Too bad to be true

Girl coming out of the sea in a Baywatch outfit.  Smiles. And the voice over says ‘ ismein kuch khaas hai. Ismein vishwaas hai.’ Then comes the J.K Cement logo. Stupid right?

Two cavemen are trying to make fire and one of them tries very hard to rub the rocks hard and create a spark but nothing happens. The other caveman eats some chips and spits fire and lo! Fire there is! Voice over comes and Bingo Red Chilli Bijli.

Micromax was another one during this IPL season with an annoying Akshay Kumar laugh being played all over the ad.

We all have seen a lot of ads that are just insanely stupid right? Some ads would have been thought off of being ‘creative’ if that is the word, by the agency and come out as serious pieces of badvertising. But some are simply too bad to be passed especially by pioneer agencies like the Ogilvy and mathers . O&M that handles the creative for ITC Bingo is one of them. They can not be mistakedly creating bad or rather odd pieces of advertising everytime. It seems too bad to be true. There clearly seems to be a strategy behind that.

In the chips category recently there was an ad by parle’s chips. The name I do not remember of which. (Rhyming J) I think it was smart chips. Well that ad is hardly emoting (an ad that just does not bring forth an emotional response in you), it lies in what I call the point of indifference of advertising. Whereas, bingo ads are downright stupid but they bring ‘what?’ emotion because of which it gets registered in your mind. For a category like chips, I wonder how much of a difference a smart creative ad would have bought. These are not ‘skin’ products. You do not wear them i.e. you do not really care about showing it off. It hardly matters if someone sees you eating a bingo or lays. In the end bingo is just as much of chips as lays is. There is no substantial  perceivable point of difference in the product. Hence, the recall factor has to be more. BANG ON. The ads seem to be doing that.

Similarly, my favorite, J.K Cement ad had everything that made it a 50’s ad plus the color. It was stupid. But it somehow amusingly registered. In cement again, the market is more price differentiated than on quality or perceptions. The decision maker is often your contractor and not you. You have the same ‘ strongest and most durable’ cement proposition with happy families or soiled workers surrounding the frame, in almost all the ads. J.K cement did away with all that and instead of having unattractive family or sweaty workers, they just had a girl in a Baywatch outfit! There was nothing to be remembered in the ad except the fact that it was the most outrageously low I.Q advertisement you saw and that it was of J.K Cement. And voila!  There you remember.. the brand name!

So next time before you say that an ad is stupid, just put yourself in Atticus Finch’s mind; always think from the other point of view. Know where the shoe pinches by wearing it.

P.S: By the way, read it from a FB friend’s friend that the logic behind J.K Cement ad it seems was that – from water comes sand and from sand comes cement. And the girl was cement ‘personified’ Ismein kuch baat hai, ismein vishwaas hai J


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Filed under Advertising, Mass media

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