HDFC urges parents not to kid around

By Khushboo Tanna , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Advertising | September 02, 2008
HDFC's new children's plan campaign carries forward the thought of holding one's head high and realising children's aspirations


Standard Life seems to be on a mission to fulfil children's dreams. And it plans to do this via its newly released campaign, which encourages parents to save for their little ones, to help them realise their aspirations when they grow up.

The new campaign opens in a living room, where the family (father, mother and daughter) are relaxing. The daughter expresses her wish to be an astronaut when she grows up. Like all children, she asks her father various questions and the father answers them patiently, while the mother looks on tenderly. Eventually, the daughter realises that it will cost a lot to travel into space and says that Raju Mama (Uncle) will buy the tickets for her because he has a lot of money.

The father smiles and replies that by the time she grows up, he will also have a lot of money and he will be able to buy the ticket for her. The daughter smiles approvingly. The ad ends with the voiceover, "Na sar jhuka hai kabhi, aur na jhukayenge kabhi (The head hasn't bowed down ever, and it shall never do so.)"

The brief given to the agency was very clear and precise. HDFC Standard Life wanted to highlight the message that parents need to be financially independent if they want to give their children the freedom to dream big.

Sanjay Tripathy, head, marketing, HDFC Standard Life Insurance, tells afaqs!, "We have done a lot of research for all our campaigns. That is why our campaigns have managed to strike the right chord with our target customers."

Nitesh Tiwari, executive creative director, Leo Burnett, tells afaqs!, "The product positioning is self-explanatory. A parent should be ready to fulfil a child's demands."

He adds, "We have done adequate research, but we have not interacted with the consumer directly. If the consumer gives us the inputs, then there will be no surprise left in the ads."

The previous campaign spoke about how children's plans could help in the long run and it was built around the moment of truth. The new campaign, on the other hand, captures the consumer at the current point of time and urges the parent to be prepared. HDFC Standard Life has retained the same target group - young parents.

Tripathy adds, "We are going to use a 360 degree campaign and different platforms, such as television, print, radio, OOH, Internet, mobile, and on-ground initiatives."

Anil Nair, president, Law & Kenneth, expresses his views about this campaign, "The ad portrays a natural conversation feel and that's why it seems realistic. It is not like a typical ad and captures the behaviour of the child perfectly. This is a new way to look at the same old proposition."

Sambit Mohanty, executive creative director, Brand Planet Elephant, feels otherwise. He says, "The ad was too wordy for a TV commercial. It was long drawn and took a lot of time to get to the point. By the time the main point is highlighted, you lose empathy for the characters."

This is the third campaign from the HDFC standard life stable promoting children's insurance. The previous two campaigns also had the message of holding your head high and fulfilling the child's dreams.

The campaign has been conceptualised and scripted by Leo Burnett and has been shot by Prakash Verma from Nirvana Films.

© 2008 afaqs!