Salman Khan’s biggest release of the year Sultan, from the house of Yashraj Films is all set to hit the theatre screens this Eid. Considering the big star cast, a lot of brands have also expressed their interest in the form of brand tie-ups and in-film integrations. Brands like Timex, Relispray, Force, Videocon, Astral Pipes, Micromax, Escort Tractors, CP Plus and Paras Ghee are already associated with the movie.
Talking about the brand tie ups with Sultan, Manan Mehta, VP, Marketing, YRF said, “When it comes to brand association with movies, we at YRF, always restrict to not more than 3 or 4 brands. However, for Sultan, considering it is a Salman Khan movie, we have marketing tie-up with more than 7 brands, in which in-film won’t be more than 3 brands. The reason for restricting brand association is because our core audience has come to watch movies and not see a celebrity using a particular product. We need to stay honest to that and maintain the sanctity of it; also a lot of in-films can go wrong.”
He further added, “Only if the marketing tie-up makes sense, we go ahead with the partnership. For e.g. we are promoting the brand Sultan as an underdog wrestler, so we even need to see to it that our brand partners resonate the same idea and are not promoting themselves as Sultan of A or B brand. If the product has a role in the story, we do the tie-up.”
Mehta refused to share details with regards to the money collected in brand associations for Sultan. However, typically a cost for in-film brand integration is not fixed. It depends on the star cast, studio, duration of the film and also the manner in which the product is shown, the range can be anywhere between Rs 15-20 lakhs to a crore.
Brands and their integrations:
Hitesh Gossain, CEO and Founder of Onspon.com gave an estimate of the money which usually goes for brand tie-ups for a big star cast movie. “Money paid is a factor of how much money is pumped by the brand in media allocated to promotion of the movie. Brands consider it a cheaper alternative to getting a brand ambassador. Typical deals are x fixed value + y value of media. On a Salman Khan movie like Sultan, if there is no custom shot taken for brand (special message shot for brand by Salman) - the cost can be around Rs 1-2 crore fixed and Rs 4-8 crore on media spend. This is also typically clubbed with in-film so that overall it's a win-win; in that case the commercials get higher but typically it is netted off by appropriate incremental spend on media which increases exposure to both movie and brand,” he said.
Timex, which is one of the brand partners, has released a video which showcases the actor’s journey from Salman to Sultan. The movie's director Ali Abbas Zafar talks about Salman's intense training with Timex Ironman Sleek 150 for the movie and how features like stopwatch with 150 Lap Memory, Interval Timer, Target Pacer and Hydration Alerts helped Salman get the Ironman wrestling avatar. The sports watch brand is being pitched as a must have for all fitness enthusiasts.
The brand Force Motors has been integrated inside the movie Sultan. The brand has been weaved into the story plot to highlight the message –‘The Force That Drives Sultan’.
Relispray, the pain-relieving spray brand from MidasCare Pharmaceuticals Pvt Ltd has an outside tie up with the film and their ad campaign is already running on television.
Astral Pipes is also one of the sponsors in the movie and the brand reflects the grit, endurance and strength of the protagonist-Sultan. Talking about the association with Sultan, Kairav Engineer, Sr. Business Development Manager, Astral Pipes says, "We are elated to be associated with Yash Raj Films. We are also extremely hopeful and optimistic for Sultan. We have a well-thought-out strategy in place to market the brand pan-India. We are very confident that the branding will have an instant connect with the audience. We have seen that the movie is a perfect connotation for us as Salman Khan is also our brand ambassador,"
The other partner, Paras Ghee is used to depict the North Indian culture which is the primarily setting of the film. The brand in order to push their product has a contest running, in which the lucky winners can get a chance to meet the actor and also around 500 free movie tickets are also being given out.
Escort Tractors has been integrated inside the movie and the campaign talks about the credibility of the 70 year old brand, its mileage and strength which somehow resonates with Sultan - the wrestler.
Videocon D2H and CP Plus, both have in-film brand placements.
Talking about the association, Saurabh Dhoot, Executive Chairman, Videocon d2h said, “Our association with Sultan reinforces our commitment to bring wholesome family entertainment to every household in India. This will aid our connection with markets in the heartland of India which is a key focus for us.’’
Micromax has recently launched their ad campaign with Kapil Sharma to promote their product ‘Canvas Unite 4’. The brand has an outside integration with the movie and is currently promoting it through ad campaigns.