By Malay Desai
From : India, UK
We pit two recently released pre-tournament campaign films by the same conglomerate for different markets. India’s Star Sports is promoting the Hockey World League that features the national team and shows a sparsely attended press conference where the team’s top players are sitting with the coach. Mentioning ‘recent history’, captain Sardar Singh rattles off a few feats by the team, and he’s backed up by others who state little-known facts of their outstanding performance before one of them says ‘India ke dil mein qualify nahin kar paye.’ In the Sky Sports spot building up to the Ashes series, its commentary team is shown mouthing their own version of ‘We didn’t light the fire’, interspersed with footage of iconic moments from the tournament’s long history.
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Over a week after you read about Myntra’s overrated ‘lesbian’ ad here, Barkhaand other media discussed how it reflected a coming-of-age India. Irked at these late lateefs, let me tell you of two ad films which really, pointedly reflect how their audiences are.
Murdoch’s Star Group here is optimistic about our hockey boys’ faring in the upcoming World League in Antwerp (not to be confused with its indigenous property India Hockey League), which enters critical stages this weekend. Knowing well that the masses flip channels and turn pages at the mention of hockey, its build-up film dives straight into discomfort zone, pointing an accusing finger at us.
The press-con narrative allows for four-five hard facts to come through, and they fly dramatically in the face of the ignorant viewer. ‘We’ve beaten the top five teams of the world in the past year; we’re Asian Gold winners and the first qualifiers of the Olympics,’ – stuff a geek friend would tell you, but this is more of a pissed off professor. The message hits hard, and the fact that top hockey players need their names to appear in sub-titles says much about our one-sport-obsession. The #deshkeliye tinge might seem overpatriotic, but it’s one of the only spins hockey can serve us. Backed by a sound digital campaign, the ad has already garnered steam.
Special mention: Sony, which telecast India’s qualifier for the football World Cup last week, made zero effort in promoting it, or so it seemed. Over to UK then, where Murdoch’s shinier child Sky Sports has possibly made the happiest, coolest film for an upcoming cricket series. Where the heroes needn’t be defined, where recent history needn’t be reminded of and where there’s already a media build-up, the campaign can just put its feet up and have a gin-and-tonic. The agency hired an indie band which rendered Billy Joel’s classic and the film, with footage from Sky’s archive folderwas an instant shot of craze. The best part – the broadcaster still flaunts its bevy of legendary cricketers who’re on board for commentary and shows.
Talk about stark differences.
(To watch the Star Sports film, type ‘bit.ly/June15Star’ in your browser and to watch the Sky Sports film, type in ‘bit.ly/June15Sky’)
Your Regular Dose On The Shifts In The Social Media Universe
Maggi crisis in social numbers
Having reported on Nestle’s not upto the mark approach on social media in the Maggi crisis, it’s now time to assess the damage caused even as the Bombay HC has refused to stay the ban order on the instant noodles. Simplify 360, a social media monitoring product reports that the crisis generated 4.43 lakh conversations, with Twitter contributing the maximum to the fire. 61% of these were of negative sentiment, and that’s a whopping number if the daily tweets were around 19k. On the queries it was bombarded with by users and concerned parties, its responses were dry and worse, automated. Even if the brand is on fire across the nation (literally, in some protests), the social media team could put up a brave face; that is if it hopes to make a return to the market some day. For now it doesn’t seem like. Here’s to a good case study on online reputation management done wrong. hashtags always spoil the news broth.
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Insta cleans up interface, adds shop buttons
After last week’s news that Pinterest will give us ‘buyable pins’ in its feeds and searches, its Facebook-owned Instagram now that has introduced its similar features. First, in case you have noticed, its interface has been thoroughly cleaned up, in a ‘VIP is coming, steer away’ sort of a way. The web version particularly looks like a banal blog now, cleared of all the glitz. The VIPs of course are the advertisers, who are now getting powerful tools as buttons of ‘Shop now,’ ‘Install now’ and ‘Sign up.’ This is probably the biggest move the network has made since being bought over by Zuck, and it’s not all too surprising. Let’s see how it impacts small and micro businesses. Also, a prediction – don’t be shocked if it introduces in-app ecommerce payments.
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Red FM shouts #dontbehorny online
Awaiting the go-ahead to air news, FM channels have felt compelled to find ways to make news themselves and stay relevant among their TA’s minds. Foremost is Red FM 93.5, which introduced the no-honking campaign in Mumbai and Thane. While this is an ambitious cause and doesn’t really have too many accurate metrics to measure impact, its noise on social media is getting it the attention. Starting from Twitterati and chatterbox RJ Malishka, RED’s online properties have relentlessly plugged the campaign and created much energy. It helps when visiting celebs (to promote films) are also raked in and on-ground events are held in coordination with the municipal corporation and the police. and an aggressive OOH campaign, this is working well. PS: Its hilarious ‘Mawali Bhai’ is doing his bit on Twitter too!
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