‘Drink More…Water’ from Pernod Ricard, Tata Tea and more: creative ads of the week

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Creating clutter breaking advertising is difficult. Not surprisingly, a majority of the ads are not just mediocre but are totally ignored by consumers. During my stint in ad agencies, I too have had my share of such run-of-the-mill ads. As a token of appreciation for those crafting good ads, I attempt to share a compilation of creative ads every week. In this week’s list, Pernod Ricard’s responsible drinking campaign, ads for Tata Tea, ITV and more.

Tata Tea: campaigns for Maharashtra & Mumbai

Pan-India advertising is tough. In a country where language and food habits change every 500 kms it is virtually impossible to have one idea & one execution which appeals to all. The time-tested approach is to create a ‘master’ advert in Hindi and have it dubbed in regional languages. Regional brands, for example those strong in the South may create the original in one of the four major South Indian languages and then have it translated. The common downsides in this approach are: lip-sync issues and poor quality of translation. But an even larger problem is that of a regional ‘connect’ which could be missing for various reasons: the central premise or situation being alien to a region, mismatch in terms of attire and so much more. Even with a ‘pan-India’ situation like Deepavali or Diwali as its called in the North, the portrayal of how the festival is celebrated may not find an instant connect in all the regions. Portrayal of weddings too suffer the same fate.

In that context, one has to admire the strategic direction of Tata Tea Premium -where they have attempted to create a regional connect beyond just advertising. Right from the product to the packaging and communication, they have invested in creative stimuli beyond just good translation. ‘Dumdaar Uttar Pradesh’, Dil se rich Dilli’ and Kanan Devan’s ad for Kerala were noteworthy creatives.

Two new ads are doing the rounds: one each for Maharashtra and Mumbai (even though the latter is part of the state).

Between the two I liked the Maharashtra one more; I thought the Mumbai one was a bit stereotypical (isn’t the ‘Spirit of Mumbai’ over done now?) and filmy, right down to the voice over of actor Javed Jaffrey and lingo. Nevertheless, kudos to the team as this approach stays true to creating a hyper local appeal even though it is expensive and time consuming.

Agency: Mullen Lintas

ITV: Drama Vs Reality

As I have said before, the creative idea of ‘Drama’ and ‘Reality’ vying for our attention is just a brilliant way to convey that ITV Hub offers great choice in entertainment. Even though the proposition is common among TV promos, the execution is fantastic: pitting actual stars from both genres in entertaining cinematic format. In the latest one, reality stars Olivia Attwood & Bradley Dack (of ‘Olivia Meets Her Match’) fall into the trap laid by star of ‘Marcella’ Anna Friel, in a heart stopping plot. Loved it.

Agency: Uncommon

Pernod Ricard: Drink More (Water)

Some may find an educative campaign on ‘responsible drinking’ from a liquor company to be dishonest but I quite liked the balanced approach taken by Pernod Ricard in their Responsible Party campaign. There is no denying that alcohol consumption is common among youth and it is seen as an essential part of celebration. The campaign takes a practical approach (after all they have booze to sell) by urging party goers not to go overboard in terms of alcohol consumption. The timing made sense too:

The reopening of bars, clubs and restaurants after so long could lead to excessive drinking and harmful use of alcohol amongst young people. 

The campaign shows realistic images of the after-effects binge drinking – designed to evoke disgust. It urges the audience to drink more…water.

The TVC provocatively asks you to drink more, only to reveal that its water they are talking about.

Agency: Buzzman

There’s even a micro site which outlines benefits of hydration and benefits of a responsible lifestyle. Over at Instagram, the audience are ‘educated’ on what the benefits of partying responsibly.

Mass Mutual: reality check

When it comes to financial services products, consumers expect a lot of small print. It is common for category advertising to portray dreams coming true through proper planning, foresight, savings and such like. A new spot from Mass Mutual is refreshing in its candour.

Agency: Grey

Skittles: Giant

‘Taste the rainbow’ slogan for Skittles is a legend in pop culture too – a classic among distinct brand assets. Their spots have traditionally been zany and playing up on the rainbow property. But instead of mindless humour, the situation (if we can call it that) is anchored on the product property – giants, in a whacky set of short commercials.

Agency: DDB

Which one was your favourite? Comment in.

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