Posts Tagged 'advertisement'

Blackberry boys (un)welcome change?

Truth be told the new Blackberry boys TV advertisement is cool (if you haven’t seen it, take a look here) and I love it.

You can clearly see that Vodafone is signaling (along with Blackberry) that it is not just for the “guys in suits” and the message is conveyed brilliantly. But, here is the million dollar question – it is a bold move and it takes Blackberry away from its corporate stronghold, is it a good strategy for Blackberry?

Even in the ad, you can clearly see the discomfort, confusion and alarm on the faces of the 5 “suited” people who were the only people in the frame originally. It could well be the case that Blackberry purchase decisions are made by “corporates” who don’t make it based on the image but on practical price-feature-network partnership parameters and Blackberry might pull off this brand extension exercise and come out all smiles (I hope that is what the research showed and hence they are doing this!).

If not, this could cost them their stronghold with the confused businessmen demanding to be given a choice of “iPhone/Blackberry/Nokia/Samsung” and the B2C market (in developing countries), being cost conscious that it is, opt for the local Blackberry rip offs instead!

It could well be that Blackberry has not seen the kind of traction with corporates in India that they generally see in other countries, in which case, this is a desperate move for them to expand their visibility and hence market share. Could they have done it with another brand name instead of extending the current one? What do you think?

Innovative Ad Formats, Irritating too!

Now when I’m watching TV I don’t know whether I’m actually watching a movie, its promo or an advertisement of a product (not even remotely related to the movie!). Not that I care, but in my mind there was a sense of separation between content and advertisement and slowly but surely, it seems to be fading, a step at a time.

While it is interesting to see innovative ad formats, for example Asian Paints doing an ad jig with Karthik calling Karthik actors and using the movies song too, it is equally irritating when I no longer know what I’m being fed. This is where most of the movie content is headed for sure, in-built advertisements. Product placements were not a new phenomena in the movie world but by pulling the actors, movie concept and song out of context ads are daring to create a grey world of their own. I’ve not even begun to talk about the risks involved if the movie were to flop, right?

What do you think? Is it a good idea to have ads revolving around a movie concept timed with its release and leveraging on its promotional activities?

The Idea Ad Does It Again

Just when I thought it was impossible to better the “what an idea, sirji?” ad. The creative agency Lowe Lintas does it again! Unlike the other telecom companies in India that focussed on limited and neighboring concepts of connectivity, availability, creativity they took on a larger concept of “creating change” and so far have been doing it in style and have tackled topics related to fitness, education, democracy etc… 

With the new ad around “save paper” and “prevent deforestation”, they are continuing their theme in style. However, I admire them upping the ante on creativity with this ad. It is truly fresh and refreshing and I love the punchline where they put a spin on “paid” as the hindi word for “tree” and ask the tree that has Abhishek Bachchan’s face which is about to be cut whether it is a “pre-paid” or a “post paid”. Pretty innovative!!! I will not bore you with details  – here are the videos for you to watch.

And of course, congratulations to Abhishek Bachchan and Idea Cellular on winning the award for the “Best Celebrity Endorsement of the Year” at the first edition of NDTV Tech Life Awards. Well Deserved!!!

Samsung Mobile Ads – Next Is What?

Samsung appointed Aamir Khan as the brand ambassador for their mobile phones in India in March 2008. Since then the ad series has gone through a couple of revamps. The initial set of ads were for the Samsung Karoke Phone, pictured Aamir Khan singing old Hindi film songs aloud and prancing around in an apartment. It was masterminded by the creative agency, Cheil Worldwide, and ended wit the punchline, “bolti band, gana shuru”, they were cheeky at best and ineffective, at worst. 

 The new set of ads are a refreshing change and bring out the innovative, creative quality of the Samsung brand to the forefront. Aamir shines in the ads by not being the center of activity, yet delivering the punches with precision timing.  It strings three disparate scenes together, with very apt music while showcasing the availability of features like music player (in a moving train), games and camera (with flash) on the mobile. You can see the new set of ads here. Quite a good package, I must say!

Just as these ads were enticing the users, here comes Samsung with a newer set of ads, showcasing a rugged image with their Samsung Marine. Attempting to debunk their image as just a “and stylish phone”, the ad is shot in real-life outdoor locations and showcases the phone weathering water, sun and mud effectively. The ad agency is Cheil India and have launched the ad with the tagline – “One Life. Challenge It.” What I find really cheeky with this ad is, in the first screen shot at the bottom they show, “Do not try this with any other mobile phone”. Ha ha!

Anybody tried any of the Samsung phones in any of these real life situations? Is it really as rugged as the ad claims?

Airtel Special 5 Launches…

Teaser ads from Airtel that were launched as a repartee to Tata Docomo that promised an offer of 50p/min have been revealed in full – with the launch of Airtel Special 5.

A set of promising ads based on mobile usage analytics which apparently showed that most people call a close circle of about 5 people, the most. A very clever tactic to throw the attention away from the second pulse rate campaign that Tata Docomo has launched. So, without hitting them head on and pitching in with a similar offering, Airtel is attempting to woo its existing base to remain with it, by showing them – they care…good move!

However, two things don’t sort themselves out in the “special” scheme of things for me and they are:

1. Why is Airtel using children in its ads? – Have they realized that the Maddy-Vidya magic is not working anymore? Are they running out of real, adult-life ideas, thanks to “Idea”? Or are they hoping to emulate the fan following the vodafone, the pug with a girl – there for you always, ad has generated? Either way, the move from the market leader proves that when a new player enters the market,  they have to keep running, to stay in the same place.

2. If the above said publicized market research, which says that people call five people closest to them most, is actually true – then that means ARPU’s (average revenue per user) will drop even further, right? If the market research data quoted in the PR is true, that is, then what the market leader is doing is axing its golden goose, in return for Re.1/person/day that they would collect from you – you get to speak to any five people you chose in the country for just 50p/minute (local calls at 20p/min), well – probably not! But here is my logic, people who speak to their “special” people for a long time, figure out attractive plans on the best possible network, anytime and the others who are casual callers, might sign up for this plan but may or may not speak longer – so the hope that you can make up in volume what you lost in price, may not be valid. The only glimmer of hope is if they convert the heavy users…that is!

What do you think? Would love to hear from you…

The Airtel Repartee to (Tata) Docomo

“Why squeeze all you want to talk in seconds, talk all you want without worrying about seconds” – screams the Airtel repartee to the Tata Docomo’s new second pulse rate (1paise per 1sec) plan. The airtel plan works out cheaper – is only 1paise per 4sec and well and  is one of the cheapest block offer I have seen from them. However, the ad doesn’t say anything about what plans will have this? Is it only for new customers? Will it be available for switching? When will the offer be available? etc etc. It seemed like, just what I said…a repartee…

Is Airtel scared of Docomo? With the 3G rollout looming large, I’m sure they want to retain their database now, that they can start milking them with higher end services. What do you think?

ERRATA and POST-THOUGHTS: I just heard their ad again – it says 50p/min and not 15p/min. I apologize for the confusion. In this case, it is still 10p cheaper than the overall Tata Docomo offer, but the block of 30sec vs. 1sec is still not something I can wrap my head around. I quite like the set of ads that Tata Docomo is coming out with and the taglines –  “one second can change your life”, “pay only for the seconds you talk” etc. But, the proof of the pie is in the eating (connectivity, in this case!) – I would wait and watch….

Tata Docomo – second pulse rate and no signal

Docomo, the Japanese telecom major, has entered the Indian market in partnership with Tata and a revolutionary pricing – the second pulse rate. That is not the only revolutionary thing they are doing in marketing – their promotion strategy ranges from traditional to new media with the ads tweaked accordingly, but keeping the theme uniform – catchy music, docomo word formation and conveying the brand as well as the 1sec pulse rate message clearly.

The TV and the Radio ads are designed slightly differently. The TV ads are visual treat with the “do”, “co”, “mo” forming and arranging itself to form “docomo”, the music stays in the background. In the radio ads, they have used music to create the same effect of using the blocks of ‘do”, “co”, “mo” to arrange itself into “docomo”. The creativity in the ad is subtle and enjoyable. They have used concepts like seesaw, over water, cat and balancing act etc. for the “docomo” formations. You can enjoy the videos here.

They also have out of home advertisements as teasers – see below and their website provides the necessary social media integration. However, the branch office numbers stated on the website are either not reachable or not picked up when it rings. No amount of advertisements, reaching out, social networking or teasers can compensate for lack of good network coverage and service, though!

However, given the increasing number of players in the mobile services market, the winning bet might be the service and value added offerings in the future. NTT Docomo is the leader in Japanese market in value added services, 3G services and beyond- so I have no doubt on that end for the success of the partnership. However, Tata teleservices doesn’t have a good reputation with service and signal availability/range.  So, it is like driving a fancy car down a dug up road – all the best to Docomo!

Note: However, ever since I wrote about Airtel’s good network strength and signal reach (here) – I have been facing so many issues that I think I would rather adopt a wait-and-see to the unfolding drama in the telecom scene. What do you think?


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