Festive Ads: Moods & Modes

Amidst the festive fervour, marketers are diving into the intricacies of festive campaigns, understanding seasonal moods, connecting with consumers, and leveraging cultural diversity in their comprehensive strategies

Traditions are meeting innovations this time of the year as we reach peak festive season where brands are aiming to capture the essence of these celebrations in their campaigns. Marketers are immersed in the art and science of festive campaigns. 

Recognising the mood of the season, brands are either evoking emotions or using humour to resonate with their consumers effectively. Acknowledging the diverse modes employed in these campaigns, brands are adopting comprehensive 360-degree campaigns to reach their audience from all grounds, capitalising on cultural diversity to expand their outreach.

Emotions & Humour Takes The Helm

It is no secret that emotional and humorous ads have become the star players of the festive season. Advertisers have recognised the rich combination of fun and nostalgia in shaping effective marketing strategies.

On recognising the need of the season, Ashish Mishra, Executive Vice President of Marketing, Acko, advocates the use of humour and entertainment in ads to engage consumers effectively. He emphasised, "I strongly believe that ads need to entertain while delivering the brand's core message. Only then, consumers don't mind watching an ad multiple times. We have always used humour, of various kinds, in our ACKO ads. No wonder our latest 'Munnabhai and Circuit' campaign has been the most talked about ad campaign of the Cricket World Cup."

Various players in the market are using short and humorous ads reviving nostalgia to evoke emotions of the season, either with Snickers 'NoobieMistakes' campaign, humorously portraying awkward moments and the chocolate being a solution to prevent such blunders or Asian Paints 'MeraWalaMood' campaign celebrating the diverse moods of individuals, aligning the brand's message with the emotional spectrum of the season.

Rohit Malkani, Joint National Creative Director, L&K Saatchi & Saatchi, reflected on the role of fun, nostalgia and family togetherness during festivals. He highlighted, "Brands use one or both these emotions as triggers. Some brands use this ‘platform/occasion’ to deliver a higher order benefit or a purposive message." In a recently concluded Durga Puja season, L&K Saatchi & Saatchi delivered powerful messages in the campaigns for Zee Bangla and Reliance Digital. Malkani emphasized the importance of aligning a brand's purpose stating, "There is a larger responsibility we owe as communicators, to find a well-synced and authentic purpose for our clients and brands.”

Balancing Traditional and Digital Media

The festive season is the busiest quarter of the year for marketers. They are employing comprehensive 360-degree campaigns, carefully shaping their marketing mix, and offering to engage with consumers in a more personal and memorable way.

The marketing mix during the festive season includes a careful blend of traditional and digital media. Television, outdoor campaigns, and print media are experiencing a renewed focus from advertisers looking to reach a broad audience during this celebratory time. Marketers are deploying a combination of traditional media, social media, and digital advertising to engage consumers across generations and demographics.

Saurabh Jain, Regional Marketing Director, South Asia - Hygiene, Reckitt, explained how Reckitt aims for a holistic marketing mix to ensure maximum reach for their campaigns. They combine traditional and digital strategies to engage consumers through multiple touchpoints. He shares, "For a diverse country like India, especially during the festivities, cultural diversity has a significant impact on our advertisements, influencing both content and the choice of advertising platforms. This approach not only broadens a brand's appeal but also fosters goodwill, as it acknowledges and celebrates the rich cultural traditions that make up our society, thereby enhancing the relatability of a campaign." For instance, he shared their #MomWaliDiwali campaign for Harpic, where the ad highlighted the importance of the collective effort of the family during the festive season, particularly in tasks like bathroom cleaning.

Aligning with Cultural Nuances

The festive season is a tapestry of cultural celebrations, and marketers are increasingly recognising the cultural nuances of each festival. Different festivals bring different traditions, beliefs, and customs, which impact the messaging, visuals, and themes of advertisements. By including cultural diversity in the campaigns, brands are not only enhancing brand credibility but also ensuring that the advertisements resonate with the consumers.

Embracing cultural diversity for inclusivity, Rajeev Jain, Senior Vice President, Corporate Marketing, DS Group, explained that culture significantly influences the way people perceive and interact with ads. He underscored, "By embracing cultural diversity, we can create advertisements that resonate with our audiences and cultivate a sense of inclusivity." 

Jain highlighted that incorporating cultural nuances into commercials can evoke a sense of belonging and nostalgia, forging emotional connections with consumers in different regions of India. He emphasized, "Brands have the opportunity to leverage local festivals to establish connections with the local populace. It’s crucial for brands to align the advertisements with cultural norms, identity, and values to establish credibility and foster a sense of pride in the target audience." 

He stressed how advertisers are now approaching festival-themed campaigns with cultural sensitivity, thorough research, and meaningful consumer engagement. Aligning messaging, visuals, and themes with the cultural nuances of different festivals helps create more engaging content that resonates with target audiences. He stated, "We at DS Group develop festival-based advertising to establish local connections with the consumers. We feel there is a need for advertisers to demonstrate a deep understanding of the cultural significance of the festival they are targeting."

Jain also shared DS Group's collaboration with Radio Mirchi for the #CatchTheRightBin campaign during Durga Puja, focusing on waste segregation, unveiling a Ganesh Idol using their candy 'Pulse' at Lalbaugcha Raja pandal in Mumbai and their recently released digital film on Karwa Chauth for the Catch brand which received a tremendous response as their commitment to embracing inclusivity, especially during the festive season.

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