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Ashutosh Gowariker directs Anupam Kher for new Close-Up campaign

24-October-2002
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Ashutosh Gowariker directs Anupam Kher for new Close-Up campaign

Close-Up Lemon Mint Gel toothpaste is ready for launch in the market place. And the multimedia launch campaign directed by Ashutosh Gowariker would break on October 27th to coincide with monthly household purchase cycle.

With this sub-brand, and the ad campaign to promote it, Close-Up is making an effort to move beyond youth - which has been the core user group for the brand so far. Though there is a young romantic pair in the campaign, the focus is on the other family members as well.

The launch commercial shot by Ashutosh Gowariker of Lagaan fame has a 'day in life' scenario. It is a 40 seconder with a cut-down of 20 seconds. When contacted by exchange4media, said Gowariker, "The script for this commercial is far removed from earlier Close-Up campaigns which had youth as the main user group for the brand. This commercial brings older generation also in the brand's fold. Besides, it also talks about the brand's USP, lemon's cleaning power, which gives whiteness to teeth". When asked if the commercial used any celebrities, said Gowariker, "There is Anupam Kher as loveable chachu, who starts trying out Close-Up lemon mint gel used by the young couple in the commercial."

Gowariker's association with Close-Up goes back to 1984, when he acted in the commercial as part of the crowd, while Manish Behl was the main character. In 1986, he was 'promoted' to being the main model, and hence the idea of directing a commercial for the brand excited him. Says he, "When the offer came to me I jumped. It is really a very interesting film!"

Meanwhile, according to JWT sources, which handles the account, "Since the time of its launch, Close up has been a youthful brand promoted through youthful imagery. And hence, it stood apart in the market full of white fuddy-duddy brands. This youthful imagery continues with the new brand as well." When asked if going for the same positioning would not lead to cannibalizing the mother brand, sources said, "The positioning is different - it has the cleaning power of lemon, and also the mint flavoured mouthwash - the campaign focuses on that. Besides the toothpaste market has a lot of growth prospects."

Talking to exchange4media a couple of months back, BV Pradeep, Head of Market Research & Regional Market Research Leader (HPC - Asia), Hindustan Lever Limited, had indicated that HLL has made a conscious effort to make its ads far more interesting to cut the ad clutter and enhance brand recall on the basis of an ad effectiveness study that it had conducted sometime ago. This commercial is a step in the same direction.

HLL, which is one of the companies actively participating in the media multiplier study, has decided to use press, outdoor and radio in addition to television for the launch campaign.

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