Shreyas Kulkarni

Hero Lectro positions its e-cycles as an alternative to public transport

The ad makes no mention of the pandemic or how the e-cycle offers any precautionary measures. It instead focuses on the vehicle's speed

'To make the world a better place' is an adage we've been a bit slow to act on. What we needed was a dramatic incident to shake us out of our stupor even if it was of such magnitude. Today, as the pandemic rages, we're finally trying to become better than we were before the crisis hit. For instance, we've become a more fitness conscious society. The commute hours saved while we work from home is now used to workout.

But, for the ones who've returned to the office or will do so, there's an alternative that will not only keep them fit but also safe from the risk of taking public transport – electric cycles or e-cycles. A Business Standard report quoted Pankaj M Munjal, chairman and managing director, Hero Motors Company (HMC), "After lockdown, we witnessed 50 per cent increase in demand for premium bicycles, while the demand for electric bikes shot up by almost 100 per cent.”

And meeting this spike in demand is Hero Lectro that has launched its range of e-cycles with a new campaign ad. The 30-second ad has a coder tell us how he chose a Hero Lectro e-cycle instead of depending on metros or cabs to commute to work and extoled the cycle's 25 km full range at 25 km per hour speed.

Hero Lectro has positioned its e-cycle as an alternative to public transport. Sumanto Chattopadhyay, chairman and chief creative officer, 82.5 Communications, the agency behind the ad agreed to the statement. He told us the agency was looking at the brand in the context of relevance in today's times where it strikes gold because while public transport hasn't opened at every place, we all know how crowded it gets. "If you want to maintain social distancing, it's not possible on public transport but the Lectro lets you do that..."

Sumanto Chattopadhyay
Sumanto Chattopadhyay

"Lectro was a fairly new client for us right before the pandemic," revealed the creative chief and said that the agency had to look at the idea (e-cycle) from a COVID lens.

Talking about the positioning of the e-cycle as an alternative mode of commute, Chattopadhyay told us that because it's an electric cycle, it not only keeps you fit and lets you reach places fast with its throttle mode, it is also an affordable vehicle for people who may not want to buy a car or motorcycle because of the present situation. Adding to these aspects is the exhilaration one gets while cycling and as per him, "... It ticks a lot of boxes."

We also asked him about the absence of cars in the ad and whether it was on purpose to target a specific audience (those who may not know how to drive for instance). To this, he said, "We didn't want to directly reference cars but wanted viewers of the ad to make the inference... we didn't want to say anything out loud..."

According to Chattopadhyay, people who're used to being driven around and work on their laptops while in their cars, may not go for this product but he counteracted himself, "Today there are CEOs who're into fitness..." The e-cycle is aimed at young members of the workforce but in reality, it's a product for the futurists who look to invest in planet-friendly products.

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