"We are always open to finding creative ways to deliver great content to our audience backed by a strong consumer insight," Sumit Mathur on Kellogg's India's latest outing

By Deepashree Banerjee , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Digital
Published : October 04, 2018 05:42 AM
A closer look at the recently released brand film.

Most parents who see their infants reassembling a toy will start picturing them as future mechanical engineers. That usually leads to high expectations from kids that builds up on every front that they show minor interest in. The burden of these expectations becomes all too real as children grow. And this pressure can get overwhelming in cases where it's a child of two sports stalwarts, for example. In a recently released video for Culture Machine's digital channel Blush, along with Kellogg's India, ace tennis player Sania Mirza is seen recording a message for her soon-to-be-born baby.

Sumit Mathur, CMO-Kellogg's India thinks the film beautifully drives home the purpose of Kellogg's - Nourish Your Dreams. "We strongly believe that storytelling is the best way to connect with the audience and as long as any content delivers that, we would go ahead with it," he states.

Sumit Mathur Sumit Mathur

On the brand's association with such content, Mathur explains, "Kellogg's, as a brand, truly celebrates this rejuvenated mindset of people who strive towards a better day and a better quality of life. Therefore, when I came across this opportunity, I thought it was a great way to celebrate #NourishYourDreams where a mother reassures her future child that she will continue to nourish his/her dreams, despite pressure from peers and society."

With regard to this joint effort with Blush to execute this new ad, Mathur found it to be a perfect marriage with their brand purpose. "She talks about celebrating the journey and nourishing the child every day so that he/she is equipped to achieve their dreams," he analogises.

When asked whether there were any other such collaborations in the pipeline, Mathur responds, "We are always open to constantly innovate and find creative ways to deliver great content to our audience that's backed by strong consumer insight."

But why the subtle/minimalistic branding in this film?

Sharique Khan Sharique Khan

According to Sharique Khan, vice president - brand solutions, Culture Machine, this over two-minute-long film is about a heartfelt message from an expectant mother, i.e. Sania Mirza to her unborn child to be free from societal pressures while anticipating the expectations that are thrust upon celebrity kids, in general.

"Our aim was to create a piece of branded content that effortlessly highlights both the brand philosophy and power of association," he shares.

Speaking about the storyline and shedding light on the collaboration between the two entities, Khan says, "Both Blush and Kellogg's India appeal to the urban India women and believe in bringing forth progressive stories that the target audience can identify with."

We also asked him whether there was any particular reason(s) behind roping in Tennis star Sania Mirza, who is due to deliver next month.

ALSO READ: At what point does a long-form ad become digital content?

"As an established public figure, Sania Mirza has not shied away from expressing her thoughts and opinions on subjects that matter to her. In her own style, she has been vocal about the undue pressure and expectations that society has from the children of successful and decorated sportspersons," explains Khan.

Interestingly, Culture Machine claims to be India's leading digital media company "whose mission is to use storytelling to build great media brands that people love."

Who is the expected TG?

"It is 22-45-year-old women; the brand talks to people with a 'striver' mindset," Khan quips.

When asked if the folks at Blush are ok being called a women's lifestyle channel by Culture Machine, he replies, "To suit the taste buds of all viewers, Culture Machine's smorgasbord offers a wide range to choose from. From contemporary, socially-relevant, smart, and feel-good content on 'Being Indian' to 'Blush', that offers a myriad of themes that modern Indian women want to explore. For the audience hungry for regional humour, there is 'Put Chutney' and 'VIVA'. And of course, 'Awesome Sauce India' that offers easy to make, hassle-free recipe videos for all aspiring home chefs."

Speaking about the challenges that come with creating such a digital spot (#NourishYourDreams), Khan shares, "It was pivotal for us to integrate the brand philosophy - #NourishYourDreams - in a seamless and contextual manner within the content, rather than a literal product integration."

So, is it well executed; we asked the experts:-

The premise of using an expectant mother talking to her unborn child seems interesting as it tends to draw people in and given the Sania-Shoaib connection, on both sides of the border as well.

Navin Kansal Navin Kansal

Lubna Khan Lubna Khan

Anadi Sah Anadi Sah

Navin Kansal, chief creative officer, 21N78E Creative Labs says, "It has been written well, however, the execution could have been more nuanced."

Kansal elaborates, "It would have been nice to see future-gazing being achieved without having to show children. An interplay between Sania and the voice in her head along with props and other objects at home could have, perhaps, captured the intimacy of the moment in a more authentic way."

In so far as the Kellogg's brand-connect is concerned, Kansal shares, "Perhaps the intent was to keep it subtle, but apart from the word 'nourish', it seems to be a case of an opportunity missed. People may remember the film, but not necessarily the brand behind the film!"

Strategy consultant Lubna Khan is of the opinion that the focus on emotional nourishment is a good complement to the physical nourishment that Kellogg's has primarily emphasised till now.

She says, "The decision to tell a story about choices and freedom through Sania Mirza and her unborn child holds the potential for a great cultural conversation, given the public speculation about the child. Unfortunately, that potential is lost in a feel-good film that shies away from taking any polarising stance."

Anadi Sah, lead innovation - creative and tech, Isobar, finds the concept adorable, extremely personal and touching, but at the same time, he feels that there could have been more scope for creative execution.

He adds, "About the narrative, the communication is spot on but I feel the transition from Sania's point of view to every mother, was a bit obscure."

Despite it all, as an audience, Sah still hopes that all mothers, expecting or otherwise, will relate to the brand message.

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