Fevicol: Bonding underwater

By Biprorshee Das , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Advertising
Last updated : June 07, 2010
Launching the new variant, Fevicol Marine, Ogilvy India has created what it calls the sequel to the first Fevicol commercial. Taking the 'tug-of-war' concept forward, the TVC shows how the adhesive works even in water

Everybody likes a bit of nostalgia. Fevicol is no exception, as it revisits its first-ever television commercial. For the launch of its new variant, Fevicol Marine, the 'tug-of-war' TVC is being presented in a different way.

In the new TVC, one hears the iconic 'Dum lagake, zor lagake haisha' line once more; as the idea of musclemen and an elephant try to pull apart blocks of wood joined by Fevicol is revisited.

The new commercial, created by Ogilvy India, has been shot in Alleppey, Kerala on a bigger scale. This time, it is the state's popular event - the snake boat race -- that has been used to show the tug-of-war. Two snake boats tied to a chair underwater are shown, with 50 boatmen trying to pull in opposite directions, attempting to break the 'Fevicol ka jod'.

The chant, 'Dum lagake, zor lagake haisha' continues, along with Kerala boatmen folk melodies. Eventually, as the boatmen give up; the film ends with the presenter, who acts like a tourist referee, saying that the bond is now impossible to break, even when the plywood is wet.

The new product claims that bonded plywood would remain intact, even if it is kept in water for 48 hours, or in boiling water for up to an hour.

The film has been directed by Indrajit Nattoji of Blink Pictures. The creative team at Ogilvy consisted of Abhijit Avasthi, national creative director; Amitabh Agnihotri, creative director and Samir Sojwal, associate creative director.

Talking to afaqs!, Rajiv Rao, national creative director, Ogilvy India, says, "We wanted to remind what Fevicol is; and hence, turned to one of the most memorable Fevicol ads to introduce the variant. It is like a sequel to the old ad. Through the tug-of-war idea, the strength of the product comes out even better."

The shoot was no mean task, reveals Nattoji. The chair underwater was shot in a swimming pool in Mumbai, and had to be matched to the one used in the Kerala backwaters. The chair was fixed on to the river bed, so that the boats wouldn't drift away when the boatmen start to row vigorously. The camera was suspended in the middle of the backwaters on a Jimmy Jib crane, mounted on a platform supported by four other boats.

"It is a simple demonstration film, visualised larger than life, in a bizarre low-tech, high-scale experiment in Kerala style. That's the twist in keeping with Fevicol's quirky concepts of demonstrating its strength," says Nattoji.

Kerala was chosen obviously for the snake boats, which provided a scenic and, at the same time, surreal backdrop for the film.

On the age-old thought behind the product's communication, Rao notes that the simple thought has become common lingo; so there was no need to tinker with it. "As a category, it is not one that needs to keep up with times. It is a simple product truth, which is as strong as the product, and has become a part of our everyday language," he says.

The TVC will be supported by outdoor promotions and BTL activities.

Bonding fine

Adlanders agree that the message of the product comes across in a simple and sound manner; and the dramatic demonstration of the product benefit is appreciated.

"The ad conveys the news of 'marine' well - a Fevicol product that also works in water. The creative thought of dramatising the use of the product in water is sound; as is the core brand promise," says Shivanand Mohanty, national creative director, Dentsu Communications.

Josy Paul, chairman and chief creative officer, BBDO India agrees, saying that the film makes the desired point about the water-resistant feature and benefit well.

"A wider audience is probably being spoken to; hence, it is kept straight and simple, so that there is little confusion. It is a down-to-earth, benefit-led demonstration for a mass audience," says Paul.

Mohanty, however, adds that the execution leaves a little to be desired, and falls short when compared to the earlier films.

"Compared to the fresh and surprising turns Fevicol used to take, the current execution leaves us asking for more. The 'Fevicol ka Jod' promise has inspired some truly path-breaking work before. It can do so again," he notes.

First Published : June 07, 2010

© 2010 afaqs!