Google is eager to see Google+ succeed in India and Bollywood actor and producer Shah Rukh Khan wants to market his upcoming movie Ra.One to the large Indian online audience. The result: a partnership announced on Monday that is intended to be of mutual benefit to both parties.
Google India head Rajan Anandan announced in a conference with Shah Rukh Khan today that the Bollywood actor will be participating in live chats with fans on Google+ as part of an agreement which will see Google promoting the movie’s channel on YouTube. Ra.One is also currently being heavily advertised on Google’s AdWords channels.
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Shah Rukh Khan, arguably the most popular actor India has ever produced, is keen to use every promotional tool in his arsenal to promote his upcoming sci-fi superhero movie Ra.One. It already has a presence on practically every single social network out there—from Facebook and Twitter to Blogger, Linkedin, Orkut and Picasa—and has an official website, movie merchandise being sold on its own online store, a graphic novel and online games.
It’s an interesting announcement, both from Google’s perspective and from Bollywood’s. It is the first time that an Indian movie has so thoroughly embraced online advertising and engagement with fans. Couple that with the increase in online distribution of Bollywood movies on Yahoo! and YouTube and it signals that the industry is making a concerted effort to tap into the online market.
This move also shines a light on Google’s continuing efforts to popularise its products and services in India. The company has revealed in the past that it lays great importance in the booming online industry in the country and moves like these are an indication that it has a finger on the pulse of the Indian audience. The best way to gain attention in India is to associate yourself with either Bollywood or cricket, and Google has been doing both with aplomb.