Brands celebrate Holi integrating powerful social messages into their ad campaigns

From Budweiser to Surf Excel and Brand Factory to Parle G, brands this Holi while showcasing the fun-filled portrayal of the festival have created clutter-breaking ad films

e4m by Noel Dsouza
Published: Mar 20, 2019 6:16 PM  | 5 min read
Holi Ad Campaigns

Holi is a joyous festival where bright colours are smeared on faces, and both the young and old celebrate with enthusiasm. It is an opportunity for brands to capitalise and create ad films that not only convey wishes to its consumers but also puts forth hard-hitting messages for them to treasure. This Holi 2019, brands have leveraged by capturing the true essence of the festival and tried to spark conversations that will continue long after the festival of colours is over. exchange4media takes you through some of them. 

We are all Kings x Budweiser 
Budweiser launched a digital film that celebrates diversity through the lens of Holi. Showcasing the colourful festival as the ultimate celebration of inclusion that transcends cultures and boundaries. The ad film is set in an urban Indian locale which depicts an energetic Holi celebration. Showcasing a group of people seen happily clad in colour. A sudden downpour of rain slowly unmasks their faces, which reveals to everyone’s surprise that the people celebrating are not the usual suspects but are diverse individuals who have come together to celebrate Holi. 
Talking about the insight of this campaign, Kartikeya Sharma, VP Marketing - South Asia, AB InBev opined, “At Budweiser, we have been constantly striving to inspire people to own their lives and be freedom energisers, not only for themselves but also for others. Holi is a global gathering that disregards stereotypical notions and supersedes prejudice with a feeling of absolute togetherness. With this film, we aim to debunk the divide and unite people through the shades of the festival”. 

#RangLaayeSang x Sur Excel 
Surf Excel adds a hue of goodness to the colours of Holi with their new ad campaign created by ad agency Lowe Lintas, Mumbai. The ad film appeals to the festive mood of the country, titled #RangLaayeSang, the campaign intends to stay true to the essence of Holi by sending out a message of bringing people together. Showcasing how colours can be an equalizer in our society. The ad campaign which brings alive Surf Excel's Daag Achhe Hain philosophy is set amidst the Holi celebrations where a young girl chooses to get stained in Holi colours in order to protect her young friend. It ultimately suggests, ‘Agar Kuch achha karne mein daag lag jaaye toh daag achhe hain’. The ad campaign has been integrated across media platforms like TV, outdoor and digital.

Commenting on the ad campaign, Carlos Pereira, Regional Creative Officer, Lowe Lintas, said, "We felt the festival of Holi gave us the opportunity to highlight the true spirit of togetherness. By making colour the medium of oneness, we could seamlessly bring forth the larger thought of Rang Laaye Sang - a sentiment that kids truly believe in.” 

#RangDeBluedSe x Blued India 
Uniting colours with love, Blued launched #RangDeBluedSe campaign. The video showcases the essence of the love spread by the festival of colours. Beautifully decorated and filled with colours, Blued is organising a Holi party wherein men are celebrating Holi in the pool area with their loved ones. A guy who is looking for love ends up using the Blued app as it allows him to find his match in a nearby location. His mobile pops up with a new notification and he is excited to find him, he glances everyone at the party. The video ends showing two men finding a perfect match between each other. 

Speaking about the ad campaign, Sanyam Sharma, Marketing Director, Blued India stated, “Showcasing love only for heterosexual is no more a choice, people from LGBTQ community are also looking to have a love in their life. Our focus to launch this campaign during Holi is to showcase that love is bound with diverse and beautiful colours. The gay community or LGBTQ community is represented by rainbow colours and showing the same in Holi will strengthen the community. Blued has always been keen to spread awareness about LGBTQI rights at large and we aim to continue doing so through this video to the community and more importantly educate the masses. It also brings our app USP in the limelight of finding a perfect match in the nearby area. Things are improving but we are happy to always be supportive and allowing people to live freely and celebrate their sexuality”.

#BuraNaManoDiscountHai x Brand Factory

Brand Factory launches its #BuraNaManoDiscountHai campaign, challenges the norm with their Holi special offers. The new campaign, created by Publicis, aims at changing stereotypes and encouraging one to wear new clothes and look their best for Holi by offering heavy discounts on top-notch retail brands. It also banks on social media and how people want to look good on their post. 

Ramakrishnan Hariharan, Head of Creative, Publicis Ambience commented, “At the onset, we knew there would be a barrage of colourful ads during Holi, so we decided to make something that stands out. Much needed in this age of mega-clutter. Also, Holi is revealed only much later in the film, in a thoughtfully crafted suspense narrative, so the audience remains intrigued throughout. It was pure fun working on this one. Grateful to all who made this happen."

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