Empathy with Decor
A look at the brand’s new spot crafted by Ogilvy Mumbai.
Ask any young person who has either studied or worked away from home and lived as a PG about their room and there’s a good chance they’ll tell you just how drab the spaces they rented were. Naturally, since it’s not their own, it would lack a certain “warmth”. And that’s exactly what homegrown brand, Asian Paints, wants to change with their new ad campaign.
Conceptualised by Ogilvy India, the new corporate TVC with #PeopleAddColour, is a followup to building the brand’s existing corporate positioning ‘Har Ghar Kuch Kehta Hai’.
Amit Syngle, COO, Asian Paints shares that this is only the first in a series of films that are part of the campaign that will be on for the next few months. With regard to the current ad being in sync with the marketing subtext, Syngle states, “Our core objective is to recapture the essence of how people who live under the same roof bring colour to each other’s lives while highlighting the emotional equity a home holds.”
He continues, “Building on our positioning and expression of ‘Har Ghar Kuch Kehta Hai’, we aim to resonate with our consumers by instilling empathy and meaning into décor.”
Asian Paints is also the holding company of Berger International. When asked whether there is an increase of business in the company’s domestic paint sales segment as the festive season is just around the corner, Syngle responds, “Though the skew of painting during festivals has gone down over the years owing to longevity and quality of products, there is a significant chunk of consumers who still have a festive association with painting.”
He nevertheless maintains that the company does look forward to doing good business in the days building up to the festive period.
The minute-long ad spot opens with a lady discovering her husband re-doing their son’s room. She’s puzzled as to why, especially since their son only comes home once a year. The husband responds saying that just as their son has been welcomed into the home of another family abroad, there would be other children living away from their families and they could find a home with them, as PGs.
“The concept revolves around empty nesters; people who miss having people at home. Hence, it made sense to tell the story from their point of view,” points out Sukesh Nayak, chief creative officer, Ogilvy West (India).
“Asian Paints, as a brand, feels that the most important part when deciding the décor for your home should be comfort and the feeling that it would give to the one who resides there,” Nayak adds.
He goes on to explain that the brand wanted to provoke consumers with the thought that the warmth lost from a home when a loved one moves away, can be brought back, a little, with simple changes in the way one looks at their décor.
Apart from the series of 20-second films, the campaign will be promoted across print, outdoor, retail promotion, radio spots, digital engagement, and on-ground activation.
So, is it a hit or a miss? Saji Abraham, executive director, Lowe Lintas feels a bit underwhelmed by the ad saying, “I guess it had a really tough act to match up to as ‘Har Ghar Kuch kheta hai’ was a fine thought-leadership piece that Asian Paints rightfully owned.”
However, the million dollar question, as always remains - will the ad help the brand garner enough eyeballs or will it be just another addition to the clutter?
Abraham feels that the new ad does not have the same gravitas as those of the past. “While the intention would have been to depict a modern house, in keeping with current trends, the execution ends up almost being mistaken for an Airbnb ad. I feel that the deeper philosophy of what a home tells us about its occupants is missing here,” he states.
“Perhaps if they had taken a contemporary phenomenon like homestays, but rendered it differently with the brand having a point of view on it, would have helped retain the thought-leadership stance that it had,” Abraham muses.
Sunila Karir, founder and creative partner, Boing!, finds the ad to have a simple and sweet idea, “Senior citizens (the probable TG) are often lonely after their kids leave the home. So, why not welcome more kids?”
Jagdish Acharya, founder and creative head, Cut The Crap, finds it a decent effort overall. The creative challenge for the brand is to constantly refresh its emotional core, to paint homes with new layers of sentiments. “Creative-wise, it’s a simplistic plot, literally spelt out through the dialogue. But casting and direction fill in for the copywriting,” he says.
The film gradually proceeds to a montage of different youngsters who have had a warm and memorable experience with the couple and that just might be another objective to also connect with the younger TG.
Acharya continues, “This ad is
The campaign will be promoted across print, outdoor, retail, radio, digital and on-ground.
“Though it has gone down over the years, owing to longevity and quality of products there is a significant chunk of consumers who still have a festive association with painting” AMIT SYNGLE
just one such building block and not the entire structure. The creative taps the trend of home-stay travelling and forges yet another angle of home bonding.”
His last statement was in reference to previous Asian Paints ads released a few months ago featuring celeb homes like that of Radhika Apte who speaks about the ideas behind her décor.
In the recent past, digital films, like brands narrating real-life stories, have become a common practice in ad-land. However, the major difference between some of these digital ads and TVCs is the length of these videos.
Acharya, doesn’t consider it to be a case of ‘shifting to digital’ or ‘going back to TV’ but juggling both. He is of the opinion that using celeb homes is like adding gloss to the paint, which is the icing on the cake that one needs to make the sale. He quips that digital is the only medium to park long-format content like those ads otherwise it’s a “good old TVC.” ■