What an Advertise-Meant?

my take on the latest Indian advertisements             

Airtel Hello Tune Ad Featuring Saif & Kareena

with 17 comments

 

{Double click to view larger video}

Tagline: Gaana bolo, Hello Tune paao

Agency: Rediffusion DY&R [Need to confirm]

Duration: 45 seconds

First seen: January ’09

Ad Message: Introducing new Hello Tune service from Airtel (Dial 543215 to get your desired caller tune)

Target Audience: All Airtel subscribers (15+ years age group)

Frequency: High

Description: The ad begins with Saif Ali Khan busy playing video games when Kareena Kapoor sits on the couch next to him. She says “Talk to me na baby” while Saif snubs her “Not now, bebo”. Not backing off, she asks the name of the song he was humming the day before and Saif curtly replies with ‘Pyaar hua, Ikraar hua”. She then wheedles him to set the song as her caller tune right there or else the game is over. Just when you think she has had her breakthrough in taking Saif’s attention away from the game, he just dials a number, blurts out the song title and tosses the cellphone back in Kareena’s hands. A shocked Kareena just manages to say “ho gaya?” while Saif goes back to his game in peace. The ad ends with the voiceover – “Gaana bolo, hello tune pao. Simple. Dial 543215.”

[Caution: Strictly opinionated comments follow]

What an unabashed lift from the Tata Sky Aamir-Gul spots…the irreverent husband, the mellow music, the focus on the dialogue, even the couch and backdrop…the similarities are only too glaring. One might contend that Airtel was the one to start this trend with their Madhavan-Vidya series; but it was definitely Tata Sky who took it to the next level by weaving the product benefits with a delightful story each time.

Now that I have gotten that itch out of the way, I have to say it is watchable nonetheless. Saif and Kareena are looking good together and they get to play lighthearted, real characters for a change (though Kareena’s hamming gene gets the better of her at times). The girl gets her song, the guy gets his PlayStation, the idea gets conveyed and everyone is generally happy…seems like feel-good-advertising has arrived big-time.  The fact that Airtel is promoting this feature via multiple platforms further helps – promo spot in Indian Idol, tie-up with the movie promos of Victory et al.

Well, I may be highly unimpressed with the choice of this overexposed jodi or the déjà-vu feeling I get because of the Tata Sky ads, but then I am not the one ecstatic about the availability of caller tunes one-phone-call-away.  In the benefit of Airtel, the young 13-25 year olds most likely to use this feature would be ready to drool over Saif or Kareena (or both 😉 ) and will lap it all up. So good for them!

 But my ratings are –

  Weight Rating W * R
Idea/Innovation/Creativity 15 0.5 7.5
Execution      
Storyline/Screenplay 10 2 20
Music/Jingle 10 5 50
Cinematography 5 6 30
Acting 5 6 30
Duration vs Impact 5 5 25
Cost vs Impact 5 5 25
Recall     0
Brand Recall 10 7 70
Ad Memorability 5 4 20
Tagline 7.5 4 30
Product Association 5 7 35
Target Audience Connect 7.5 7.5 56.25
Entertainment 5 5 25
Claim 2.5 7 17.5
Emotional Appeal 2.5 5 12.5
Total 100   454

 Weighted Average Rating: 454/100 = 4.54 (on a scale of 10)

How would you rate this one –

Vodafone SMS @ 10 p ‘Proposal’ Ad

with 12 comments

{Double click to view larger video}

Tagline: “Now everyone will know”/”Make the most of now”

Agency: [Need to find out]

Duration: 45 seconds

First seen: January ’09

Ad Message: Introducing the new reduced tariff for Vodafone SMS service

Target Audience: Middle income group (13-24 years)

Frequency: Medium-High

Description: The ad opens with a middle-aged guy picking up a ring from a store where the owner(s) shake his hand and smile at him encouragingly. The rest of the ad shows the guy’s journey to his destination – a group of oldies in a cab staring at him, another guy shaking his hand, a group of college guys giggling at him, a girl offering him a ride in her car, people staring from their verandah and an old lady even pulling at his cheeks – all of them sporting a mischievous I-know-what-you-are-up-to smile. He finally reaches the café to meet his girlfriend only to find the others staring at him with the all too familiar look again. He slides next to his girlfriend nervously as the ad ends with the all-red-Vodafone screen displaying “SMS @ 10p, Now everyone will know. SMS TEN to 111”

[Caution: Strictly opinionated comments follow]

It is alright to create ads that force you to flex your imagination, but eventually the truth must dawn. And that’s where this one falters. From what I have understood of this ambiguous ad is that the affair and the fact that the guy is going to pop-the-question today is the talk of the town thanks to Vodafone sms’ being as cheap as 10 p. But that’s what I thought of it. I mean, just the fact that I have to wonder if I got the story right is enough of a put-off for me.

Moreover, can I relate to it? Hell no! Will the 13-24 year old youth who is the primary user of the SMS feature (and most likely to be thrilled about the cheaper service) be able to relate to this ad? I don’t think so.

Whether it is the sleepy-distinctively “non-Indian”-town backdrop or the main guy who looks like he is caught in a mid-life crisis, this one seems to be trying too hard to be different. I would go so far to say that it is ok to be predictable and get the message across rather than being innovative and leave the viewer (read potential customer) wondering.

In fact, they did have a truly brilliant idea in “Now everyone will know” (oh, the irony of this tagline!) concept – the same ad in a college setting with some visuals of people actually texting each other fervently would have done the trick for me. Oh, but that would have been too in-your-face you see ;). The only other thing that deserves a mention is the background score, it seems to be different, and yes in a good way (unlike the rest of the ad). You can grab the mp3 version here.

Sorry Vodafone, but ‘Not everyone will know’ what you are trying to say here!

  Weight Rating W * R
Idea/Innovation/Creativity 15 4 60
Execution      
Storyline/Screenplay 10 3 30
Music/Jingle 10 6.5 65
Cinematography 5 5 25
Acting 5 6 30
Duration vs Impact 5 2 10
Cost vs Impact 5 3 15
Recall     0
Brand Recall 10 5 50
Ad Memorability 5 3 15
Tagline 7.5 6 45
Product Association 5 3 15
Target Audience Connect 7.5 2 15
Entertainment 5 3 15
Claim 2.5 3 7.5
Emotional Appeal 2.5 1 2.5
Total 100   400

Weighted Average Rating: 400/100 = 4.00 (on a scale of 10)

What did you think about this one –

Bournville Dark Chocolate ‘TV Anchor’ Ad

with 18 comments

{Double click to view larger video}

Tagline: “You don’t just buy a Bournville, you earn it”

Agency: O & M

Duration: 55 seconds

First seen: December ’08

Ad Message: Re-introducing the dark chocolate brand ‘Bournville’ from Cadburys stable

Target Audience: SEC A Higher income group (25+ years)

Frequency: Medium

Description: The ad begins with a TV anchor (played by Brett Stimely) getting ready for his shot as he looks into the camera and says “Hello, today I am in the lovely town of Bournville, holding a Bournville, made in Bournville. Now they have a tradition here that you are supposed to open it gently, listen to the snap, take in the aroma. But before you can eat it, you have to ask yourself “Have you earned it?” Well, back in the day the old chaps had to beat the French at the war or the Aussies in cricket before they could enjoy it.” He goes on to scorn the tradition as – “British mumbo-jumbo! Have I earned it? No!!! But I am going to eat it anyway”.  And just as he is about to take his ‘un-earned’ bite, a huge scary bird plucks him and takes him away. What follows are shots of the dark chocolate and the TV host wrapped in bandages surrounded by the armed locals while the host voices – “Made from precious Ghanaian cocoa, comes a dark chocolate so fine, legend has it and I have learned you don’t just buy a Bournville, you earn it.”

[Caution: Strictly opinionated comments follow]

This one has several things going for it. For starters, the ad has a fresh idea suitably backed by a fresh execution. [Well ok, the making-a-tradition-out-of-eating-the-chocolate reminded me somewhat of the really old KitKat spots where you take out the bar, swipe your finger through the inner wrapper, snap and so on…] But still, the high-handed claim that you have to ‘earn this Bournville’ goes well with this premium dark chocolate offering (priced @ Rs. 75) primarily targeted towards SEC A.

The situation uses both drama and humor to convey that taking this chocolate ‘lightly’ (pun intended) can be risky business thereby creating a certain aura around the brand. Moreover, I very much liked the emphasis on the brand “Bournville” and the fact that you rarely lose sight of the chocolate throughout the ad.  For a change, someone cares about the product to be sold.

As for what I didn’t like so much – the rather British-looking actor and British-sounding script I would say. I mean, till the time I read this article and heard him scoff the ‘British mumbo-jumbo’, I didn’t correlate that he is supposed to be an non-British (rather American) anchor. If that is the case, they should have ‘American- ised’ the look and script of the actor much more to avoid sending mixed signals.

Apart from the tv ad, they also have a dedicated website and a print version of the ad – but again there seems to be little connect between the three versions! So while the website, impressively done in Flash, takes you through an interactive journey of the chocolate-making-process; the print ad talks about how this chocolate is the food of the gods and the upper management. Maybe they could use the same TV anchor for taking you through the online journey as well and so on to enhance recall.

Still shines bright this dark chocolate!

 

  Weight Rating W * R
Idea/Innovation/Creativity 15 7 105
Execution      
Storyline/Screenplay 10 7 70
Music/Jingle 10 6 60
Cinematography 5 7.5 37.5
Acting 5 5 25
Duration vs Impact 5 6 30
Cost vs Impact 5 7 35
Recall     0
Brand Recall 10 8 80
Ad Memorability 5 7 35
Tagline  7.5 7 52.5
Product Association 5 7 35
Target Audience Connect 7.5 7 52.5
Entertainment 5 8 40
Claim 2.5 7 17.5
Emotional Appeal 2.5 5 12.5
Total 100   688

Weighted Average Rating: 688/100 = 6.88 (on a scale of 10)

How do you rate this one – 

Written by AsMi

January 8, 2009 at 3:15 pm

Pepsi ‘My Can’ Ranbir Kapoor Ad – Part 2

with 10 comments

{Double click to view larger video}

Tagline: None

Agency: JWT

Duration: 30 seconds

First seen: December ’08

Ad Message: Establish the 15 Rs. Pepsi ‘My Can’ offering in the market

Target Audience: 15-25 years young SEC A & B crowd

Frequency: Medium

Description: Ranbir Kapoor continues in his mission for the can and leans on his bed in the hope that the other girl (Pooja Sharma) will give up. She threatens ‘bed pe nahi, bed pe nahi’ just when Deepika Padukone (playing the reel life girlfriend too…yawn yawn) opens the door to find her boyfriend on bed with another girl, slams the door shut as Ranbir looks on helplessly and Ms. Pooja Sharma stands victorious holding ‘My Can’.

[Caution: Strictly opinionated comments follow]

She came, she saw and she let someone else conquer…thunderous applause ladies and gentlemen for you have just witnessed the most innovative, powerful and unexpected idea of all times. I never thought that after the great build-up in the first part, JWT could actually follow-it up with an even more enchanting and befitting ending.

This ad uses the element of mystery so masterfully…err what mystery did you say? Let me explain…you see…the boy is willing to go half-naked on the bed with another girl when his girlfriend emerges out of his apartment’s other room…so, is the guy too brave or too stupid? Now ain’t that a nail-biter. Then there is the peripheral mystery like …why anyone would want to buy this cold drink after seeing the ad? But apologies as I digress to mundane topics, as the super-smart youngistanis are expected to dutifully swoon over Ranbir and Deepika. After all, it must have taken a hell lot of effort to make them look hot enough to take away our focus from the product they are selling (arre ‘Pepsi My Can’ baba). And must say, choosing Deepika to play Ranbir’s onscreen girlfriend, that sure must have taken some heavy-duty creative leaps of faith.

Kudos JWT, as you have just proven wrong anyone who ever believed that advertising is a means to evoke a customer action other than pulling at his hair in disgust.

Now for the ratings:

  Weight Rating W * R
Idea/Innovation/Creativity 15 0.5 7.5
Execution      
Storyline/Screenplay 10 0.5 5
Music/Jingle 10 1 10
Cinematography 5 4 20
Acting 5 5 25
Duration vs Impact 5 2 10
Cost vs Impact 5 5 25
Recall      
Brand Recall 10 5 50
Ad Memorability 5 1 5
Tagline 7.5 0 0
Product Association 5 1 5
Target Audience Connect 7.5 3 22.5
Entertainment 5 1 5
Claim 2.5 1 2.5
Emotional Appeal 2.5 0 0
Total 100   193

Weighted Average Rating: 193/100 = 1.93 (on a scale of 10)

So, how would you rate this one –


Happy Holidays!

with 2 comments

Happy holidays all of you! I am off for my year end vacation and will see you all in 2009 with more advertisement reviews. Till then, be good and take care.

PS: I must’ve been not-so-bad last year, as Santa just nudged my blog count over the 10,000 mark today! Yehhhh!

Written by AsMi

December 24, 2008 at 2:30 pm

Posted in General

Tagged with

Pepsi ‘My Can’ Ad featuring Ranbir Kapoor

with 5 comments

{Double click to view larger video}

Tagline: [Not available yet]

Agency: JWT

Duration: 30 seconds

First seen: December ’08

Ad Message: Establish the 15 Rs. Pepsi ‘My Can’ offering in the market

Target Audience: 15-25 years young SEC A & B crowd

Frequency: Medium

Description: This ad opens with a store shutting down when a guy (played by Ranbir Kapoor) and a girl (played by Pooja Sharma) both reach out to grab the last can of Pepsi. The struggle for the coveted can begins with each of them proclaiming it’s ‘my can’. The girl not wanting to give-up the can ends up in the guy’s apartment and does not give ground even when the guy takes off his shirt. She covers her eyes but continues to hold on to the can. Last shot informs that the story is ‘to be continued’.

[Caution: Strictly opinionated comments follow]

Do us a favor JWT, please don’t ‘to-be-continue’ this one. How on earth could you forget that Pepsi once took potshots at Akshay-Kumar-grabbing-the-last-bottle-of-thumbs-up series by coming up with an ad which proclaimed ‘Pepsi piyaa karo uncle, har jagah milti hai’. Have you heard of the term ‘consistency’? Here is a brilliant article to get you started.

It looks like such a humdrum idea, so very predictable from the very first shot. Moreover, the story has very glaring loopholes – a girl who is ready to barge-in in a strange guy’s apartment (that too at night time; since it was time for the store to shutdown silly!) BUT covers her eyes while he takes off his shirt (mind you, only ‘while’ he is undressing – somehow she is quite comfortable once the process is done).

Again, like the Kareena-Desi-Beats ad, this seems more like a video showcasing Ranbir Kapoor; hard not to notice how brazenly the girl has been ignored – you get to see her face only once during the entire clip.

The only positive thing is that you end up remembering it is a ‘My Can’ ad simply because of the repetition technique used. And yeah, I can see a niche section of teenage-dimwit gals drooling over Ranbir and if they end up buying some ‘mycans’, good for Pepsi.

But definitely not my cup of tea, this ‘mycan’ (and that’s when I have seen only the first part).

 

  Weight Rating W * R
Idea/Innovation/Creativity 15 2 30
Execution      
Storyline/Screenplay 10 1 10
Music/Jingle 10 3 30
Cinematography 5 3 15
Acting 5 5 25
Duration vs Impact 5 6 30
Cost vs Impact 5 7 35
Recall     0
Brand Recall 10 7 70
Ad Memorability 5 6 30
Tagline     0
Product Association 5 6 30
Target Audience Connect 7.5 5 37.5
Entertainment 5 3 15
Claim 2.5 2 5
Emotional Appeal 2.5 1 2.5
Total 92.5   365

Weighted Average Rating: 365/100 = 3.65 (on a scale of 10)

Your rating please –


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
Execution      
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
Recall      
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