A man walks into a bar.
He is searching for Abdul's killers. After some clap worthy dialogues, he heads up and finds the four henchmen that he is looking for. Using his fists as well as some beer bottles and his shoulders he clobbers them and pulverizes them, besides destroying the bar.
A whole generation has seen all of this many times in Ramesh Sippy's Shaan when Amitabh Bachchan walks into Viju Khote's bar. Besides the overall setting, a very interesting thing is the ceiling fan whirring at the top of the bar when he walks in. As one of the henchmen is flung on to the ceiling fan, he comes down holding one of the blades, reducing a four blade fan into one with three blades. At the end of this fight sequence, as the henchmen are lying unconscious, the fan with just three blade keeps whirring away --thachak, thachak, thachak.
If product placements were in vogue during that time, this could have been an ideal opportunity for a fan brand to display its brand name and its durability on how it continues to work despite enduring a fighting machine beating those villains to pulp.
Which brings us to the ceiling fan brands that are advertising prominently during this 2018 season of IPL. The India Premier League is the most attended and most watched league in the world with a fan following of many millions. But the Indian Pankha League - the ceiling fan brands that advertise during the league throw up a range of opportunities for the humble but quintessential to India ceiling fan category to evolve. This India Pankha League can certainly do with some pace.
While there are quite a few ceiling fan brands advertising, there is one that stands out. The Crompton Anti Dust Fan that claims to attract 50 per cent less dust than normal fans and is easy to clean with one swipe. We have all experienced the bai ki jhikjhik about climbing on a stool and cleaning ceiling fans coated with dust. Of course Crompton can do with more investment given its differentiating edge, but this also leads to a whole new range of unexplored opportunities for this category driven by technology and linked consumer insights -- The Pollution Saaf Pankha.
After all India has one of the highest pollution levels and a whopping 15 Indian cities figure in the list of 30 most polluted cities in the World. In most Indian homes, where air conditioners are outside the affordability range, it is the humble ceiling fan that provides all relief. I am sure technology can help create a pollution reducing fan. The good old regulator of such fans can even provide a reading of the level of air pollution and recommend a speed setting to minimise this.
We have all heard of, or are using Nike Dri-Fit, a high-performance, microfiber, polyester fabric that moves sweat away from the body and to the fabric surface, where it evaporates. Similarly, there is Adidas Climalite, that sweeps away moisture. This again throws up the possibility of a moisture evaporating ceiling fan created for high humidity levels. No sweat.
Or there could be the Machchar Choo Mantar Pankha. Mosquitoes are winning the war against humans in India and the extent of garbage and stored water is only fuelling their victory. An interesting article in the Science section of the New York Times published in 2013 mentions that mosquitoes are weak fliers so a large fan can provide a low tech solution. It also mentions that the breeze from a fan disperses the human emanations that allow female mosquitoes to zero in on us. The American Mosquito Control Association, a nonprofit, endorses outsmarting bugs with a fan. Time for the mosquito repellent ceiling fan to make its presence felt amongst India's growing population of mosquitoes. The Fast and Furious anti-mosquito fan.
And the entire world is moving into apps. So it is time for the App ka pankha-- your very own fan that comes without a regulator because you can regulate it through an app on your phone. Stepping out of the house and need some clothes to dry. Leave them under the fan and switch off the fan with your app, a couple of hours later. Entering your home after a hot and terrible day at work? Just switch on your fan through the app, minutes before entering home.
The India Premier League is getting stronger every year. It is now for the Indian Pankha League to amass an unprecedented fan following.
(The author is a senior consumer marketing and financial services professional based in Vietnam, who has lived and worked in India, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore and Dubai. His book "Marketing Chronicles" is available on Amazon India, Flipkart and at key online/ physical book stores.)
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