The TalkOver – Fastrack and Bhima Jewellery

Pride Month, a time to honour the struggle of the LGBTQ+ community for acceptance and equality, takes us back to the Stonewall Riots in New York City in 1969. LGBTQ patrons of the Stonewall Inn, who were mostly people of colour, fought back against the police after being harassed and targeted, which resulted in four nights of rioting. Over the years, as the importance of the movement grew, brands too began coming out in support of Pride, through creative campaigns and messaging to promote awareness. 

We are in the middle of Pride Month, so we decided to review a couple of our favourite ad campaigns in recent years. Urmi chose “Come out of the closet” by Fastrack while Rohit selected “Pure as love” by Bhima Jewellery. Both these campaigns embrace the plurality of gender, in their own unique ways— one with an audacious punch, while the other through a moving narrative.

Fastrack: Come out of the closet.

For many years, discussions on the LGBTQ community were forbidden in the Indian advertising industry. Today, however, certain ground-breaking initiatives in recognizing the community exist, one of which is the Fastrack advertising “Come out of the closet & move on.”

We liked this commercial since it was the first time in India that a television advertisement featured a lesbian pair. Inside the closet, the Lesbian duo is altering their clothes, and viewers are forced to speculate what the ladies were up to behind closed doors. The message “Come out of the closet” encourages users to leave their comfort closets. It all comes to a close with Fastrack’s now-famous byline, “Move On.” We’ve seen a strong brand interact with and tap into a variety of taboos for advertisers to consider. It had piqued the public’s interest and sparked a discussion. Fastrack’s Facebook page, which has 6.8 million followers, and YouTube, where the commercial has been viewed over 100,000 times.

It’s a terrific place to start for folks who want to think more progressive. It was wonderful to see corporations take a stand for homosexuality, and we can use advertising to educate people about such social standards.

Bhima Jewellery: Pure as love

Pure as love: Bhima Jewellery

People who do not comply with society’s norms have been despised and marginalised throughout history. Transgender persons are an example of one such community that continues to face ostracisation and abuse. 

The ad “Pure as Love” by Bhima Jewellery depicts the transformation of a young adolescent into a joyful, confident woman, thanks to support of their loving, caring family. The simplicity and sensitivity with which the storyline is portrayed effectively conveys how love and support can nurture a person to stay true to themselves.

While some may argue that what the ad depicts is utopian and that our society is still a long way from becoming as welcoming as the young woman’s parents in the commercial, I believe this is a wonderful start.

In India, jewellery advertisements are all about promoting femininity, or more specifically, the society’s sanctioned definition of femininity. As a result, Bhima’s ad stands out, and it does it beautifully.

As one might expect, the ad received a lot of positive feedback and acclaim.

Do leave a comment to let us know your thoughts.

The TalkOver- Facebook and Surf Excel

Every brand needs a story that strikes a chord with its audience. There are so many exciting marketing campaigns and commercials that not only help brands sell their products but also capture hearts through heartwarming stories. The TalkOver brings you some of our favourite campaigns of all time, told through our team members’ perspectives.

With the season of colour upon us, we decided to check out some great advertisements by various brands on the occasion of Holi. While Sudhanshu chose the ‘More Together’ campaign by social media giant Facebook which was launched during Holi 2020, Sakshi decided to pick the campaign labelled ‘Rang Laaye Sang’ by Surf Excel from Holi 2019. Whilst both the brands focus on bringing people together, the paths chosen are quite divergent. Read the individual reviews to know how these two brands have interpreted the idea of colours bringing people together, in their own heartwarming ways. 

Facebook – More Together

This beautiful campaign by Facebook, labelled ‘More Together’ was launched in India in March 2020, just before the nightmare of the virus took over our lives. The advertisement perfectly captured the essence of Holi and the holiday spirit that it entails. Translated in 8 languages and showcased on TV and Social Media, the campaign earned huge praise from people in the advertising world.

Created by the agency – Taproot Dentsu, the advertisement showcases a young Indian named Ketan, living in Romania who through Facebook gets updates about his friends playing Holi together in India. This FOMO is experienced by several students who are either studying or working abroad. Before there are any more spoilers suggest you have a look at the advertisement below:-

We have over 32 million Indians living abroad, most of whom can’t make it back for most of the major Indian festivals. Imagine them being able to enjoy certain festivals due to the power of an application. The advertisement is able to capture how the world is beautifully connected using Facebook, which has managed to break the actual physical barriers between people.

In the ad, you can see the Romanian connections answer the call to bring Holi to Romania. Using whatever they can find to create colours “Romanian Style”, these guys head to the store where Ketan works and invite him outside to play Holi. “More Together” captures the cultural nuances of togetherness and the festival perfectly. 

‘The more you open up to the world, the more the world opens up to you’

Facebook, nicely done.

Surf Excel – #RangLaayeSang

On Holi, every year, Surf Excel comes up with a vibrant campaign that captures the essence of this festival in unique ways. Their 2019 campaign became my favourite. The choice of using a pleasing visual to portray a powerful message won over many hearts.

Their idea of “Apnepan ke rang se auron ko rangne main daag lag jaaye, toh DAAG ACCHE HAIN!” was not only an excellent extension of Surf Excel’s popular tagline, but also a prominent message on bringing people together – a core part of Indian festivities. 

The use of a noisy Indian mohallah setup, showing a typical Holi morning where kids are playing with colours and water, is a very relatable scenario for all viewers. The story starts with a girl asking her friends to throw colours and splash water on her – a very unusual call that leaves viewers curious. The climax shows the girl helping a boy who wants to go for his daily prayers (namaz) by shielding him from all the colours, painting a delightful picture of friendship, love and solidarity. The end of the commercial brings in smiles as the girl drops him off outside the Mosque to say – you’ll be coloured after your prayers though!

Despite its humane messaging, this commercial managed to fall prey to controversies. Charges of ‘Love Jihad’ and ‘Namaz being portrayed as more important than Hindu festivities’ were levied. Surf Excel was forced to take the ad down. However, the commercial did make an unforgettable impact on a vast number of viewers.

In my opinion, the commercial was a very optimistic approach to promoting the idea of communal harmony. Well done, Surf Excel! 

The TalkOver- KFC or Puma

Every brand needs a story that strikes a chord with its audience. There are so many exciting marketing campaigns and commercials that not only help brands sell their products but also capture hearts through heartwarming stories. The TalkOver brings you some of our favourite campaigns of all time, told through our team members’ perspectives.

However, we’ll let YOU be the judge of it. Read on and tell us which is the better campaign according to you.

Since it’s Valentines week, we decided to look at some of the best marketing campaigns over the past decade. With Chirag picking Team KFC and its finger lickin’ good ad, Sudhanshu chose Pumas’ highly engaging marketing campaign for football fans worldwide. Let’s dive right in.

KFCLove is Forever 

KFC is known not just for serving world-class fried chicken but also dishing out impactful campaigns. One such example is KFC’s ‘Love is Forever’ commercial, released back in 2011. The ad opens with a group of kids enjoying a KFC meal outside while an old woman looks at them from her balcony; sniffing the air in reminiscence of her childhood. Following this, the ad progresses in a ‘life-in-reverse’ chronology showing the old couple dancing through different life stages. They get younger and younger as they dance before turning into children again. The sequence of events blends beautifully with the background song (Your Song), originally performed by Elton John. A cover of the song sung by Ellie Goulding is used in the commercial. 

The commercial ends with the two kids lying in bed, when the girl says “I’m hungry.” The camera zooms out to show a sticker bearing the Colonel’s face and the words “So Good”.

The commercial resonated with its audience because of its refreshing storytelling and mesmerising visuals. It left the viewers with a warm and fuzzy feeling, usually associated with the satisfaction of having a KFC meal. The “memories” theme highlighted throughout the commercial effortlessly tugs at the viewers’ heartstrings. 

The commercial has garnered over 800K views on YouTube and is considered one of KFC’s finest campaigns to date.

Puma (Puma Hardchorus)

Football or your better half? An age-old question to which we still don’t have any definite answer. It really is the ultimate trick question, ain’t it?

With the 2010 FIFA World Cup in June, the likes of Nike and Adidas with huge marketing campaigns had roped in several football stars from around the globe and shot several commercials. Puma, although a significant player in the footballing world, lacked the deep pockets of Nike or Adidas. On a humble budget, Puma and its advertising agency DROGA5, NY decided to engage with the fans rather than the stars of the game. With Valentine’s Day around the corner, they decided to capitalise on the fact that after several years, Valentine’s day and FA Cup games both were on Sunday. This ultimate opportunity to dramatise and amplify what a fan goes through every single time when choosing between love and football was something Puma simply couldn’t pass up [1].

Launched in February 2010, Puma Harchorus, was a digital love letter by football fans of various clubs and countries all saying sorry to their better halves, that they couldn’t make Valentine’s work this year. What we see are men in pubs singing songs by Savage Garden to their heart’s content. This trend picked up and several fan clubs across Europe also joined in, recording their singing sessions using bare minimum equipment and sending their entries to Puma.

Puma spent only 1/10th as compared to its competitors while roping in huge numbers of in-store walk-ins, an increase in social media followers and 1.8 million users visited Puma online. Within two weeks of the campaign launch, the video had 5 million views and over 50,000 of these videos were made by fans across 121 countries [2].

Kudos to the advertising team:-

Advertising Agency: DROGA5, New York

Executive Creative Director: Ted Royer/Duncan Marshall

Creative Director: Neil Heymann

Copywriter: Erik Hogfeldt

Art Director: Petter Hernmarck

Production Company: KNUCKLEHEAD London UNITED KINGDOM

Director:Ben Gregor

Post Production:The Mill

The TalkOver- Coca Cola Vs Pepsi

Every brand needs a story that strikes a chord with its audience. There are so many exciting marketing campaigns and commercials that not only help brands sell their products, but also capture hearts through heartwarming stories. The TalkOver brings you some of our favourite campaigns of all time, told through our team members’ perspectives.

However, we’ll let YOU be the judge of it. Read on and tell us which is the better campaign according to you.

This week, we have Team Coca Cola – Chirag and Team Pepsi – Sudhanshu, sharing their favourite Christmas commercial concepts from these two great rivals in the soda industry. 


P.S. –
There are no wrong answers. 🙂

Coca Cola – The Letter 

Coca Cola‘s powerful Christmas commercial has been a breath of fresh air in an otherwise challenging year. Continuing its ‘Holidays are coming’ truck campaign (airing annually since 1995), the brand doubled down on its efforts this year with ‘The Letter.’ The heartwarming commercial harnesses the power of nostalgia to encourage everyone to give something only you can give – presence. 

The commercial follows a father who leaves home before holidays to work at an offshore oil rig before realising he forgot to post his daughter’s Christmas list. He then sets off on a heroic journey through seas, forests and open terrains to arrive at the North Pole, where Santa waits for him in the trademark Coca Cola truck. The commercial ends on a sweet twist as it reveals the daughter’s Christmas wish – for her father to return home. 

Directed by Oscar-winning director Taika Waititi – in partnership with Wieden+Kennedy London – and shot in his home country, the spot has also been critically acclaimed. Kantar, a market research company, ranked it as the most powerful advert of the year by organising a poll involving 3000 UK consumers. They were paired with LinkNow AI facial coding technology to reveal the campaign eliciting the most emotional response – all pointing to Coca Cola. This brilliant spot ranked 2nd on Kantar’s list of most powerful adverts of the season, just behind Coca Cola’s ‘Holidays are Coming.’ 

Final Verdict: Coca Cola’s commercial is proof that an impactful campaign resonates with its audience despite a pandemic. 

Pepsi – Nothing Else Is A Pepsi

There’s always been this huge debate between which cola drink is the better one, Coke or Pepsi? Although Coke was the first one on the scene and still enjoys a significantly higher market share, I have always been team Pepsi. I really don’t know why I enjoy Pepsi more. Some say it’s my sweet tooth that makes Pepsi my go-to drink as it’s sweeter than Coke. But for me, I just like the colours of the logo. 😉

You’ll remember those typical videos your friends used to share of foreign commercials? Or was it just my friends? Anyway, I found this gem of a commercial on a 700 MB CD during my school days. 

This is one of my favourite commercials from Pepsi made during the festive season of 1996.

The commercial shows 2 drivers, one from Pepsi and one from Coke, who stop at the same diner during the festive season. Tired from their long haul drive in the winter, they find themselves sitting on the same counter. What follows is a classic case of foes turning friends, particularly due to the festive nature. The conversation the drivers have about family and holidays is just so wholesome, before…. I won’t get into the commercial, no spoilers. This sweet and hilarious commercial is one of Pepsi’s most recognised commercials even today. Ranked among the top 10 commercials of all time, by a popular video blogger, this is one of the first foreign commercials I had seen. As a kid living this rivalry with my brother, who is a Coke fan, just made me associate with this concept even more. Also, I don’t know why but this ad just reminds of that dialogue from Home Alone – “Fuller, go easy on the Pepsi!” 

Everything about the commercials just gives me a feeling of winter – cake, movies and of course, Pepsi. It’s even more special now considering the commercials that either Pepsi or Coke come up with have a celebrity aspect to it and a strong opinion on current events. Although it does act as a platform to call out what is happening in the world, it turns its back on the focal point – the drink itself.

The commercial aired on American television from November 1996, and the lead agency for this project was BBDO NY, USA.

Which do you think was the best commercial? Tell us in the comments.