Emvies 2009: 'Blockbuster' case studies on innovations done in cinemas

By Surina Sayal , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Media
Last updated : August 18, 2009
Tata Sumo Victa, Reeboks, Asian Paints, Sonata, Sunsilk and Maybelline were some of the brands which used films effectively to communicate to the audience. The case studies threw up interesting results

The annual Emvies, the event that awards the best work and best innovations in media, organised by the Ad Club Bombay, unveiled its case study preview at the Wellingkar College in Mumbai on Friday.

Media agency Maxus presented its case study on the Tata Sumo Victa and on creating 'India's first Lyricode'.

The situation: Tata Motors wanted to promote its brand, Tata Sumo Victa, in important markets such as UP and Bihar, but the problem for the Victa was that everyone associated it with Sumo. The challenge, thus, was to put the word 'Victa' on the tip of the tongue.

Print wasn't an option here as literacy rates aren't high and electricity cuts render TV ads ineffective in the area. Cinema was the best medium to reach out to the audience, especially Bhojpuri cinema. People here have the highest affinity for the local language, Bhojpuri, and Bhojpuri cinema does twice as well as Hindi films in these markets.

The idea was to create an ode to the Victa by tying up with a big Bhojpuri film, Darogaji Chori Ho Gayee, where the brand name was made part of the lyrics in one of the movie's songs. The vehicle was also placed in a number of prominent scenes in the film.

The company felt that since music is not dependant on box office hits, the hit song would work wonders and in fact it did. Five lakh audio cassettes of the movie were sold. The song was played across local TV and radio channels all over UP and Bihar. The movie ran for 3,000 theatre shows and there were 85 hours of brand mention on TV and radio.

This was followed by a number of free plays, where the song was played at festivals, 'barats' (wedding processions) and in auto rickshaws.

Sanjay Gupta, assistant general manager, Tata Motors, says, "The Lyricode helped us establish the brand in media dark areas such as UP and Bihar. The overall response was very encouraging."

Maxus also presented its case study for Reebok's winter collection, named the Victory Collection, where the brand was tied to the cricket based film, Victory, starring Harman Baweja. The challenge for the brand was to position itself as not just a sport brand but a sport and lifestyle brand targeted at the youth. Tying in fashion, celebrities and cricket, the brand and film came together and changes were made to the script to suit the Reebok imagery.

The story was about a small town boy who rises to stardom with his skill and talent but falls, only to rise once again. The film had Reebok branding throughout on the cricketer's uniforms and gear.

It worked so well for the brand that Reebok didn't have to do any other promos and this became the sole marketing initiative. The movie also happened to bring together more than 40 international cricketers and the brand benefited without even having to create a tournament or a cup series.

The result the brand received 25 minutes of coverage in the two hour movie and also received PR worth Rs 2 crore. About 75 per cent of the Reebok Victory collection was sold before the movie was released and the collection was completely sold out within four weeks. Unaided awareness for the brand increased from 25 to 40 per cent. All this also proved that the success of the brand placement and reach doesn't depend on the success of a film.

Madison's agency, Mates, presented its case study for Asian Paints Kids World for the Chalkboard and Glow Wall and its association with the film, Bhoothnath, starring Amitabh Bachchan and Juhi Chawla. The objectives were to exhibit the product, target the child and also the mother, and drive awareness and sales.

An analysis revealed that home interiors are gaining importance and children also contribute a lot to how they want their rooms done. Research also revealed that 24 per cent mothers go with their kids for movies.

Thus the canvas used was the film Bhoothnath, where audiences connect with stars such as Bachchan and Chawla, who cut across audiences in the film targeted at both adults and children.

The agency leveraged in-film placement, where the core product was shown where ghosts are projected on the walls. POP activation, cinema activation for the brand was also done and a short TV commercial with Juhi Chawla and the child artist from the film played on kid's channels such as CN and Pogo.

At cinemas, glow masks were given to patrons and a chalkboard was created where they could leave their messages. The activity reached 40 million people and the brand saw a 30 per cent increase in sales.

P9, a division of Percept India, took this further for Asian Paints and brought the cinema activation on-ground in the form of Amitabh masks that were distributed, Asian Paints kiosks at cinema halls and a contest. The total number of leads generated from P9's activation was around 1,600 and more than 2,000 masks were distributed, while more than 40,000 eyeballs were garnered.

Another interesting case study presented included Sonata's carpet bombing of cinemas for its 101 Collection, done by Maxus in 12 towns across three states, Maharashtra, Karnataka and UP. Sonata was launching its new collection that offered 101 different designs in watches around Diwali in 2008 (Diwali season contributes to about 33 per cent of the brand's sales).

Sonata is targeted for the masses, so the agency felt what better route that a filmy take on the brand, seamlessly integrating the brand with films. Thus, creatives were made with brand ambassador MS Dhoni posing as an actor in a new film. Posters of this new 'film' were also put up at ticket counters, along with Dhoni standees in waiting halls at cinemas. A TVC with Dhoni and the new collection was also played during movie intermissions.

The activity generated much buzz and the resultant sales were to the tune of almost eight lakh watches. In fact, following the activity, one month's sales figures were higher than five month sales for the brand, with the cost per contact working out to only 0.83 paise.

Hindustan Unilever's hair care brand, Sunsilk, tied up with Priyanka Chopra starrer Fashion, which charts the rise of a small town girl with big dreams who makes it as a supermodel. Chopra incidentally is also the brand's ambassador.

Sunsilk was placed seamlessly in the film, where the protagonist is seen sitting with her agent and ad producer, watching behind the scenes footage and the making of a Sunsilk TV commercial which she stars in.

She is also seen on larger than life hoardings in the city, modelling again for Sunsilk, once she makes it as a supermodel. The film also shows her and other models walking into Sunsilk Style Studios for hair makeovers.

Another brand that tied up with a Priyanka Chopra film was Maybelline. Maybelline's innovation by Madison's agency, Mates, tied the brand to the film Dostana, starring Priyanka Chopra, who plays a high profile fashion editor, a go-getter woman of today, who is also the brand's TG.

Thus a 'Get the Neha look' (Neha being Chopra's name in the film) campaign was executed, where patrons coming in to watch the film could get a makeover by Maybelline and also stood a chance to win a Dostana gift hamper to achieve Chopra's look from the film. Also, when patrons bought tickets, the ticket jackets had Maybelline branding. Opening credits for the film also displayed Maybelline as the movie's 'Make up Partner'.

A Maybelline 'look book' was also created and given out at stores selling the brand, where information on different Maybelline products were given, along with instructions on how to use those products to obtain certain looks. The activity managed to reach out to 12 lakh women and 21,000 new consumers tried the products. The film ran for a good six weeks and Maybelline saw 15 per cent incremental sales following the activity and the movie.

First Published : August 18, 2009

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