Wednesday, October 19, 2016

The solved Mystery of Bookmyshow Cashbacks & Discounts

There was a time when i had to struggle to get discounts or free tickets on Bookmyshow website. For the past few weeks, i see 50% Coupons, Rs 100 Off coupons! What changed? And suddenly?! Did we stop watching movies in India? Did Bookmyshow miss me?

I realized the reason why i am getting all this free stuff - Paytm! Yup, Paytm have started selling Movie tickets and they are giving out offers like "Buy 1 Get 1", Rs. 100 Cashback! Like these -

Oooooh, So that's why!
Up until now, Bookmyshow had that edge over most of the other "ticket booking" websites. Almost all of my friends were used to Bookmyshow. But things started changing. I now see my friends using Paytm for booking tickets. Bookmyshow has a "real" competitor now and somebody with deep pockets! Let's see how this turns out in the end, until then i am off to a movie which gives me Rs. 100 cashback!

Friday, April 15, 2016

Taxes and the war!

If you didn’t know, IRS has a “Internal Revenue Manual”. It is a new hires guide to taxing! For example - You want to know what happens to tax collection if there is a “Nuclear war”? No taxes - eh? No, IRS (or the FEMA) has already figured it out.

The IRS has created a section in the Manual called “National Emergency Operations”. That section mandated that 30 days after a nuclear strike, the IRS would regroup and start, again, to collect taxes. It would do so even if it meant a total overhaul of the corporate hierarchy; the plan specifically noted that employees could be reassigned, without regard for rank or seniority, into any job essential to the collection of taxes. The good news? According to the New York Times, if you are delinquent in paying your taxes, the IRS’ new action plan assumed that yours would be more difficult to collect, so they’d ignore you in favor of current taxes.

Bummer!!! You can never escape one thing in this living world - Taxes!

But in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes. - Benjamin Franklin.

Information on this post was gathered by Now i Know newsletter.

Friday, September 25, 2015

The Axis of Junk Food!

          Eat healthy, Cut down on the Sugar, stay away from Junk food. This is pretty much what i see on my Facebook feeds and also on every other news sites "Health" columns. Ofcourse, whenever i read them, i think to myself "I resolve to eat healthy from this moment onwards". Suddenly, "Dude, Coffee?" my colleague says. Being a man of strong resolve, i of course, agree. I take 3 shots of "Espresso" and add on some milk. It tastes horribly bitter. I lump in the sweet awesome white sugar and it tastes perfect! There goes my "eating healthy" resolution!

         That was a rant. What i wanted to say was how easily we give in to our temptations related to Food specially Junk Food. With the advent of "Food Delivery" services in Bangalore (and india), it has become easier to binge on the Fried, Oily, Potatoy, Tastes-awesome-but-kills-you kind of food. I realized this when i saw an Ad on TV by Faasos. It turns out, there is a store "very close" to my place and it takes about 15mins for them to deliver their tasty hot Wraps. After hogging on their food and waiting for the "guilt" to get over, i mapped out all the "Fast Food" places around me. I realized i am swarmed and surrounded by it! No wonder its easy to give in to the temptation!

          See the infographic which maps out how close the centers of Evils are!


The Lyrics and the Music. Awesome!

aayiram sooriyan suttaalum (Thousand Suns might explode at once)
karunaiyin varmam karainthalum ( Mercy may cease to exist)
vaan varai adharmam aandalum ( The evil might become very powerful)
manithan anbai maranthaalum ( A human may forget the emotion of love)
valiyaal un uyir theinthaalum ( Pain would eat you slowly)
un kaadhal azhiyaadhey ( But your love will never leave you)!

Ok, Edited to add this - not the music, the picturization of the song is top notch. And, yes, Parvathy's look in the song - gorgeous is an understatement!

Here's a video of her in a Malayalam movie called "Charlie". Good song.

Friday, September 11, 2015

The Upside down revolution is here

        You know what i hate the most apart from getting up from bed in the mornings? Holding my
phone upside down. Yes, i hate it so much that i want to throw the phone to the
wall. Imagine this, you wake up and you are already pissed that you have to getup AND go to work. You pick up your phone and everything is UPSIDE DOWN!!! You can't read a thing, your emails are all gibberish, your texts don't make any sense. You get a call and the contact is displayed upside down. Goddammit! You hate your life, you curse GOD and you might not even want to continue living.

        Sure, you can turn the phone around and get back to being normal. But why would i do that? I have paid "money" to buy the phone, the money i have earned by selling my soul to the devil. Why can't the damn phone, for which i have to pay, handle such a simple thing? Phone Bro, you are designed to be a "BAR"! It doesn't matter which side is up (or down), you should work both ways and make sense. But you don't and i hate you.

       Ok, Why am i ranting about upside down phones? Because, the answer is here. Somebody with a angel in their heart has thought of this issue and has designed for this exact problem. Ladies and gentlemen of the pissed off world, i present to you THE BEST "ALSO WORKS UPSIDE DOWN" smart phone in the world - Panasonic . I know its a Panasonic phone, but the phone is named weirdly like its written upside down. This is what i call Innovation. Take that Intuit. Not only it has the upside down feature, it also has speakers and microphones on both sides, both sides! 

Without wasting more time, i present to you - THE AD -

P.S : This blog is in no way an endorsement of the product. Please buy this product only after making an informed decision.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Once upon an Invite

Found these "gems" hanging around in the drafts! This was when i was trying out different "smart-aleck" wedding invitation wordings!

Hey Folks,
When, some of them went on to say, "Marriages are made in heaven", others went on to add, "So are ... thunder and lightning" :-).
Well, ignoring all those warnings i have decided to go ahead :-).
So, find attached the invitation to my wedding reception, on 18 February 2009.
The reception is from 07 00 PM to 10 00 PM.

See you at the venue ;-)

Hey Folks,
Some say, Marriage is an alliance of two people, one of whom never remembers birthdays and the other who never forgets!
Well, hoping to remember all the birthdays, i have decided to go ahead :-).
So, find attached the invitation to my wedding reception, on 18 February 2009.
The reception is from 07 00 PM to 10 00 PM.
See you at the venue ;-)

This day I will marry my friend, The one I laugh with, live for, dream with - Rathna!
I am getting married on 18th Feb 2009! I hope that you will join us in this celebration on a important day in our lives!
Please find attached the invitation to my wedding reception, on 18 February 2009.
The reception is from 07 00 PM to 10 00 PM.
See you at the venue ;-)

Monday, April 01, 2013

Disruptive Innovations

Innovations are always great! And then, there are innovations where in people come up with products which are so awesome that they shake up the whole industry. The companies which once had a "strong" foothold will need to rethink their strategy, redesign their project so that they comply with the new Innovation, because the crowd is slowly moving away! 
Now, when we think about "Innovation" we think of something that needs to be invented or  trying to come up with something that no one has even thought of before! Not necessarily; think about iPhone. Touch Screens were already there before Apple got into Phone business. Nokia tried and threw it away, unfortunately! Facebook, which came after Myspace and pounded it to the depths of the underworld. Last heard, Myspace is being relaunched. 
Now, One such product which has a potential to be a "Disruptive Innovator" is Simple. is a product which can potentially replace "offline" banks. 

Why am i writing about this product? Well, provides an online Banking solution, completely online, An Amazing "analytics" about your finances, Deposit your checks by scanning them from your smartphones, Attach photos to your transactions - basically making your banking experience cool!

Lets wait and see if this innovation unfolds right in front of our eyes or if they just "fold" up.

Read more - Simple

P.S: If you are in the US, give it a try!

Friday, December 14, 2012

Sit Down!

...And give me all your money.

So, here i was, sitting in front of the TV watching "Sangam" on Zee Classic. Eventually got bored of it and was surfing around for something interesting. I got see an Ad asking me to "Sit Down"! It turned out to be a Coffee day Ad. I have never actually seen CCD do this kind of marketing before. Infact, Not just on TV, there were no CCD Ads on the print media, Radio, Flyers! So Why now? Could Starbucks be the reason? Probably not. If we see what Starbucks has in store for India (in the short term), CCD should do just fine for some more time -
However Starbucks is reportedly rethinking its earlier strategy of a rapid scale-up of 50 stores in one year. Having learnt a lesson from its venture in Australia which saw deep losses and multiple store-closures, in India Starbucks is looking for a slow and solid entrenchment. Tailoring food products to suit the Indian palate, it plans to launch three stores in the six months after November. However, tapping the Delhi market has been postponed.
Ref: Money Control

With CCD having over 1500 Stores all over India and a solid brand name, CCD can breathe easy for some more time! So why this "sudden" marketing strategy? Here's why -

So imagine their surprise when a survey showed that only 47 percent of their target customers in the 17-35 age bracket were keen to visit cafes. "This was a huge customer segment that we were weren’t reaching," says K Ramakrishnan, president - marketing at Café Coffee Day. Clearly something needed to be done. 
Even more surprising was that 65 percent of people were willing to visit a quick service formats like McDonalds or Pizza Hut. Those who didn’t go to cafes believed they were expensive. Others said they didn’t have a partner to take there - so why bother going at all? There was a last set that said the café was a serious place where interviews and discussions took place.

On the other hand the competition was clearly winning. A McDonalds or Pizza Hut served affordable food and were fighting for the same pie of the customers’ wallet. They were working on various ways like say a Lunch Price Menu to attract customers through the day. With an eye on increasing bill values Café Coffee Day had also introduced an expanded food menu. But clearly the message hadn’t filtered through. 

With a national presence and an expanded food offering in place, the team at Coffee Day decided to step outside their comfort zone and work on a medium they’d never worked with before - television.(Till now Coffee Day has spent very little on advertising. In fact, ad spend at the company is negative as it makes more money through in store advertising)

Content From : Forbes India

CCD just wants more customers, to milk them out of their money!  More Customers, More Profits. Costlier Coffee. Brahmin's Cafe, here i come.

If you happen to be a CCD fan, Go thru this Linky "Cafe Coffee Day Lounge - The coffee connoisseur's paradise". Good read.

Funny thing i read about the Ad -

The 'Sit Down' TVC, conceptualized by Creativeland Asia, CCD's communication partner, is part of a 360-degree campaign. It gives the CCD customer a purpose for hanging out at the café. It’s built on the premise that 'standing up' often doesn’t really yield results, but a lot of things can happen when you 'sit down'.
Ref: Business Standard

So now, the customer actually has a purpose for going to CCD - To Sit down. Pricey Coffee be damned!

Last but not the least, the video.