An outstanding Creator meets his Creator. Steve Jobs, iBidgoodbye but not quite yet.


   15

iCried today. Rarely has a perfect stranger caught me off guard like this. Then I realized I wasn’t alone. Many more through scores of bytes zipping across the smallest & fattest pipes were expressing their deepest void like never before. It seemed like a favorite toy had been pulled away from us. We were adults for God’s sake. Then why was there such an outpouring of emotions? The last time I felt sadness (like real sadness for a stranger) of a different kind was when MJ moonwalked away.

This post is a short & sweet one. Much like what Steve did to the many contraptions in our lives. Made them short, sweet & simple. The many words of gratitude continue to flow & I paused for a few moments wondering why across the world,…
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What brands can learn from Gandhi!!


   6

Every year around this time we end up remembering the architects of our Independence – among them stands a ‘half-naked fakir’ who always outshines the rest – Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi. Ever wondered how much brands can learn from the greatest marketing campaign ever launched by an Indian? Think about it – it was touted as a ‘campaign’ against the Raj and it drove them out of this country (oh and also brought about the timely demise of the British Empire).

Here are few lessons which we can learn from what Gandhi did and brands can adopt these principles to successfully make an impact in today’s world:

1. Involve people – it’s the participation economy honey!

Perhaps one of the things that Gandhi did remarkably well was he mobilized the masses. At a time when…
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FREEBIES vs. DELITEBIES


   2

I know many who’d say FREEBIES it is. That’s it. (Oh! A freebie incidentally includes an extra of the same product, discounts, practical stuff like a glass jar with a Bournvita beverage pack etc.) I can understand why. As many homemakers would proudly proclaim, it’s quite a smart buy. Who will otherwise travel that extra mile (using up extra fuel) to a Big Bazaar (BB) that could be quite away from their home? Isn’t BB the ultimate retailer who indulges the smart buyer in each one of us??!!

That has been the norm even before retailing became an organized sport. It’s a sport isn’t it? One against the other, negotiations, survival of the fittest, the winner gets them all etc. I can’t grudge the ladies on that emotion. But in the recent past, I’ve…
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Would you rather love me for 30 secs or a life time?


   1

The debate on whether television and print as a medium is losing its status of Holy Grail in the advertising community, has been on for quite some time now. Industry pundits will throw stats at you (and I won’t) and passionately argue that India unlike the developed countries still nurses an appetite for 30 sec commercials and full page ads.

So marketers still pump in thousands of crores to get ‘eyeballs’. They believe a full page ad in The Times of India will be enough to get the ‘changing Indian woman’ (just dissected the day before in the ppt). 30 or 20 or 10 is really not the point – the secondage never was, question is: “is television enough to anchor your brand in the lives of consumers?”

Here’s my argument:

We live in…
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‘The lines have long disappeared’. As told to ‘Impact’ by a true brand custodian Anil Nair, CEO, Law & Kenneth


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Someone asked me recently, whether building brands in the coming decade would rest with above the line or below the line agencies? My reply was that the lines have long disappeared and the only line one needs to look at is what’s drawn between the consumer and the brand.

The reality is that very few brands can afford to play the IPL gamble, use fix-all celebrities or create TOI roadblocks to establish themselves quickly. Marketing ROI and strategies thereof are under the scanner in many boardrooms.

Given this truth, I believe the next decade will not be about ‘interruption’ or disruption’ but about connections, conversations and adding value to consumers’ lives. The only way forward for brands will be through making meaningful cultural connections and creating lasting relationships with their consumers. It’s not going to…
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Can brands be choreographed to Sun Signs & Planets?


   6

When reading a magazine, often inadvertently your hand flips many pages to arrive at today’s, this week’s and this month’s tarot reading. Soon a ring with a pleasing stone slips into your finger. Precious stones hide in crevices of bags. Planets define journeys.

India for years gave in to the power of the black hole and was prepared to face any onslaught by shielding herself from the very occurrence. Thanks to astrology and the planets.

However, today this trend is visible across the world. In a small but expensive golf town called St. Andrews in Scotland during my shopping moments, I encountered a corner store with karmic stones. The advertising professed authenticity and benefit readings. Surely, Karma & Golf make great holes in your wallet. Feng Shui  another buzzword in the Western/Eastern Hemisphere is…
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“This is why I love YouTube.” From the heart of Aheibam Prahlad. Copy Group Head, L&K Delhi


   6

YouTube has been defining the single most important thing of our lives today – sharing. In an easy to consume way. And we all love to be a part of it. You can’t deny having seen some of the most amazing videos, most hilarious ones, most touching ones, videos that you love but never know where to find or who to ask for and videos that have helped you as a professional, as a family “chef”, a parent, a geek…. And then again there have been your own YouTube moments where you play the lead. We have seen exceptionally spectacular YouTube events too, which could not have been possibly executed on any other media. YouTube Symphony Orchestra was one such surprise.

Here’s good news for all ye YouTube enthusiasts who have been meaning to…
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Don’t just stand there. Do something. Anything!!!


   5

Static (adj.): not in physical motion; the inertia of an object at rest

When something lulls you to a static state, there is hardly anything you remember of your surroundings or even what has brought you to that state. I think this is what Cobb defines as ‘limbo’ in the movie Inception. If you are at a beach lying under the glorious sun, this is your preferred, chosen and totally involved static state of being. However in the business of brands, this state of being for both the brand and its customer, is near coma. I am taking the liberty of defining the classic approach to communication that waits for the BIG CURTAIN RAISER before it starts its act, as the state of being ’static’.

Do brands really need a reason to start…
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Have (fantastic) product, will (out) sell – I


   2

We are in a 21st century hyper metropolis. Where an ocean of brands greets us every day. Somewhere in the midst of it all, are a few brands that surprise all the time. They haven’t yet forgotten that they can sell a great product a millions times over. In a search for these masterpieces, a few stood out. Sharing the aura of one today.

In an era where many products have another 10 clones or where new brands come into an exceedingly cluttered category, Apple stays refreshing & differentiated.

In an era where benchmarks are set by every competitive move, Apple begins & ends with its own ‘do’s & don’ts’.

In an era where technology and not formulas rule, Apple has consistently proven its control over the former rather than be overwhelmed or caught…
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Social media experiences + Live experiences = Bigger beer or brand belly


   2

Goes to say that experiential marketing is alive and kicking. The world has become a smaller place but not all of it has shrunk into mobiles & laptops. A few practical problems do need some very practical and ‘real world’ thinking. Andes Beer ensured boys could stay boys, with their ambient idea titled Teletransporter. Apparently these techie contraptions were installed in bars in Mendoza, Argentina. These booths let the ambient sounds speak on behalf of ‘boys-who-love-their-beer-with-friends-in-bars-without-their-girlfriends’. It signs off with a conscience uplifter: Why lie when you can teleport?

So some queries bother me as a student of advertising. Not as a pessimist, but as a tech-amazed, wide eyed, excited soul who would like to apply technology as a whole rather than the sum of its parts.

Q 1: What creates lasting impressions? Many…
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