By Malay Desai
By: DDB Mudra
This new commercial in Union Bank’s continuing campaign features a young couple in an urban setting. The wife is shown getting increasingly worried about her husband’s secretive behaviour with regards to constant phone calls, texts and online activity, and he appears happy doing so. Toward the end, she answers his phone when he’s not around and discovers that it’s a banking officer on the other end, who reveals that their car loan — for her surprise birthday gift — has been approved. After the couple’s Reconciliation, the union Bank logo and tagline appear with a voiceover.
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To reconcile with readers, perhaps miffed with the skimpily-clad-dancing children-spot we featured last week, here’s a campaign we thought reached its peak in late 2011, but packs in good thought in this latest installment.
One of the largest and oldest banks in India has had a makeover in the past half-a-decade, its logo evidently wanting to shed its sarkari baggage. Its ‘Aapke sapne sirf aapke nahin’ campaign began in 2008, but we only spotted its elegance a couple of Octobers ago when we saw Ajit Tendulkar, brother of cricketer Sachin, on a hoarding. It was one of the greatest casting coups of Indian advertising — it snapped the kin of VishyAnand, AR Rahman and Vijender Singh too. The print ads featured outstanding copy to drive home the ‘your near ones want you to be successful as badly as you do’ thought.
The production design here, just as in the Ajit Tendulkar film, gives a warm and homely vibe. To show characters just like the target audience, the spot uses an ‘upper’ middle class home and dons the two actors in unspectacular clothing. The casting here is top notch again, for the faces chosen bear no glamorous airs.
While the ad is putting together this little story of a wife suspecting an affair, it gives away pointers such as the bank being accessible through various media, at various times and importantly, a customer sharing a special relationship with the banker. Customers with ‘privileged account’ status in any bank, you’d know this feeling (although you’d never need a loan).
This phase of the campaign may not have the intrigue of the earlier one, but thanks to Mr Tendulkar and Mrs Anand, we are ready to listen to what it has to say now.
A little research reveals that the film firm behind this ad has also produced 7Up’s ‘Kimono dancing on platform’, Airtel’s ‘1 Rupee videos’ spots and the hilarious Hit Anti-Roach Gel ad. Little surprise this turned out so well, then.
To watch this film, visit http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0VdlJDhe2Bg
What we learnt from SMW Mumbai
India’s first Social Media Week wound up last week, with all five week days packing in much conversation, debate and well, tweets. If you did not attend despite our heads up last week, here’s what you missed: an engaging to-and-fro between Subramanian Swamy and Suhel Seth on the significance of social in India; Gul Panag asking for a show of hands to know how many folks think social influences their opinions; a host of group heads and digita l chiefs talking about the relevance of going digital for their brands; Rohan Sippy at his wittiest best and his confession of stalking journalists on Twitter… and some musical performances at one of the Mumbai venues. And why should you take this event seriously in the future? Well, the co-founders of SMW were in Mumbai too. Mark your February dates now we say.
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Meet the World’s first Vine Reporter
While we were busy checking Twitter for just news, ‘nontroversies’ and updates, one firm has gone ahead and launched a mobile-first news network. Now This News takes its beats seriously and recruits web journalists to create content but its latest recruit has made news. Florida boy Cody Johns, who’s assumed Twitter celeb-dom thanks to his six-second videos on Vine, the video-sharing app, is now a ‘VJ ’ or a video journalist with this news network . The plan is to create snappy content and “seek out what people want to hear” and a glimpse through Cody’s Vine account reveals that they apparently want to hear about pop culture, football, comedy and current affairs. Vine’s uber-tight scope of six seconds presents a superb opportunity to drive home sharp news and analysis and this is quite the step for the future. Also, we’re happy the term ‘VJ’ is coming back!
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The most shared publications on social
Talking of web publications, we have come across a report on the ‘top shared’ news/feature stories of August this year and the highest ranked publications surely raise eyebrows. (‘Sharing’ of course is a direct indicator of a site’s engagement and hence growth levels). For Facebook, the American feature site BuzzFeed is on top, overtaking Huffington Post and even CNN/BBC with over 15 million shares. Disappointing, given that many of its features are inane such as ‘7 funniest facts of all time’. Also unsurprising is that Brit tabloid with a bad reputation Daily Mail is among the top 8 and the Guardian is at number 10. On Twitter, BBC’s tweets are the most shared, followed by Mashable and the New York Times (see now why we’re partial toward Twitter? More sensible people!). Interestingly, all publishers recorded a dramatic spike in interactions, which is slated to keep growing.
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