By Malay Desai
From: Norway, by Try/Apt
A Norwegian NGO that works to protect rainforests across the world has launched an interactive campaign asking Portuguese footballer Cristiano Ronaldo to get a haircut. The film of the interactive campaign directly speaks with Ronaldo, firstly apologizing to ‘hear about the World Cup’ (his team’s loss). It then states that a rainforest the size of a football field is chopped down every third second but there are still more web searches about footballers’ haircuts than deforestation. By saying ‘Trees don’t grow back, hair does’, it further appeals to Ronaldo to cut his hair to spread awareness as the national team, club teams and some politicians have already done the needful. A URL displayed toward the end leads to more details on the campaign.
Why we like ?
Tongue, meet cheek. As we wind up on a whirlwind season of football-pegged marketing, we have a spot from a Norwegian agency whose works of dry humour we have featured here in the past.
Google search results have been the metrics of popularity from a decade or so, but are being used to sell ideas only from the past few years. They may not be the most accurate ways to perceive an issue, but truth be said, a digital footprint of a person/issue says much about how many people are talking about it. The irony being played upon here is that ‘rainforest deforestation’ gets lesser hits and ‘Ronaldo + hair’, giving the cause a good lever to project a hammer at us.
The plan is ambitious, newsworthy and best of all, doesn’t cost a single krone. Through the World Cup, players from Norway were buzzed and filmed to raise awareness, so were politicians, fans and club players. But we suppose the fillip for this idea might have been the news of Ronaldo getting a zig-zag haircut as solidarity for a young cancer patient. The story was never confirmed (smart PR campaign, we assume) but it led to reams of press. Then, Portugal was knocked out and this campaign happened.
The Rainforest Foundation is looking to land a big whale here, and by simply mentioning the name of the world’s top footballer (again, if you go by Google hits and social media fans), it’s driving attention to its site – rainforestcut.com. It’s been 12 days or so and we don’t see any response from Ronaldo but if he were to get a haircut at some point anyway, the ‘event’ is likely to make news. Worth it!
Looking locally, a top cricketer can, by mundane acts, make quite an impact to the dozens of environmental crises we live with everyday – Delhi’s pollution, Yamuna’s waste, Goa’s mining or even a simple cause like rainwater harvesting. If the cricketers wish (well some super-busy actors cannot even if they wish to), every single haircut could bring in a new wave. CC – Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
To watch this film, feed this link into your browser ~bit.ly/July14ad
#Budget2014 – a bitter pill for online advertisers
So MrJaitley presented his debut budget last week and among other expenses, has given us new trouble – print advertisers will not have to pay a service tax on their expenditure but those who advertise online (including Google Adwords and Facebook ads) are now hit by a service tax. Now the internet pundits aren’t too happy with this and rightly so. An article on the oddly named but interesting site findingloopholes.com tells us that this is going to hurt a lot of small retailers. We agree, online is an open market, a level-playing field for everyone from your local Oriental restaurant to a Unilever. This is discouraging for the former, at a time when we’re waking up to the benefits of online advertising. Cunning move given the growth possibilities here Mr FM but not a level playing field, sir.
Arun Jaitley likes this
Priyanka Chopra’s ‘AMA’ adventure on Reddit
We’re a little late to report this as this writer isn’t too active on Reddit, a thread-based sharing platform. It so happened that actor and (auto-tune) singer Priyanka Chopra decided to do an ‘AMA’ – that is ‘Ask Me Anything’ on Reddit. The exercise is a (mostly) healthy function for popular people to interact with their fans, getting a chance to reveal their true personalities and seeking feedback. Now perhaps Miss PC didn’t know that Reddit could be the most ruthless, unforgiving social network (not in a Twitter troll way, but smarter) and she was hurled with probes on her choice of fairness cream ads and the Mumbai road named after her dad among other uncomfortable topics. She of course chose to ignore these and answered just the routine queries. Disclaimer – this writer is a small fanboy and thought she still did well. The step to do an AMA itself was bold, which we doubt PC’s colleagues would even dream of.
Redditors like this
#MustFollow – Lord’s on social media
Last weekend also witnessed perhaps the greatest cricket match in a long time – the MCC special ODI between Sachin Tendulkar’s XI versus Shane Warne’s XI, filled with the biggest names of ‘90s cricket. We were struck by yawns at several moments but gladly we noted a very cool, classy social media account that’s been active from 2010 – the Lord’s Cricket Ground. The birthplace of the game carries its rich heritage with just the right amount of dynamic sophistication in all its channels – YouTube being the most intriguing, Twitter (@homeofcricket), Facebook and even Instagram. Take this for instance, after this epic match, it put out two stunning videos – one which followed Sachin as he walked through the Lord’s dressing room out to the ground, and another ‘GoPro’ innovation that showed us feed from the top of Gilchrist’s camera!
Mohammad Kaif likes this