CategoryA02. Best Use of Social Media
PR Agency 2 20:20 MSL Noida, INDIA
Entrant Company MSLGROUP CHINA Shanghai, CHINA

The Campaign

Evernote is a multi-platform web and mobile application that helps people take and access notes. The team behind Evernote saw India as a prime market for user growth, but they had a problem. They had no India office or employee, no marketing spend or partnerships. They were starting from a nominal base of 500,000+ users and had to contend against more than 1,200,000 apps in the iOS and Android store alone. To drive user numbers, Evernote had to become more than an app for the tech connoisseur. The crucial insight that the agency worked on, was that the lives of middle-income urbanites was becoming increasingly strenuous. Without the support of the traditional joint-family structure, delegation of tasks was now a huge chore left to the nuclear family to complete. Evernote found a place as the perfect extension of the human memory designed to help! The agency created stories with real people to show how the app helped urbanites such as ‘the working mom’ or ‘the young professional’ get through the daily check-list of tasks that comes with modern life. Through strategic creative social media content and community management supported by real-life meet ups the utility of the app was showcased to a whole new audience. The impact was immense. Driven purely by integrated communication efforts, Evernote’s user base in India grew by 127%. Social media helped grow their overall follower base by 165%. The premium user base of Evernote in India also grew to match the global average of 5%.

The Brief

The objectives for the agency were to increase the India user base by atleast 100% and convert loyal users into premium, paying ones. The target audience had to be the smartphone user, who is typically a middle-class urbanite. But to have any sort of impact on user numbers, the agency had to reach beyond the ‘tech geek.’ Insights revealed that India’s economic growth had brought with it the breakdown of the traditional joint-family set up. The practical support usually found within large families was diminishing; people were having to do more on their own, and importantly remember to do it!


Driven purely by integrated communications efforts and no marketing spend, Evernote’s user base in India grew by 127% from 529,232 (July 2012) to 1.2 million users (June 2013). The premium user base of Evernote in India also grew to match the global average of 5%. Evernote was awarded the prestigious Cloud app of the year for 2012, by Stuff magazine India, a leading consumer tech magazine in the country. Social media activation, driven by all organic activity, helped grow the Evernote India social media follower base by 165%. In terms of media mileage, there was a 100% increase in media stories secured for the brand, on a year on year basis. This included 387 unique stories appeared reviewing Evernote products and 432 unique feature stories capturing the utility of Evernote.


Real-life, everyday stories were created for content enrichment on social and traditional media to engage the non-traditional app consumer, such as a young man who planned his wedding with the help of Evernote and a young mom with her family food shopping list. In addition to tasks, we also took on board their interests and showed how Evernote could help users keep on top of sports news, music and create fun ideas around events like Valentine’s Day. We then crowdsourced how people use Evernote, with people on Facebook and Twitter sharing how to keep a record of hotel menus; how to build a virtual stack of favourite articles for future reference – all helping people go paperless. Branded content such as infographics and videos captured real people’s uses for Evernote, and extended into real life meet-ups, for example with food bloggers to show how Evernote can help support their hobbies.

The Situation

Evernote is a multi-platform web and mobile application that helps take and access notes. The team behind the app saw India as a prime market for user growth, but had many hurdles to overcome. Firstly, unlike entertainment apps, Evernote didn’t offer any incentives so only those who had used it for a long duration would understand its utility. What’s more, Evernote lacked an India office, employee or partnerships. Lastly, relying on an app to remember things didn’t come as first nature in a country that still has a majority of feature phones and low bandwidth issues.

The Strategy

We decided to come to the rescue of people who were struggling with the day-to-day checklist of tasks, such as the young professional or the working mum. As India’s urban growth increasingly affects the family set-up, Evernote became the extension of human memory to help those who now have to do more than ever before, alone. We crafted a strategy that would encompass stories with real people to show how Evernote helped urbanites cope with the demands of modern life. By doing this, we were reaching beyond the tech connoisseur – and purposefully focused on things such as food shopping lists, wedding planning and even interests such as cricket scores to position Evernote as the solution that helps someone in their personal and professional day-to-day. To reach India’s urbanites, the campaign was kept ‘real’ and ‘relevant’, and executed through a holistic campaign spanning social media, experiential and traditional media.


Name Company Position
Anamika Srivastava 20:20 Msl
Radhika Nandwani 20:20 Msl
Karan Bhujbal 20:20 Msl