It’s said that horses sweat, men perspire and women glow. But what if your glowing woman is bewitched by a blue eyed boy, smearing your envious face with black coloured blobs? It is Set Wet’s new mating game that rides high on the colloquial yet cool tune of ‘Buri nazar waale tera muh kaala’.
Gone are the days when gorgeous women were portrayed tickling male instincts. This new ad changes the dynamics of the mating game showing the impact Set Wet has on the partners of the swooning women. The insight being that relationships today are becoming increasingly momentary and guys are more insecure now than ever before. The TVC leverages the insight playfully by tipping its hat to the pithy maxim of ‘Buri nazar waale tera muh kaala’.
The initial Set Wet campaign was centred on women trying very hard to impress the Set Wet man. Instead of focussing on the impact the Set Wet guy has on girls, the new campaign focuses on the impact the brand has on the boyfriend of the women charmed by the Set Wet guy. This is the first campaign for the brand post Marico’s acquisition of Paras, and also the first campaign from Taproot post its acquisition by Dentsu.
“The category has been on a roll over the last few years given the changing equations in the mating game and the increasing acceptance (and expectation) of male grooming. We felt it would be interesting to shift the focus from girls trying to woo the man to a slightly eccentric space, which draws attention to the same gender getting affected by the brand prowess. So the whole thought of envy and insecurity over attraction came about,” said Sameer Satpathy, Executive Vice President and Head Marketing – Consumer Product Business, Marico.
The ad shows the Set Wet guy attracting women from all corners – right from the telephone booth, cafes to streets and ice cream stalls – with their boyfriend’s faces getting smeared signifying jealousy.
“Given the high growth rate (30 per cent plus), there has been increasing fragmentation with new brand launches along with blurring lines of differentiation amongst choices available for consumers. The key challenge with this campaign was to bolster this differentiation and further underscore it to give Set Wet the rightful mind-space,” added Satpathy.
Talking about the concept behind the TVC, Agnello Dias, Co-Founder, Taproot said, “Set Wet was obviously a very robust brand when it came to us and there are quite clear drivers that rule the category. We just felt that the category was tending to get a bit uni-dimensional with its gender magnetism platform. And while it was imperative to retain that, it would be interesting to layer that with an entirely new emotion like jealousy or envy. Because when girls love you, it's natural that their men will not like you too much.”
Given that music is in the DNA of the youth today, the campaign seeks to leverage the same with a foot thumping international mix number composed by Sameer Uddin.
Retaining the brand imagery, the campaign has adopted an international look and feel to it, which has raised doubts in the minds of industry experts.
Ajay Gahlaut, Executive Creative Director – Ogilvy & Mather, Delhi said, “The ad is quite interesting, especially the track is very lively. But I don’t understand the usage of foreign models to establish a connect, unless the idea was to make the ad look completely distinct and different.”
However, Dias says, “If it did not connect with the Indian audience, it wouldn't have become the powerful and large brand it is today. I did think long and hard about the casting though.”
Prathap Suthan, Managing Partner and Chief Creative Officer, Bang in the Middle shared, “It is one more ad well produced, more women, better men and a good track. But that's roughly where it ends. For all I know, this could have been any male grooming brand, where women will swarm, women will fall, women will flock, and women will swoon. Terrible, but then, that’s the promise. This campaign creates more generic pull for deo as a category, and adds more clutter as a sure shot way to attract women, and get ahead of other men. But certainly there's just no tangible or intangible difference.”
“Execution unfortunately, cannot be a difference unless it’s so cutting edge or so deliberately shocking. However, this ad could have ended with Raja deo and gel, and it would work or Macho deo and gel or a Dagger deo and gel,” said Suthan.
He further added that the aesthetics of the ad is certainly global. I like the effortless arrival of the ‘muh kaala’ bit of the track, which gives an Indian feel and gets its closer to the eventual target audience. However, I must happily concede that the lines between Indian brands and international brands in this category are fast blurring, which is intended, and obviously the strategy. Get the imagery up, and then sock it to them with the cheaper price tag.
Keeping the target audience in mind, the campaign has premiered on the digital medium before moving to TV. Considering that the average youth today spends more time on the internet than TV, the ‘see it first on digital’ thought was further backed by the shareable nature of the campaign. The brand aims to build and leverage platforms beyond Facebook and YouTube to enable conversations around the campaign. Mobile apps and the gaming arena will be central to the launch plan which will be digital-centric.
The lead vehicle for campaign will be YouTube; this will be popularised through creative banner executions (homepage take overs, tandem banners) on major websites frequented in India such as Rediff, Yahoo. The international sound track will be leveraged through free downloads and sharable ringtones. The campaign will also be supported through associations with some high foot-fall on-ground events and entertainment properties.
We feel that the ‘Buri nazar waale’ concept of layering jealously over and above the tried and trusted concept of girls lust for a man using a certain brand will certainly be emulated by other brands in the category.