For a Broader Au­di­ence

The tex­tile brand wants to po­si­tion it­self as an in­ter­na­tional, global brand.

The Brand Reporter - - FRONT PAGE - By Ash­wini Gan­gal and Su­nit Roy

The tex­tile brand po­si­tions it­self glob­ally.

In the ‘80s and ‘90s, por­tray­ing whites and blondes in In­dian ads was the quick­est way to make brands look pre­mium. The ethos of the time sup­ported this — prod­ucts man­u­fac­tured over­seas were deemed to be bet­ter than lo­cal goods. But to­day, peo­ple take pride in us­ing home-grown prod­ucts.

Last year, Only Vimal, a tex­tile di­vi­sion of Reliance In­dus­tries, re­turned to TV af­ter a gap of eight years. A few days back, the brand team re­leased two ad films — both fea­ture white, blond mod­els run­ning around what looks like Eng­land, as the sig­na­ture ‘Only Vimal, Only Vimal’ song, that we’re all quite fa­mil­iar with, plays in the back­ground.

Ac­cord­ing to Vivek Me­hta, head marketing, Reliance In­dus­tries (Tex­tiles), “The youth in In­dia are chal­leng­ing ‘the sta­tus quo’, with a mind­set of new pos­si­bil­i­ties, risk tak­ing and can do at­ti­tude. And they are do­ing all this in style. Only Vimal re­flects their val­ues by of­fer­ing, ‘fab­ric and ap­parel which is not only tech­no­log­i­cally ad­vanced and in­no­va­tive but also stylish and world class in de­sign val­ues’.”

“Now we are tar­get­ing SEC A, B, and even C, pre­dom­i­nantly be­tween the age group of 18-35 years, across all towns in In­dia.” RAHUL GUPTA The me­dia mix in­cludes print (news­pa­pers, mag­a­zines), dig­i­tal (Face­book, YouTube) & out­door.

AGENCY SPEAK

Last year, it was all about get­ting the brand back on TV af­ter eight years. What was the brief like this time around? Rahul Gupta, man­ag­ing di­rec­tor, IBD, a sub­sidiary of Per­cep­tHakuhodo, tells afaqs! Re­porter it’s all about hav­ing a rich and stylised brand im­age. He says, “...The rea­son for choos­ing white mod­els is a strate­gic one. It’s not be­cause they bring in some­thing ex­tra in terms of act­ing su­pe­ri­or­ity or looks. The per­son­al­ity of the brand is care­fully crafted. We want to po­si­tion Only Vimal as an in­ter­na­tional, global brand. To­day, the fash­ion land­scape is chang­ing rapidly; it’s mov­ing away from stitch­ing clothes and go­ing to­wards ready­made fash­ion. In­ter­na­tional sen­si­bil­i­ties are at­tract­ing the youth. It’s im­por­tant to have a world-class, stylised, rich brand im­age...”

The ad films were shot in Lon­don. “The most chal­leng­ing part of this year’s campaign was shoot­ing the film un­der­ground in Lon­don,” he re­calls, “Also, the un­pre­dictable weather of Lon­don can dis­rupt shoot­ing sched­ules and es­ca­late the pro­duc­tion cost. For­tu­nately, we planned well and every­thing went smoothly.”

About the TG, Gupta tells, “There has been a shift in the en­tire brand­ing — ear­lier, it was pre­dom­i­nantly fab­ric, but now we are look­ing at the length and breadth of fash­ion in our of­fer­ing. So, now we are tar­get­ing SEC A, B, and even C, pre­dom­i­nantly be­tween the age group of 18-35 years, across all towns in In­dia.”

Gupta in­forms that the team is ex­plor­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties to carry this campaign out­side In­dia. “As soon as enough rev­enue starts com­ing from spe­cific coun­tries, we will be able to in­vest in marketing in those coun­tries. Right now, there’s no im­me­di­ate plan to broad­cast it out­side In­dia.”

It’s a 360-de­gree campaign, and the TVCs have been launched on GECs. The me­dia mix in­cludes print (news­pa­pers, mag­a­zines), dig­i­tal (Face­book, YouTube) and out­door.

“Although, we haven’t cho­sen ra­dio as a medium yet, there are plans to take it for­ward,” says Gupta, “As of now, TV as a medium has re­ally de­liv­ered for us... we grew last year, so we are stick­ing to our same strat­egy.”

AD REVIEW

Ra­jesh Lal­wani, CEO, Sce­nario Con­sult­ing, a brand con­sul­tancy, says, “Do re­mem­ber the world we are liv­ing in is still an Amer­i­can­ised world. The big­gest soft power in the world has dom­i­nated cul­tural trends for decades, but even more so now in a world con­nected by so­cial net­works. With a peer net­work of fam­ily, friends and col­leagues liv­ing and work­ing in the west­ern world and con­nected on so­cial net­works 24x7, it’s not only our looks, but also our cel­e­bra­tions, fes­ti­vals and man­ner of speak­ing that are largely Amer­i­can.”

Brands, he be­lieves, with a sharp fo­cus on cur­rent trends and tech­nol­ogy, tend to look to the west­ern world for cues that it can use in or­der to make their brands ap­pear pre­mium.

As for the cur­rent Only Vimal campaign, he rea­sons, “I’d say it’s an at­tempt to ap­peal to a ‘broader’ au­di­ence base. The brand wants its au­di­ence to feel more con­fi­dent about who they are and who they as­pire to be.”

Ayan Banik, head, brand strat­egy, Cheil In­dia, ar­gues, “More than be­ing fas­ci­nated with Cau­casian looks, the deeper in­grained truth is that we are fas­ci­nated with the life and the life­style of west­ern, first world coun­tries, as they con­note every­thing that hu­man be­ings can as­pire for, at least ma­te­ri­al­is­ti­cally beau­ti­ful, ex­otic lo­cales, fancy cars, mod­ern tech gad­gets, high style, high fash­ion... over­all, a great qual­ity of life, one that’s very sought af­ter...”

He goes on, “So it’s not a ques­tion of us­ing a for­mat from the ‘80s-’90s for­mat; rather, it’s more about mind­set map­ping.”

Banik ex­plains that for high in­dul­gence, lux­ury cat­e­gories, and seg­ments such as high end au­to­mo­biles, high fash­ion, life­style prod­ucts and ac­ces­sories, ad­ver­tis­ers and mar­keters dial up the ‘as­pi­ra­tional’ and ‘pre­mi­um­ness’ quo­tient by show­ing for­eign lo­ca­tions and west­ern life­styles. And that’s when such “vis­ual lan­guage” is used.

“Even home-grown, eco­nom­i­cal brands at times bor­row the vis­ual gram­mar of the west­ern world to cue in pre­mi­um­ness and ex­clu­siv­ity,” says Banik. ■

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