Chinese smartphone brand Vivo, recently roped in Bollywood A-lister Aamir Khan as its brand ambassador, replacing Ranveer Singh. The announcement emerged as one of those exceptions to the rule where an older celebrity has replaced a younger one as a brand ambassador.
Vivo has released three new TV commercials for their newly launched Vivo V9 smartphone with its new brand ambassador taking centre stage... along with a couple of his furry companions. In previous ads that the brand has done with Ranveer Singh, the camera focus was much more on the actor as opposed to the phone. The difference in these ads featuring Khan is that his presence, although relevant, is not as intense, allowing the 'focal point' to be the handset's features being showcased. The three ads have been produced by Early Man Films and directed by Abhinav Pratiman.
We asked our experts if these ads have mass appeal; if they're better than the previous ads; and about their take on the overall treatment of the campaign. This is what they had to say:
Akashneel Dasgupta, executive creative director and senior vice president, ADK Fortune, says, "Any campaign with Aamir is reason enough to create buzz and be massy. His exclusivity and brand selection anyways drive curiosity even before the campaign sees the release. Buzz, to me, is not an issue. It will get enough eyeballs. I doubt whether the current campaign breaks any new ground in terms of creative. Not that it had any lofty benchmarks to improve upon, but certainly, I was expecting more in the way they use Aamir. But the use of a dog and cat together is sticky for sure."
Commenting on the bare minimum usage of the celebrity, Dasgupta says, "This is where my primary discontent comes in. Why do you need Aamir to do this? Aamir endorsing a new brand is like an event in itself. Wish he had more to do. Leaves me asking for more."
Saji Abraham, executive director, Lowe Lintas, says, "Firstly, the move to telling small real stories is a welcome one and the celebrity use is not in your face. Use of the pets as props also makes it interesting and gives character. Although they might be stretching it a bit as is evidenced in the shift focus film."
He adds, "Aamir Khan's performance, as usual, is top notch, but one can't help wondering if he has been underplayed a bit. Remember the Coke ads with him playing different characters? That and others, when compared, seem to have got more bang for the buck out of him. But I assume the brand will increase his presence and involvement along the way. Overall, a nice story with the phone tied in well."
Carlton D'Silva, chief executive officer and chief creative officer, Hungama Digital Services, says, "Anything with Aamir in it generates mass appeal... I guess that is the reason he is in the campaign (plus you have dogs and cats to capture the rest of the audience which are not an Aamir fans) ... Aamir + Cute Dog + Cute Cat = World Domination."
He adds, "I see what they did there... I believe it's a notch higher... The humour, though average, is carried well due to Aamir's presence and it does the job as its feature-benefit centric."
D'Silva continues, "I thought it was good, though this must be the first ad that has used Aamir and has not made him say a word in it."
Prabhakar Mundkur, chief mentor, HGS Interactive and a brand strategy advisor, says, "I loved the campaign. Really liked the way Aamir looked and the whole theme with the pets. But somehow, I felt that this has neither anything to do with cricket nor with a mobile phone. In fact, it reminded of the old Kodak ads or old camera ads."