A 'back-up' plan to steal five hundred bucks

By , agencyfaqs! | In Advertising
Last updated : January 15, 2007
In an ad for the GlaxoSmithKline pain reliever brand Iodex, JWT, Delhi, has attempted to give the classical 'backache' concept a new twist

If you plan

on getting away with petty thefts in public places, you'd better watch your back in more ways than one. For when a backache beckons, all else is history.

In an ad for the GlaxoSmithKline pain reliever brand Iodex, JWT, Delhi, has attempted to give the classical 'backache' concept a new twist. In 2006, Iodex underwent two major changes. It was re-launched as Iodex with Double Power, with a new look and packaging. It also changed hands from Bates Enterprise to JWT. Last year, to mark the re-launch, an ad was released on the premise that a backache can make one miss important moments in one's life. The ad, which was scripted by Bates Enterprise but executed when the brand was with JWT, showed a husband getting home from work and, in a romantic moment, trying to sweep his wife off her feet. But he is unable to do so because of a backache. While that ad may have gone unnoticed in the clutter, JWT has now come out with an ad that lends a humorous twist to the brand story. This is quite unlike its competition, such as Fast Relief and Moov, which adopt sombre routes to communicate the brands.

The film opens on a man walking on a lonely road. Seeing a five hundred rupee...

...note he stops in his tracks. Tempted to pick it up he ponders over something.

After much deliberation he moves on in disappointment without picking up...

...the note. The ad ends with the super and product shot: "Peeth dard? Iodex."
The ad opens on the shot of a middle-aged man walking on a lonely road. On spotting a Rs 500 note on the ground, he pauses and hesitates. One can almost see the inner battle in his mind as he figures whether he can pick up the note or not. Finally, he walks on disappointed, leaving the note behind. Along with the Iodex pack shot, a super reads, 'Peeth dard? Iodex Double Power (Backache? Iodex Double Power)'.

According to Soumitra Karnik, vice-president and senior creative director, JWT, movies such as 'Lagey Raho Munnabhai' and 'Rang De Basanti' influenced the creative team to a great extent. "With the morality fundas propagated by these movies, a wave of metamorphosis has hit India, as we all know," he says. "Taking off from that, the viewer will feel that the protagonist's inner battle is entirely a moral, 'to steal or not' dilemma." Hence the twist in the ad, or the 'misdirection', as Karnik puts it, brings in the surprise element, as morality has nothing to do with the man's decision - his backache is what decides it for him.

In fact, so convinced was the JWT team with the simplicity of the idea that instead of presenting the idea to the client as a script/concept, a film was shot and exhibited. "Imagine their surprise," laughs Karnik.

According to Shikha Tak, senior brand manager, Iodex, GlaxoSmithKline, this ad is a continuation of the 'missing important moments' premise. "In this ad, the protagonist misses out on what he saw as an opportunity to make a quick buck," she says.

The ad, shot by Shantanu Bagchi of Illusion Films, deliberately leaves out background tracks and voiceovers, to lend a real-life feel to the ad. According to Maneesh Rangra, vice-president on Iodex at JWT, this helps in raising the curiosity element. The ad was written by Preeta Mathur, a copywriter at the agency.

Iodex has targeted smaller towns mainly with its communication so far because it enjoys a high penetration there. But with this communication, metros and big towns are also in the target area now. In December 2006, Iodex carved a first for itself when it sponsored the Chennai Open tennis tournament. "Tennis players tend to suffer backaches, which is how Iodex associated itself with the event," says Tak of GlaxoSmithKline. A local TVC, along with radio spots and on-ground initiatives, completed the activity.

The brand also executed some ground activation after the rainy season in Delhi and Mumbai, wherein volunteers identified bad roads and potholes, and stood nearby with placards that read, 'Bad roads ahead. Thank God there's Iodex Double Power'. Another message went, 'Back-breaking roads ahead. Issued in public interest by Iodex Double Power'.

It is learnt that some ambient communication is on its way, which will also be based on the humour platform. Be it the backbone or the funny bone, Iodex looks set to tickle both.

2007 agencyfaqs!

First Published : January 15, 2007
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