Vodafone: Good insight

The ad is very simple, and its positive point is that it is humane without using human beings. It is also a good example of how even an average creative work fares well when the strategic thought is strong

The next time you run out of 'talk time' on your Vodafone SIM card, there is no need to panic. You can simply borrow it from a buddy/neighbour. And to highlight this value addition, Vodafone has hit upon a unique Indian insight. Which is that we desis do not hesitate for a second to hit on others when we need to borrow something. In fact, many Indians seem to enjoy this practice, I kid you not. For them, borrowing things is a part of the bonding process.

I like this concept. Because it's very us. I cannot imagine a Western nation where a housewife rings the doorbell of her neighbour to borrow some sugar; or a dude borrowing his friend's bike when he has to go on a hot date. It's a very Indian thing. Vodafone's consumers, which for this feature must constitute the lower middle and the lower income groups, will identify with this communication.
 
The ad itself is very simple, and its positive point is that it's humane without using human beings. All we get to see are close-ups of hands exchanging different items. Toothpaste, hammer, stool, gas cylinder, fan, thermos flask, tennis racquet, shoes, eggs, etc, etc.

Against the backdrop of a cheerful music track, which helps the situation feel happy. The music is important in this advert, else the act of borrowing can appear a bit painful, which on occasions it is, for the people who are constantly hit on. All this ties in, of course, with the promise that people can borrow Vodafone 'talk time' from others.

Now while the commercial is cute enough, I have to say it stays at the level of 'okay'. After a few exposures, ennui that comes from watching hands exchanging things will set in. The creative has missed a trick out here. Some really engaging and hilarious ads can be made with people abruptly running out of 'talk time' on their mobile phones during those moments when they need it the most. Still, it's a cool insight, and that's already half the battle won. A good example of how even an average creative work fares well when the strategic thought is strong.

PS: A safety warning: Er, people, do be careful who you lend your 'talk time' to! We live in a world where even a friendly neighbour can turn out to be a terror agent.

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