What an Advertise-Meant?

my take on the latest Indian advertisements             

ING Corporate ‘Paisa Sirf Paisa Nahi Hai’ Ad

with 25 comments

{Double click to view larger video}

Tagline: Mere Desh Mein Paisa Sirf Paisa Nahi Hai.

Agency: McCann Erickson

Duration: 60 seconds

First seen: December ’08

Ad Message: Establishing ING as the financial institute that understands value of your money (banking, investments, insurance)

Target Audience: All income groups, 25+ years age

Frequency: Medium

Description: The ad is a medley of shots – a boy dives into water to get hold of a coin, a mehendi ceremony where an elderly aunt is warding off buri nazar, an old rajasthani snake-charmer playing his been embellished with coins, a wide-eyed toddler playing with some coins, a shagun envelope with a coin, a girl wearing coin-shaped earrings, a brother teasing his sister for the customary rakhi shagun, a regional film poster decorated with currency notes, a turbaned man balancing a coin at the end of a stick, a chaadar full of coins and a scene of the masjid where an eager boy runs to gets some eidee and hugs his uncle. The ad ends with the voiceover –“Hum samajhate hain aapko, samjhate hain paise ki aihmiyat aur usse judi aapki bhaawnaon ko. ING – Banking, Investments, Insurance” The lyrics of the song played in the background go – “Mere desh mein paisa sirf paisa nahi hai…Kabhi pyaar ke rang ranga hai paisa, Kabhi ban ke nageena jalaa hai paisa…Sapnon ka paudha hai, rangon ki rangoli hai, Paisa nahi yeh to duaaon ki boli hai…Mere desh mein paisa sirf paisa nahi hai -2”

[Caution: Strictly opinionated comments follow]

This ad like many others in the past*** plays on the how this bank knows the importance of your money and understands your emotional attachment to it. But how this idea has been translated as being an ‘Indian’ sentiment and its manifestation in various walks of ‘Indian’ life is quite commendable.

Garnished with some undeniably-hummable music by Monty Sharma (of Saawariya fame) and lyrics by ‘The Prasoon Joshi’ himself (Asia-Pac Chairman of the agency behind this ad), it makes a mark alright. Also worth-noting is that a number of different regions and religions across the country have been represented in the various scenes giving it a pan-India appeal.

The only question that comes to mind is why a Dutch bank just about 18 years old would be the right one to claim that it understands India’s cultural mind-set of money-not-just-being-money? Mind you it is ING sans Vysya we are talking about.

[General rant] What is with all (and I mean all) banks going the emotional advertising way? Any ad for a financial institution talks about emotions, sentiments, relationships, dreams, you-get-the-drift-stuff these days that you can barely tell apart one from another. I am craving for some ‘Surprisingly SBI’ types already [/Rant ends]

Yes, here is one more bank ad tugging at those heartstrings, and had the execution been any lesser I would have given it a hard time. But as it stands, nothing aisa-vaisa about this paisa!

***I had a nagging thought that the central idea resembled that of an earlier campaign where a small kid gives 1 rupee to his father as his first salary. After trying my luck with a whole lot of search terms, I have finally found the video I wanted to quote. As you can see, the closing lines “We understand how much every single rupee means to you” and the tagline “We appreciate the value of your money” are indeed very similar. Also, make sure you read the description (more info) of the youtube video as it is uncannily similar to what this ING campaign is all about.

And yeah, you can download the MP3 here – ING_Paisa.mp3

  Weight Rating W * R
Idea/Innovation/Creativity 15 6 90
Storyline/Screenplay 10 8 80
Music/Jingle 10 9 90
Cinematography 5 8 40
Acting 5 7 35
Duration vs Impact 5 7 35
Cost vs Impact 5 7 35
Brand Recall 10 6 60
Ad Memorability 5 7 35
Tagline 7.5 8 60
Product Association 5 8 40
Target Audience Connect 7.5 7 52.5
Entertainment 5 8 40
Claim 2.5 5 12.5
Emotional Appeal 2.5 8 20
Total 100 725

Weighted Average Rating: 725/100 = 7.25 (on a scale of 10)

I’d love to know your rating too, please use the voting widget below to rate this ad


25 Responses

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  1. idea was very good, but i think execution could have been very good, video could have been much better.

    they could have also included.

    janmastmi with rupee notes around the matki.
    rupee notes with 365 numbers whihc people consider lucky.
    many more things.. instead of clubbing all the things in a single ad they could have made some 10 – 15 ads on this idea


    December 18, 2008 at 6:28 am

  2. To clarify, ING is not just a 18 years old bank. Though in its current form its 18 yrs old, but its history dates back more than 200 years. Mind you, you are talking about a company which is at 7th on 2007 Fortune 500 list. Being a low profile company doesnt means that its small.
    It is indeed a totally different ad campaign, very well written lyrics…
    great work McCann


    December 21, 2008 at 5:59 pm

    • @Varun: Hmm, makes me wonder why I didn’t get this information from their very own website. ‘Totally different’ – well ya, as different as one Ekta Kapoor’s soap is from another 😉


      December 22, 2008 at 6:15 am

  3. hi guys,

    i had the great fortune of being a part of making this ad (I work as the strategic planner on the ING Corporate account). it’s truly heartening to see such positive stuff being spoken about my work. just wanted to post some quick responses to the comments made:

    1. maya thanks for pointing out the observation about notes with 365 on them. we didn’t know that one. the other two moments of ‘money being more than money’ are already on-board. you just have to wait for a few more days to see them 🙂

    2. Varun i must compliment your research. you sure do know a lot about ING. you’re absolutely right, ING is a big company, but they’re also very humble. thanks for your compliments to us. i’ve shared them with the team and they’re grinning ear to ear. 🙂

    3. AsMi your question is extremely pertinent. the information must be available on our website. we’re working on that. and i must admit, your analysis of advertising is pretty good. you worked with an agency before? 🙂

    thanks a ton guys. take care. have a merry christmas and a happy new year.


    December 24, 2008 at 9:14 am

    • @Mehul: Thanks for dropping by and posting your very informative response, much appreciated. The second one in the sequence is out and it’s great to see the other situations discussed here included too. Wish you a very Happy New Year from my side too.


      January 5, 2009 at 1:37 pm

  4. Emotional appeal is very high, however I still cannot understand why the Diwali Laxmi Puja doesn’t find a place in the ad.. bad research is the only reason i can think of, clearly reflecting that after all its a foreign bank trying to cash in on Indian traditions…

    Taking nothing away from its makers, its really very well cooked, the music and the visuals are perfectly in sync with the underlying idea.

    From a marketing perspective, I smell a number of similarities with HSBC’s “World’s local bank” campaign…


    December 24, 2008 at 9:18 am

  5. I should admit, my initial reaction to this ad was .. woo hoo.. AIG’s followup to their ‘we understand the value of your money’ I was surprised to see another bank using the same idea. The campaign was not bad, was well conceived and nicely executed. The tune is not bad (I’m a Rahman fan, and I normally dont appreciate anybody else 😦 )

    I’m just disappointed with the originality of the idea, everything else is fine.


    December 29, 2008 at 7:17 am

    • @Jeffrey: I couldn’t agree more regarding the ‘originality’ point. I have even modified the post to include the similarity with the AIG campaign.


      January 5, 2009 at 1:31 pm

  6. Hey!
    it is indeed an AD that leaves an opinion, thought or perception in the mind of the creative people who see it. i guess the greatest appeal of this ad is in the particular thought “paisa sirf paisa nahi hain…” and sets every creative person thinking about what examples that one has had in his or her life which echo this thought… and as indians i guess the appeal is substantially more, since we have always been confronted with the more emotional, psychological, cultural, ritualistic aspect of “SHAGUN” and “BARKAT” rather than mere 100 ruppee note plus that one ruppee coin. How often have we seen those envelopes with a one ruppee coin stuck to its face? This is quite unique…

    what i really cant figure is that in this blog the link given for the music doesnt work… WHY? some issue? It is good music, that’s so hummable..


    December 31, 2008 at 5:15 am

    • @chottbhai: thanks for bringing the broken link to my notice. I have fixed it now.


      January 1, 2009 at 1:03 pm

  7. Hey,
    great post! I love this ad, and although the connection between banking and the ad doesn’t quite become clear, the overall experience of the ad makes it worth remembering. But of course, there is the other problem – that the ad is so cute that it ends up becoming the star instead of the brand.

    Similar to the IDBI Bank “Not just for big boys” ad, where the cute baby footballer elephant and kids steal the show, a very mesmerising jingle also helped.

    I wonder if you could find me the MP3 for it?


    January 13, 2009 at 6:09 am

    • @krystalmage: thanks for visiting! the MP3 link is at the bottom of the post, did you try using that? Unless of course, you are referring to the IDBI jingle???


      January 13, 2009 at 6:12 am

  8. Hi Friend. I am a fellow ad-freak. I have been trying hard to get the background score of this fantastic ad by Mudra for LIC. The ad starts with a little giral flating a paper boat that cruises through a hundred places, face a whole lot of adversities and fianlly makes it to its destination. Its on youtube as the LIC boat ad. You can describe it in one word- fatabulous man!Can you please help me ?(pusugo@rediffmail.com)

    P.S: I think you blog’s a fantastic resource for ad-fraks… Please include a section on vintage ads- eg the cadbury’s original, the hari sadus, the happy dents..that would be an icicng on the cake…


    January 13, 2009 at 12:51 pm

    • @Pushpa: Hi friend, I could grab the MP3 for the LIC ad and here it is – LIC_Boat_Ad.mp3

      Thanks for appreciating the blog and your suggestion about including vintage ads (though I must admit I feel daunted by the sheer though of it); I will definitely look into it. Keep visiting!


      January 13, 2009 at 1:07 pm

  9. hey asmi,
    lovely read…….n your comments r gr8 too…….m still having problems downloading the mp3 version of the background score……..any idea y?????
    looking forward to more of ur views on the newer ads!!!


    January 15, 2009 at 11:38 am

    • @utkarsha: Thanks for the lovely comments too 🙂 Could you tell me what exactly is the problem you are facing?


      January 15, 2009 at 11:45 am

  10. Hi Asmi..I was in fact referring to the IDBI jingle. I would love if you could find it. No pressure tho. seriously. 😀


    January 16, 2009 at 6:35 am

    • @Krystakmage: That’s ok. Here is the jingle for you – IDBI_Elephant_Ad.mp3

      Don’t mind taking a little trouble for great readers like you 🙂


      January 16, 2009 at 6:48 am

  11. Thank you! You have officially given me my new ringtone. 😀


    January 16, 2009 at 11:33 am

  12. I whave been looking for this song since the day I watched this ad on TV. Thanx a lot for prviding me this ringtone.


    January 21, 2009 at 5:19 pm

    • @Sanjay: glad to be of help!


      January 23, 2009 at 10:53 am

  13. i want this mp3 song

    neha rathi

    January 23, 2009 at 10:47 am

    • @neha: I don’t have the ‘song’, just the jingle that is played in the background. You can click on the link at the bottom of my post to download the same.


      January 23, 2009 at 10:49 am

  14. This is very bloddy thing bcos i cant get ringtone from this


    January 25, 2009 at 6:51 pm

  15. hello friend…

    hope you all fine ..

    i want to set jingle of ing vyasa as a caller tune

    please give me idea how to set it ??

    thnk you



    Siraz Rajwani

    August 11, 2009 at 8:10 am

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