Kerala Tourism launched a TVC on 25 April 2014 in India across channels targeting evolved travellers, themed ‘The Great Backwaters’. The campaign also involved print (October to November 2013) and web creatives, focused on India and the State’s key international tourism markets like Europe - including UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain and Sweden, thereafter.
The film captures the ‘real’ beauty of Kerala’s backwaters. It stemmed from the belief that with 44 rivers and 1500 kilometers of interconnected canals, it is a unique ecosystem with its rightful pride of place to be showcased for what it is, naturally.
The two-minute TVC opens with a boy rising from under the backwaters to the surface to the accompaniment of a sound track that captures the simplicity and essence of life in the pictured locales. It showcases houseboats sailing across serene waters, people commuting on boats as part of their everyday life, fishermen casting their nets to earn their daily bread, people who lead their lives alongside the water, and even the marine ecosystem - like the birds that swim across the surface. From a boat race on the waters to kids jumping into the water fearlessly, the film captures the reality of the backwaters of the State, from underwater and through aerial shots. It ends with a voice over that encapsulates the visuals thus: ‘The most fascinating water world on earth: The great backwaters of Kerala’.
Suman Billa, secretary, Kerala Tourism, said in a statement that the intent was to focus on the USP of the State and target niche audiences. He added, “The concept was to promote the backwaters and the enchanting life around it as a standalone experience like the Grand Canyon in the United States or the Great Barrier Reef in Australia.”
“The idea of the film was to capture life around the backwaters in all its ‘realness’. And the challenge was to get the world to see life in the backwaters from a new perspective and to create an unforgettable visual spectacle - thus the decision to go the aerial route was taken,” explained Shelton Pinheiro, NCD, Stark Communications.
Roy V Mathew, director, Stark Communications, added, "The response to the campaign was phenomenal. In just a few weeks after the campaign the new backwater website drew over 40,000 new visitors from around the world. The campaign led to 8100 Facebook shares and in just the first week after the campaign, the backwaters had attracted 1400 mentions across several websites."
Images of the campaign were captured on a remote controlled, custom-designed eight-rotor helicam.
Agency: Stark Communications
National creative director: Shelton Pinheiro
Client servicing director: Prem Mathew
Account manager: Anu Praveen
Director (film): Rathish Ambat
DOP: KU Mohanan
Helicam DOP: Ville MJ Hyvönen