Pakwheels does it again at Auto Show Islamabad

Pakwheels has been conducting auto shows for the last four years and recently organized their best todate at the 2F2F Karting Ground [Lakeview Park] near Rawal Lake on Sunday the 13th of September 2015.

Pakwheels is the biggest auto show in Pakistan. No one comes even close to it. The great thing about it is that it’s not just a car show but more of a carnival with the sponsoring brands showcasing their products, and engaging the visitors in different exciting activities. For instance Atlas Battery conducted a free-battery check-up service as well as a talent show which allowed the visitors to showcase their talent.

While the Pakwheels Islamabad Auto Show wasn’t the biggest they’ve held – the Karachi and Lahore ones get far more audience – it was their most unique. Some of the activities that took place here were unprecedented for any auto show in Pakistan. For the first time, live coverage of the event was streamed live throughout the day on Three different cameras including a drone camera covered the event from different angles. Moreover, a host was used to cover the event. The host Komal interviewed the visitors, the sponsors and the organizers of the event.

Another unique feature was a flash mob arranged by the main sponsor Atlas Battery that performed intermittently throughout the day, drawing huge crowd each time it came into action.



The success of the event can be gauged from the fact that in spite of extremely hot conditions, the crowd thronged to the event in droves.

A number of new sponsors were seen at this edition of Pakwheels. While Atlas Battery and Shell have always supported Pakwheels in organizing this auto show, this time around FAW, Dubai Islamic Bank, Cinepax, 3M and Tapal also came on board. Warid was conspicuous by its absence and so was Mountain Dew.

Shell traditionally set up their dome at Pakwheels which showcased actual scale models of the F1 formula racers. This activity was missing this time around. In fact it wasn’t clear what brand activation Shell carried out this time around. They didn’t make use of any brand ambassadors either.

Racing game track on which remote-controlled cars are used, was something that Mountain historically organized. In the absence of Mountain Dew, Pakwheels themselves conducted this activity. Apart from this activity, they had also set up a kiosk for promoting & offering their Pakwheels Membership Cards to the visitors. The card owner is entitled to discounts on purchases at various auto stores nationwide.

Strangely, there was no chief guest arranged by Pakwheels for this event. In the last Lahore event, there was Ali Zafar, before that there was Fawad Khan. However, Atif Khan, Education Minister of KPK did grace the occasion with his presence.

This was the second time Pakwheels has organized this event at this location. Previously, the 2013 Islamabad show was held here. Back then it was a two-day event with the first day reserved for the F3 Karting race. This edition of the auto show was a one-day event with the race missing.


The 2f2f karting track was a beautiful track back then with everything maintained in pristine condition. Now it’s just a shadow of its glorious past, a victim of neglect. Parking at this event for the visitors is a major headache as there’s no proper parking area. Atlas Battery took over the management of this aspect of the event and helped Pakwheels by ensuring that the traffic flow was smooth in the narrow lane leading up to the venue.

Traditionally, Atlas Battery has promoted its flagship brand AGS at this event along with their ancillary product Battery Tonic [distilled water]. This time around they promoted their newly launched brand Atlas Hybrid as well. Atlas Battery brand ambassadors adorned two different uniforms, one AGS and the other Atlas Hybrid, both resembling uniforms from the European football League. Their flash mob team adorned yet another set of uniform with just the corporate name on it. Their focus however was on their new battery brand Atlas Hybrid. In order to ensure exposure of this brand, they had created branded hangols, tissue boxes, car fragrance and side shades- all items that are prominently visible both within the car and outside it.

CinePax cinema conducted a very interesting activity at the event. They offered membership/loyalty cards with 20% discount applicable on all Cinepax cinemas across Pakistan. In return you had to provide your detailed data. A very good idea if you’re looking to build a customer database.

Strangely enough, none of the sponsoring brands highlighted their participation at the event other than the main sponsor Atlas Battery. Neither on their website nor on social media. Not a single word.

Which is mind-boggling especially for marketing savvy brands like Shell and Tapal. Pakwheels of course had been promoting the event for the last one month while Atlas Battery ran the pre-event hype on three different mediums, digital, print and billboards. The print ads were run in major newspapers including Dawn, Express and Business Recorder. The billboards were placed at strategic locations in Islamabad. And then on the day of the event, the Atlas Battery social media team posted live updates of the event throughout the day on their social media properties including Facebook [] Twitter [] and Instagram []. Not only that, their brand manager and his team promoted these live updates on their own social media profiles, leading to a cascading effect.

One more interesting activity they carried out was experiment with Periscope. Periscope is a relatively new social media mobile app that lets you stream live video via mobile to your followers and the followers can interact with the video in real time. Atlas Battery posted snippets of live stream throughout the day on Periscope.

Android mobile phone users can download the app from:

Apple phone users can download the app from:

Moreover, first time around Pakwheels also introduced car projection mapping at the show. The whole projection activity was conducted by 3D Illumination – 3Di. Since projection is carried out in a darker area, therefore it was conducted under a tent placed at the back of sponsoring brands’ stalls.


All in all, Pakwheels has been able to pull off yet another successful auto show. Their next auto show is scheduled for Peshawar next month. Let’s see how they fare at this considering that Peshawar is going to be uncharted territory for them. And it would be interesting to see what their sponsoring brands come up with for that event and whether Atlas Battery would be able to repeat its stellar performance.

How to Ace The Automechanika Exhibition Dubai

The Automechanika Exhibition is the premier after-sales parts exhibition for all things related to vehicles. Although the organization is based in Germany, the exhibition takes place in every nook and corner of the world, from Jeddah to Johannesburg.

But the Middle East version which takes place every year in Dubai, UAE, is the most strategic, Dubai being at the crossroads of the business world.

Automechanika Middle East takes place every year at the Dubai Exhibition and Convention Centre either in May or June.

Because it is the one of the most prominent of the Automechanika exhibitions, a huge number of both the exhibitors and businesses attend it. And that means the competition is tough, the rates are high and you’ve got to plan out everything months in advance.

The Automechanika Exhibition is just around the corner, taking place from 2nd June to 5th June, and having participated in this exhibition and committed my own share of mistakes, here’s what you need to do or not do to ace this exhibition and make your brand stand out:

  1. Automechanika people offer an early bird discount several months before the actual exhibition. Most companies are tempted to ignore it because it is so early that they don’t want to lock their money. Don’t give in to this temptation. Not only would you save money, you also get the chance to choose your own stall space and location, something which is near impossible later on because all the strategic stall locations are taken in no time.


  1. Another money to save money is to go through the trade development authority of your respective country. It’s really cheap. For instance I applied through TDAP [Trade Development Authority of Pakistan] and I was able to get the stall for as low as 40% of the actual cost. Now that’s a real bargain. However, it has its drawbacks as well, the biggest being you don’t get to choose your own stall space. You get a standard space of 3mX3m within your country’s pavilion, which in my case was the Pakistan Pavilion. And whether you get the corner plot or not is at the discretion of the authorities.


Automechanika Exhibition Dubai
Automechanika Exhibition Dubai
Automechanika Exhibition Middle East
Automechanika Exhibition Middle East
Pakistan Pavilion at Automechanika
Pakistan Pavilion at Automechanika
Automechanika Exhibition Middle East
Automechanika Exhibition Middle East
Dubai Exhibition & Convention Centre
Dubai Exhibition & Convention Centre
Atlas Battery at Automechanika
Atlas Battery at Automechanika
  1. Now comes the stall itself. The ideal case scenario would be for you to hire a stall fabricator and create an impressive shell instead of just adorning the stall. And to create a proper shell you need a space of at least 5m X 3m. There are many advantages to this: you don’t have to create, carry and then put up the flex banners and backdrop yourself. You can just get the design created by your ad agency and give it to the fabricator in Dubai for getting it printed.


  1. The trouble with printing and carrying the backdrop and banners from your own country is that although it is the cheapest option, once you fold the flex sheets for a longer period of time, they just don’t have the crispness when you put them up.


  1. Its best to find and negotiate the stall fabricator from your own country instead of going all the way to Dubai and then finding one. It’s cheaper too. Cheaper still is any company that has offices both in your country and Dubai. Like Gul Studios. You can negotiate better this way.


  1. Automechanika has an online portal to which it gives access to you a week before the exhibition. On that portal you can login and order quite a few things in advance, including catering. Don’t. You’re better off buying things on ground instead of pre-booking them. Don’t worry. Everything is still available when you reach Dubai.


  1. Where you will stay? Better book a hotel at least two months in advance as the rates go up exponentially as the date of the exhibition comes close. The best possible choice is the hotel that is adjacent to the Convention centre. It even has one entrance open directly into the centre. Unfortunately, this hotel gets full at least a month before the event.


  1. There are a number of hotel options on Shaikh Zayed Road, the same road on which this the Dubai convention centre is based, but most are quite expensive. The up side is that you get to reach the centre with a five minute ride. Amongst these Rose Rayhan by Rotana is a good hotel.


  1. For some inexplicable reason, everything inside the Dubai exhibition centre is damn expensive. Instead of facilitating the exhibitors and participants, its aim is to fleece you every step of the way. Want internet access? It will cost you a fortune. Want a soft drink? Pay double the normal rate. One way to counter this is to buy your refreshments from a general store near the place you’re staying and then bring that stuff here. No permissions required for that.


  1. In general, the cafeteria inside each hall is slightly cheaper than the cafes sprawled outside the halls.


  1. Arrive in Dubai for the exhibition no more than 1.5 days before. Any time earlier is a waste of time as the stall is not handed over to you that early.


  1. There are at least three entrances to the Convention centre. Scout the whole centre and identify which entrance is nearest to your hall so that you can easily direct your cab towards it instead of disembarking on the wrong entrance and then walking miles. That’s because the convention centre is really really big.


  1. You’ll probably want to wind up your stall for the day early on because there’s only one taxi stand, and if you arrive late at it, well, expect to be in the queue for quite a while.


That’s just about it. Follow these tips to save a lot of hassle and have a successful showing at the Automechanika Exhibition Dubai.

All the Best!

Psychographics of the Pakistani Consumer aged 25-35: Marriage and Beyond

Here’s the second part of the article on Pyschographics of Pakistani consumer in the age bracket 25-35. The nuptial knots are tied and now the real show starts.

  1. The proverbial honeymoon period is roughly around three months for the new husband. Within these three months he would be engrossed in ‘maternal bliss’ so much so that he won’t make it to any get-together with his male buddies unless you explicitly mention it’s a treat for him. After this blissful period ends, he would actually start coming up with excuses for a get-together, going to the extent of inviting the clan over for a game of cards, when she’s not around, of course, probably visiting her folks. For the wife, this period may last longer.


  1. He still indulges in his ‘old habits’ unbeknownst to her while she has gone to her ‘Maeka’. Whether it’s just the momentum from his youth or is there an underlying reason for this, that has to be probed deeper.


  1. There’s a correlation between the career of the wife and her inclination to indulge herself in a job. The MBA wife is much more likely to continue her pre-marital job whereas the engineer or doctor wife is more likely to sit at home and be the typical housewife. However, exceptions abound. The freelancer wife is very rare, at least in these traditional professions. The fashion designer wife is the most likely to continue her day-job. So is the journalist wife who if not pursuing the day job at least continues to contribute as a freelancer to various publications.


  1. The wife has a strong affinity for lawn exhibitions, which she visits religiously while the husband not so keen on these events has to tag along. In fact, it’s not only a window shopping expedition but an actual shopping spree. Whether this is spurred by the hordes of women indulging in buying at the exhibition (herd mentality) or the ambience of the location (in most of the cases the exhibitions are held at an upscale hotel mostly Marriott) is not known. It is worth mentioning that there’s no discount or introductory price at the exhibition to induce the frantic buying that is witnessed at these lawn exhibitions, so there probably is a correlation between the location and the behavior.


  1. Another very distinct pattern is the offspring phenomenon. The working wife and husband may delay the arrival of the stock, but for the rest of the bunch (working husband and dedicated housewife), it’s a race against time to conceive a child in record time before the maamies and chachies raise cries of impotency. Or at least that’s what seems to be the line of thinking.


  1. However, the dominant partner in this critical decision is the wife. While the rookie husband may be in favor of having some fun time before the added responsibility of an additional family member, it’s the female who wants to get ‘started’ right away, probably because the brunt of the criticism if the couple doesn’t conceive soon enough is borne by the female in the Pakistani society. This in turn is driven by the widely accepted false notion that impotency is a female syndrome. So her fear of this is so great that at least on this occasion she becomes the dominant partner so much so that while the male has arranged all the contraceptives in accordance with his ‘wait’ decision, he gets dissuaded not to use them at the ‘last minute’ by her.


  1. But what after the first child? This is where it gets interesting. After heaving a sigh of relief that they can reproduce for sure, the young couple refrains from having another kid for ages. At least that’s what has been observed over the five-year period. Many who married five years ago are still stuck at the first kid.


  1. Just a couple of generations ago, the trend was to go for kids one after the another. That’s not the case now. One of the reasons probably is the wife wants to shed off baby fat before embarking on another pregnancy. In contrast to the days of yore where the young wife was bulky with three kids in tow after just a few years, now you see a slim and smart wife with just one kid in as much the same time.


  1. The secondary reason is of course, money. The young couple wants the best for their child, even before the child is born. And that includes the best gynecologist and the maternity clinic. The place of choice is Agha Khan Hospital in spite of its exorbitant rates. When asked why, the usual response is that it offers the best nursing you can get in Pakistan, and that it ensures the young mother before and after the event is taken care of in the best way. However, the maternity charges do not affect the young couple financially because the man is most probably employed at a major company, local or MNC, which covers all the maternity charges.


  1. But from there on, it’s an unending battle. They get their first born all the branded stuff from diapers to nutritional supplement. Then comes the education and it’s an even steeper uphill task from there.


  1. One other cardinal rule the couples religiously follow is the celebration of the first birthday of the newborn. For some inexplicable reason, it has to be a grand affair akin to their wedding celebration, and literally everyone’s invited – from the distant relatives to the distant friends. It can happen anywhere depending upon the financial position of the young parents. From hotel ballrooms, shadi halls to seaside huts, you name it. The only common trait is that it’s extravagant.


  1. Like many other traits, it doesn’t make much sense, because the poor kid is not even aware of what’s happening. The rational thing to do would be to save that money and spend it when the child is a few years old and can truly enjoy his or her occasion. By that time he or she would have a few friends as well. But at age one, it’s just to show off to the world.


  1. Majority of the young couples’ first child is a girl. And since they don’t go for the second shot anytime soon, their world is going to be rotating around a female child for quite sometime. Although the biological reasons for that happening cannot be determined, but this simple fact is going to help marketers and advertisers position different brands in the minds of these young couples. Green Star made use of this fact in the first video of their song ‘Suno Zara’, when they showed the couple having a girl as the first born.


  1. The offspring, even when it’s just half a year old, is brought along on every wedding occasion, even though the occasion lasts well into the night. This does not bother the young parents at all that their newborn’s sleeping regimen is being disturbed.


  1. Gone are the days of entertaining the newlyweds at your home. These days the couple’s friends and relatives don’t go through this hassle but instead entertain them at a restaurant, mostly upscale. Again a good marketing opportunity here for the shrewd restaurateurs.


  1. The modern couple eats out at least twice a month. What sort of restaurant depends entirely on the specific couple. It could be an upscale restaurant on Zamzama or just a run-of-the-mill Usmania or Lasania.


  1. Couples going to their friends’ house for a random visit like they used to in the past has become a rare commodity. Nowadays, the favorite rendezvous point is mostly a wedding of a common friend, or the post-wedding party. Apart from these occasions, it is extremely rare for the couples to get together. Mostly the husband and wife have their separate get-togethers with their friends – no spouse allowed.


  1. Public show of affection in newly married couples is also becoming somewhat common. Not the kissing part, but anything below that like holding hands and leaning on each other is fair game. However, the affectionate displays disappear altogether after the proverbial honeymoon period.


  1. Pregnancy has ceased to be a hindrance in food outings. Couples would readily venture out into the food jungle even when the first-time pregnant wife is in the final stages of the pregnancy, as opposed to the previous generations’ practice of keeping a low profile and not doing outdoors at all.


  1. Now coming to the conveyance part. Unless the male is provided a car by his company, which inadvertently is a Suzuki Cultus, and a white or silver one at that, he goes for the Honda brand. Since he can’t afford a zero metre, he sets his eyes on a second hand one. Let’s say his budget for the car is Rs. 400,000. Instead of buying a brand new Suzuki Mehran or Alto, he’ll go for a Honda Civic or City even if it’s ten years old and he knows he’ll be spending a lot of time at the mechanic getting it fixed.


  1. Living alone is out, and the extended family system is in. It’s not exactly the joint family system of the yore where all the uncles and aunts used to live together. But the nuclear family system is becoming rare at least in Pakistan’s middle to upper middle class. Whether the reason is budgetary constraints or having able baby-sitters (in the form of grandparents) to look after the child while the young parents venture out for work, is not clear.


  1. Another revealing fact is that both the partners remain active on online communities especially Facebook, Twitter and Instagram even after marriage. Facebook is the most popular, taking over from Orkut. While the men usually indulge in this activity at work, their female counterparts indulge at home. Marriage photos are duly posted on Facebook profiles for all the world to know what transpired at the event.


  1. The husband is more keen to post almost the entire wedding album. Some go even to the extent of posting the bride and groom photo in the place of profile photo.


  1. Sharing of honeymoon photos on Facebook is yet another rising trend by both the partners, although some are more discreet in that they change the privacy setting to be viewed by just friends instead of all the world to see.


  1. Sharing of the newborn’s photos is another must. In fact many go to the extent of putting their child’s photo as their own profile photo.


  1. Linkedin is the new kid on the block whose popularity has more to do with the rumor that some have got their dream jobs through this network rather than any great feature available on it. Who are these people and what did they do on this network to grab their dream jobs, no one knows other than the fact that they are ‘friend of friend’. In any case, Linkedin is the strongest contender to dethrone Facebook especially with respect to the segment under study.


  1. About moving to greener pastures, the husband has a definite desire to move to the Middle East before marriage. However, in the post-marriage period, this desire wanes considerably, but does not cease to exist. A close friend of his getting a job there in this period boosts up this desire though.


  1. The favorite destination for offspring shopping is two-fold. If the attire is being bought for some occasion or outdoor stuff, then it is Zubeida’s. However, for casual stuff to be worn at home, the favorite haunt is Madinah and Zainab Shopping Centre, where children clothing can be had dirt cheap, think Rs.50 for a shirt or knickers for a 1-3 year old.


  1. Day-long excursion to a farm house is fast transforming from a fad to a trend. The trip is usually under-taken with three or four families in the same age group.


  1. This has fuelled demand for model farm houses which are continuing to spring up not only on Super-Highway but on National Highway as well.


  1. In the previous generation, this excursion was mostly reserved for the sea-side.


  1. Subjects belonging to the top tier within the SEC class under study are most likely the members of one of the non-elite resorts, the most common being Dreamworld Resort, and spend their weekends at these resorts instead of the farm house.


  1. Divorce still continues to be a stigma in this segment of the society. However the word most commonly used to refer to it is ‘Khula’ especially by the girl side as if that would offset any stigma attached to it, or at least it does in their perception of reality.


  1. The generation of yore was a better time manager, juggling 4 to 5 kids in addition to a job and family and in-law commitments. This generation struggles to cope with even a single child and thinks a million times before going for even a second child, let alone a 4th or 5th.


  1. This could partially be explained by the erosion of the standard 9 to 5 office timings, with the husband reaching home after almost 12 hours at work, except in the case of a government job where this schedule is still followed to the letter.



So what do you think? How much of this really reflects the behavior of this segment? If not, do you have any other insights, or would you like to add to what I’ve already discerned?

Psychographics of the Pakistani Consumer aged 25-35: Getting Married

The institution of marriage still survives in this part of the world in the face of steady influx of pre-marital and extra-marital values. However, there has been a paradigm shift in the way couples are getting married, interacting with each other, having and raising kids, and spending their disposable income. This has a direct bearing on how marketers ought to seamlessly integrate their brand into the lifestyle of this married segment of the target market.


This study of consumer behavior based on family, friends, neighbors, and friends of friends, is by no means comprehensive or even impartial. But it’s a start in the right direction and the insights it provide won’t be that far off from the ground realities.


Let us not even call it a study. That tends to lend an air of scientific method to it, which it isn’t. In a nutshell, it’s an observation of the emerging trends of the young Pakistani married couples belonging to middle and upper middle class over a period of five years. And it goes without saying that both of them are educated, in fact both have probably one of those professional degrees that are socially acceptable in our society, viz. engineering, medicine and business.


  1. As opposed to the last millennium, this millennium has seen an upsurge in the males getting married before they turn 30 irrespective of their class and social status, the most common nuptial age being 25 and 26. One of the underlying reasons they go for the early marriage is because of their long-term family plans, like at what age they’re going to have an offspring and then how old is he or she going to be when they retire, this line of thinking figures prominently in the decision to marry in the 20s.


  1. On the other hand, their female counterparts are marrying late compared to their kind of a decade ago. Their reason has more to do with acquiring professional education (5-6 years) and then working full-time for a year or two before settling down.


  1. This translates into less age difference between the male and females, hardly 3 or 4 years compared to 5, 10 or even 15 years in the past.


  1. In the past the age difference of 3 or 4 years was only possible when there was a love marriage. Today this age difference holds true irrespective of whether it’s love or arranged.


  1. The ‘larkay waley’ of today place more emphasis on the girl’s education than her looks and complexion, two factors which used to be the most dominant factors in the past. It still holds some weightage though in the lower-middle class.


  1. The ‘larki waley’ on the other hand focus on how much the lad is earning, whether he (i.e. his family) has his own cribb or are they living in a rented house. And of course, he should be at least as educated as she is but preferably more. This hasn’t changed much from the previous decades.


  1. Inter-sectarian marriages especially between Shia and Sunni sect are becoming more common. The love blossoms as in the old days at the university, but while in the past the couple had to run away to get married and then let some time elapse before the two families reluctantly accepted the nuptial agreement, these days families are more tolerant.


  1. In the post-engagement but pre-wedding phase, the fiance is brought along in almost every university event to be introduced to the classmates. This is true of both the sexes. What is the underlying reason is not known – whether it’s ‘I am-betrothed-and-you’re-not’ complex, or something entirely different.


  1. ‘Mangnis (engagements) overall are on the decline. They are being replaced by the Nikah which is increasingly being held in the mosque mostly after the Asr prayer. It’s a perplexing trend considering the fact that there’s no Islamic injunction endorsing it to carry extra blessings. Another equally perplexing trend is to have an additional full-fledged ceremony at night to celebrate the Nikah, a ceremony which rivals the actual wedding ceremony in all regards.


  1. In the old days, Nikah was held prematurely only if the prospective groom had to go abroad and it made sense to hold the Nikah early so that he could prepare the documentation for taking her abroad, and even then there was no ceremony as such. The insistence of Nikah in place of a ‘Mangni’ comes from the Larki-waley who probably need an iron-clad guarantee since a ‘Mangni’ these days is cut off at the drop of a hat. Like the Mangni, the Nikah is held at least a year prior to the actual wedding.



  1. Another trend in the old days about the number of occasions was to have a Mayun, two mehndis- one for each side, shadi and valima. Now it’s down to total three events: one combined mehndi, shadi and valima. Mayun is on the decline whereas the Nikah ceremony (discussed earlier) although not that popular, is picking up acceptance.


  1. However, even if the Nikah is scheduled along with the other ceremonies and not a year before, it is never held at the actual wedding night but either a couple of days prior to the D-day, or on the afternoon of the D-day. This trend is prevalent even as we go up the social ladder.


  1. However, as one goes up the social ladder, the number of occasions increases, including a number of Dholkis and now even Quran Khwani. But for the middle to upper middle, three occasions is the standard except in the case of Memon community, who irrespective of their social standing has an extended fanfare with Dholkis and all.


  1. Today’s male makes a conscientious effort to groom himself just before the wedding – getting his teeth scaled (spoilt by years of cola drinking and beetle nut craze), having a few facial sessions- spending anywhere between 5,000 to 10,000 on his ‘beauty treatment’.


  1. There’s a peculiar trend prevalent with respect to the shave of the groom. Keep a week-long stubble for your mehndi occasion and then wipe it off on the wedding day. The logic is that if you shave on all the three occasions (mehndi, shadi and valima) you won’t appear fresh enough on the two main ones. Whatever the logic, every single male follows this advice religiously.


  1. Maybe there’s a case of branding possible here. For instance a cream that catalyzes the growth of beard in super quick time without having to wait for a week to grow the same length and having to explain this unkempt appearance to your boss. ‘Grow a great stubble in just two days!’ That could be the tagline of this cream.


  1. The prospective bride two to three months prior to the D-day joins a fitness club, or more aptly a slimming centre to try to get in shape. However, this fad hasn’t found wide level of acceptance in this segment.


  1. Dowry is another thing which has seeped imperceptibly into the minds of this segment. Although some of the males acknowledge the fact that it’s not acceptable, they keep mum on it at the time of reckoning, and accept whatever the bride brings along with her, even if it’s household appliances they already own. They justify their silence with the claim that ‘larki’ waley have a reputation to protect as well. If they don’t give any dowry, the ‘khandan waley’ would bad-mouth them in front of everyone.


  1. The Haq Mehar is usually set anywhere between Rs.1 lac and Rs. 1.5 lac. For some inexplicable reason, it doesn’t go below 1 and above 1.5.


  1. There are two types of Haq Mehar – Muajjal and Muwajjal. Muajjal is the strict type where you have to give the complete Mehar before the consummation of marriage and is thus very rare. Muwajjal is the lenient type where it is not necessary to pay the Mehar before the consummation. It is thus the most commonly applied one by the ‘larkaay waley’, because they don’t have to pay the six figure amount they have set as Mehar right away. In fact in many cases just a nominal amount is paid by the groom and the rest doesn’t figure until there’s a divorce. The husband’s line of thinking is that since he’s already paying for all her expenses, what does she need the Mehar for?


  1. The man goes on a shopping spree just like the larki-walas before the big event. His shopping list includes amongst the usual sherwani,suit and khossa; an entire collection of undergarments. Maybe the old ones are too worn out (possibly to the point of being disgusting) and can freak out the new wife.


  1. This insight has already been used fantastically by the Indian advertisers. Remember the Indian ad about Hanes underwear where the man is shown cutting off an itchy tag off his underwear on his wedding night in front of his wife, and the wife is horrified that he is cutting his….. Well, you get the idea.


  1. The favorite destination for the honeymoon is Malaysia and not Dubai. However, if there are budgetary constraints, the second preference is Murree and its surrounding resorts like Ayubia, Nathiagali and Bhurban. Dubai just doesn’t figure in the newlyweds’ list of honeymoon priorities.

The rest of the pyschographics of pakistani couple aged 25-35 will be continued in the next article of marriage and beyond.

Marketing in the Digital Age – A Course by LUMS

Marketing in the Digital Age is a four-day course being conducted by the Rausing Executive Development Centre at the Lahore University of Management Sciences [LUMS] from 23rd to 27th February.

Marketing in the Digital Age-Workshop by LUMS
Marketing in the Digital Age- Workshop by LUMS

This is the second time around LUMS is conducting the ‘Marketing in the Digital Age’ course. There’s not much feedback available online about how this course fared the first time around. If you Google it, the top 10 results almost all of them pertain to the content being put online either by the REDC [ Rausing Executive Development Centre] or by Dr. Farrah Arif, the programme director herself. Even if you dare to go to the second or third page of Google, you would be hard pressed to find any independent review of the programme. Which is quite strange considering some of the movers and shakers of the corporate world must have attended this course.

What Dr. Farrah Arif herself have put out in the digital sphere is a slideshare presentation giving the programme details and a video intro to the course on Daily Motion.

It would be interesting to see whether the course is academic in nature which revolves around solving Harvard Business Case Studies or has relevance to the Pakistan’s digital sphere as well.

Atlas Battery Sponsors Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore 2014

Pakwheels Auto Festival sponsored by Atlas Battery (makers of AGS brand) was held in Lahore on 16th March at Liberty Market.

Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore

Pakwheels has been holding this event annually for the last three years. In the beginning it was just confined to Lahore which is the home base of Pakwheels. Since then they’ve branched out to Islamabad and Karachi as well.

The last one was the Pakwheels Auto Festival held in Islamabad on 1st December 2013.

Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore

However, the Lahore event is Pakwheels’ flagship event and draws the most crowd of all the three cities. Approximately 475 cars and 375 bikes were put on display.

All in all the Pakwheels Auto Festival is  a haven for the sponsoring brands as it presents an ideal opportunity for them to engage their audience and provide them an awesome experience which they then can associate with that brand.

As such all the major sponsors of the event – Atlas Battery, Shell, Warid, Mountain Dew and 3M tried to woo consumers and customers in their own unique way at the Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore.


Atlas Battery (makers of AGS brand) conducted a free battery check-up of all the participants’ cars as well as visitor cars at the Pakwheels Auto Festival. They had two teams working in tandem – one was the Brand Ambassadors’ team that was intercepting the visitors and conducting a short survey. The other was Atlas Battery’s tech team that checked the cars’ batteries as well as the charging system of the car itself, serviced the batteries and advised the car’s owner about the state of their battery and whether it needed replacement or not.

Atlas Battery at Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Atlas Battery at Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Atlas Battery at Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Atlas Battery at Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Atlas Battery at Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Atlas Battery at

Atlas Battery at Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Atlas Battery at Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore

Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore

One interesting thing they did was the way they promoted their new product  – Battery Tonic – the first time proper distilled water is introduced in Pakistan. To encourage the use of Battery Tonic, the Atlas Battery tech team opened new sealed bottles for each individual car, topped up the battery’s cells with it, and gave the remainder to the customer for future topping up.

When both teams, had finished their task, the respondent was presented with a gift. Atlas Battery had done one more clever thing to get ahead of the other brands. In addition to their activity in the middle,  they had placed brand ambassadors both at the entry and exit points. At the entry points, the brand ambassadors were just welcoming the visitors and giving them hangols for their cars. At the exit they were handing out branded calendars to the participants. In that way, Atlas Battery strived to remain TOM (Top of Mind) throughout the e

vent, without spending a fortune or doing something grandeur to catch people’s attention.


Mountain Dew carried out something entirely different at the Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore. They had set up a mini race track for racing toy cars. By and large, this arrangement was attracting the tweens crowd.


Warid was seen promoting their Glow sub-brand at the Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore. They had set up a sort of a karaoke system whereby visitors were given the chance to showcase their singing skill. While it gave Warid good mileage and excited the budding singers in the crowd, it was a nerve-wrecking experience for the rest of us, having to endure some really bizarre singing styles. At the end of the activity they gave out some prizes as well.


Shell had gone done something entirely different from the rest of the sponsoring brands. They went the grandeur way, and by the looks of things, spent a fortune to try to dominate the proceedings at the Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore. While this strategy of theirs was a dud at the Pakwheels Auto Festival Islamabad, here Shell fared much better.

Ali Noor at Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Ali Noor at Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore

In addition to the dome they had used at the Islamabad edition of the Pakwheels Auto Festival, Shell arranged a concert at the end of the show featuring Noori. A stage was built on the green built in the centre of the Liberty Market parking lot where this event took place.

Noori concert at Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Noori concert at Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore

Inside the dome they had placed life-size replicas of F1 cars, and there was a long queue for people trying to get inside.

The Islamabad edition of Pakwheels Auto Festival was nothing short of a fiasco for Shell as their dome position was way off where the real action was, and Atlas Battery along with Warid dominated the proceedings.

At the Lahore edition of Pakwheels Auto Festival, they did things differently. Dome was placed smack in the middle of the inner ring of Liberty car parking. Their brand ambassadors were actually visible. They made sure that the super cars including Ferrari and Lamborghini were displayed right in front of the dome. And then there was the concert as the finale. A good comeback for Shell.

Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore

The following are the pros and cons of the event from the point of view of an observer:



  1. The event leveraged its starpower to promote the noble cause of building Shaukat Khanum Memorial Hospital in Peshawar.
  2. From a branding point of view, the Pakwheels Auto Festival is an ideal opportunity as not many brands show interest in the event unlike Dawn Lifestyle Expo where every other brand is present. The fewer brands there are, the more chances you’ve got of properly engaging your consumer in your brand, in fact not engaging, but engrossing, and the more chances of that experience being memorable for your target market.



  1. Workflow not properly managed. Congestion spots early on in the day even when there was ample space around the two rings of the Liberty parking. Even though Pakwheels had planned things differently by assigning display space according to category, somehow the plan didn’t pan out as expected. It could have been made a whole lot smoother.
  2. Traffic flow around the Liberty area remained disturbed throughout the day.



  1. The Pakwheels Auto Festival has garnered a huge loyalty since its inception 3 years ago. What this means is that the public or at the very least the loyalists would eagerly attend the event wherever it is held. It’s high time Pakwheels management shifted the venue from Liberty Market to someplace spacious where there’s no issue of things getting bogged down, whether its’ traffic or flow of people.
  2. Pakwheels needs to take the event beyond the K-L-I (Karachi Lahore Islamabad) nexus to other major cities of Pakistan especially Multan, Faisalabad, Hyderabad. Hell, let’s go to Peshawar as well.

I’ve just received a proposal from Pakistan Army about their plans for the Swat Cultural Festival as part of the tourism promotion drive. It’s an ideal opportunity for Pakwheels to hold a semblance of an auto show there. It may not be a full-fledged show like the KLI ones, but at least it would be a start.

Pakwheels has created an ideal platform for car enthusiasts all over Pakistan which has tremendous scope. They just don’t know it yet. Once they realize it, they will move decisively to leverage the power of this brand far beyond the three annual auto shows.

The thing is, while Pakistan is a poor country, Pakistanis themselves are filthy rich, which is evident from all these auto and vantage shows where a plethora of not only Aston Martins, Ferraris and the Lamborghinis are showed off, but invaluable classics of the bygone era like Pullman and Angila are flaunted. Pakwheels could well position itself as the one-stop solution for not only the vanity outlet of the ultra-rich, but also the lynchpin for luxury car manufacturers and their Pakistani buyers. The possibilities are really endless.

Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore
Pakwheels Auto Festival Lahore