When the task on hand is to communicate the clarity of sound of a TV set to a discerning bunch of consumers, the temptation would be to harp on the superior audio technology and all the assorted features that go with it.
After all, talking to an audience which is sharp, incisive, has a clear preference, and is, above all, aspirational, is no child's play.
Given this scenario, if the creative agency working on the campaign chooses to send the message across succinctly without the usual spiel on cutting-edge technology, slick features et al, the job on hand would be pretty challenging.
That's what Interpublic Group agency Quadrant Communications set out to do in the Realism in Sound TV campaign for Toshiba. The campaign helped the agency to fetch the Best TV Commercial Award at Toshiba's annual review meet called the Toshiba World Tour in Singapore this year.
Launched late last year, the TV campaign talked about Toshiba's new audio technology - Realism in Sound - which allows the viewer to listen to all frequencies of sound as they are - even when the volume is loud.
Toshiba had introduced the technology during the launch of its new 21-inch TV sets and Quadrant chose to communicate the message in three 30-second commercials - all of them set in a dealer showroom.
The first film has two old men listening to Tansen's rendition of raag Malhar on multiple TV screens in the showroom. Tansen was a legendary Hindustani classical singer at Mughal emperor Akbar's court, and it's said that raag Malhar, if sung correctly with the right notes and the right pitch, is known to induce heavy rains. As Tansen sings, there is a heavy downpour - but only on the Toshiba television screen.
In the next film, a little boy is viewing the mating season in Masaimara, Africa, with the lion giving out his characteristic mating call to a female in heat. Once again the lioness responds to the lion's frantic calls only on the Toshiba television screen.
In the third film, a group of school children are standing in the rains, staring at TV sets placed in a showroom. On TV, the famous balcony scene from Romeo and Juliet is being played out. As Romeo calls out to his beloved Juliet - yes, you guessed it right - she steps out in the Toshiba television screen only.
According to Noshir Desai, president, Quadrant Communications, the agenda concerning Toshiba was clear - to present communication that is razor-sharp, and above all, that can cut through the clutter.
"In today's competitive environment, there has to be some kind of value addition in terms of a consumer proposition that the agency can exploit. 'Realism in Sound' allowed us to do just that and we chose to present the overall communication in a unique manner," he says.
Realism in Sound, incidentally, marks a progression in the overall communication plan of Toshiba, which hitherto focused on the attribute of realistic picture. "Clarity of picture has been a unique selling proposition for Toshiba, and advertising had so far dwelled on this concept. Realising, however, that the average consumer in India pays a great deal of attention to sound as well, the company introduced its new audio technology in the Indian market," Desai explains.
Positioned at the "top of the triangle", Toshiba has a range of products including conventional TV sets, home theatre systems, flat screens et al. Toshiba is the ninth largest integrated manufacturer of electric and electronic equipment in the world and enjoys consolidated annual sales of over $47 billion.
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