The Times of India readers were in for a surprise on September 29, 2011. Not only were they not charged for, or ‘gifted’, the paper on the day, which is celebrated as World Heart Day, but TOI had also brought with it many different elements that readers could engage with, that would remind them once again that the human heart too has an age and anything that is alive, should celebrate its birthday.
McCann Erickson’s Senior Vice President and General Manager Loveleen Raina calls it ‘one big party’ in the paper, and putting this party together were Marico through its brand Saffolalife and its advertising agencies – Madison Media and McCann Erickson.
In Context to the Heart...
Giving a background here, Marico’s Head-Marketing Sameer Satpathy explained, “Saffolalife continues to work on its mission to bring down the incidence of cardio-vascular diseases across India. However, the biggest challenge we face is that people believe they are immortal. They believe that nothing wrong can ever happen to them. Hence, any attempt at alerting them on their risk levels is likely to be met with rejection. Saffola, has tried to tackle this challenge, by ‘positivising’ the space of preventive heart care, in a manner that will best resonate with people.”
Loveleen Raina added here, “The premise of the communication is based on a very simple thought – that the heart, which is also used as a love sign, has a life of its own. Conceptually it is alive, and anything that is alive, should have an age, and should celebrate its birthday.”
“The subject of the heart can be very serious, but to communicate a message effectively, it must be done in a happy manner,” observed Sushma Y Jhaveri, COO, Madison Media Infinity.
Last year, the company’s communication was around the fact that the heart is young. Some of the renditions seen of that thought were ‘dil toh bachcha hai ji’ and ‘jaaniye apne dil ki umar’. Building on this, this year’s communications reiterates the fact that the heart has an age and one should take care of it. Satpathy said, “We do so with the warm and disarming message of ‘Happy Birthday Dear Heart’, which instantly connects and makes people want to engage. This World Heart Day, these path-breaking initiatives by Saffolalife, united the media fraternity.”
A first of its Communication Initiative
Gerald Roche, Vice President, Madison Media Infinity explained here, “Saffola has been talking about preventive heart care. There have been various renditions of this that you will see though the year – Saffola partners with the renowned Framingham Heart Study for instance but World Heart Day is one of the key platforms that Saffolalife has utilised to spread the message further. We partnered with The Times of India for the print initiative because it is the biggest platform in cities such as Mumbai and Delhi, and they were very keen to work with us on this initiative.”
Sameer Satpathy observed, “Our creative agency McCann and our media agency Madison worked with us for most of the World Heart Day campaigns and have continuously raised the bar with creative and innovations. They feel very strongly for the cause and the passion they feel helps create magic. What helped us further was that our partners in media such as The Times of India, feel that they have equal lien on the cause and the brand and work as insiders. They have co-created many of the elements in the innovation. So the shared passion & ownership has helped us to pull off the innovation.”
Raina pointed out that the innovation done with the TOI was very special, because it was “one big party in a newspaper”. She explained, “We encouraged people to find out their heart’s age, blow the candles and then, unwrap the gift. Beyond its creative thought, this is a first of its kind initiative done at this scale.”
Technology played a key role in the innovation with The Times of India, where the readers could take their handsets over a marker on the paper and blow candles. Raina informed that they designed the innovation to work across technologies such as Symbian, Android, Java, iPhone and BlackBerry, with around 60-70 handsets and 100 screen sizes. She said, “We wanted it to be truly engaging and be a great experience for the readers – we have spent the last one week on just cracking how to do this. No one has tried anything like this in India, and even internationally the only one brand that did it, had done it only for an iPhone.”
The McCann Erickson team on Happy Birthday included Senior Creative Directors Abhinav Tripathi and Denzil Machado and Business Director Sudhish Pillai.