Published in Jan-Feb 2015
Saher Ahmed Khan, Chief Creative Officer, Starcrest Communications, shares her favourite and not-so-favourite ads.
Campaign: Nikal Nikal
Message: Shezan Ketchup is so thick it takes effort to get it out of the bottle.
Effectiveness: Message conveyed, but with the crudest execution possible.
I remember an ad for Heinz which showed a housewife ordering groceries over the phone and struggling to pronounce h-h-h-h-h-h-Heinz… while the voiceover went: Mushkil sey nikalta hai. So, same message, but a huge difference in execution. When I saw the billboard where a car is stuck and three guys are trying to push it, I could not think of a worse shot to go with the line Nikal nikal.
Verdict: There are better ways of doing this.
Campaign: Share a Coke with rock stars
Message: Coke Studio shares music and culture with the nation.
Effectiveness: Content design and advertising are two different things. Or are they? Coca-Cola has proved that a powerful idea can transcend such boundaries. Coca-Cola have always been about sharing and their ‘Share a Coke with…’ campaign encapsulates this idea very nicely. And even more, the seamless way the idea went from packaging to advertising to digital, social and viral campaigns and then into content design is a fabulous example of the power it possessed.
Verdict: Beyond brilliant.
Campaign: Vitamin enriched bread
Message: Sensible mothers choose Dawn bread for their growing kids.
Effectiveness: An impressive production with pleasant faces. The mood of the commercial takes Dawn bread’s brand image to the next level with convincing demos of the product and appetising food photography. Yet something is missing. Most probably it is the emotional connect. As a creative director I appreciate the execution but as a mother of two, I am not convinced to switch to Dawn.
Verdict: 10 on 10 for production and message clarity. Not convincing enough.
Campaign: Soch bari manzil bari
Message: Big dreams start young.
Effectiveness: In terms of the brand promise, the communication and the product are not offering anything new. However, Meiji is one of the few products in its category to use a celebrity endorsement – and that too by Shahid Afridi. The ad came as a pleasant surprise, because although Meiji has been in the market for a long time, the brand had never communicated on this scale. The TVC is well produced and the way the past morphs into the present is well executed, although the OOH and print campaigns were a different story. Nevertheless, it’s good for any brand to come out and reach out to its target audience.
Verdict: Good effort, the category is growing and there is no reason why the brand will not.
Campaign: Sar dard, sar dard
Message: When you have a headache, everything else becomes numb except the headache.
Effectiveness: A husband has a bad headache, while his wife talks to him about what shoes and dress to wear. Many people like the commercial and many don’t. I side with the former. For a medicinal product, this humorous approach is totally out of the box and the execution is a clutter-breaker. For a painkiller that has been around for a very long time and enjoys top of mind recall, it was a big step to break away from their previous approach and come up with a totally new twist. And boy, did they succeed!
Verdict: Smart strategy with good execution.
Saher Ahmed Khan is Chief Creative Officer, Starcrest Communications.