A year after its launch, Firstpost has rolled out another TV commercial, but this time it is not inviting people to participate and be a part of informed discussions. The new campaign (which goes on air across the Network 18 Group channels today) aims to convert readers of the morning newspaper to Firstpost.
The film, created by Contract Advertising, shows how millions of trees have to be cut in order to manufacture paper used in printing newspapers. These newspapers are religiously awaited by readers every morning. The ad points out to these loyal readers that the planet has to suffer (the loss of trees) so that they get to read the newspaper, which anyways carry news that's a day old.
Enter Firstpost.com. The same reader now has the option of catching up on news, as and when it happens, without damaging the planet.
Durga Raghunath, vice president, product, and executive news producer, Firstpost, said, "When we had launched, we had made a promise to deliver healthy discussions and informed viewpoints. A year later we have delivered our promise and have managed to attract an initial sample of news junkies to the website. Now we definitely want to broaden our reach to attract the early morning news readers."
Elaborating on the brief given to the agency, Ravi Deshpande, chairman and chief creative officer, Contract Advertising, said, "While Firstpost.com has its dedicated following, the task was to migrate newspaper readers to Firstpost. Challenging newspapers would have to be done at a poetic level. We wanted to show how people could read news fast on Firstpost.com without hurting the planet."
An ordinary day at Firstpost begins at 5 in the morning (in Hong Kong). While there are certain news-heavy slots during the day, Raghunath of Firstpost points out that the site is updated throughout the day and that it is heavily focussed on Indian readers.
The digital news and views website will air the ad across Network 18 Group's television channels, while digital promotion will continue on a parallel track.
Deshpande said, "We wanted the execution of the film to serve up total honesty, total reality. That’s why we showed nothing fictional when it came to the process of deforestation, whereby trees get cut, transformed into pulp and ultimately into newspapers that serve up news that's already a day old."
He added that the music chosen was an authentic country/folk song, which helped present irony in an entertaining way.
"It kept the drama going till the commercial makes its statement about exhorting you to move to the digital platform," he explained.
Agency: Contract Advertising
Chief creative officer: Ravi Deshpande
Creative director: Ravi Deshpande
Copywriter: Ravi Deshpande, Sahar
Art director: Ravi Deshpande, Salil Sojwal
Agency producer: Ketaki
Account management: Arjun Sengupta, Anish, Namrata
Production house: Day Dreamers
Producer: Deepti & Kautul
Agency producer: Ketaki Guhagarkar