Raahil Chopra
May 20, 2021

Raahil’s blog: Dear brands, where are the masks?

As the country struggles to fight the Covid-19 pandemic, brands need to show more responsibility, says the author

Raahil’s blog: Dear brands, where are the masks?
At around 1:00 pm today, I came across a news outlet sharing a set of ‘easy to follow’ guidelines to fight Covid, set by the Indian Government.
Of the several points shared, one was as simple as ‘wear masks’, something that most of us have been following for the last 15 months.
The guideline has been pasted from NDTV’s report below:
People should wear a double layer mask or an N95 mask, which offers maximum protection, the new guidelines said. For Double Masking, wear a surgical mask, then wear another tight-fitting cloth mask over it, the advisory said, adding that those who do not have a surgical mask can wear two cotton masks together.
"Ideally surgical mask should be used only once, but when pairing, you can use it up to 5 times by leaving it in a dry place for 7 days after one use (ideally give it some sun exposure)," it said.
And then about a couple of minutes later I came across a TVC released by Lay’s.

Titled ‘The Boss’, the film shows one Covid protocol – work from home – being followed, yet fails to show the actors in a mask when they step out to a supermarket for their ‘five-minute' break. What difference would it make to the film if the actors were shown wearing a mask? If the pandemic has been labelled the ‘new normal’, wearing a mask (or a double mask) while at a supermarket or any public place, is at the top of the list of this ‘new normal’.
I’ve been saying this for a while now, brands need to step up and help fight this Covid battle. Because if one assumes advertising has no subliminal bearing on consumers’ psyche, what are we even doing here?
Earlier this week, Campaign India published the Facebook film. The film had a great message, but among that, the best takeaway for me was the fact that actors were wearing masks in the film. We even picked a picture of ‘Rizwan’ wearing a mask as the lead image because we believe these are the kind of messages that need to be out there to the public.
Except for this film, most of the TVCs we have covered on the portal or that are being shared on social media don’t believe that masks are essential.
It’s a known fact that ads have an impact on pop culture and so, here’s a humble plea from us at Campaign India to brands – please mask up.
(The author is managing editor, Campaign India.)
Campaign India

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