Duolingo launches hyper-localized language campaign
Digitas India has successfully concluded an integrated advertising campaign for Duolingo, the most popular language learning app in the world, which allows users to learn from over 100 courses in over 40 languages in India. The hyper-localized campaign that was staged for Bengali-speaking markets, with a particular focus on Kolkata, resulted in positive business results for the brand.
Bengali is the second most spoken language in India and the seventh in the world. With the launch of the Bengali to English course, Duolingo has made this fun learning tool available to over 300 million Bengali speakers worldwide, including those in India and Bangladesh.
As there was a growing need and demand from the Bengali speaking audience in India for an effective English language course, it was imperative to build a narrative based on an understanding of the cultural nuances of the market. It had to be personalized and presented in a way that resonated deeply with local audiences.
The central narrative was therefore based on the fact that if one understands a complex and complicated language like Bengali, understanding English becomes so much easier! This led to the rise of the phrase Ankhon Bangla Jaanle Engriji Eiji which translates to “If you know Bengali, then learning English is easy”. Incorporating information based on daily behaviors and lifestyles in Bengali-speaking markets, the advertisements integrated humor, food, relationships, traffic and festivities into the main content. The campaign was also designed to accurately represent Duolingo’s core principles of being fun, free, and effective.
Commenting on the ad campaign, Karan Kapany, Country Head, Duolingo said: “Indians are largely multilingual and are constantly adding new language skills to their repertoire. While English can often be seen as an intimidating language to learn, many fail to realize that local Indian languages are far more nuanced and complex, making learning English easier in comparison.
“While we wanted to encourage Bengali speakers across India and Bangladesh to add English to their language portfolio, it was important to tailor communication in a way that was extremely relevant, localized and engaging. We were successful to do so effectively and have seen phenomenal growth in Bengali-speaking cities and audiences. India is one of the fastest growing markets for Duolingo and with the successful launch of Bengali, we see great potential for introduce even more regional languages in the future,” he added further.
The linguistic launch campaign was deployed on media often frequented by the Bengali-speaking public. Radio jingles composed by the famous Surojit Chatterjee and sung by the incredibly talented Ananya Chakraborty on popular radio stations in West Bengal, OOH in major cities of West Bengal, Metro takeover in Kolkata, branded candy boxes and digital movies on social media and YouTube – the rollout of the targeted 360 degree campaign has proven to be very effective.
Achieving the business goal it set itself, the campaign effortlessly propelled the Bengali to English course to second place in India in just a week of deployment, moving it up several rungs on the ladder. popularity of the language in India. The app saw a whopping 400% increase in active users after the launch of the campaign, with Kolkata becoming the 3rd largest Duolingo user market in India.
Sharing her perspective on the campaign and its success, Sonia Khurana, COO of Digitas India, said: “We believe it was the simplicity of the idea behind the idea, along with the conscious and impeccable execution that made this campaign a huge success. More so, the team had a ton of fun bringing this to life to this idea – it’s campaigns like this that are worth it!”
Digitas India won the digital AOR for Duolingo India earlier this year and was responsible for cross-channel strategy, and integrated campaigns.
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