It is often said that a signature is as unique to an individual as the individual himself. Taking this insight forward, ITC Classmate has launched its new television commercial with ‘signature’ as the central theme. Extending its ‘Because you are one of a kind’ thought and encouraging children to nurture their uniqueness instead of being ‘the next somebody’, the brand celebrates individuality to promote its pens among school children. The TVC conceptualised and created by Rediffusion Y&R is launched in two languages – Hindi and Tamil.
Children around the age of 9 – 10 years start interacting with a pen for almost the first time when they are allowed to use it in school and almost instantly start to secretly practice the creation of their signature which is the ultimate outward representation of their unique identity. It is almost the beginning of a new life stage – where the pen becomes a trusted honest companion, almost like an instrument of empowerment.
The film opens on Tara, a young everyday girl, growing up somewhere in the hills. Standing on the cusp of childhood and adolescence as she does, Tara is earnestly trying to create her own unique signature – an identity that represents her and her unique individuality. While at it, she's very protective, almost zealously guarding her various iterations from everyone around her; it is almost her own very secret which she wants to reveal only once she has masterfully crafted it. She finally finds her inspiration at the local community festival where the swirls of ribbons set against all the festivities, inspire her to her final flourish. The Hindi TVC adorns lyrics penned by the legendary Gulzar and the Tamil TVC is embellished with lyrics penned by National Award winner Vairamuthu.
Karan Kumar, Marketing Manager, ITC’s Stationery Business said, “Classmate has always endeavoured to recognise, nurture and celebrate the uniqueness of every child. We decided to take the concept of ‘uniqueness’ forward by exploring what is that one thing in every child that is the most obvious manifestation of his/her own uniqueness.”
He further added, “The simple insight was that it was the way every child wrote his/her name, the unique signature that every child always wants to create, almost like a master-piece, developed after many rounds of secret iterations that actually stood as an outward representation of every child’s uniqueness. It is this powerful simplicity of the child’s endeavour that we wanted to capture. We are proud and happy that we have worked with Gulzar and Vairamuthu, both extremely acclaimed writers, to capture the powerful yet innocent emotions of children during this pursuit, in an extremely important life-stage.”
Komal Bedi Sohal, NCD, Rediffusion Y&R said, “In a digital world where we are all mostly communicating via SMSes and e-mails, it is only our signature that uniquely requires the use of a pen. And we linked this insight to the beauty of a child finding her first expression of identity through her signature. We felt that this is a step away from the typical pen ads.”
The campaign will be supported extensively by digital and social media marketing; consumer activations and engagements, besides a slew of school connect programmes.
Will the distinctive quotient work?
Expert take: Mahesh Parab, ECD, DDB Mudra Delhi, said, “The beauty of this commercial lies in the execution. It’s fresh and sweet. It very well compliments the insight. The age where each kid tries his/her hand at a signature comes out beautifully. Kudos to the team!”
Our take: The brand has creatively amplified the thought that a signature is one of the most important and earliest expressions of a person. They have beautifully portrayed the simple idea that a signature matters a lot to a child who has just started using a pen. The thought behind showing the girl secretly practising the signature and the happiness shown after crafting one is very relatable to our childhood. The idea is very simple but at the same time it is universal in its appeal and has adaptability across markets. It is very well executed with good production values.
The casting is apt because the target audience is children. The jingle is hummable and the lyrics are very lively and fresh.
Overall, the commercial will be liked by the viewers. However, the brand’s earlier campaign rested on a much more powerful insight of ‘uniqueness’ instead of being ‘the next somebody’.