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TVC: Marmite Yeast Extract–Neglect


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From: UK, by adam&eveDDB

A new campaign for HUL's yeast extract (a spread commonly used over Bread) tackles the findings that many customers buy a jar of it and forget about it. The spot, shot to look like a real-life animal rescue mission, sees a ‘marmite rescue’ team barging into homes and shaming the owners after Finding a bottle of marmite in a corner of their kitchen. These jars are then Shown ‘recovering’ in a reform centre and later adopted by families. The tagline of the ad ‘love it, hate it, just don’t forget it’ appears next To a boy frowning.


Why we like


Unlike Print, the fate of your Cannes-winning campaign idea in TVCs depends on three things – treatment, treatment and treatment (Yes we know ‘execution’ is a favourite term but we’d like to point out the thin line here). Showing a team going to people’s homes faking an animal rescue mission is execution. Shooting this guerilla style and adding blurred faces and candid dialogues is treatment. This is where Marmite has scored.


It’s a peculiar challenge for the brand and the agency that the objective of the campaign is not to talk to potential users or non-users, but current users themselves. Simply pointing out that they’ve been ignoring the product isn’t enough, they must be drawn in to pull it out of a corner and begin having it, while knowing it doesn’t exactly taste delicious.


No, details haven’t been spared in this Marmite Rescue Mission. There are uniformed teams, candid reactions from ‘real’ families and even a rehab centre adding a crazy touch. But it’s the handheld camerawork, bad lighting and shots of folks being ashamed that are crazier and funny in a typical Brit manner. The voiceover is serious too, tying the visuals together and trying to put sense in an obscure idea.


Terms such as recovered in a ‘shocking state’ and the ‘scenes can be traumatic’ add to the surprise factor and over multiple viewings, convey that here’s a product you must take care of, not render to a corner. Though we don’t know if this makes for pleasurable multiple views, we also don’t know how the Brit audiences have reacted to this.


The underline of the ad ‘don’t neglect Marmite’ is a modest, self depreciating appeal. When the brand can’t do much about how it tastes, it takes a dig at itself and says it in the face. Not many non-MNC brands could afford to do this!


There’s much to learn for our brands in the brave treatment of this product. For now, this writer’s heading to his kitchen to hunt down his neglected bottle of Chawanprash.


To watch this film, feed this link into your browser: vimeo.com/72027977

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