Thursday, February 23, 2012

A very special moment

Brand-comm being awarded as a partner for its PR support at CavinKare Awards!

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You want to buy a caaar?

Maruti Suzuki: Appealing to the consumer in a savings-conscious market.

Often, an ad that seems less imaginative but more direct has a better chance of making an impact than more sophisticated ones.

In 1987 when I bought my first car (Oh God, there he goes again, you're thinking) the task was simple. There were basically two cars in the market, the Premier Padmini and the Ambassador. I remember the management guru of those days, Sharu Rangnekar, telling us that the Ambassador made you feel close to God because everyone who got into the car invariably exclaimed “Oh God!” and I did not want to feel so close to God then as I was already experiencing similar emotions when my wife was at the wheel!

Monday, February 13, 2012

You Shouldn’t Read ‘Bleep,’ The Hindu Says

A battle of brands between two of India’s leading English dailies is brewing, with The Hindu newspaper launching an advertisement campaign suggesting that The Times of India contains trivial news that leaves its readers unenlightened on issues that matter.

The three television advertisements come in response to one by The Times of India some four months ago that showed a man, holding a newspaper strikingly similar to the Hindu, fast asleep in various locations, from a construction site to the roof of a car, and in situations that included him even being arrested. The advertisement carries a line asking viewers if they’re “stuck with news that puts you to sleep?” and ends with the words: “wake up to the Times of India.”

Thursday, February 9, 2012

A brand called Narendra Modi

Running a tight ship: Despite Godhra, Narendra Modi is acknowledged to be a good administrator.

An analysis of a person seen both as an efficient administrator and as a politician with a stain that doesn't wash away

I am normally not a diffident writer, it is only my readers who tend to be cautious lest they get mired in my confusion, but when I do write or attempt to write about political leaders, I realise that I am as comfortable as the Indian team currently is on the bouncier Australian pitches. Nevertheless, the show must go on, as M. S. Dhoni says, and like the solitary win in the “hit and giggle”, as T20 is often derisively referred to, I too shall take heart from the fact that I am going to focus on an area that I have relatively more knowledge about, that is branding, and examine the credentials of Narendra Modi as a personal brand. I am not as concerned about his credentials as a Prime Ministerial candidate as I am about his commonality or differences with other leaders who have established themselves as personal brands.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Is cricket overpriced?

The past six to nine months has been a phase where Indian cricket has seen a remarkable slump. BCCI, which is at the helm of affairs, has been criticised for not keeping an eye on the future. The general sense is that the board is not prepared to mend this sorry state of Indian cricket despite pressures from broadcasters, the media and of course, viewers at large which matter the most if the plan is to sustain the sport in the long run.

Yes, cricket is the only celebrated sport in the country and advertisers have banked on its popularity. But recently, the game has come under the scanner with India’s debacle in its current series. Sahara has decided to end its 11-year association with BCCI and the Indian cricket team. And have also put the fate of Pune Warriors in jeopardy. The question here is whether cricket, as it is today, is an overpriced sport.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Cricket going “down under”?

The sport is proving to be too much of a good thing, and then not even that.

Friday the 13th. Contrary to what the date suggested, it turned out to be a brilliant, sunny day at Perth. For the Indian cricket team and the hapless Indian cricket fan, though, it could not have been gloomier. The much vaunted Indian test batting line-up that has scored an aggregate of over 50,000 test runs among them and who have put most attacks and bowlers to the sword, folded up for a mere 161 (yet again) after being put in to bat. That was not all. David Warner, who made his reputation in the Indian Premier League, bit the hand that fed him by doing a Virender Sehwag on us, as Shashi Tharoor cleverly tweeted. Around 2.30 p.m. on that fateful day, I called my long-time friend and co-cricket lover to commiserate with him. If anything he has been more cricket-mad than me, faithfully getting up at 4.30 a.m. for a 5 a.m. cricket match and sitting dutifully in front of the television, coffee mug in hand. But he shocked me, when I asked him the score. “I have switched off,” he said.