Havells Fans: Winds of change

By Aditi Srivastava , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Advertising
Published : June 12, 2015
The campaign talks about initiating social change, represented by its fan range used as a catalyst to drive home the point.

Havells India in its third year of the 'Hawa Badlegi' campaign, has tried to convey the message that a small change in our thought process can contribute to a much bigger and better change in society, at large. Created and conceptualised by Lowe Lintas, the latest set of four new television commercials- three for North India and one for the Southern market, subtly yet effectively tugs at the viewers' heartstrings.

Aptly titled - Conversion, Censor Board, Wedding and Mother Daughter conversation (in Tamil), all the advertisements showcase those subjects that are considered a taboo in the present day as well.

The 'Conversion' TVC depicts a conversation between a Hindu father and his daughter where the latter wants to get married to a Muslim boy. However, the conversion in question happens from a smoker to a non-smoker and has nothing to do with the suitor's religion. In the Censor Board TVC, members of the board are seen reviewing a 'family film' for awarding it the relevant certificate of viewership. The film expresses the disparity that films follow with respect to a male and a female actor on screen. The Wedding TVC features children from an orphanage attending a wedding for the first time. The last ad, featuring a conversation between a mother and daughter in Tamil, highlights the plight of a girl who experiences her menstrual cycle and hence is expected to keep away from the rest of the family. The voice-over, towards the end says 'Taaza hawa chali. Havells fans- Hawa Badlegi' where the fans have been used as a personification for change.

True to promise

Amer Jaleel

Amer Jaleel, national creative director, Lowe Lintas and Partners, shares, "Mainly, the first campaign was the launch pad for the idea of Hawa Badlegi because back then, it was a relatively new idea. The next year we shifted our focus to politics and how there are winds of change in politics too. Now, it's more about how new can the thought be. We are being more ambitious right now in terms of the topics we are choosing".

Jaleel was all praises for the social media and television channels where the major interaction for Havells has been happening. Winds of change and Hawa badlegi are two separate hashtags that have seen immense popularity and participation from people on social media.

To add to it, Jaleel says that Havells being a premium brand has tried to appeal to people in an intellectual way. The focus is not on benefits and features of a product but in making the brand speak for itself. Making people talk about subjects that are still a little less explored has been the aim.

"We believe that the brand can speak a language that the premium consumer can understand. Hence, striking a chord with people through conversations or rather eliciting conversations with a brand is what Havells has tried to do," he says.

For the brand, there was a specific marketing objective behind advertising for South India. Havells has a huge franchise in the region and wanted to engage the consumers there by means of a local subject that would ensure better recall.

The report card

Vishnu Srivastav

Kapil Mishra

Kartik Iyer

Vishnu Srivastav, creative head, DDB Mudra South & East has given a thumbs up to the Havells ads. According to him, "They are nice films that take forward an existing property, that the master brand has brought alive with all their different products. What I like about Havells is that they integrate their individual products very nicely under their umbrella idea." He further adds that "the good thing about forward thinking is that you don't ever have to stop. As long as the issues are relevant and the story telling is great, you'll always make an impact. Moreover, the insight is national, so the films are relevant across the country."

Kapil Mishra, executive creative director, Contract Mumbai adds, "These ads have a very strong advantage, they talk about something no fan has talked about. They go beyond the basic product promise or even the benefit proposition. They get into the social arena and make an effort to make themselves socially relevant. These ads do represent forward thinking. However, I wish they had pushed the scripts more."

Talking about the difference between North versus South, Mishra is of the view that the basic platform is the same but the difference lies in the choice of issues according to their relevance to North and South.

Kartik Iyer, CEO and co-founder, Happy Creative Services opines, "I find the ads to be fresh in approach. The Tamil ad talks about breaking conventions. But honestly it would have really broken convention had the girl had been asked to join the family on the table. But that's my take. Havells has very well delivered through these ads within its brand positioning of Hawa Badlegi, that talks about bringing a social change."
With the good comes the bad. Hence, when asked about what was not really relevant to these TVCs, Srivastav says, "The disadvantage is that they stop there only. There is no creative push in the ads. They sound like the very first script that comes to mind after cracking a brilliant proposition. That's the trap. That's the harm that good creative propositions do, if we don't refuse to be swayed by them."

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