ASK Group campaign passes the Acid test

Acid, the creative outfit by Sameer Desai and Niranjan Kaushik, is quite upbeat about its first campaign for ASK Group.

e4m by Tasneem Limbdiwala
Updated: Feb 2, 2011 7:49 AM
ASK Group campaign passes the Acid test

Launched in December 2010, Acid, the creative outfit by Sameer Desai (ex-Contract) and Niranjan Kaushik (ex-McCann Erickson), has released its first campaign – for ASK Group, the wealth management player. In conversation with exchange4media, Kaushik shared the agency’s philosophy and the foundations that it stands on.

Speaking on its association with the ASK Group, Kaushik said, “It is on a project by project basis for the moment, but hopefully more permanent things will start taking shape. We are also working on an exhaustive print and outdoor campaign for a five-star hospitality brand to be released in April.”

The campaign is designed to strengthen ASK’s name in the fast growing wealth management business as a leader with an experience of over 25 years. It seeks to differentiate the brand as one that understands the customer and the fast paced life he leads, while it manages his wealth with the same passion and commitment as the customer would do himself.

Describing the campaign, Salil Vaidya, Head - Marketing, ASK Group, said, “Most of the communication today that targets the super rich is often a monologue on a brand’s expertise and heritage. Brands try and outdo each other through such communications. Here is where we saw an opportunity for ourselves. Being large home grown pioneers in the wealth management space, we not only understand the Indian financial space better, but also the customer, his life space and his needs. This campaign seeks to project this strength of ours.”

Founded in December 2010, Acid is a team of “talented, hungry creative mercenaries”, as founder Desai terms it. Kaushik added here, “Acid is a house that offers through the line communication solutions with a sharp focus on digital, for which the firm is in talks with possible technology partners.”

Speaking on the agency’s philosophy, Kaushik stated, “Acid’s philosophy is simple. Do great creative work that works for the brand. It’s a cliché we know, but it’s a cliché we would love to live by. After all, it is a simple philosophy on which noteworthy agencies were built in the past, agencies like Trikaya, Enterprise, Nexus Equity, etc. It may be ambitious, but Acid’s ambition will be to bring back the days of yore. Clean, good, simple communication that works.”

On its plan to further strengthen its client portfolio, Kaushik said, “The aim is to have a limited client folio, as we would like to remain lean and mean, as opposed to big and sluggish. The effort will be focused on having not more than four or five active projects at one time. Anything more can get chaotic and eventually counter-productive.”

Kaushik and Desai both have 13 years and 17 years of career span in advertising, respectively. Kaushik has worked across agencies like Ogilvy, Bates Singapore, LHM Singapore, Contract Mumbai and McCann Erickson Mumbai. He has worked on brands such as HSBC, Asian Paints, Shoppers Stop, Mercedes Singapore, Singapore Tourism Board, Singapore Airlines, Disney, Kotak Mahindra Bank and L’Oreal.

Desai has been associated with agencies like DaCunha Communications, Lowe, Ogilvy, Rediffusion Y&R, Ambience Publicis and Contract Advertising, before setting up DesignCode. He has worked on numerous brands, including The Taj Group of Hotels, Cadbury, Raymonds Apparel Ltd, Marico Industries, HSBC, Shoppers Stop and Asian Paints, among others.

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