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Spoonfeedin WOrld

Mktg – Soundtracks in ads moving beyond TVC to ringtone downloads

Prasad Sangameshwaran

Ad agency Ogilvy was shooting Bajaj Pulsar’s ad film in Cape Town, South Africa with internationally acclaimed film maker Keith Rose, when the team
felt that ad would get a booster shot if they could get a soundtrack to match the ad.

Rose recommended Alun Richards, a singer from South Africa to lend his voice for the now famous soundtrack “I am the man” . Soon the Bajaj Pulsar 220 ad went on to become a hit, with nearly 35,000 Internet downloads as ring tones till date and a much larger number of Bluetooth transfers.

Unlikely as it might sound, this bit of advertising comes from the same company that gave us the lilting melody in the 1980s and 1990s “buland Bharat ki buland tasveer, hamara Bajaj.”

From hardcore Hindi to progressive English music in its ads could partly be a sign of the changing times, partly the reflection of attitudes from a company that’s graduated from being seen as the seller of sturdy scooters to race-ahead bikes.

Importantly, this is also the first time a Bajaj commercial has caught so much attention for its jingle in the post “buland Bharat” era.

In another company, another category, in the direct to home TV broadcast services space, the challenge was to communicate the clarity of image. As Airtel Digital discovered, it could end up making a motherhood statement that even adjacent categories ranging from television sets to cameras could end up making.

So in classic Bollywood style, the communication of the brand dwelled upon the story of lost childhood love. “It was felt that a song would add to the character and memorability of the campaign,” says R Chandrasekar, head – brand and media, Airtel. The result was the song Dil Titli that according to the company has become such a hit, that the number of online downloads of the song could rival any successful Hindi film song.

These examples could probably illustrate the return of the soundtrack in adland ? Not necessarily, claim the admen. Manoj Shetty, creative director, Ogilvy, who was a part of the Bajaj Pulsar campaign says, “When we were editing the commercial it was felt that the ad would be much better with a song. That’s when we started looking for options.”

And they add that successes like these need not restart the trend of using songs in commercials . “It depends on the ad and the situation ,” adds Rajiv Rao, NCD, Ogilvy. But for the moment, they are milking the success of these ads for whatever it’s worth. Media2Win, the digital agency that looks after Bajaj Pulsar’s online promotions says that the response online has been fantastic.

Krishna Kumar CEO, Media 2Win says that apart from the official Bajaj Channel on YouTube, there’s also a fun page on Facebook that gives you a speedometer to check your internet speed and so on. In the case of Airtel’s Dil Titli, Priti Kapur, ECD of JWT, the agency that handles the account says that the number has been made into a 90 second music video that has been screened in multiplexes and so on.

In fact, PVR cinemas ran a teaser with posters that said “Dil Titli Coming Soon” a promotion that according to Airtel’s Chandrasekar had film goers asking for tickets. Like the butterfly in the Airtel Digital ad, commercials are now sending hearts fluttering

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October 22, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized |

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