1. The Pied Piper effect

The Pied Piper effect

A recent ad film for Skoda Rapid makes a bid to highlight the newly stylised, feature-driven hatchback

By: | Published: November 22, 2016 6:10 AM
Skoda India (Volkswagen Group) has given the Rapid a facelift and launched a campaign conceptualised by Publicis India. The Skoda Rapid brand was first launched in 2011. (Representative Image) Skoda India (Volkswagen Group) has given the Rapid a facelift and launched a campaign conceptualised by Publicis India. The Skoda Rapid brand was first launched in 2011. (Representative Image)

The Ad

The film sees the Skoda Rapid being driven around, quickly becoming an eye catcher as it drives past a rally of marathoners. The ad shows sequences of the marathoners scrambling to keep up with the car, as they follow it even at the cost of deviating from the race route and hence, completely missing the finish line.

Our Take

Skoda India (Volkswagen Group) has given the Rapid a facelift and launched a campaign conceptualised by Publicis India. The Skoda Rapid brand was first launched in 2011.

The ad was launched on digital first followed by a shorter edit on television. The film, set to a popular and upbeat accompanying score, is pacey and energetic. The execution and production looks clean. One of the aims of the campaign is to communicate the design overhaul of the car, apart from highlighting the new features that are a part of the facelift. The brand has done well by not going with the flashy, sharply edited automobile ad template for this one, something that other Skoda products have done in the past. The campaign will run throughout November and December.

The ad casts young professionals (Indian and otherwise) in the 25-40 year bracket, which is the brand’s core TA. The brand’s advertising over the past few years in India has been about communicating the efforts to fortify the overall brand image, after sales services and dealerships. Tarun Jha, head of marketing, Skoda Auto India, says, “For this, we had a brand campaign some months ago based on the message of Better made better. The (Skoda Rapid) launch which follows the brand campaign very closely follows the same thought but this time, specifically for the product.”

Skoda Auto India has observed that in the Indian market, Rapid used to be the second or the third car in the consumer’s progression. The change, however, has come in the last five years with the car now being seen as their first car. Jha adds, “Two primary reasons are: increasing average income level and the start-up culture. This demographic wants to go for a ‘proper car’ rather than a small car as the first.”

The 360 degree integrated campaign is supplemented by a CRM programme for existing and prospective customers who have sent in queries about the car over the past few months. The brand is planning to do roadshows by November-end, especially in areas where it doesn’t have active dealerships but those that come under the ambit of a dealership in a nearby town.

TV and print account for 35% communication spend each. Fifteen percent would be digital and the balance would go to outdoor.

@shinminbali

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