It’s great to see a great tango. I can watch the tango in Scent of a Woman a hundred times and not tire of it. Al Pacino and Gabrielle Anwar are in complete synch; their movements are fluid, elegant, exciting; even if they met just a few minutes before the tango, they are completely comfortable with each other.
It’s great to see a great ad, too. You can’t create great communication unless the agency and the client are in complete harmony, completely comfortable with each other, completely trusting each other.
I can watch the new Audi TVC created by Creativeland Asia a hundred times as well. It’s obvious that the client and the agency worked in tandem on this one; there is no way such an ambitious piece of communication would have seen light of day unless the two saw each other as partners in a great adventure.
This is certainly not rocket science; talking about the need for agency and client to see each other as partners rather than as a supplier and a buyer. All the iconic advertising that we have seen in India in the last few years demonstrates the importance of, and benefits of, such partnerships.
Take O&M and Vodafone, O&M and Cadbury, O&M and Fevicol, Lowe and Bajaj, Lowe and Idea, JWT and Times of India, Agnello Dias and Times of India, Perfetti and McCann and O&M.
All the great communication for these brands have been born during a period of high trust between the marketer and the agency.
The trust results in confident communication; where the client is clear that the communication will deliver.
Which is what makes the Audi work even more interesting.
The relationship between Audi and Creativeland Asia is not a long one; it started with the pitch, just over a year ago. The relationship between client and agency had to be built double-quick, as the date for the launch of the product was defined.
In a category such as automobiles, where Audi is a very late entrant into the booming market, the communication had to be both clutter-cutting and effective. Launching a new car brand in a country as vast as India is not for the fainthearted; and the required budgets often see the communication taking a safe, low-risk route.
Which is why the Audi communication is a statement.
Forget, for the moment, the strategy employed (which you can read about elsewhere in this issue) and focus on the execution.
They’ve used 3D. The moment I heard that, I cringed. I’ve not been a great fan of gimmicks and ‘non-innovative’ innovations.
So I went to the Audi commercial preview with all the cynicism I could muster. A few minutes after Sajan Raj Kurup’s presentation and the screening of the film, I was blown.
The 3D exists because it tells the story better. Every time the 3D effect is used, it’s because the feature it highlights needs the 3rd dimension to enhance the story telling, something which would have fallen flat, pardon the unintended pun, in 2D.
I spent some time speaking to the client, more time talking to Raj. Probed a bit about how much this exercise cost. I can’t share numbers, but take it from me that it did not cost an arm and a leg – it’s been money well spent.
Creativeland Asia was working with a new client – and they proposed something as radical as this solution; Audi was entering a new market – and they bought something as radical as this solution.
In the auto industry, India is, arguably, the most important market for the auto majors. This piece of communication will have all auto professionals and advertising professionals working on the category staring hard at what Audi and Creativeland Asia have created.
Great for Audi, great for Creativeland Asia, great for Indian advertising.