A collage of various & #BANNER1 & # single shots tied together with a thread of narration can tell a story effectively. The latest Hutch Delhi Half Marathon 2005 TVC is a perfect example of how simple advertising can be.
What's interesting about the TVC, which promotes a marathon, is that not a single person is shown actually running in any of these shots.
As V Mahesh, senior creative director, O&M, who conceived the campaign with Rajiv Rao and the Mumbai Hutch team, says, "The idea of showing people running would have been very clichéd. Instead, we thought of important places in the city to which every Delhite would relate. We basically wanted to bring out the romance and emotions associated with the city."
Mahesh says, "We took a conscious decision to not show any historical places or monuments except for India Gate. Had we done that, it would have looked more like a tourism brochure. We just wanted to present the ethos of Delhi."
Naveen Chopra, corporate vice-president, group marketing, Hutch, says, "The marathon is a city event and we wanted to capture the imagination of people from all walks of life. We wanted the city to empathise with the marathon - that's why we came out with a campaign that would represent Delhi."
He adds, "We wanted to capture the spirit and essence of the city, which is unique to it and irreplaceable."
Chopra elucidates, "It is a huge event and more than people participating, there will be people watching and cheering in the streets and on television, and we wanted something that would connect with the city."
The narration by veteran actor Raghuvir Yadav is brilliant. He virtually makes the viewers run across Delhi.
The director of the TVC, Prakash Varma, explains why he chose Raghuvir Yadav for the voiceover. He says, "His voice has a fantastic texture. We were looking for a voice that would sound different (not from the advertising world), yet we wanted it to sound familiar. Yadav's voice matched perfectly with what we were seeking."
The television commercial shows a collage of various images that are very 'Dilli'. In fact, the TVC can be described as a quick succession of images with a voiceover.
The voiceover says: "Gurgaon daudega. Moti Bagh daudega. Lalaji daudenge. Yeh bijli bhi daudegi. South Block daudega. North Campus daudega. Pammiji daudengi. Unki close neighbour Loveleen bhi daudengi. Doctor Saab daudenge. Lajjoji bhi daudengi. Sheila, Priya aur Supriya daudegi (the clip shows the old Sheila theatre, well known to Delhiites). Tommy daudega. Asiad Appu bhi daudega (the clip shows an elephant). Rickshaw stand daudega. Rickshawala bhi daudega. Bus stop daudega (the clip shows a deserted bus stop with a lone man waiting). Karol Bagh daudega. India Gate daudega. Inspector Happy daudega. Kitab Ghar daudega. CP daudega. Dabbu Junior daudega. Paharganj daudega. Sharmaji daudenge. Yeh ped daudega. Pragati Maidan daudega. Jasveer, Jolly aur family daudegi. Aap daudenge. Main daudoonga. Kyonki ab Dilli daudegi."
Gurgaon, Moti Bagh, Karol Bagh and India Gate are shown by the ubiquitous direction signboards seen all over Delhi roads. Dabbu Junior, Doctor Saab, Pammiji, Lajjoji, the 'rickshawala' and Inspector Happy are all people who can be seen anywhere in Delhi. The TVC tries to connect with the real people of the city and not just the creme de la creme. Hinglish words like 'Unki close neighbour Loveleen' are also easy identification points for all Delhiites.
The word, 'daud' (run), is juxtaposed with images of people, animals and places that are not moving. Sheila (where the pun is on the theatre) or 'bijli' (a shot of electricity wires and the pun is on the Hindi word) are inanimate objects that come alive. The only bit of running is shown when Sharmaji increases his pace to cross a road.
The last shot shows a traffic signal turning green, signifying that Delhi is ready to go for the run.
The Hutch Delhi Half Marathon 2005 is the world's richest half marathon with a total prize fund of US$ 300,000 which includes prize money of US$ 150,000. The marathon is scheduled for October 16, 2005.
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