Bring­ing Back Mem­o­ries

The food de­liv­ery app re­cy­cles mem­o­rable ads of the ‘90s.

The Brand Reporter - - EDITORIAL | CONTENTS - By Abid Hus­sain Bar­laskar abid.bar­laskar@afaqs.com

Most Mil­len­ni­als and some oth­ers who were ex­posed to In­dian tele­vi­sion dur­ing the ‘90s will surely re­call ads such as Dhara’s ‘Jalebi boy’, the Cad­bury Dairy Milk girl with her strange dance on the cricket field or even Nirma Su­per’s ‘Deepikaji’ with her ‘paar ki nazar’ for ‘sasta’ op­tions. Hit­ting the nos­tal­gia but­ton, on­line food de­liv­ery plat­form Uber Eats’ lat­est dig­i­tal cam­paign — ‘Pu­rane prices, Naya app’ — brings a lit­tle bit of those three iconic ads back to life. The cam­paign is a col­lec­tive of three dig­i­tal ad films ti­tled — The Flat­mates, The Class­room and The Of­fice — each one cash­ing in on the pop­u­lar­ity of those three clas­sics.

Apart from main­tain­ing a sim­i­lar jin­gle, sto­ry­line and re­hashed di­a­logues, ‘The Flat­mates’ video fea­tures the orig­i­nal Jalebi boy — Parzaan Das­tur. In this ren­di­tion, Das­tur, now all grown-up, leaves his apart­ment with bags packed as he feels quite ig­nored by his flat­mates. How­ever, he promptly re­turns when he finds out they’ve or­dered biryani via Uber Eats.

The sec­ond ad, ‘The Class­room’, pays homage to the fa­mous Dairy Milk TVC com­plete with the fa­mous ‘Kuch khaas hain’ tune and cor­re­spond­ing wild dance rou­tine. Here, the girl is por­trayed as a stu­dent who cel­e­brates a suc­cess­ful food or­der placed on Uber Eats while still in class.

The third in the se­ries, ‘The Of­fice’, show­cases a new-age of­fice­go­ing ‘Deepikaji’, but one who shares the same ‘paar ki nazar’ (a keen eye) for the best op­tions avail­able just like her coun­ter­part from the ‘90s ad. While the Deepika from the orig­i­nal TVC chooses the cheaper and bet­ter Nirma Su­per, the new one opts for the newer, more af­ford­able Uber Eats op­tions over the al­ter­na­tives.

The videos have so much more than mere “Easter Eggs” that al­low view­ers to rem­i­nisce; the com­par­i­son is quite ob­vi­ous and makes a bold state­ment in to­day’s dig­i­tal-first arena, es­pe­cially for on­line food or­der­ing plat­forms which are still spread­ing their wings.

afaqs! Re­porter got in touch with Namita Katre, head of brand, strat­egy and cam­paigns — Uber Eats, to find out more about ‘Pu­rane prices, Naya app’. In Katre’s words, the ads were more of a trib­ute to the iconic ads of the past and aimed at evok­ing nos­tal­gia while still de­liv­er­ing the brand’s mes­sage.

“We went back to the brands such as Mon­delez and Dhara and shared the idea that we were in­ter­ested in recre­at­ing their ads as a trib­ute. We car­ried only the ba­sics like the sto­ry­lines and mu­sic, which are sym­bolic. Although we haven’t named the brands, the ads are a com­pli­ment,” Katre says.

Speak­ing about the se­lec­tion of the three ads cho­sen for the cam­paign, Katre says, “We had a lot of iconic

The ads were con­cep­tu­alised by the in-house cre­ative team at Uber Eats. “We are the new­est kid in the block. This mes­sag­ing helps us con­vey that Uber Eats is a new app while invit­ing peo­ple to get on-board be­cause of our value for money of­fer­ing.” NAMITA KATRE

ads to choose from, but we picked the ones which had the strong­est emo­tional con­nect with view­ers. Some scored more than oth­ers and had a bet­ter con­nect for us to be able to weave in a mes­sage of not only ’90s nos­tal­gia but ’90s prices too. They pro­vided us with a rich cre­ative spring­board.”

afaqs! Re­porter also asked about the ‘naya-pu­rana’ tag that is a bit edgy in a new-ish genre like on­line food or­der­ing and de­liv­ery. Katre explains that the ‘naya’ or new­ness of Uber Eats sim­ply means that the brand isn’t amongst the first movers in the on­line food de­liv­ery space. “We are the new­est kid in the block. This mes­sag­ing helps us con­vey that Uber Eats is a new app while invit­ing peo­ple to get on-board be­cause of our value for money of­fer­ing,” Katre states.

About why Uber Eats chose to go ahead with its in-house cre­ative team in­stead of rop­ing in an ad­ver­tis­ing agency, Katre explains, “We use agen­cies who are ex­ter­nal part­ners depend­ing on what we are work­ing on. On this one, it was the in-house team’s un­der­stand­ing of the nu­ances of value com­mu­ni­ca­tion, the cat­e­gory, the com­pe­ti­tion, and more than any­thing else, speed, agility and nim­ble­ness that our in­ter­nal agency brought to the fore. We do work with ex­ter­nal agen­cies oc­ca­sion­ally when we are look­ing for fresh per­spec­tive and the depth of a col­lec­tive ex­pe­ri­ence.”

EX­PERTS SPEAK

Ra­manu­jam Srid­har, CEO and founder of Brand-Comm, is of the opin­ion that although the ad films did a fairly good job at cu­ing a ’90s mem­ory, they seem self-in­dul­gent and made from an ad per­son’s per­spec­tive. “The idea was ‘pu­rane za­mane ka prices’. McDon­ald’s did some­thing like this some years back with a spoof/ mimicry of vet­eran Bol­ly­wood ac­tors while de­liv­er­ing a brand mes­sage of a pocket-friendly price from a pre­vi­ous era. It’s the same thought. Again, in­vok­ing mem­o­ries of ’90s ads and the brand’s price point is a bit stretched,” Srid­har says.

The ads from the cam­paign, are more like a breath of fresh air for Ashish Khaz­anchi, manag­ing part­ner, Enor­mous Brands. “The cast­ing for the ad ref­er­enc­ing Dhara is a mi­nor coup. Some­where we’ve for­got­ten that brands do have a pur­pose and it’s not al­ways to im­bue the con­sumer’s life with high­fa­lutin mean­ing. We no longer live in a time where you cre­ate an ad and it stays for­ever. The pace is more im­por­tant. It has been done well. There might be mi­nor flaws, but they are not rel­e­vant,” he says. ■

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