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Wasting the Jaago Re campaign

January 10, 2011 13:45 IST

Nearly everybody fell in love with the Jaago Re campaign of Tata Tea. The campaign showed simple aspects of our daily life, highlighted how we have forgotten our basic duties as citizens of India, and urged the audience to 'wake up'.

These set of ads stood out in the crowd and mostly focused on the functional aspect of tea. There have been some attempts by other players to build emotional associations; one that comes to mind is by 'Bagh Bakri' Tea, which soughtto revive family ties.

However, they were either farfetched, or too lame to create any major impact. Waking up, in a literal sense is deeply associated with tea. The campaign Jaago Re, very smartly leveraged that connect, and took it to a whole new level of social responsibility.

By picking up issues so close to the average consumer's average day, Tata Tea was able to connect with the audience, and by bringing in an emotional angle to the whole experience of tea, the campaign was hugely successful.

While watching the ad for the first time on TV, based on the setting of the ad, I was able to guess that it's another one from the Jaago Re campaign, and was looking forward to the climax.

However, it was a big letdown. The company has tried to marry the goodwill created by the emotional appeal of the earlier campaign to the functional communication required for the new product. This was unwarranted, as Tata Tea is now doing what any xyz brand is also doing – talking about the functional benefits.

Yes, there might well be some extensive consumer research which may have showed that tea drinkers want to have a 'balance of large & small tea leaves'… but then, that should have been communicated with a different campaign.

Thinking about it now, it just struck me whether there is something called 'Campaign Extension'.

Just like brand extension, where one decides to launch a new product under an existing brand name, a marketer decides to launch another advertisement under an existing campaign.

It is not very difficult to relate the two based on the benefits and risks associated with both.

Major benefits of brand extension include leveraging the existing brand's equity to gain trust, cost saving and continuing on a trusted formula (in terms of brand elements).

The biggest risk of brand extension is the fit between the new product, its target segment, usage behaviour etc with the existing brand.

Similar is the case with 'campaign extension'. Where brand extension leverages the tried and tested branding formula, a campaign extension benefits from the tried and tested campaign formula.

Where brand extension helps build trust among consumers, campaign extension ensures that people would be interested in viewing the campaign (as happened with me in the above mentioned case of Tata Tea Premium; as would have happened with you in several Fevicol ads).

These were the benefits. The risk of mismatch between the product and brand is, if not more, equally high in case of campaign extension; just that it becomes the case of mismatch between communication idea and campaign theme in case of campaign extension.

A really successful example is Airtel. Airtel has always had more than one campaign on air simultaneously.

While one campaign would be aimed at brand building, the other one's purpose is to communicate the functional aspect, schemes etc. Corresponding to the two different communications, the theme of the two campaigns is different.

While there have been some AR Rahman ads (and some others) high on emotional appeal, there have been others, especially the Madhavan – Vidya Balan series focusing completely on the functional benefits being offered.

The writer is a PGDM (2011) student at IIM Calcutta.


Shashank Bajaj