RMAI Awards 2008: Mortein's Louie burns in Ravana fashion

By Surina Sayal , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Advertising | December 23, 2008
The Mortein Jala Re Jala Re… Louie Dahan campaign was activated by rural marketing agency Impact Communication

One & #BANNER1 & # of the case studies presented at the Rural Marketing Association of India (RMAI) Awards 2008, which were held at the JW Marriott hotel in Mumbai on December 22, was that of the Mortein Jala Re Jala Re - Louie Dahan campaign. The campaign was activated by rural marketing agency Impact Communication.

The group began the presentation with some statistics about the mosquito coil market. The all-India market is worth Rs 565 crore. Mortein's closest competitor is Jyothi Labs' Maxo.

Since Bihar was a priority market for Mortein, it was decided to take the brand to the annual fair in Sonepur in that state in November. The Sonepur Mela is the largest cattle fair in Asia. More than one million people visit the fair every year. The month long fair coincides with Dussehra. The fair is, therefore, used by savvy marketers as a good platform to integrate and interact with consumers. Apart from music, food, dance and theatre, the fair sees a number of brand activations, trials and demonstrations each year.

The challenge was to make Mortein stand out in this crowd. The company needed to design larger than life action in sync with the leadership position of Brand Mortein and to optimise reach.

The brief for Impact Communication was to communicate that Mortein provides power protection against mosquitoes and a range of mosquito borne diseases. The agency was asked to create a relevant property event around the brand mascot, Louie.

The creative thought now was to use the mythological plank of the victory of good over evil. The idea was to make the 'firangi' Louie desi. Thus, the brand mascot was tagged as "Duniya ka sabse khatarnaak janwar, Louie".

In true Ramayan style, an 80 foot high effigy of Louie was set up at the Sonepur fair. Teaser messages in Hindi and Bhojpuri directed people to the effigy. A huge stall was set up for trial generation for Mortein, where people could participate in games and win coupons. The person with the winning coupon would have the opportunity to set fire to the Louie effigy.

To raise awareness, a Ramayan like skit, titled The Louieshasur Kaand, was staged at the large stall. An audiovisual campaign was set up, which alternately played the Mortein TV commercial and local Bhojpuri numbers. Fliers and banners added to the campaign.

On D-Day, that is, Dussehra, a procession was taken out towards the effigy. The grand finale, witnessed by more than 50,000 people, comprised a fireworks display and the burning of the effigy.

The campaign intercepted and involved more than 2.5 lakh visitors. In 2006, the year the campaign was carried out, Mortein's market share was 25.7 per cent in Q1 - it rose to 29.7 per cent in Q2 (as claimed by the presenter). Since then, the Louie effigy is awaited eagerly each year at the Sonepur Mela.

The objective of the RMAI Awards is to recognise and reward successful case studies in rural marketing, initiated and put into action between April 1, 2006, and March 31, 2008.

Tata Shaktee was the title sponsor of the bi-annual awards event organised by the RMAI and co-sponsored by Impact Communication. Business Line was the media partner and Eventfaqs, the online partner.