Merging of copy and art

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Two new examples of how the lines between copy and art are merging. Gone are the days when the copywriter would think of a headline and the Art guy would find a suitable visual. The first one is for Listerine, from Australia. Brands that offer a solution to problems like body odour, bad breath, dandruff etc., have relied on exaggerating the problem or embarrassing the hell out of you. In India, Itchguard and RingGuard have built their brands on showcasing the yuck factor on screen.

Listerine ambulance

Listerine has its unique set of problems: the one who suffers from the problem rarely realizes it. It has remained a niche brand in India, limited to a small section of users and usage occasions. There have been attempts to make it a everyday habit and thus, broad base the brand. For example, they promoted the concept of Listerine being a ‘must do’ habit before you go to bed. Brands like Rexona too have attempted to highlight the social shunning caused by body odour. I remember this international TVC where they showed a Mexican wave happening, only to pan to a section of the stadium where our hero is doing the wave…alone! They have also executed an ambient idea where glass doors with images of people move away as you come closer to the door. There is a thin line between ‘Hey that could happen to me’ and ‘That happens to somebody else, not me’ in such ads. The plight of the protagonist could evoke humour and nothing else. In this case, I think the point about others could avoid you in critical moments is driven home nicely.

The proposition of ‘say goodbye to stains’ is given a nice twist with the creative idea of ‘stains reaching the heavens’. A minor quibble though: isn’t it too close to Ariel, which also focuses on stain removal?

Can you think of any recent print work in India which is a true marriage of copy & art? Apart from Clinic (I saw it in Adsoftheworld, not a mainstream magazine), I can’t think of any.

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