Dialling up the Deepika factor

By: |
New Delhi | February 12, 2018 10:38 PM

Goibibo’s latest ad goes a bit overboard on the dramatisation, losing its signature charm of subtle humour from previous campaigns.

deepika padukone, goibibo, commercial ad, ad campaignGoibibo is hard-selling its products and services through new campaigns every few months.

The Ad

The TVC opens onto a crowded street, where three youngsters are trying to negotiate with an over-the-top traffic cop played by Deepika Padukone, to accept their apology for not adhering to the traffic signal and let them go as they have a flight to catch. A relentless cop, she asks her junior to fine them, refusing to believe when the trio state they have no money, as they are travelling out of town. Upon questioning, Padukone learns of easy booking through the Goibibo app and the benefits of its e-wallet service GoCash Plus, making her download the app as well.

Target Audience

22-35 year-olds, pan India.

Business Objective

New user acquisition by leveraging the power of a traveller’s social network.

The Appeal

Functional, Emotional


In order to gain new customers, explaining a feature like a travel booking currency can be challenging in an ad campaign. But Goibibo takes the simple route here. It brings in the functionality of the platform towards the end with a very educative, direct explanation to help understand how it works. It further tries to play up the humour element, through Padukone’s quirky portrayal of a female traffic cop.

Competitive Edge

The online travel category is witnessing a ‘war of the celebs’ of sorts, with almost each player featuring the most sought after Bollywood actors to endorse their platform and talk to travellers. While MakeMyTrip has the power of two with Ranveer Singh and Alia Bhatt, Goibibo and Yatra have Deepika Padukone and Ranbir Kapoor, respectively.

Given Padukone’s current fan following and popularity, showcasing her in a quirky avatar which was already the talk of the town prior to the campaign launch, helps the brand grab eyeballs instantly.

Tone of Voice



Unlike some other players, Goibibo is hard-selling its products and services through new campaigns every few months. This could help in keeping the brand in the public eye constantly in a cluttered and increasingly competitive category.

However, the offering being advertised in the new campaign has been showcased by Goibibo in a much better and humorous ad film earlier, which is a big minus point for the new one.

The new ad uses the element of subtle humour to highlight the benefits of the unique ‘GoCash’ feature on the Goibibo platform, which can be earned in a method otherwise referred to as plain and simple referrals.

The ad film in itself is decent in terms of execution and the storyline, but it does not evoke the ‘wow’ factor. One would have expected Padukone’s portrayal as a cop to be the highlight of the show, but the team has played it up a bit too much. Her character is way over the top, and although it does bring in a peculiarity to the campaign, we are afraid it does not do much beyond that.

It seems like Goibibo has hit the refresh button on the old narrative, to highlight a feature on its platform. Unlike its parent company MakeMyTrip that has built a cute narrative around hotels and deals, creating an endearing mass market appeal for itself, Goibibo is trying to play a rather tricky game of promoting a referral scheme through a TVC that is rather dry.

Rating: 5/10

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