Work That Speaks | Ad Reviews | 15 To 23 March 2023

Brands that cut through: Macho Hint, Axis Bank, Limca, Tanishq, Spotify, Mahindra Rise, Jio Cinema, DTDC, Blue Star, Rasna, Hyundai Verna, OnePlus, Appy Fizz, Dabur Herb’l, Havells, Lay’s, Airtel, Bombay Times, Aditya Birla Finance, Brillare, South Indian Bank.

Brand campaigns that deserve to be in the spotlight this week.
Brand campaigns that deserve to be in the spotlight this week.

By Gokul Krishnamoorthy

Macho Hint | Ek Hint Toh Dete | Bade Aaram Se

Unbelievable? Of course. Stands out? A resounding yes, again. A haven’t seen this kind of an outlandish proposal plot involving an official parade. Thankfully, it’s not raked up controversy or attracted protests from those who might argue that it is disrespectful to the armed forces. One wouldn’t be surprised in today’s age, when the most erudite of professionals can turn inane with their insinuations – because brands are soft targets and because their brains have been coded to conflate issues. The spot is refreshing. Stands out while sticking to and building on the ‘aaram’ anchor.

Axis Bank | Finding The Familiar In The New

Axis Bank has extended its tested ‘Dil Se Open’ welcome to Citi’s consumer banking customers coming into its fold. The premise of ‘Finding the familiar in the new’ stems from the promise of the familiar privileges and relationships they were accustomed to at Citi. Must be a daunting integration task. The confidence with which it has been approached shows in the warm and collected communication.

Limca | #MatThak (2023)

Limca’s #MatThak has come some distance. If the ‘Train’ and ‘Marathon’ films from previous years featured protagonists in the ‘do good’ zone energised by the drink, #MatThak moves into another zone this year.

The tour guide plot allows for interesting storytelling and engagement with humour. Unlike the past work under the umbrella, Limca also finds a way now to be part of the plot from the start – by being the game changer. And guess what, you really don’t mind the brand being in your face. Because the new approach marries the promise of refreshment tastefully with entertainment.

Tanishq | Vardhini | Why Can’t A Dream Be Her First Child? (Telugu)

On the occasion of Ugadi comes another signature campaign from Tanishq. Written and filmed to evoke empathy, the spot takes one through familiar societal expectations from – and attendant pressure on – newly married women to ‘deliver’. This is often seen flaring up during family gatherings such as the one pictured here. Protagonist Sudha plays along about her ‘glow’ until she reveals the name of her ‘child’. ‘Why Can’t A Dream Be Her First Child?’ she asks, mouthing words that women around the world should relate to and millions around them should wake up to.

Spotify | Blend to Love. Love to Blend

Missed this Valentine’s Day spot where Spotify slays it with music, yet again. Music is not just the food of love here, the film also presents a relaxed yet swift storyline that the youth will relate to. ‘Blend to love. Love to blend’ blends right in with the spirit of the day. The role of music in one’s life and love, and the product innovation of blending playlists, take centrestage. Told playfully, this sprightly short uses music to unleash the magic of young love.

Spotify | The Unheard Playlist

An innovation that should bring the makers some glory, unless of course it’s been done before in some other part of the world. Not that I recall any such device where the female voices have been muted to make a point – certainly not in a playlist! The collab route works wonders with singers amplifying the message themselves.

Mahindra Rise | #SheIsOnTheRise

This one is brought alive thanks to the elevating soundtrack. Featuring its own employees lends authenticity to the women’s day message from Mahindra and believability to its message that #SheIsOnTheRise.

Jio Cinema | Digital India Ka Digital Tata IPL

It’s evident now that the battle for eyeballs is not between IPL and anything else on offer but between IPL on the broadcaster and IPL on the streaming platform. That may not be the case with advertisers, but that’s another story. In any case, I am not sure if going head on is helping either.

While the broadcaster’s spot highlighted the group viewing celebrations possible on TV, this one from Jio seems to appropriate the same premise. The intent clearly is not to promote group viewing on a handheld device – the promo additionally highlights multiple camera angles and flexibility the streaming option allows, with a sporting MSD and SKY doing their bits. Engaging, captures the frenzy of IPL fans, and might lure some of them to the ‘digital’ version to figure firsthand what’s on offer. Mission accomplished.

DTDC x India | Let’s Grow Together

We have seen logistics companies spin emotional stories before. But I am not sure I have seen DTDC craft such messages in the past. Through some simple yet compelling stories that draw from everyday life, DTDC manages to connect us with the importance of what it does. Be it a visa or a shipment, DTDC delivers. In the films, it delivers what matters to the protagonists and reassures them with its legacy.

Blue Star | #GarmiKiChhutti

How do you visualise garmi? Check. How do you counter that? With Blue Star, of course. Check. And a little push from Virat Kohli, with perfect timing.

Rasna | Inki Tricks Mein Mat Fasna, Dhyan Rakho On Your Rasna

Summer is here and so is some refreshed communication from Rasna. Rasna’s ‘Our energy’ moment of the Boost kind comes in the form of ‘We love you Rasna’, but not before wrapping us around the little girl’s lows and high.

Hyundai Verna | Futuristic. Ferocious

Futuristic? Certainly. The spacecraft scenario leaves us in little doubt of that. The lady behind the wheel in another car seems to have become par for the course but we’re not complaining. Ferocious has a nice, fresh ring to it, even if it doesn’t come alive on screen. Promising promotion nevertheless.

OnePlus | #BuiltFor5G | Ready Before You Were

The brand has quite a few takers for its 5G offerings, as it did for the previous gen phones. It was ready before we were, underlines OnePlus, in this simple spot sans confusion.

Appy Fizz | All New Look | Aaj Kar De Kuch Naya

What does an appy fizzy drink have to do with ‘Do something new today?’ We will have to ask such questions of many brands if we go down that route. Let’s stick to the spot. Nice choice of ambassadors, nice line to drive home the ‘new’ look. Strongly delivered message.

Dabur Herb’l Activated Charcoal | Choose #BlackForWhite

“Who says you can’t…?” Paint a masterpiece blindfolded. Begin a meal with dessert. Work out in work clothes. Nice devices to get you hooked. Perhaps the brand is addressing a perception issue in the minds of consumers about using a black toothpaste when the desired end result is white teeth. Countering the problem in the affirmative by taking it head on seems to be working here. Or is it? It certainly got me watching till the end, willingly.

Havells Fans | #LookUpToHavells

Havells was a brand in its own league in its category. It still wows us once in a while and comes close to doing so here. The line ‘Look up to Havells’ helps it own that all-important space on the ceiling this summer. The instances portrayed to establish ‘Look up’ are interesting slices of life. Breezy film makes for a pleasant watch and makes its point.

Lay’s | #GharParLaysAlways

A fancy dress party with our man dressed as burglar. It gets your attention and leads you onto a quick, fun supermarket to police station caper. A star who can act and a line that the film was written for, help this score. #GharParLaysAlways is the unmissable message.

Airtel 5G Plus | Ki Bhi 5G Kyun?

5G is going to be a talk point for handset makers and service providers. Now how do you stand out? Creating a product differentiation with a ‘5G Plus’ is a master move. The campaign works to position Airtel’s 5G as different from other 5G networks.

It is interesting to see promises like ‘Environment Plus’ and I for one will want to know how that is kept. The speed premise is visualised attractively. The real game changer will be bundled offers for those needing an upgrade to 5G handsets. I am sure we’ll see that soon.

Bombay Times | #FixTheGlitch | Out & Proud @Work

This one’s here for the message. Kudos to the brand for staying the course.

Aditya Birla Finance | #ZarooratKeWaqtPeZarooratKaPaisa

Every one of us has received a wanton call from someone selling loans. Playing on that to sell the brand’s proposition was a masterstroke. In the course of the role reversal, we are informed of the benefits of the brand’s product/s. It was too amusing to switch away from. Shorter edits should work better.

Brillare | #FocusOnIngredients

You’ve got to admit that there is a solid and tangible differentiation in the label. As for how that’s communicated – through the narrative of one pack speaking to another – it may seem a tad familiar. But it is done well enough to make one watch. The music adds a nice touch.

South Indian Bank | Trust Meets Tech Since 1929

It is easier said than done to drive home your tech credentials when you are a legacy player, more so in a sector like banking. Winning tech awards helps but how do you communicate that? South Indian Bank tries to do that by marrying ‘trust’ and ‘tech’ with a race track and a father-son association. A worthy attempt that may not wow juries, but it seems to be a start. It shows intent in the right direction and hence, one expects more where this came from.

(First published on FE BrandWagon Online. Powered by Feedback:

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First published on: 24-03-2023 at 10:48 IST