Cheeky, creative, and captivating: these 5 ads by Indian startups stood out in 2018Sutrishna Ghosh
These 5 video advertisements by startups made us pause, think, and remember them long after seeing them – just the qualities an effective campaign should have.
You aren’t alone if you can’t wait to hit skip on YouTube advertisements. Ad makers may believe their creativity and storytelling are winning us, but people see most adverts as product hardsell. Most, but not all!
The ad space has, over the years, shifted gears, courtesy younger companies. Instead of following old-style TVCs, these younger brands are keeping an ear out for what Indians – especially millennials – are talking about. Pair this strategy with star power, quirky narratives, and a punchline that just won’t stop playing in your head, and you have a compilation of some of the best adverts by startups in 2018.
Swiggy – What’s In a Name
With its latest video campaign, titled #WhatsInAName, popular food delivery startup Swiggy hit the nail right on the head. Released in November, the almost 2-minute-long advertisement spotlighted Swiggy’s huge fleet of delivery partners with the intent of humanising and sensitizing our attitude towards these people, who are frequently referred to as delivery boys, or even worse, as simply “Swiggy”.
What’s in a name, you ask? Well, that’s the idea behind the innovative video, which draws a parallel between personal identity (with effective use of flashbacks) and the current “nameless” status to add a human element in our interaction with these delivery partners.
Pepperfry - Diwali toh sab ke liye hai
Diwali isn’t just a festival about lights and sweets; it’s all about family and love. Making things more exciting this festive season was Pepperfry’s creative ad campaign that banked on the idea of the feeling of “home”. Their tagline was simple – Diwali toh sab ke liye hai (Diwali is for everyone) – and the advert was absolutely heart-touching. By evoking relatable emotions, like turning your hostel room into a home and the varied characters during Diwali get-togethers, the furniture and home products marketplace struck a chord with thousands of people during the festivities.
Nykaa – Haseen Tu, Haseen Din
Beauty comes in all shapes and sizes. Online beauty retailer Nykaa made this cliché a tad more realistic with their maiden video ad that captured the hearts of Indian women earlier this year. Directed by Konkona Sen Sharma and featuring actor Tara Sharma among others, the captivating campaign went on to make an astute commentary on the changing landscape as it celebrated women across roles – as a mother, as a changemaker, and as a career-driven person. While the theme of breaking stereotypes was significantly touched upon in the ad, what stood out was the unapologetic assertiveness with which women are embracing these roles, every day.
Paytm – Zero bana Hero
‘Paytm Karo’. The jingle is probably playing in your head as you read this. That’s because digital payments major Paytm, with the help of its creative campaigns and memorable one-liners, has carved a niche for itself in the online wallet space. In fact, Paytm began 2018 with an outright cheeky video advert, playing on gender dynamics and - at the same time - educating masses about how the app functions. A quick note from one of the characters – a typical shopkeeper – in the video also highlighted the latest features in the app, including the provision of direct money transfers to bank accounts.
Freecharge - Chika-Chik-Chik
Digital financial services platform Freecharge has a clear target – the mobile-first generation. In its attempt to cut itself a bigger slice of the pie, the company launched a catchy and quirky campaign this year with an equally unique tagline – “It's Slick, Its Quick, Its Chik-Chika-Chik-Chik”.
From the tone to the language and even the actors in the video, everything about the advert screamed digital millennials, making it obvious who Freecharge’s target audience is. And the underlying message? It was pretty simple too – this generation just cannot be bothered about every day, mundane tasks like phone recharges and bill payments, unless they have an easy and convenient app like Freecharge handy.