afaqs!

Amul: Reaching every home digitally

By Satrajit Sen , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Digital | January 28, 2014
As a first in a monthly series of digital films, Amul depicts a new theme telling stories of an everyday Indian home.

Traditionally, Amul has been known for using hoardings and print media to tell stories, captivating Indians of all ages. In fact, its tongue-in-the-cheek snippets on current affair topics have engaged audiences for decades. In today's digitally connected world, though, the iconic brand has decided to take the route of new media to tell stories of the everyday Indian home.

Amul digital film

Rahul daCunha

R S Sodhi

Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF), the company behind Amul, has launched a digital film with a new theme, 'Har ghar Amul ghar' (Every home is an Amul home). The film was uploaded on the brand's YouTube channel on January 18 and has so far received 174,675 views. The film, conceptualised by daCunha Communications, is the first in a monthly series.

The film features a family comprising a young boy and his parents. In the first scene, on the eve of the boy's first day in first standard, the indulgent parents look on their sleeping child and talk about early morning school - bringing a worried look to the mother's face. It moves on to show the parents taking turns to wake up and get the boy ready for school. The process involves giving him a glass of Amul Milk, and bread with the brand's butter packed for the lunch box.

As the days roll on, the parents continue to get the boy ready, but the joys of the first day are replaced with impatience. The boy notices this change and is visibly unhappy with it. One day, he removes the battery of the alarm clock so that his parents don't wake up, gets ready by himself, butters his toast, drinks milk and even packs his lunch box. The parents are shocked to see their son fully dressed and waving goodbye to them when they wake up. The boy then walks out confidently with a bottle with an Amul logo on it. The film ends with the super, 'Har ghar Amul ghar'.

According to Amul, the film depicts a typical scenario of a modern Indian home. "In early India, it was always the mother who had to do all the household work but here, both the parents are working and there is equality at home. At the same time there is a kid who is independent to do things himself. The film has been successful as the brand is coming in subtly. The mood, emotion and the insight is stronger," states Rahul daCunha, managing director and creative head, daCunha Communications.

Speaking about the idea behind the ad, R S Sodhi, managing director, GCMMF (Amul), says, "We wanted to show people that Amul is consumed throughout the day by everybody. It's a part of everyone's daily life. We wanted to show it in a very witty way so that people can identify with themselves."

As per Sodhi, the film was made without any brief from Amul. "Rahul (daCunha) just made the film, showed it to us and we liked it because nowadays brands are going big on digital. This film is made only for the digital medium," he adds.

Amul's idea was also to try a slightly longer format of film that goes beyond 40 seconds. And longer formats need a story that is more emotional. "Further, Amul is the last of the great Indian brands as most of them have either been taken over or merged or shut down. Amul is a very emotional brand because it involves food. So we decided to do a series of slice of life bitter-sweet films where each film will attempt to sell the brand and also tie into an emotion that is quite seriously Indian, which is why the tagline is 'Har ghar Amul ghar'," says daCunha.

The initiative comes close on the heels of the Amul girl leaping right out of the hoardings onto the TV screens for an ad film which has given the Amul girl a three-dimensional form for the very first time. In the TVC she looks like a regular, well-rounded cartoon character and has been profiled from several angles, not just the front. Moreover, the 60-second version of the ad will be placed in cinemas during 3D movies; when viewed through special goggles, the ad will be a three-dimensional one.

The digital initiative is an interesting move by Amul which has so far established its digital presence by building a community around its posters and print ads on Facebook and Twitter. On Facebook, Amul has more than1.2 million fans and 20,000 followers on Twitter. daCunha had earlier mentioned how Amul has found yet another media platform in digital (particularly Facebook and Twitter) for its topical outdoor creatives. But, in this instance, the brand has created content typically for this medium for the first time. Amul creates one new topical ad daily. Of these, some are for the outdoor space, some appear only on Twitter, some appear in print, and some are released only in specific geographies.

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