From the dumb and mute Barfi to the Rockstar Jordan, he’s bewitching and enchanting. With a Bollywood success record, Ranbir Kapoor has casted a magical spell over millions of fans. The remarkable appeal of the actor has not only earned him loads of fans, but the promising actor has also become the hot favourite of brands. Showcasing stunts for Hero MotoCorp to bringing the joy of football to India through Pepsi’s ‘Change the game’, Ranbir has done it all.
His endearing avatar of an old man for Tata Docomo had a refreshingly different approach. The perfect blend of both style and performance of the actor matched well with Nissan Motors. The recent addition to his kitty is Philips LED lightning, Oreo and Lay’s. The freshness and immense popularity of the actor has worked well for many of the brands. His popularity among the youngsters, along with his cool persona, is the reason behind many of his associations. However, it is crucial to know how brands have successfully utilised the celebrity power. Brands such as Panasonic and Blackberry must have leveraged this association in a better manner like Nissan, which took the digital route and offered consumers a chance to act with the star in a commercial.
Ranbir is being preferred over the Khans as he is a youth icon and his persona resonates well with the values of most of the brand. Brands ride on the image of the celebrity and Ranbir always had a clear image without any controversies, which becomes an icing on the cake for his endorsements.
Friendship with Oreo
Recently, Oreo announced Ranbir as its brand ambassadors for Oreo in India to take the family togetherness platform to the next level. This is the first time that adults were shown in the ad in order to avoid being seen as a kid’s brand. The brand launched a new campaign – ‘Connect Playfully’, based on the unique relationship shared by siblings. According to Chella Pandyan, Associate Vice President – Biscuits, India & South Asia at Mondelēz International, Ranbir Kapoor has a universal appeal and perfectly fits the lighthearted personality of the brand. With him on board it is going be a fun ride taking Oreo’s appeal to the next level.
But is there a need for a brand ambassador for a hugely popular brand? By roping in Ranbir, Oreo is trying to reach out to young adults in addition to the earlier target audience. They want the brand to be universally likeable and create a wider appeal. This association will be fruitful and might be a game-changer for Oreo.
Shining with Philips
In October last year, Philips LED lighting revealed its first ever celebrity endorsement with Ranbir Kapoor. The biggest ever marketing campaign by Philips Lighting featured the actor in a suit of LED lights with the iconic song ‘Saara Zamana Haseeno Ka Deewana’.
On the association with Ranbir, Sumit Joshi, Head - Marketing, Philips Lighting India said, “It is after a long time that a Lighting company has a high profile Bollywood actor as brand ambassador. The strategy is to differentiate and lead the change from conventional to LED in the market with the right combination of strong value propositions and glamour. The choice of having Ranbir was an easy one as we wanted to get on board a brand ambassador who represents dynamism and modernity and is constantly experimenting with possibilities on the silver screen. He also comes from a family which has been a legend in the Bollywood industry, and we saw synergy with the 125 years of heritage of Philips Lighting.”
According to Ajay Gahlaut, Executive Creative Director, Ogilvy & Mather, Ranbir Kapoor is the best performer in the younger lot. He has a mass appeal and is the biggest name in this generation. The Khans have grown old, so Ranbir becomes an obvious choice for many brands that want to connect with the youth. The brands that want to show lineage can obviously have Ranbir as their brand ambassador.
On the Philips campaign, Gahlaut added, “Ranbir fitted to the category very well. The legend Amitabh Bachchan was seen wearing a coat with lights in the song ‘Saara Zaamana’ from the movie ‘Yaarana’, and we gave a fresher look to that with Ranbir Kapoor who has a mass appeal.”
The cool Lay’s gang
Lay’s recently signed on Ranbir as the face of its new campaign. The brand launched ‘Lay’s Best Buddies’ – the coolest group on campus with the actor in the lead role as the loveable rascal ‘Sid’.
Speaking on the association, Gaurav Mehta, Category Director – Western Snacks, PepsiCo India, Foods said, “We are proud to associate with Ranbir Kapoor, who truly reflects the modern, aspirational and youthful persona of the Lay’s brand and its consumers. As an individual who seeks joy and magic in the ordinary, spontaneous moments of life, Ranbir is also a genuine embodiment of the brand philosophy of ‘Pal Banaye Magical’. We believe that this association with Ranbir will enable us to take our brand philosophy to new heights as we expand our reach to India’s youth. We look forward to a great new year and are confident that this partnership will be mutually rewarding.”
Lay’s advertising has always been about youth and moments of friendship and Ranbir fits in perfectly with Lay’s persona of youthful energy and international appeal that continues to grow in the minds of consumers.
Are brands solely banking on the youthful appeal of the actor or is there a deeper connect?
Abraham Koshy, Professor, Marketing, IIM Ahmedabad said, “Ranbir Kapoor has a strong connect with the youth and he brings in credibility to the brand. In many of his associations, the personality of the actor and his reputation go hand in hand. There is no disconnect between the actor’s personality and the brand endorsements as long as he is not endorsing a Zandu Balm or Navratna Oil.”
According to Koshy, Ranbir’s old man act in Tata Docomo is commendable. He believes that it was an interesting take adopted by the brand. In the Pepsi and Lay’s, Ranbir’s persona resonates with the product and the brands have leveraged him very well. In case of Oreo, Ranbir is not shown directly endorsing the brand. However, the association with Philips is more inclined towards his lineage.
The credibility of the star, along with his youthfulness and equity will continue to help the growth of the brands endorsed by him. Hence, associating with Ranbir Kapoor is a logical move by brands to create a wider appeal and visibility in the hyper-competitive market.