Zomato porn sites ads
One of the ads run by food-ordering service Zomato on adult websitesZomato blog

An India-based restaurant search service has literally put food and porn together mimicking the popular internet epithet "food porn". Zomato has gone a step further in aiming to tap the potential of porn sites in India by advertising food on them.

Enticing as it may sound, the New Delhi-based firm with global ambitions, has said it is hoping to serve the "obviously hungry" customers. Firmly pinning hopes on the growing number of Indians watching porn on their desktops and smartphones, Zomato said the initial response to the advertisements has been positive, if not overwhelming.

Speaking to IBTimes UK, Pramod Rao, senior vice-president of growth at Zomato, said: "Based on the first week of the campaign, we're seeing great traction in terms of click-throughs, app installs, and orders originating from these ads. However, the first week has been more of a test and we'll now be optimising a few things for the remainder of the campaign based on what we've learned."

The ads, which Zomato claims would beat other advertisements on adult sites, were placed between 11pm and 4am, during which the traffic to the sites is thought to be at the maximum. The food-ordering service, which has already set up offices in 23 countries and is aiming for more, said residents of New Delhi clicked on the advertisements more than any other city. This was followed by the south Indian city of Bangalore.

When asked whether it would negatively impact their brand name as Indians are often seen as conservative, Rao said: "I don't think it'll affect our brand name negatively."

Zomato porn sites ads
Zomato hopes its food ads on porn sites will not affect the brandZomato blog

Rao said the idea of advertising on porn sites came up during a meeting when someone mentioned: "'Hey we should try advertising on porn sites', and then justified it with 'look, people watch porn, and people get hungry, so stop judging me.'"

The unconventional campaign has come at a time when the company is struggling to make profit in a vibrant and crowded Indian market. Zomato fired about 300 staff, or 10% of the workforce, in October this year.

It also attracted a lot of flak over a campaign during the recent Chennai floods in which Zomato promised to contribute one meal towards relief measures for every meal ordered by a customer. Critics pointed out Zomato was trying to capitalise on the disaster by marketing themselves but the company said it was a genuine charity measure.