’s classic only at social events such as parties or potluck - 73% of potato chips lovers eat Lay’s classic because it is there - Lay’s classic tops as a potato chips that people bring to BYOB and BYOF parties - 57% of potato chips lovers said that they preferred brands with special taste, texture, or style (Home-cooked) for themselves

Make Lays the life of every party table How does this message add personality to the brand? This message embraces the fact that Lays is bought for other people and adds a “party” personality to the brand. Lays can be positioned as a fun potato chip that is present as a companion at all parties. It is the potato chips that goes well with everything else on a party table.

Task : Create a new board game for Hasbro. Make the rules, concept, playing surface and packaging. Selling culture : Travel is an emerging trend. Given a chance most of us would love to travel and see the world around us. Some of us think travel as a vacation, some of us want to explore other cultures, some of us view it as a romantic idea to go backpacking around the world. But the bottom line is we all love travel.

Our concept : Our idea for the board game is based on the idea of exploring other cultures and learning new things about other parts of the world.

The traits : The board game has five continents and the players have to travel around each of these continents by answering questions from categories such as culture shock, landmark, language, food, and miscellaneous. The team that answers most of the question and travels around the world fastest wins.

The trick : When a team wins over a continent they can place a chip over another set of questions and block the other teams from answering some questions. These are aptly titled as layover, food poisoning, mugged, lost passport, lost luggage and missed flight.

Target : Families with multiple children Educational institutions that are striving to make learning more fun

Marketing : Our viral campaign involves unveiling a giant sized game piece placed on Barnes & Noble location which will generate buzz as the largest available game piece and will also generate word of mouth. Also each year Barnes & Nobles had 100,000 game nights across 800 locations. By distributing “Culture Shock� in Barnes & Noble we are more likely to reach our target audience.

Culture shock Language Landmarks Food Miscellaneous Your Choice



Playing Surface

Game Cards

Thanks for taking time to look through my work. I really appreciate it, and feedback is definitely welcome.

Archana Mahadevan 214-864-5390 |

Portfolio CBM  
Portfolio CBM  

Brand Management