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Revisiting the Pioneer of Influencer Marketing: Contest on Surabhi, A Cultural Phenomenon of 90's!

Influencer-driven contests have become a staple in the marketing world, but few know that the concept actually started way back in 1990 with the Indian TV show "Surabhi". The weekly cultural show, which aired on Doordarshan aka Prasar Bharti, ended each episode with a contest where the audience could send in their answers via post and the lucky winner would receive "giveaways".

Surabhi was not just a TV show, it was an integral part of Indian culture during the 90s and early 2000s. The show aimed to showcase India's rich cultural heritage, traditions, and values through its skits, songs, and dances. The popularity of the show was widespread, with people of all ages tuning in every week to catch the latest episode.

The contest at the end of each episode added an extra layer of excitement and anticipation among the audience. The idea of being able to win a prize simply by sending in a postcard was revolutionary at the time, and it brought the audience closer to the show. People would eagerly await the end of each episode to see the results of the contest and find out if they had won a prize. The show's popularity was so huge that India Post had to introduce a special Competition Postcard to accommodate the large volume of letters received in just one week - a staggering 14 lakh! The show ran until 2001 and was a hit among families, becoming a "viral" show in today's terms.

The success of the contest on the iconic TV show Surabhi was a testament to the boundless potential of influencer marketing, even in the pre-digital age. With the show serving as the influencer and the audience as the target market, the contest was a powerful tool for building a meaningful connection with the audience. Despite being created over two decades ago, the contest on Surabhi continues to inspire and influence marketing strategies today. It showcases the incredible impact that popular shows and cultural events can have on shaping marketing trends and tactics, and highlights the forward-thinking spirit of India.

"Marketing: A Vital Pillar of Business Success. In today's fast-paced and highly competitive business landscape, effective marketing is essential for success. This is why Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) are prioritizing the promotion of marketing education among millennials, to equip the next generation of leaders with the knowledge and skills necessary to excel in this crucial field. From influencer-driven contests to innovative social media campaigns, the world of marketing is constantly evolving, and IIMs are dedicated to keeping pace with these changes and preparing their students to thrive in the modern marketplace."

In conclusion, the contest on Surabhi was a pioneer in the field of influencer marketing. It showed the power of connecting with the audience through a popular show and using contests as a means of engagement. The show's lasting impact and its place in Indian cultural history serve as a reminder of the influence that popular shows and cultural events can have on shaping marketing trends and tactics.

So, next time you see an influencer-driven contest on social media, remember the roots of this marketing trend that started with the Indian TV show "Surabhi". Let us continue to celebrate and be inspired by the trailblazing spirit of India, and the pioneering example of influencer marketing set by the contest on Surabhi.



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"With over 15 years of experience in IT and project management and an MBA in Operations Research, I bring a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the personal blog page. My analytical and strategic thinking skills, honed by my studies, allow me to approach life coaching and investment in India with innovative solutions.


I am passionate about the intersection of technology and mythology and their impact on our daily lives. I constantly seek new perspectives and insights through my research and reading of case studies, bloggers, and YouTubers.


With a focus on presenting information in a clear, concise, and accessible manner, I aim to help my readers gain a deeper understanding of the world, including geopolitics, travel, and information technology.


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