Technology has immensely influenced the mediums through which we consume content. We have witnessed a transformative shift in the past two to three decades; from newspapers to radio to television, and finally, mobiles, we have traversed a long route in a short period.
I remember growing up as a child; I used to wait for eye-catchy and trendy ads while watching my favourite shows, as ads were an avenue to streamline my parents’ attention towards the products I desired! As we progressed into the technological revolution, television/print/radio ads became one-click (call-to-action) electronic ads that directly facilitated consumers to buy their preferred products via mobiles and other devices.
The medium has changed, the methods have changed, and the audience landscape is changing drastically; but what remains constant is the Content and the Remembrance Quotient. In an age of Information Overload, we still remember the ads that have resonated and shaped our childhood.
This article is a curation of 10 such advertisements that have Impacted and Resonated with the Indian Commercial Space without being equipped with either modern technology or techniques.
1) Amul Manthan:
Post-liberalisation, Premium and Fancy packaging of Global products damaged the ‘not-so-attractive’ Indian products on the shelf. But contrary to the popular belief of a more glamorous presentation, Amul decided to reiterate Indian roots and create: Manthan ad film. The ad features glimpses from Manthan, the 1976 National Award-winning movie featuring Smita Patil and Girish Karnad. The entire journey from the churning of milk, packing, loading and delivery is capsulise in a musical retreat by Preeti Sagar’s ‘Mero Gaam Katha Parey.‘ This ad did not just initiate a revolution in the commercial space; it is also studied by every Media student as a case study of Rooted-Branding.
2) Vodafone’s Pug:
‘Stronger Together’ features an army of30 pugs aggressively following a young boy in diverse locations, symbolising the robust 4G network. It also underlines that Vodafone adds a tower every hour to enhance customer connectivity. In 2003, Cheeka, the pug, first appeared in the “You & I” ad of Hutch. Through cute and emphatic stories, human-pet connection, and intelligent selection, Vodafone’s pug campaign exemplifies how a simple idea, if executed well, can multiply the popularity and benefit the Brand in multi-folds.
3) Surf’s Daag Acche Hain:
This campaign was created when ads in the detergent segment were limited to their functional characteristics of cleaning and adding fragrance to clothes. The first ‘Daag Acche Hain’ ad featured an innocent and adorable relationship between two siblings. Surf Excel enabled us to accept our imperfections/mistakes and reminded us—imperfections/mistakes make us humans. Through the symbolic ads and emphatic stories, Surf Excel communicated—that stains are temporary; a single attempt can heal relationships, and differences can be washed away. Daag lagne se agar kuch accha hota hai, toh daag acche hai na?
4) Fevikwik’s Chutki Mein Chipkaye: Humour, if appropriately written and directed, can transform the minds of consumers. FeviKwik has successfully and sustainably cracked the‘humour code’ over the years. The ad wherein the villager somehow manages to catch a fish with a few drops of Fevikwik on a stick, quicker than a professional guy, immediately hooked the consumers. The award-winning ad constructed the Legacy for the FeviKwik Brand; its fun and witty ads like Broken Heart continue to win the hearts of the masses.
5) Ambuja Cement’s Yeh deewar toot ti kyu nahi hai: Two brothers, divided by a gigantic wall, hopelessly wish to get back together, dumping all the grudges. They stake everything to break the wall; still, the wall stands strong. Ambuja Cement has always distanced itself from cliche ads. They have envisioned an unconquerable vibrancy for the Brand and showcase rationale advertising with a dash of humour. Linking Strength with Emotion and Bonding is a unique way of presentation; the ad captures the issues in the Indian setting and presents itself in the smoothest manner.
6) MDH’s Taste me best, Mummy aur Everest: This ad may sound stereotypical in a Modern setting, but it is one of the well-remembered taglines of all time. ‘Panner me masala Thoda Kam hai’, a traditional Indian meal, sounds incomplete if a family member doesn’t complain about the less spicy delicacy. MDH positioned itself in the Indian spices segment through the perspective of a Mother and Grihini. Everest ads’ have struck chords with their messaging and targeting. The pan-Indian taste and the nostalgia stuck with ‘maa ke haatho ka swaaad‘ often teleports the audience to joyful memory lanes.
7) Coca-Cola’s Umeedo Wali Dhoop, Sunshine Wali Asha:
Coca-Cola always astounds consumers with its creativity and originality. Umeedo Wali Dhoop, Sunshine Wali Asha is another campaign that has successfully managed to attract consumers emotionally and sends a strong statement of spreading happiness. Coca-Cola attempts to infuse hope by portraying gloomy pictures next to messages of ‘a new sun’ and progress. Through its powerful lyrics, soothing tunes and hopeful visuals, the campaign makes us believe: rone ke vajah kam hai, hasne ke vajah hai zyada.
8) Parle’s Melody Itni Chocolaty kyu hai?: I guess we all have tried finding answers to this question and are still trying to! In my opinion, this is one of the cleverest ad campaigns of all time; it has left an open-ended answer for the audience. People of all ages have created multiple creative answers to this question. This helps the Brand to be trendy and have the upper hand over its competitors. The Chudail and Alien ads have sparked inquisitiveness among the younger population; everyone wants to know: Melody Itni Chocolaty kyu hai? The repeated use of Chocolaty in campaigns has clearly stated the products USP-Chocolaty. Melody’s smart case study is a must-read for ad enthusiasts.
9) Bournvita’s Tayyari Jeet Ki: If an individual can inspire a person or a community, it is considered a significant achievement; Bournvita’s Tayyari Jeet Ki campaign just does that. Bournvita targets failures, and values like – Improvement, Never Giving Up, Grit, Determination and Perseverance. It does not make the consumer feel isolated but motivates them to stay in the game. With careful curation of themes and scenarios like – failure in sports, parent awareness or exam preparation, the Tayyari Jeet Ki campaign never fails to stand out.
10) Cadbury’s Asli Swaad Zindagi ka:
Cadbury created the iconic ad featuring a young girl in a blue dress, enjoying her Cadbury on the sidelines of a cricket match; when the batsman hits the winning shot, the crowd erupts in excitement while she runs past the guard onto the field and hops in happiness. This ad broke the conception of chocolates being just loved by kids; this ad depicted how individuals across age groups can be ‘chocolate fans’. The ad also underlined—fun-loving, cheerful and unorthodox behaviour. It was a breath of freshness in an India which was evolving quickly. Hindi Lyrics, Spirited Acting and Unexpected Emotions make this one of the most-loved ads of all time.