A rollercoaster ride

Madhav Kochunni’s rollercoaster career ride began in Bombay, India. The first part of the ride took him through the world of publishing instilling in him the finer aspects of writing, editing, proofing, print production, and interviewing. Seven years later, he embarked on the second leg of his career into advertising. Besides enjoying the duties of a copywriter, creative lead, and client services representative for nine years, he learned graphic design and gained experience in pre-print production.

In 1999, he decided to move to Toronto which coincided with the third leg and most exciting part of his career. The learning bug made Madhav’s mind its permanent home. Madhav tackled the internet teaching himself web design and development keeping in mind the constantly changing trends and raising his own standards intuitively. He is well versed in the latest web and interactive technologies. He is now tackling the challenge of converting corporate marketing publications to an interactive digital format saving hundreds of thousands of dollars and shortening project timelines to 1/10th the timeframe usually taken.

Digital publishing, marketing, advertising, journalism

Web designer/developer

Designer / Coordinator / Publisher

2001 – 17 April 2009:- Conquest Vacations, Toronto

Content Management:- Revamped, customized and developed intranet project with CMS (Joomla and DotNetNuke); ensured editorial and graphics content met company specifications and guidelines; increased channels for advertising content. Compiled news, edited, and proofread travel destination pages and all online content and published them; coordinated with the buyers, print, sales and marketing departments, and external hotel groups for copy and graphics; designed and created the online version of Conquest Vacations magazines (summer and winter brochures, flight magazines).
Technical Development:- Structured, designed, revamped, developed, and maintained Conquest Vacations’ websites (www.conquestvacations.com, www.conquestagent.com, www.liftoffmagazines.ca, and http://intranet); provided tools for employees to log in and update content; developed RSS feeds for daily update of prices and news flashes; created micro-sites for niche clientele such as hotels and hotel groups for promotions.
Project Management:- Coordinated with 680 News for advertising and marketing promotion; liaised with Toronto Star for Caribbean and other advertising and marketing promotions; coordinated with the sales and creative departments for product launches and brochure production for content, design, and graphics; coordinated and produced e-Newsletters for mass mailing among travel agents and the general public. Deployed and maintained web measurement tools (HBX Analytics and Google Analytics) and custom metrics for external and internal advertisement tracking; guided site enhancements; tracked and analyzed feedback and user experiences for navigation and customization; coordinated with Omniture for web analytics and tracking; coordinated with travel agents to customize their pages to accept Conquest’s booking engine on their websites; developed process and troubleshooting manual. Project coordinator for creating and managing interactive multimedia elements. Project leader for finding new methods to push news and updates to travel agents; development of RSS feeds, and training; trained employees on updating content
Design:- Coordinated and developed editorial and graphic content, navigation, and usability methodologies; coordinated with the print, sales, marketing, and IT departments for creative process. Designed and developed interactive and multimedia ads; developed interactive online maps, hotel images and video; created product launch presentations comprising multimedia elements (audio and video streaming) and Actionscript 2.0. customized style templates of Photoshop to automate (batch) processing of images; culled images from materials brought by buyers (CDs/DVDs), batch processed them for the print department and buyers to select, and created internal and external photo banks for marketing department to approve for print brochures.

Software

  • Adobe – Dreamweaver CS3, Photoshop CS3, Flash CS3, Illustrator CS3, Premier Pro 2.0, Acrobat Pro
  • Microsoft – Expression Web, FrontPage, Access, Excel, Word, Power Point
  • Other – PC, Mac platforms. XML, CSS, RSS feeds, Email Marketing, Multimedia Streaming
Advertising

Senior Copywriter, Creative Direction, Client Manager

1995 – 1999:- Advertising & Marketing Consultants, Dubai
  • Creative team leader managing five graphic designers and two copywriters
  • Directed advertising and marketing campaigns
  • Design and copywriting of promotional materials
  • Re-launch, design and writing editorial content for two consecutive issues of ‘Shopping Dubai’ magazine

Software

  • Quark X’Press
  • CorelDraw
  • Adobe – Photoshop, Illustrator

Copywriter, Senior graphic designer

1992 – 1995:- Multitec Advertising, Dubai
  • Designed promotional materials
  • Copywriting, public relations, marketing
  • Completed three marketing and advertising project studies

Software

  • Microsoft Word
  • CorelDraw
  • Adobe Photoshop

Copywriter

1991:- Kshetra Advertising, India
  • Copywriting, designing, account managing, coordinating with the art department, DTP operators, and printers
Publishing

Copywriter

1991:- Kshetra Advertising, India
  • Copywriting, designing, account managing, coordinating with the art department, DTP operators, and printers

Chief Sub-Editor

September 1985 – November 1990:- Business World Magazine, India
  • Managed the editorial team of five sub-editors
  • Wrote the advertising and marketing column
  • Edited business content and marketing section
  • Coordinated with correspondents and editors
  • Developed cover story and photo ideas
  • Trained new sub-editors
  • Assigned articles to correspondents
  • Directed photographers on photo shoots

Software

  • PageMaker

Sub-Editor

December 1983 – June 1985:- Onlooker Magazine, India
  • Edited articles, coordinated with correspondents
  • Created the pagination, proofread articles, assigned articles to freelancers
  • Coordinated with pre-print units and printers
  • Made pages on PC using PageMaker and Ventura

portfolio [pdf] | resume [html]

Story of my personal life

“My father, in an unguarded moment of his life, bestowed on me a long name…teachers bicycled from one end to the other to read it in full…I patiently listened to telemarketers wrestle with it… (snail) mail addressed to me had characters falling off the edge of the envelope….” rest of the story…

Zero print: The making of an app

Couple of years ago, the company where I am currently working launched an initiative to reduce its carbon footprint and go purely digital. The company had hundreds of marketing materials that it printed, when required; since the print run was limited and at random throughout the year, this drove up the cost per publication. Besides, content became outdated as soon it was printed.

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On effective communications

Corporate content is traditionally communicated through word-of-mouth, marketing, and advertising campaigns. When such content finds its target, users are directed to websites (and other media) to search and ‘pull’ relevant information. Websites continue to be a major...
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Digital initiative

The digital publishing initiative was meant to enhance customer experience, considerably reduce development time, publish multiple formats for the mobile platform, and complement existing content (marketing resources, materials and communications) and in some cases...
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Alternate digital publishing technologies

Some of the digital options in terms of platforms and trends that were gaining traction at the time when I was researching options were: - ePUB [electronic publications] was popularized by digital book readers and then tablets. ePUB can be designed for AODA...
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What’s in a name

Two weeks ago I was peacefully watching TV when the phone rang. It was a 1-800 number. Usually I do not pick up marketing calls. That day I was indulgent. I took the call. "Hello", I put on my booming, deep, scary voice. A female voice spoke back to me in a high...
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This business of marriage

As a prank, my friends published a classified ad in the newspaper [That was the eighties!]. The ad gave my skinny profile and postal address under the title, 'Wife wanted'. Over the next couple of weeks, I received many letters. Most said the same thing, "You can take...
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Mistress of my soul

On the night of last thanksgiving I woke up at three in the morning with palpitations. My heart was pounding. I was gasping for breath. I could feel the acidity in my mouth. My hands were clammy. There was a thin film of sweat on my forehead. My body was on fire. That...
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Holiday blues!

The day I was invited to four Christmas parties may go down in history as the day my weighing scale broke down and cried. That night I stood over OhMy!, the weighing scale in my bathroom, for a long time thinking "should I take its taunt and step up to the challenge?"...
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What’s bugging me?

The flu virus! Physically not yet. The quandary began with the onset of the flu season and advertisements that flustered even the most resolute. This constant bombarding triggered the fear factor which I had, over decades, hidden under layers of positive thoughts....
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OneWalk for Cancer

On 12th September 2015, I will be taking part in the Shoppers Drug Mart® OneWalk™ to Conquer Cancer benefiting Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, Toronto. Every day, over 500 Canadians are diagnosed with various forms of cancer. They hear variations of “I am sorry,...
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