Tanaaz Bhatia – founder of Bottomline media spoke to us in a brief chat about her collaboration with Virgin EMI Records, DJ Snake for his Indian collaboration, brand association and marketing strategy overall. Excerpts:

“Independent music is music in the end”

How did the idea materialise to collaborate with Virgin EMI record?
It was to the matter of fact that we all met and were discussing about India and now India is becoming a very important market for a lot of genres including music. Then they spoke about music, how India is an important market, they started seeing the stuff that my company Bottomline does and they thought that why don’t we work together, we shared some ideas; they liked it and that’s how the whole collaboration started.

Y’all have worked with international artists /bands, what has been the learning and experiences?
Working with international brands and artist is always interesting, you learn a lot. Their thought process is very different from the Indian market and they are looking to enter the Indian market and when they are here, you are actually teaching them about the Indian culture and the way things work. It’s actually a learning process that you are educating them and giving them knowledge on it, and based on that learning about their product, they do it overseas and how it’s different in India.  It’s a brand new strategy that you have to collaborate with them on and when it comes to international artist, end of the day we all are artist and they have a common thread between them and they are all creative people but having said that, they work very differently each one comes with their own ideas in what they want to do and when you work with them, you have to take their ideas and build upon what is relevant in the market and make it bigger and that’s how the collaboration becomes interesting.

It’s all about strategy when you plan out something big, how has that process been and have there been times when it didn’t work the way you wanted it to?
Yes and that always happens. Sometimes you start up with A and you end up with a total different alphabet, sometimes it happens for better, you start with a particular thing and the idea turns into something bigger, better and probably something you didn’t start off with. There are times when things don’t work accordingly and you can’t do anything about it. If you can’t do anything about it then you will have to start it from the scratch. You can’t plan anything; and end of the day when people are involved, there are temperaments, there are certain things which don’t go the right way so you just have to be smart and remove it in a positive way.

Do you think it’s easier to connect with the audience when you make independent music?
Basically independent music is music in the end whether independent or with a label or with work. And of course you need your partners along the road to make it bigger and better. But it totally depends on the track that is out and how it pans out. Today even a track with a big label may not work because it’s not good so there is no distinguish between independent or film music; you just have to have the right strategy and the way to amplify it so that everybody gets to listen.

Tell us about your recent association with DJ snake’s upcoming India tour?
So, we are working with DJ Snake on bigger plan, as we know DJ Snake loves India and his recent songs that’s there “Taki Taki” and “Magenta Riddim”, all have and sense the India culture with the music in it. We are working with him for his India’s collaboration and brand association and marketing strategy overall. And there are plans that he has in India.

What are the challenges that come the way?
When you do something not everybody knows about the artist, knows about what you working on, they must have heard it but don’t necessarily recollect at that point in time. When you are doing a collaboration or an event with international artist or an international brand you have to spend X amount of time educating them who is who and what they do then you have to make it the current to the mark audiences before them getting to mainstream, what they want to do with the brand or the person and that is where it’s a challenge whether you going to see anything because you are building the audience for the brand or the person, so that’s one of the biggest challenges that we face and also, sometimes its budget. Sometimes you can’t marry the timing of the brand and the timing of the artist coming in to marry the two; sometimes it’s really tough.  Because when they have budget it’s not necessary that the people are in and it’s vice versa, so it always has to work in a way where it is complimenting both and have budget, and sometimes it does work out perfectly fine. Trade Magazine