Reliance ADAG's BIGnanimous attempt

By Savia Jane Pinto , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Advertising | September 01, 2008
The newest player in the DTH space, Big TV, aims to play it like its name

Reliance & #BANNER1 & # ADAG made a big splash when it launched its direct to home (DTH) offering, Big TV, on August 19.

Tata Sky, Dish TV, Sun Direct and DD Direct are the players already in this segment. Therefore, says Sanjay Behl, group head, brand and marketing, Reliance Communications, Big TV needed to establish superiority and be impactful in its delivery right from the word go. Behl tells afaqs!, "Our challenge is to communicate our superior offering to the customer through multiple experience points." The plan is to distribute Big TV in 6,500 towns.

Communication for the DTH offering began with a seeder, which included television actors informing the viewers that something big was about to happen. The TV commercial that followed the seeder was made on a grand scale and cost Rs 1 crore.

Behl talks of the brief that was given to Big TV's agency, Mudra: "Prepare a Bollywood blockbuster movie within 60 seconds of air time." The ad was created by Mudra, shot by Mad Productions and directed by Austrian director Marco Kalantari.

The TVC opens on a man fighting off contenders with the strength of his moustache. The voiceover says, 'Moocchein ho to aisi ho, varna na ho'. The next shot is on a battlefield, where a group of soldiers see the enemy approaching, and one of them sneezes. The sneeze dislodges the enemy's tanks and arsenal. The VO goes, 'Chheenk (sneeze) ho to aisi ho, varna na ho'. Similarly, a vegetable seller peddles her ware really loudly in the middle of a street, upturning vehicles on the road and causing general chaos. The VO says, "Awaaz ho to aisi ho, varna na ho." In the next shot, a heavily built man jumps from the balcony of his palatial building to create a big, deep hole in the ground, from which water bursts forth. The VO says, "Vazan ho to aisa ho, varna… aur bhaiya, TV ho to Big TV ho, varna na ho."

Sanjay Behl

Bobby Pawar
With a very Bollywood background, the ad ends with a description of the distinctive features available only on Big TV, and saying that if you have a TV service, it better be Big - 'Ho to Big ho'.

Graphics have been used cleverly throughout the ad. The scene where the woman screams on the road and the cars topple is in-camera - the cars actually blow up all over the place. Various camera angles were used here. Similarly, the scene where the man jumps to the ground to start a spring of water has been shot, too - the man has actually performed the stunt.

As a result, the TVC conveys a larger than life idea. The original idea was to show a Kung Fu Hustle, but that was replaced with a long moustache instead of long hair. "It started with a dialogue from one of Amitabh Bachchan's movies, which says, 'Moochein ho to Nathulal jaisi ho'," says Bobby Pawar, chief creative officer, Mudra.

The idea was conceptualised from the product itself. The product aims to be a leap in the category. "Big will be a benchmark," says Pawar of Mudra. When asked whether Big TV has an endorser to carry the brand message forward, Pawar says he thinks the product is strong enough to not need a brand ambassador as yet.

Brijesh Jacob

Kartik Iyer

Hanoz Mogrelia
Work had begun on the brand six months before the launch. The lead medium is television across all cities. In Tier I cities, more than 10,000 outdoor hoardings have been used. Radio has been utilised in 50-60 top cities. In Tier II cities, Behl explains that regional print has been used. In relevant markets such as Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu, cinema boosters are planned. Here, too, outdoor will be used efficiently. Print will be used across the cities.

The other ads that will be part of the campaign a little later will concentrate on the individual features of the service, such as 32 cinema halls and double the channels as compared to other DTH providers. This will be supported on television and radio as well.

Big TV claims to have captured about 15,000 spots on television in the first week of its launch. The ad is being aired across all genres of channels.

When afaqs! asked other advertising professionals what they felt about the Big TVC, a common comment was that though the ad was great on execution, it lost out somehow out on a solid creative idea.

Brijesh Jacob, executive creative director, Grey India, says, "Puns are a big no-no unless done in a fresh way. It's a big waste of airtime."

Kartik Iyer, creative director, Happy, says, "It was a big production and executed well, but I'm not sure if the idea does justice to it."

Hanoz Mogrelia, creative director, Saatchi & Saatchi, thinks that it's a safe and non-controversial way of making an ad. He says, "The ad is predictable and boring. But this sure isn't the first idea that the agency came up with."