afaqs! news bureau

Domex openly names rival Harpic in ad by Lowe Lintas

The ad is a conversation between two mothers, reminiscent of a yesteryear Tide vs. Rin ad.

How many people question the efficacy of a toilet cleaner in fighting both germs and malodour? To address the need for toilet hygiene, Domex - the home cleaning/disinfection brand from Hindustan Unilever Limited (HUL), has launched a new evidence-based brand campaign that takes on Harpic. Brand’s new communication demonstrates the superior benefits of Domex Fresh Guard Disinfectant Toilet Cleaner in the toilet cleaner category.

Domex has been a part of the HUL portfolio for several decades and the commercial and the new product being advertised comes at a time when preventive hygiene and disinfection is a critical consideration factor across the world.

The improved Domex Fresh Guard Disinfectant Toilet Cleaner doesn’t just claim a 99.9 per cent germ-kill formula but proves it through ISO-certified lab attestations.

Commenting on the category and the campaign, Prabha Narasimhan, executive director & VP – Home Care (South Asia), Hindustan Unilever said, “The latest communication for Domex is in line with our goal to give consumers the evidence to help make informed decisions. Battling the second wave of the pandemic, we are all well aware that hygiene, safety and disinfection are three facets which will dominate our collective consciousness and as a brand we have been attempting to address and deliver on these core parameters being sought by consumers in their everyday lives.”

Featuring renowned television actors Divyanka Tripathi (Hindi version) and Revathy (Tamil version), the spot opens in a supermarket scenario and unfolds as a conversation between the two women. The premise is simple, questioning Harpic as a toilet cleaner brand and if it helps in containing malodour and disinfects the toilet over a longer period of time.

This ad belongs to a particular category of ads called comparitive advertising. When two products that perform the same function are displayed and talked about, side by side. While this category isn't against the rules per se, the Advertising Standards Council of India has it's own guidelines when it comes to comparitive ads.

According to an article on Law Street India, ASCI guidelines state that that “advertisements shall neither distort facts nor mislead the consumer by means of implications or omissions.” Comparison between rival products must be factual and capable of substantiation and should not distort facts or mislead customers either with respect to the advertised product or with the one it is compared to. ASCI Code also states that such advertisement must not denigrate, attack or discredit other products.