Vodafone UK: bringing families together through shared data plan

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Mobile phones are considered the death of family time. In public places, it is common to see each member of a family staring in to their mobile phone screens, keeping to themselves…conversation be damned. In this context comes a new campaign for Vodafone UK’s family sharing data plan, Red+. The ads position it as an enabler of sharing and hence bringing families together. Agency: RKCR/Y&R What worked for me was the real-life nature of the ads. Turns out that real British families [Read More]

The pitfalls of buying influence in social media


Much has been discussed about in Indian social media after a recent blogger’s meet sponsored by a car brand. The attempt here is to share my thoughts on the larger issue of buying influence in social media and not about that specific event. Hence, I am not going to take any names – be it of individuals, agencies or brands linked with the event. ‘Advertising is the science of arresting the human intelligence long enough to get money from it’, said Stephen Leacock, tongue firmly in cheek. The [Read More]

Airtel: the reason-why is missing boss


India is poised to become the smartphone hotspot with truck loads of players entering the fray. According to IDC, India witnessed the highest rate of growth – over 18% – in smartphone sales in Asia Pacific region during January-March 2014, outshining countries like China. And the CAGR is expected to be in the region of 40% over the next five years. The consumer is spoilt for choice when it comes to handsets too; affordable price points are also driving this adoption. It is all apparent when you see [Read More]

New advertising: @GSP creates clothing line to train baby brains

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The best instances of great client-agency partnership is when the ad agency goes beyond the role of a creative services provider and becomes a true business solution provider. In 1907, the California Fruit Growers Exchange was looking for ways to increase the consumption of oranges. The legendary Albert Lasker of Lord & Thomas ad agency (which later became Foote Cone & Belding) proposed that they create a unified brand to represent all the orange growers. The Sunkist brand was born. He also [Read More]

Sponsoring global events: new challenges for brands


An interesting discussion with Lakshmanan Narayan, CEO and co-founder of Unmetric in this week’s Storybard, touched upon the topic of brands sponsoring global events. Specifically, the issue was about how with global events like FIFA World Cup, brands not associated with the event in an official capacity as sponsors are gaining mileage through through brand content in social media. So it begs the question, ‘do brands have to be sponsors anymore?’ Brands stealing thunder from a competing brand [Read More]

Death by iteration: no end in sight for ad agencies


A recent blog post by the immensely talented and insightful Tom Fishburne on the process of creative reviews touched a chord. The article went on to say: most talented designers in the world will create mediocre work if the creative review process is managed in a mediocre way; breakthrough creative only starts when we treat our creative partners as partners. Almost everyone who has ever worked in an ad agency, especially those in account management, planning and creative have been subjected [Read More]

LYNX Australia: from chick magnet to ‘seize the work day’


Loved the new positioning and execution for LYNX in Australia. For years now, Lynx (called Axe in many markets) has hammered home the ‘chick magnet’ idea. The creative executions have been had some common underlying theme – winning over the girl, seduction, humour and lots of sensuality. My favourite executions: short duration films like ‘masseur’ and the ones which were themed with major sporting events. Other notable campaigns included the ‘Call Me’,  Axe Apollo and Kiss for Peace.  The brand [Read More]

KBC: time to go beyond the great leveller theme

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One of the comments regarding the new ads for KBC is that while the earlier ad themes of the show being a great leveller were relevant, winning hearts is not. Agency: Leo Burnett In my view, the show has long gone past the need to convey the thought that it is a great leveller…that anybody can win, as long as they have the knowledge. That thought has been drilled into the viewer’s head for several seasons now and consumer’s believe it. People from decidedly humble backgrounds winning [Read More]

Nike’s ‘Tomorrow starts now': when brands seize the initiative

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How do some brands seize the initiative? How do they take a leadership stance? I guess this is how. Brazil lost badly to Germany in the recent football World Cup and the nation must be smarting from the defeat. Understandably the morale must be low and the nation must be looking for something positive, inspirational to identify with. Enter Nike with a brilliant initiative urging the nation to look forward to the Rio 2016 Olympic event. The film showcases many of the sporting stars from Brazil: [Read More]

Three Mobile: laddering benefit with wit and charm #holidayspam

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How often have we seen offer ads in the cluttered telecom category? Dry as a bone, most such ads attempt to highlight freebies like extra data, price-offs or add-ons like roaming. In this context, comes this charming little campaign from Three Mobile, UK. The background: a plan called ‘Three Feel At Home’ allows UK users to call and text back home and use data, at no extra cost, when in 16 countries abroad. Instead of merely limiting to announcing this, a brilliant #HolidaySpam campaign has been [Read More]