Tata Docomo: Hum along

By Savia Jane Pinto , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Advertising | November 19, 2009
The telecom brand has launched its jingle, with the aim of building familiarity with the brand

Tata Docomo, the youngest among telecom players in the country to offer GSM, is presently banking on its services to garner visibility and a share in the telecom pie.

The launch of Tata Docomo also announced the intention of the brand to associate with the thought 'do'. Tata Docomo, for the first time in the country, offered pay-per-second billing; though other telecom providers have followed suit since.

The company has carried out a few adverts that highlight the brand's unique features and some other topical advertising during Ganesh Chaturthi and Diwali.

The latest from the GSM provider is the 'Friendship Express' TVC. The ad opens inside a train, where everyone is doing their own thing. A couple of the travellers don't like the solemn mood and start humming the Docomo tune. Slowly and steadily, others pitch in and soon most of the train is singing along. The ad ends with the super, 'Why walk when we can dance together'.

afaqs! spoke to K S Chakravarthy a.k.a. Chax, national creative director, Draft FCB Ulka to understand why the three-month-old telecom company chose to build on a jingle.

Dum Dee Dum

Chax points out that an audible is inherent to a telecom brand. This is so, because ringtones, caller back tunes and other such value added services are very important for a telecom provider. Chax has worked on brand Airtel for four years, when he was the creative head at Rediffusion Y&R; and he even worked on the tune for the brand.

While planning the launch for Tata Docomo, he was sure he wanted a differentiating tune, which was vibrant, funky, maverick, and catchy. That is why he chose Ram Sampat as the composer.

The brand tune was created when the logo was created, much before any of the other communication. Sampat made only one track for the tune. "This was the easiest and most pain-free track that I've made," he says happily.

As a reference, Sampat knew that the tune had to be proactive. He explains the use of the word 'do' in the jingle -- it is also because the first syllable of Docomo is the same.

Treble clef and Bass clef

The second reference was a personal one for Sampat, who is a huge Beatles fan. He wanted to create a memorable tune with bass beats; much like what the band created during their time, which uses a lot of interesting phonetic work.

The track has four layers, making it easier for the brand to use any part, as the communication demands. The first part is the repeated 'do - do - do' bit; the second is the repeated 'do-do, mo-mo' bit; the third part is when Docomo is recited in a cuckoo clock manner; and finally the high-pitched voice taking the tune to a higher note.

There is very little use of musical notes in the tune; voices have been used more extensively. It was also necessary to maintain a certain ambiguity of mood; so that the tune could be adapted to any other genre in the future.

Hitting the right notes

Usually a brand that has matured over a few years chooses to create communication that builds its image with a sound or audible. However, Tata Docomo has taken the step in a mere three months. Harish Bijoor, CEO, Harish Bijoor Consults, says that the concept of doing such a communication later in a brand's journey is a now a thing of the past. "A brand could be a name, a symbol, a colour or even a sound," he says. He thinks the idea of building a sound-related connect to the brand, especially a telecom one, is very right.

Stating a few numbers, Bijoor says that sound has been known to be 22 times more powerful than words when conveying a message. With the route that Tata Docomo has taken of building connect through sound; Bijoor feels that the ad will be more memorable than font advertising.

© 2009 afaqs!