Aurora Magazine

Promoting excellence in advertising

Nailing It with Underwood

Published in Jan-Feb 2022

Anusha Zahid reviews Interwood's new campaign 'Trust the Experts'.

Interwood concluded 2021 with a new campaign called ‘Trust the Experts’. The objective was to create awareness about the pitfalls of relying on “seemingly inexpensive” carpenters to make large items of furniture, such as kitchens, doors and wardrobes – the underlying message was you are better off with Interwood.

The campaign was made up of a series of three ads – for kitchens, doors and wardrobes respectively. The approach used humour (to good effect) to showcase a young couple facing unforeseen and exasperating situations (poor quality, unforeseen costs) arising from hiring carpenters big on promises and poor on delivery. It was aimed at homeowners either buying or renovating aspects of their homes. The brand is essentially competing with independent carpenters and contractors as well as other branded furniture makers.

According to Taimur Tajik, Creative Head, Interwood, Pakistani consumers, when it comes to making big-ticket furniture items, traditionally resort to carpenters for lack of better options and, as a result, have become used to dealing with shortcomings in the quality of the finished product. In this situation, carpenters can easily get away with providing cheap, low-quality material and mediocre fittings. “Although carpenters seem to be the more affordable option, what customers fail to understand is that most of them choose their material based on cost-saving considerations and as a result, the furniture deteriorates faster, leading to further and unwanted investment in terms of maintenance and repairs.” Another objective of the campaign was to make customers aware of the fact that buying furniture can be painless. “Customers need to be reminded of the reality they currently have to deal with versus the convenience of opting for a branded furniture item.”

Interwood, on the other hand, offers customers a wide range of options to choose from, the promise of quality and after-sales service. They also provide design customisation in terms of layout, colours, finish and additional features. Their showrooms also offer 3D virtualisation.

The challenge, says Tajik, is that the general perception among customers is that branded furniture is more expensive, which he says is not the case. All prices are set before initiating the project, so there are no hidden surprises and customers get exactly what they agreed to pay for. Furthermore, Interwood offers affordability by way of monthly instalment payment options. The company also uses a combination of materials in making their furniture, including melamine-faced chipboards, veneers and solid wood. The materials are calibrated according to the product and this reduces dependency on solid wood. This method, according to Tajik, is not only practical, long-lasting and cost-effective, but it is also more environmentally friendly and sustainable for our national forests – “something carpenters care little about.”

He adds that many people think that Interwood’s products are made by carpenters, which is a misconception. All their furniture is manufactured in a state-of-the-art 600,000 square feet facility in Lahore, equipped with advanced machines from Europe, including fully-automated computer-assisted robotic technology. “No other brand is even close to owning these machines,” he says.

In his opinion, carpenters are not held accountable to work to set standards, nor do they follow recognised building codes and regulations. “Last but not least, a majority of them do not pay taxes so they play no role in supporting the country’s economic development”.

Despite all this, the concept of branded furniture is still unfamiliar for most Pakistani consumers, and Tajik agrees it will take a while for people to change their opinion, even if more and more customers are shifting to Interwood. The ‘Trust the Expert’ campaign has garnered amazing responses and a tremendous amount of leads, many of which converted to sales. The campaign was rolled out on digital, OOH and via in-store promotions.

Going forward, Tajik says that despite on-going innovations, the focus will be on introducing more ways to make high-quality furniture available to everyone, even though “keeping the cost down remains a challenge while adhering to material and construction standards as well as paying taxes, maintaining showrooms, and offering free deliveries, installation, and after-sales services”.