Xylys attempts to take the high ground on design

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Xylys, the watch range from Titan Industries is described over at the Titan website as a Swiss-made, impeccably designed watch for the connoisseur and new age achiever. It was launched a few years with ads featuring Rahul Bose and Saira Mohan. The ‘Power of X’ idea then gave way to ‘You don’t possess a Xylys, it, possesses you‘. The latter idea was anchored on certain product categories and brands evoking a sense of obsession among a select audience – automobile fans, watch aficionados, Apple fanboys come to mind. The common factor about these obsessions is ‘design’. It’s the combination of aesthetics, feel and the functionality of these categories & brands which evoke that sense of obsession.

Xylys, which interestingly has dropped the Titan endorsement in the logo unit has launched a new communication platform: ‘Design. It Matters’. It has roped in Farhan Akhtar as the brand ambassador and the theme TVC is out.

Agency: W+K, Delhi

Here’s the voice over:

Some things should always be this way. Hugs should be warm, handshakes firm. Design should not be seen. What’s not seen should be designed. Tables shouldn’t wobble. All that glitters should be gold. And every tick, every tock should be beautiful. Design. It matters.

I think the entire ‘package’ – the choice of brand ambassador, the positioning, the  creative expression, seems a lot more focused than the previous efforts. And feels right. The tag line ‘Design. It Matters’ has huge potential…a much larger intent and meaning. There is ‘design’ all around us – in nature, in the way great men & women ‘design’ or plan’ their lives, in the way artists execute their vision, in the way products look and feel, in the UI of a website, the graphic design of a book…and so on. It can be applicable to how certain things look…in their visual appeal. At the same time, it need not be restricted to superficial looks alone – it can carry a larger meaning. As Steve Jobs said, ‘Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works’. All of this is pretty relevant to the product category and the Xylys offering – Swiss made, ‘different looking’ watches.

Along with the TVC, there is a game based on the TVC over at their Facebook page. One has to place visuals from the TVC in sequential order within a given time frame, to win cool prizes.

Xylys competes with a wide range of international brands in its price range – from brands with Swiss heritage to well-known and trusted Japanese brands. Since Xylys cannot claim to differentiate in terms of origin (it can’t be more Swiss than the Swiss watches) I think ‘design’ offers a powerful peg to differentiate itself. And the definition of what constitutes design (beyond mere looks) is likely to have a cerebral appeal. And Farhan’s credentials, his various talents (from script writing to acting to directing) and his persona of an intelligent man with substance adds weight to the claim.

What do you make of the makeover? Do comment in.

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