Monday, 27 May 2013

The Ambi Pur IndiBlogger Meet at Chennai yesterday May 26, 2013

The Ambi Pur IndiBlogger Meet: May 26, 2013: Hyatt Regency, Chennai

Attended my first ever IndiBlogger meet yesterday; came off for the better; found it purposeful, fun-filled and informative.  Community, causes and celebrating blogging and networking seemed to be at the heart of the engagement.  

I was also pleasantly surprised by the sponsor Ambi Pur's very interactive but not super imposing or all pervading presence.  Very undemanding, cheerful presence from the marketing folks at Ambi Pur. 

The day started with a hassle-free one step registration process on arrival in Hyatt's ground floor conference hall: just key in IndiBlogger login email ID on the appointed laptop and bingo, you are in! Of course, we had already registered online days ago, to allow for seat optimization.

Two white sedans - one parked right within the conference hall and the other - a surprise to be disclosed a while later - kept us company thru the session that started 13:00 hours IST and concluded approximately 18:00 hours IST.

A short welcome session ensued; we were informed we could tweet about 'My Most Favorite Road Trip' with the hashtag #AmbiPurFreshNHappy through the session and, at the end of the session,  one tweet will win a brand new Samsung Galaxy S4!   

A breezy '30 seconds of fame' session followed, where featured bloggers introduced themselves with the large screen sportingly displaying 'up next' to alert the next speaker :) Through the day, the large screen and other monitors spread around the conference room displayed our tweets with the hashtag #AmbiPurFreshNHappy - was delightful to read all those in the background, even as we proceeded with our sessions.

Up next: a sumptuous Hyatt Regency lunch combined with a playful 'surprise' activity: behind a large white satin screen in the luncheon arena, we were invited (rather, dared) to take part in a surprise activity.  We were blind-folded before being escorted past the white screen and ushered in to what we later realized was a white sedan car.  The enclosure emitted freshness and was refreshing.  Only when the blindfolds were off did we realize the sedan car was full of odor emitting candidates: example, fruits :)  But, Ambi Pur car freshener had taken good care of all the candidates and provided the fresh environment.  Those who tweeted about this experience were in to win another Samsung Galaxy S4.

So, shortly after lunch, the gal who tweeted 'the car you pushed me in to, smelt much better than the world i was born into' was awarded the S4 :) 

Ambi Pur's Marketing team then provided a crisp 15 minute presentation.  I got to know, for the first time, that there could be so much science and research behind odor management.  Learnt they (Ambi Pur) don't just suppress odor but their product absorbs the odor molecules, eliminating odor and introducing freshness.  That is why, we were advised, their advertisements seldom have 'fragrance' as their USP; rather, 'freshness' is their USP.  A new nugget of general knowledge I acquired: Procter & Gamble (P&G) has a very strong presence in Perfumes and is the owner of oh so many of the leading brand names - i didn't know :) And this strong perfume base allows them to cross pollinate research on to odor management as well.  Hmm.. sounds like a good plan. 

Then came a very enjoyable team activity: we had all received Ambi Pur Car Freshener mini clip packs - which came in five different flavors / variants.  So, based on the random pack assigned to each of us, we grouped in to 5 teams.  I made it to the "Lavender Comfort" team :) Each team elected a captain and the captain picked a chit that held out the theme of the skit we had to prepare with our flavor at the heart of the skit! Ours was 'Malayalam Art Picture'!  Three minutes presentation time :)  Sure enough, we gathered Malayalam Art Pictures manifest very subtle emotions but leave a stunning screenplay impact. So, my team put up a three minute skit of two boats (7 team members each in ascending order of height) in kerala racing lifelessly - then Ambi Pur gets out of a nearby car and enters their lives: whichever boat Ambi Pur "lavender comfort" breezes on to started rowing with renewed freshness, vigor and cheer :) Icing on the cake: because I had worn a digital print purple top with yellow skinny fit jeans, team assigned me to be 'lavender comfort Ambi Pur': little did I know when I left for the meet that my ensemble would have this result :) sample my outfit:



so, i plonked myself inside the white sedan car, got out as the voice over called for my entry in to the lifeless rowers' lives and took turns to wave breeze on to one boat after the other :) Our voice over concluded: "Thus, Kerala becomes truly God's Own Country - Who says Ambi Pur can only find use in homes and cars? Look what Ambi Pur does to Boats? Ambi Pur freshens not only the environment but also minds and hearts"! good fun! The other teams had interesting themes such as 'office romance', 'rajinikanth style' etc. and made rocking skits to the hilt :)  

Then, bloggers associated with a number of causes spoke about their respective cause over brief presentations; causes included prevention of discrimination based on skin color, welfare of school children - pooling to take care of their needs, improving civic sense overall (including simple things like how we handle litter in public spaces) .. impressive list.  

Networking is high on priority in these meets, so was happy to meet bloggers across the genres.  I was in the minority, given my principal interest in blogging, currently, is fashion blogging :) Found the majority in tech, food, cause oriented and generic blogging :)

We wound up with a nice photo session (over 200 Chennai based bloggers attended the event) and a refreshing coffee session with vadas, choco-chip cookies and cut fruits.  

Take away goodies included:

Movie tickets from Ambi Pur: over the sessions, we won movie tickets as individuals and teams.  To start with, anybody who could name everyone else on their table, won couple movie tickets for the entire table :) Oh yeah, I did. 



Ambi Pur New Mini Lavender Comfort Car Freshener:





The IndiBlogger Tee: quite like the various messages on the sleeves and back:

Tee - Front:



Tee - Right Sleeve:

Tee - Left Sleeve:

Tee - Back:

I seem to have messed up the size though - picked up 'M' (medium) and realized when I got home and opened the pack that I need 'S' (small) :(

Now, the tweet that won the S4 for the 'most fav road trip': a blogger who tweeted he had travelled 1500 kms in Rs.56 (thanks to an obliging lorry driver :)

At the end, if i regretted something, its just not having attended the earlier IndiBlogger meets in Chennai.  Will be clued in from now on :)

Thank you Ambi Pur and Thank you IndiBlogger. 

Know more about IndiBlogger here

Know more about Ambi Pur here.

Cheers.