Birla Sun Life Insurance: Are you leaving your dreams to fate?

By Shibani Gharat , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Advertising | November 17, 2011
Created by JWT India, the latest campaign from Birla Sun Life Insurance aims to induce the masses to purchase life insurance and not leave their dreams to fate.

If the words 'future uncertainty' rings a bell with most people, it is probably in connection with divine intervention or insurance! The new television commercial for Birla Sun Life Insurance speaks about 'not leaving your dreams to fate', and urges people to purchase insurance to safeguard their dreams.

The TVC, created by JWT India, features a young working couple discussing future plans, dreams, money and career matters on their way home from work. Suddenly, the husband has a lucky escape from what could have been a fatal accident. As the duo recovers from the shock, the voiceover urges people to protect their dreams and not leave them to chance.

Giving the insight on the campaign, Ajay Kakar, chief marketing officer, financial services, Aditya Birla Group, says, "Today's generation lives in the present, without planning for the future. They are confident about their work and ability, and hence feel that their future will automatically be good. Our mission is to provoke this generation and to let them know that something unscheduled may let all their dreams go away."

The climax in the TVC puts forth the thought-provoking question: 'Kahi aap apne sapno ko kismat par toh nahi chhodh rahe hain?' (Are you leaving your dreams to fate?) .

"Something unscheduled could take your dreams away," says Kakar. "Even when your actions, intentions, determination and approach towards life are perfect, someone else's actions have the potential to spoil your life."

Euphemism for death

The film ends on a positive note, with the couple realising that a lot needs to be done to live their dreams. "In the Indian context, we cannot talk about death directly. Hence, we have to showcase the same euphemistically in the communication. We wish to convey that anyone you love should be protected after you are no more," Kakar says.

Speaking about the campaign, Nandita Chalam, vice-president and executive creative director, JWT says that India is a young and optimistic nation, where most people believe that they can create their own destiny. "But, we had to find a way to make people aware of the fragility of life without frightening them. We managed to do this by adopting a tone that is provocative, yet empathetic."

The creative team that worked on the campaign includes Tista Sen, Nandita Chalam, Dipesh Kowarkar, Siddharth Joglekar and Kunjika Talpade. The production house is Chrome Pictures.

Besides TV, the campaign will span radio, outdoor, below the line and digital media.

Mindshare is managing the media buying for this high density campaign. The estimated media spends on the campaign are in the range of Rs 10-15 crore.

1-2, 1-2 or one of the few

As walking is metaphorically mentioned as '1-2, 1-2' in the TVC, the industry refers to this campaign as the '1-2, 1-2 insurance ad'.

Overall, the ad fraternity likes the way the TVC is executed; however, some feel that it is the same old insurance communication in a new package.

"It is a nice interplay of relations with a lively couple, all the way trying to communicate that life is uncertain but there is an assurance in terms of insurance," says Sujit Das, executive creative director, Pickle Lintas.

He adds that it is a typical run-of-the-mill ad. "I feel the advertising industry has not been able to crack the insurance category. We see the same type of ads predicting future death or ill-fate, when it comes to this category."

Amit Shankar, executive creative director, Grey India gives a thumbs up to the TVC. "What I liked about the TVC is that it's so real, everyone can relate to it," he says. He feels that it touches the emotional chord among consumers. "It reminds us that however advanced we may have become, nothing replaces the simple personal touch," he concludes.

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