Two ads I lately saw that really made me pause and go heh?
One is for diamonds or diamond jewellery. For some reason, the new trend is to make the ads mono chromatic -black and white. I think it is meant to make the diamonds sparkle and in this just fails miserably and at least to me ends up making the whole thing look very dull and average .
There is one where I am not sure, but I think the model is graceful Nafisa Ali on some last day at work after 35 years at a farewell party, suddenly twirled around by all in a dance. Vague. Really vague but a winner if you compare it with another so bad that I want to run away every time it airs.
There is this Vivah ceremony, all monochrome all around, the female model as a bride in traditional attire, the groom puts the sindoor in her maang and then for some reason, she turns, looks at him in a piercing gaze and whispers in a low, what appears to me, sinister manner, "you may now kiss the bride". The expression on the grooms face is worth watching- it is as if he does not know who he is getting married to and to me the whole thing looks like an episode of Addams family. I expect fangs to emerge any minute and a scream too.
Actually, I quite loved the episodes of Addams family(on television series- it was the cutest)- so I will change that to- it looks like a scene from Sshhh...koi..hai.. or Raat ke saaya se.. one of those hindi bad horror serials. Scary- I really don't see me wanting to buy diamonds after watching the ad.
From diamonds, to money.
The other ad that made me go hmmnn is a print ad. I have been seeing it pasted on the back of BEST buses. I think it is for some mutual fund cos the line says, "Investments are like marriage. Stay in it through good times and bad." What?
Really, it is one thing to have a complete lack of ideas, another to make ads that are based on or appeal to emotion and, a completely third option as I feel it has been done here, to "play" on local cultural ethos. India is a country where-at least as compared to many other parts of the world-emphasises marriage as permanent, so to use this line to tell people to stay invested in their fund is nothing short of corny. And with changing social mores and stock markets, even risky. I'd think just as there are a section of investors who believe in the "stay invested" theory, there are also those who advocate the "cut your losses" in investments in the stock market (and in relationships). After all marriage, investments or anything else, staying with it or opting out of it would depend on how well considered was the decision in the first place. And the factors that affect it later.
Really poor ads. Because I am so appalled at the copy that what is the product it is advertising has not registered. Poorly made ads annoy me- it is wasting the clients money, the agency's time and is either not advising or ill advising the consumer.
I'd rather have the seeda -saada bees saal purane, 'Sirf ek saridon, aur Sar dard se aaram'- jingle with a smiling man holding an aspirin in his hand. When life was simple. Or even the recent ones where children chant 'Maggi Maggi Maggi'. Or 'Whirlpooool... Whirlpooool...' Nothing complicated. Or scary or confusing. Unhealthy, silly, but clear.