afaqs!

Havells Fans: Keeping it simple, but quirky

By Biprorshee Das , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Advertising | May 10, 2011
To up the consumer connect with its fans, Havells' campaign for its range of fans continues with its typical cheeky tone of communication, but keeping it straightforward at the same time.

It is a habit that is way too common. On a hot sweaty day, you probably would pick up the first thing you can lay your hands on and fan yourself. Taking up that very simple insight is Havells India's communication for its range of fans.

Known for its quirky ads ('Shock Laga'), a series of television commercials has been created by Lowe Lintas to further up the consumer awareness for Havells Fans.

The TVCs show people in different situations using whatever they can find to fan themselves with to beat the heat. One film shows the protagonist fanning himself with a newspaper. He is immediately surrounded by a bunch of journalists who protest saying that a lot of effort has gone into printing the newspaper and he should not turn it into a fan.

Similarly, the second film shows a teacher using exam answer sheets for the same purpose when creepily enough, children surround her to tell her how they have toiled hard for an entire year to write their exams and it is not fair on her part to use them as a fan.

The third film shows a lady in the kitchen using her sari to fan herself when promptly appears an old woman telling her how the sari features age old art and must be treated with due respect.

Each film ends with a voiceover that says, 'Hawa Chahiye? Havells Fan Lagaiye (Need air? Get Havells Fans)'.

Besides the three TVCs that are currently on air, a fourth film will soon be aired.

The films have been written by R Balkakrishnan (Balki), chairperson, Lowe Lintas, and Deepesh Jha, executive creative director, Lowe Lintas, and have been directed by Ayyappa of Footcandles Films.

Talking to afaqs!, Jha says, "In this category, everything that can be said and done has been done. Cluttered with technical information, we thought the best thing that could be done was to use this basic insight and pass the message that when people think of fans, they must think of Havells Fans."

Havells, known for its other electrical equipments such as wires and switches, has not been very strongly associated with fans. The agency was briefed to do just that and help Havells own the category with enough recall potential communication.

Vijay Narayan, vice-president, marketing and communications, Havells India, says, "This is a very simple category. People do not get into technicalities when buying a fan. So, we were looking at communication that is relevant, simple and easy to catch, and at the same time continue with the quirky tone that Havells is now known for."

Jha agrees as he says that instead of telling the consumer the technicalities, what is more important is a relevant message.

"Until last year, we were focussing on advertising only around our energy-efficient fans. This time around, we have made it more broad-based, showcasing our entire range of fans," Narayan further adds.

The television campaign will be supported by on-ground activation and in-store promotions, and will continue through the summer season. The media mandate is handled by Motivator.

Thumbs up for simplicity

The films have met with positive feedback from creative professionals. The clarity of messaging has been appreciated along with the execution that has kept the message relevant along with the humour.

Says Ashish Khazanchi, vice-chairperson, Publicis Ambience, "It is a sweet campaign. It is not like something that will set things on fire, but is definitely clutter-breaking and disruptive enough for this category."

He adds, "In a low-involvement category such as this, the share of mind is the name of the game that will ensure share of market as well. The real test of the campaign would be to see when the consumer goes to the market place, would Havells stay on the top of his mind."

Khazanchi thinks it would, as he believes there is enough recall potential in the communication. Saying that he prefers the newspaper film since he thinks it has been executed better, he is also of the view that the line 'Hawa Chahiye?' is sticky enough.

Ryan Menezes, chief creative officer, Percept H, too, has a word of approval for the films. "I like the campaign. It is witty, wicked and well executed," he says.

Menezes, however, has a suggestion to offer. With CSR initiatives becoming increasingly important for brands, he thinks a similar association could have helped Havells further.

"I think the creative idea would have been much bigger if the product message was linked to a larger CSR initiative. Imagine the fans (no pun intended) an angle like that would generate," says Menezes.

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