While almost every other brand out there is going to town with high decibel attempts to leverage consumer interest around ICC World Cup 2019 - with anthems, motivational songs and offers of the 'buy our product and win a trip to the World Cup' kind - cab-hailing app Ola decided to do the opposite. The cab hailing app has released something called The Anti-Anthem, a spot that mocks advertisers and their clone-ish attempts to bait consumers. The spot has been crafted by Leo Burnett Orchard.
"Cricket ka time hai, sabka anthem ready hai. Yeh raha apna, same same, but different hai..." goes the first line of Ola's anti-anthem. Going on to lyrically mock other brands that promise offers, prizes and even tickets to the World Cup, Ola reminds people that they're around to take you wherever you need to travel to, to watch the matches.
We're going to classify this as a light-hearted, ambush marketing effort because Ola's nemesis Uber is one of the forerunner in the anthem-cum-offer game. The brand was one the first to unveil its anthem - titled 'Way-Yo', Uber's anthem has been created Ogilvy's Sonal Dabral. Among Uber's carrots was a reward-based campaign with the Britannia-esque tagline 'Uber Karo World Cup Chalo'.
On being asked why it was important for Ola to come up with such an ad, an Ola spokesperson responded saying, " It is natural for brands to look at ways to capitalize on marquee events such as the World Cup by launching campaigns, anthems, offers, etc. to grab eyeballs and promote their services to a large audience. When it comes to cricket, in a country like India, people know no boundaries. People love cricket, and all they want to do is watch the match with friends, family etc, and not fall into the gimmick of scratch cards, offers, discounts etc. We want to use the world cup as a platform to let people know that we will get them to their destination to watch their favourite teams in action."
In a press release, Amod Dani, ECD, Leo Burnett Orchard, says about this anti-anthem, "This World Cup, we've seen many brands come up with some or the other cricket/World Cup related promotion. So what does Ola, India's mobility expert, do during this season to ride the cricket wave? Simple: Nothing! What do people want most during the World Cup? To catch the game, at their home, their favourite restaurant, with their friends and families. So when everyone else came up with cricket and World Cup related promotions, Ola simply said we will do what we do best, we will #GetYouThere."
Here are a few recent World Cup anthems that brands came up with:
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