Ballantine's, the Scotch whisky brand, has taken up the positioning of ‘Stay true, leave an impression’, and a campaign based on it for the Indian market. The ad film features American television actor Gabriel Macht from the series Suits, which is also telecast in India. The film has been conceptualised by Ogilvy & Mather.
The story begins at a lobby of an office building where the elevator door pings open to reveal a company senior. The crowd waiting for the lift, in a bid to try and share the elevator with the senior, rush towards him when the frame freezes and we see Macht making his way through the crowd as he speaks about ‘positioning’ as one of things people do to get a corner office. The scene shifts to a meeting in progress where all those seated at the table are nodding in unison to what is being said by the senior. Just then, Macht reappears and stops a person from nodding, a signal for having a different point of view. The ad film shifts to a presentation where everybody is just about to clap in appreciation when the frame freezes and Macht enters. He presentation currently shows a profit of 24 per cent, his narration says, ‘But when you show spine, I beg to differ…’ and shifts the profits to 35 per cent and continues, ‘…that’s when you account for something.’ At a corner office now, the protagonist says, ‘Unflinchingly, unapologetically, you’ as the film ends with a brand sign of and a voice over announcing the new positioning.
Kartik Mohindra, head - international brands, Pernod Ricard India, said, “George Ballantine stayed true and left an impression with the whiskies that he created. With this campaign, we want to continue his legacy by creating a platform that celebrates Ballantine’s and its founder’s intrinsic values. We hope to inspire people to have conviction to stay true to themselves, to follow their passions and to remain as genuine and authentic as they can be.”
Ajay Gahlaut, executive creative director, Ogilvy & Mather, New Delhi, added, “There are the movers and the shakers who are here today and gone tomorrow. Their allegiances are based on self-gain and change with changing winds. And then there are those few who quietly go about doing what they believe in, undeflected in purpose and unswayed by criticism. These are the ones who are remembered. They are the ones who leave an indelible mark on time. They are the ones who lead by example. This film is about them.”
He added, “There is something very inspiring about individuals who live by what they believe in. They are hard to find but they are there. This is the individual of integrity that the brand sought to associate itself with. And this is what led us to close in on Gabriel Macht. He, in a way, echoes everything that the brand stands for. There are strong affinities about who he is in real life and the character roles that he depicts in his professional life, with our brand values. So his character accentuates the stark differences between the two worlds that the film has captured. And the master stroke is the treatment of the film itself that creates a taut tension between the two worlds.”
Creative agency: Ogilvy & Mather
Head - international brands: Kartik Mohindra
Executive creative director: Ajay Gahlaut