Let her “slip” from your hands

Here is a cultural saying in India: “Ladki Haath se nikal jayegi” – Which means that if you don’t control her, she will slip out of your hands.

And needless to imagine, this leads to a painful slippery slope – girls are not encourged to study, not encouraged to pursue a career, instead – She is simply taught that one day she will get married and take her of her in-laws.

This cultural acceptable since decades has been a systematic reason why women are not in the running for most things including representation of women in schools, work and in leadership positions.

Mahindra Rise,  a foundation for the Mahindra conglomerate kickstarted a movement that really makes you rethink the meaning of “a girl slipping out of your hand”.

From a negative connotation, they simply twisted it to something different – Wouldn’t it be wonderful if you let you girl slip from your hands and help her realise her dreams?

Having my roots in India, and my wings outside:  this story is personally quite hard hitting.

Home Alone 2.0

One of our favorite movies growing up was Home Alone. I still remember loading those DVD’s up, sitting in a circle with a group of my girlfriends and laughing so loudly at all the mischief when you are “home alone”.

I loved how Google re-created Home Alone just when the main protagonist – Macaulay Culkin is now 38 years old instead. He still seems familiar, the scenes of the house are exactly re-created and bring back a gush on nostalgic hormones running through your skin.

There is only one difference – The house is integrated with the Google Home Mini, Home Pub and Pixel Smartphone.  HA! Genius!

Memories <3

X out Fake News

Spread Joy, Not Rumors.

Taking social responsibility and educating everyone about how fake news spreads so rapidly is so important. Many times, we don’t realise that we are part of the system that fuels the fire.

I believe that Whatsapp India took the bold move to be deliberate in their communication to stop the spread of fake news. Be like Kavya who helps people understand that if that content didn’t originate from you, it is important to validate it before sharing it.

In a world where forwards happen with just a click of a button, we all have to take up more responsibility to ensure that these channels of communication remain clean and reliable.

I really enjoyed the pace of the creative and messaging – “Spread Love, not Rumors” hits the nail on the head with a strong social message in a fun and relatable delivery (remember the times, people in white suits would preach us about the right ways of life?)

Museum Of Laundry

LG launched a series of videos in an interesting twist to Laundry stories – A museum of Laundry.

Every piece of laundry that is messed up actually leads us to eventually not use- make it a cleaning cloth – throwing away clothes. But what about the death of these clothes primarily because of poor laundry techniques?

I loved the concept of a series of laundry items that just keep getting added to almost like a museum of antiques.

The centre piece has a strong product go-to: The actual washing machine with a two part load. Let’s be honest – we separate our whites, our undergarments etc and do multiple loads. Product is on point. But the messaging – super on point too.

Diwali for it’s true emotion

Diwali is about many things – lights, sweets and family.

But most of all the true emotion of Diwali lies in lighting up other’s people lives in our own small way.  Just beyond the celebrations, it stems from a pure emotion of wishing well for everyone around you.

This Diwali, HP showcased a story of a young boy lighting up the life of the lady who actually sells those diyas. Have we ever thought about what they are possibly feeling while selling those diyas on the streets? In a beautiful story, the short film takes people on the journey of what the protagonist (the diya seller) feels and goes through during the auspicious celebrations – trying to sell diyas and get by so she can celebrate with her family as well.

HP highlighted what Diwali really stands for – no fancy parties, dinners or card games. More than anything, I just loved the essence of the festival through this storyline. This spot really did showcase Diwali for it’s true and pure emotion.

PS: I cried a little when I watched this.

Dream Crazy

“Don’t feel like you need to be anybody, to be somebody”.


Please tell me that Nike is giving you the goosies, the tiny hair on your arms standing up, feeling electrified by the tenacity of the human race and the endless obstacles that you can conquer. You ought to be feeling those things by just the power of this ad.

It’s absolutely mind blowing. It reminds me of the Apple’s – Think Different campaign: giving the highest respect to the crazy ones, the misfits, the people who changed the world.

The human race is a story of continuous victory through the pains and struggles – picking ourselves up with the greatest falls. I am inspired, truly by the meaning behind this campaign – going so much beyond shoes if at all.

Sometimes I have questioned, the power of brands and human connection.  But this campaign is a great reminder that we are all in this together – taking the human race forward.

So, “Don’t ask if your dreams are crazy, ask if they are crazy enough”.


We need to chat about WeChat

Slide1I have realised that we have chatted (&blogged) about so many great campaigns, trends and upcoming fab-jazz, but we still haven’t chatted enough about the biggest wave in that is being driven right here – the land where the sun rises (i.e. the East).

Here are the top 5 reason why WeChat is the mega universe of everything that defines ‘magic of your touch screen phone’ –

  1. Make instore payments through QR codes
  2. Send bitcoins to a friend
  3. Manage a personal wealth fund
  4. Pay Utility bills
  5. Check how much a product costs instore by scanning a code

PS: My favourite one that should be at the top of this list – You can book a karaoke through the app. Hello WeChat, Karaoke is my eternal weakness. Oops, did I just reveal my Kkk-Kryptonite to the world?



Stains disappearing

Brands are still playing with out of home in cool, innovative ways.

Ariel created a disappearing billboard where the closer you get to the stain get’s wiped out. And once you almost get to the board, boom – the stain has gone.


arielstain1 2.jpg

The power of product marketing

How many times have you seen a great ad: sometimes cried, once in a while laughed, ads that use some insane technology that makes you go wow but literally – you can’t remember the name of the brand or the value they might drive in your life.

I need to come out of the closet about how strongly I feel about these award hungry “innovative” advertising campaigns that literally drive 0 business value. We all know these ads – you can sniff their award winning desperation from a distance. Hate it.

I’ve always respected brands that are so confident in themselves that all they want to do is drive business value and grow user love. The ‘it name’ for it today is product marketing. Now, I’m not saying that brand marketing is not important or these are 2 are mutually exclusive. I just believe that if you have limited marketing dollars, the most important thing you want to do first is to drive user growth and love – increase product adoption by being explicit about the utility that you drive in someone’s life.

eBay did a great job to re-establish their credibility by proving their value in the market (even if by taking a direct stab at Amazon).


I loved the pun on golden number $119. But more so, I loved how direct the messaging was to be like “hey – we provide more value therefore use us over xx”. Really that simple, but so well done.

Marketing is really about simplicity. We tend to over-complicate it.

Simple messaging to the right audience, at the right time to maximise business impact. (Business impact being the operating clause). I think that we need to always remind ourselves that this isn’t about us being creative (you can pickup a paintbrush for that) – this is really about customer value. More value, more love. Simple and beautiful.

Highlighting women at the back

One of the most common topics of discussion around  women is that they are often instrumental in certain wins or achievements but don’t get the credit they deserve – sometimes due to systematic issues, sometimes because of a male dominated rewarding environment and sometimes simply because they lock themselves in and don’t demand that well deserved recognition.

Whatever the reasons, it’s been proven that systematically women who deserve to be on the front lines are fighting battles in the shadows of other people at the back. Stabilo, a highlighter brand decided to make that connection with a higher purpose – highlighting women like Katherine Johnson who was instrumental in saving lives of the people in Apollo 11 through her pure mathematical genius.

I am often super charged with women issues and this creative immediately ignited a yellow flame in me. I adore brands like Stabilo who dare to take the bold step and stand up for a purpose that is much, much larger than the utility of a ‘mere highlighter’.

It’s true, we need to really highlight more women like this.


In all that trunk?

What are you going to do with all that trunk? Fiat comes up with another ‘boot’in’ campaign.

The new Fiat Tipo is just the right car for you if you need a hell lot of storage space. So much so, that an entire topography just fits right in.

And let’s be clear – what can’t really fit? Volcanoes, creature, helicopters and really cool terrains.

I love the exaggeration to make a point. Probably because I believe in everything being “extra”.

Goodbye Jurassic Park. Hello, Fiat.




Thrill o’ taking the wheel?

Magic, the feeling I have. Absolute magic. Taking charge of that wheel and going steady endlessly at 80km/hour at the road without a destination.

That’s the thrill of driving today. Road-‘tripping’ in essence.

Audi imagined a world in the near future where you will in-animately be transported from Point A to Point B in your driverless car. And, while that’s perhaps an inevitable future that could be fun too, I loved how Audi positioned the thrill of taking the wheel in their new Spyder R8. The trick to learn from them is to not sound backward, be technologically forward and stay classy Audi the entire time.

Wonder if we will pay a premium for a self (= yourself talking the wheel) driving experience in the future?

In all honesty, it’s the right positioning for Audi atleast until driverless cars become mainstream. Let’s all enjoy the thrill of the wheel, atleast while it lasts? Maybe we will tell our grandkids about these good old’ times :)


KFC is wingin’ it

What does hot and spicy mean to you?

(Well, let’s not go down that path -_-)

But there is a path I’d like to take your neural network down – tender, juicy, spicy, fried chicken. The kind of tub you want to secretly gobble up while watching Netflix and giving yourself the well deserved cheat day after days of slogging and salad’ing.

Ogilvy and Mather worked with KFC to create almost a real life visualisation of fire to depict chicken that is as spicy as explosions and space take offs.



I always say – the fundamentals of marketing, they don’t change.

And, neither does the fundamental love for tender, juicy Kentucky fried chicken.


Follow the arches, to the place I belong

You’re on the highway.

The wind is in your hair.

You are probably listening to the good old’ songs.

Singing along.

It’s kind of a custom – you are hungry, craving for a drive through meal.

You hate to admit it – but some hot fries and a juicy cheese burger would just so perfect.

Who is watching anyway?

Come-on, it’s a ‘take me home, country road sort of feels’. You want it to be perfect and golden.

Yes baby, you want some macca’s.

But where is the sign? Those beautiful golden arches, just like the crispy golden potato parallels fried at 168 degrees celcius.

You’re cravings have been heard my friend – Mac Donalds came up with the perfect sign to take you to that place so divine. (Haha, there is a reason I’m not a poet).

Follow the arches –  to the left, to the left.

Building an employer brand

At Adidas, something binds everyone together beyond different functions, races, interests and sports hobbies.

As the manifesto states – It’s a passion to create.


Building is the most rewarding thing about any job. Keep creating.

Bob, the builder is watching & Inspiring.

Midlife or a midnight crisis?

Never under-estimate the power of a witty copy. A lot has changed in marketing, but the fundamentals – the things that move people, make them laugh and build connections, that will never change.



Check out dominos’ midlife vs midnight crisis.

A picture truly is a 1000 words. And, 4 words, that’s more than a 1000 words.

Would you say, Word?


Nike, Don’t quit playing games.

Screen Shot 2018-03-20 at 11.38.07 PM.pngNike plays again. And, in my opinion – wins again.

With innovation at it’s forefront and experiential campaigns in it’s pocket, Nike goes strong again. In a market like China where e-sports and online games is mainstream, Nike brings their ‘React’ shoes to the people of China in the virtual ‘React land’.

Get on a threadmill and gamify yourself to go through mountains and roofs. Best of it all, it’s really just trying to prove how ‘bouncy’ the shoes are with every jump. Message received.

Some might call it gimmicky, but I call it smart. Experiential marketing is here. Retail experience 2.0. is here. Nike is here.

Time for you to ‘react’ and ‘make the jump’ too?

The Sapeurs

Sapeurs to me is elegance, sub-cultures, colour, and hope.

That’s the real story of the Sapeurs. No no, it’s not just another fashion style. ‘La Sape’ is a movement based in the Republic of Congo that has so much cultural and social richness. In most ways, they are fighters for peace.

I love how Guinness gave these group of extraordinary people a global stage – to show their culture, the colours, and really the joy of celebrations.

Other than the awards this campaign has won, Guinness truly celebrates the brilliant people who live life with joy amidst the turmoil. It is a reminder for all of us to constantly fight to not just live, but to be alive.

Guinness – Always made of more.

Apple celebrates moments that matter


Embed yourself in the conversation. Be part of the culture. Be more than a function in people’s lives.

Apple has been great in doing that – integrating itself right in places, in people and in hearts. It’s always stood for more than the megapixels and storage.

And with the ‘first dance’ – Apple celebrated same sex marriages in Australia capturing moments that truly matter – on the I-phone.





My favourite in-flight safety video

I’ve been doing a fair bit of flying lately.  Safety instructions and videos are perhaps one of the most boring and un-engaging things you have to go through on flights. (Don’t get me wrong – plane rides still excite me!)

Virgin Airlines did this ultra cool – dance jam safety video that broke the internet, but I give them 5/10 points.


But honestly, for me – Singapore Airlines gets my full vote – hands down. They created something that brought out the best views in Singapore, was totally on brand with their quality of service and to be honest, was just so calming.

I think before you are about to take off, you want to be assured that your life (literally) is in the hands of the best people – and with Singapore Airlines, I believe it to be true.

And that’s what brands need to be – authentic and true to themselves. Singapore Airlines, you have my heart. Always.

Alexa, We all need you

Alexa, We need you.

Most of the times, we just need our simple, predictable friend.

No surprises, no additional thought.

Just simple, elegant and working.

Alexa showed us what happens without her. I personally, loved the personification.

I guess more than celebrities, don’t we just love her?


Loved the celebrity humour, but come on – Alexa could have atleast cracked one joke. :P


Why skittles for the Super Bowl

I might not follow the super bowl (Okay, let’s be honest – I don’t), but I do wait for the Super Bowl just as much for the best ads to come out. The super bowl is like the series I wait to release every year. (Yes, it’s the marketing nerd in me out of the closet again).

I love picking my favourite ad, and debating about which one I liked the best. But this time, it’s not just an ad, it’s a strategy that wins.

And the best part is, it is an ad that you’ll never see.

The one thing that is universal is exclusivity. Something that not everyone has that just can’t keep us stop guessing. And as for Skittles this year, Marcos Menendez is their star.

I guess, he is the only one who got the full fledged ‘taste of the rainbow’.


5kgs of love to take home

There is nothing more exciting than going home after a long time and filling your bag with thoughtful gifts for everyone you love!

Coca cola yet again opened happiness with a #Wishuponacoke. For everyone who was carrying excess baggage mainly full of gifts, Coke sponsored 5kgs excess baggage for free.

I’m on my way back home, and so excited to see everyone. To some it’s just 5 kilograms, to me, It’s an infinite amount of love.

The Goodbye Menu

Chili’s is refocusing on its core products and therefore cutting down 40% of its menu.

That’s a painful goodbye given that some of their food was delicious attached to a lot of fun memories.

Instead of quietly bidding goodbye, Chilis created a humorous social campaign to bid adios to some of its favourite dishes – Chicken Enchiladas (Bacon critic), Southwest Chicken Soup (Professional Snuggler) and Buffalo Cauliflower (Broccoli Impersonator).

I enjoyed the dramatic and social turn a restaurant took to build some brand love through their dark, red times.

Budlightin’ Game of Thrones

Screen Shot 2017-08-27 at 11.28.59 AM.png

The perks of good brand content riding on a strong social conversation = Fantastic.

In the world full of ‘gas’ marketing, I believe this is a solid strategy.

Just before the Game Of Thrones release this Sunday, Bud-light released a humorous spot about different subjects presenting the King with different levels of beer.

All well and good, until a smart-a** comes with “spiced honey mead wine.”  He is immediately banished to the pit of misery.  Haha.

Loved it!

Being true to your brand while catching a wave of conversation around Game of Thrones. Dilly, Dilly. (raises a toast).

‘Watch’ out: Video isn’t a fad

When a new form of content hit the ‘market’, you start to wonder – is this really a thing? Fashionable? Faddish? Or a long term behavioural change?

A few years ago, Video got ’em questioning. But no more. We have fundamentally changed the way we consume content. No more tweets, but quick disappearing photos. And no more quick photos, but live, immersive videos.

We aren’t the same anymore. Facebook recognises that and rode the way. Facebook recently launched ‘Watch’: An immersive video hub that will appear as a tab in the mobile app and also be featured on the desktop web.

Bye bye Youtube? Only time will tell.



Co-roading with Cars and Bikes

Road Peace. Finally?

Cyclists vs cars.

Green vs pollution.

Danger vs Safety.

A lot of people want to go green, and ride bikes to work. But everyone is scared. Road safety for cyclists isn’t a thing if you don’t have separate bike lanes.

Co-existing safely on the roads was a myth. But maybe, AXA’s Smart bells might change that.

AXA created it’s first-ever “bike insurance,” – it’s basically a bell that transmits a signal through car radios to alert drivers about approaching bicycles. Therefore, keeping cyclists safe even over the loud Spotify playlists that is playing in the car.

Seems like cycles are heading in the right direction > 15 km/hour.

Reebok takes a dig at Donald-Ts.

When do you tell people ‘You are in such beautiful shape’? Reebok has a flow chart to guide people through the decision making.

Seems like the only appropriate time to say that if you dig up a forgotten action figure from your childhood in your parent’s basement. LOL

Not when you meet the spouse of the head of state. -_-

reebok-trump-chart (1) 2.jpg

Look who is on AirBnB


The entire country of Sweden is on AirBnB – one of my favourite travel sites in the world.

Come explore the relaxation area, the bathroom, the bedroom, the infinity pools and the breath taking terrace.

Take a holiday here. You won’t regret it.

Smirnoff trolls Trump with 100% wit and a dash of sarcasm


Smirnoff Vodka #21 Recipe:

  • 100% Wit
  • Dash of sarcasm
  • Served on the rocks
  • Note: Only to be served ice cold

As Trump questions are raised over Trump’s ties with Russia during the elections, Trump is well known for quoting that he is happy to reveal his more only under oath.

The same with Smirnoff that originated in Russia but is not made in America.

I love bold advertising. I love smart advertising. And I most definitely love witty advertising.



Moms Don’t Quit : Not Now, Not ever

For every working women, there is a pivotal time in their career to make one single choice: Career or Family.

A life time of hard work boils down to a single moment – What would she choose?

Not only in Italy, but also in a lot of other countries – women sign blank resignation letters – the decision to quit their jobs once they become pregnant. In a lot of other scenarios, women choose to not have kids for the fear of fewer career progression opportunities.

But why are these scenarios mutually exclusive? What would happen if a woman chose to do this the other way around? What if women quit their jobs as mothers in order to work?


If children can understand that this would be such a cruel thing to do, why can’t we? #momsdontquit



The Hero: My Favourite Father’s Day Campaign

Almost every brand is trying to capture a moment -> a memorable piece of time that brands can make strong, lasting associations with.

Father’s day is one such moment. A moment where sons and daughters cherish that special bond they have with the believer, adventure seeker and cool headed dude in the house – their dad.

A lot of touching stories are shared by individuals and brands. But one teary eyed story that pushed me into that emo zone was  – The Hero: A Bollywood Story.

It reverses the roles of a father and son – where generally it is the father’s role to make their child’s dreams come true. Google reversed the dynamic where instead the son fulfils the father’s dream to become a Bollywood Actor.

‘Heros never retire, Papa’.

Instagram Stories are Snappin’ away

Bottom Line -> # of daily active users for Instagram stories > Snapchat

Snapchat = 158 million

Instagram stories = 200 million

Lesson -> A Fast follower strategy should never be undermined.

See a huge wave, learn to ride it. Or be sure to drown under it.

After Snap Inc. went through with their exciting IPO, reports revealed that Snapchat’s growth slowed 82% since the launch of Instagram stories. That’s a massive correlation.

It’s exciting to watch the battle between Snapchat and Instagram as they fight it out over disappearing  content.

From a revenue standpoint as well, Snapchat probably needs to level up since it is still not ramped up to serve brands from a data and tracking standpoint.

In a marketers world, where data is gold,  I’d say Snapchat better get to some digging.

Full disclosure: I am still a Snapchat loyalist. It’s a private network with my closest buds who I am excited to share my daily adventures with.

Yet, I can’t help but watch from the corner of my eye the powerful network effects Instagram stories has been able to create in such a short time.

I can feel the platform calling me -> And I am almost tempted to abandon my Snapchat mission and sail the Instagram Stories ship.


Artificial Intelligence got nothin’ on Momma’s Intelligence

In the ultimate battle of #besthugs – Nothing competes with a mom’s warm hug.

Not so far out in the future, we will have artificial intelligence monitor and guide us through every step of our lives – waking up, getting breakfast, scheduling things.

Not too far out in the future, AI might replace mom’s thoughtful reminders to get things done.

Not too far out in the future, our lives will be lead by someone speaking to you through the ceiling of our perhaps lonely home.

Maxis, a telco in Malaysia sets out to remind everyone that no amount of software can compete with a mother’s intuition. She knows more than you even convey and is always there to hold you when you fall.

To my mom,

Thanks mom for being there for me! You’re intuition is stronger than anything in the world. <3 You know me better than I know myself. Happy Mother’s Day!

On disappearing Lions

World Wildlife Fund has always been able to make you stop, pause, and think.

In India, they have a powerful, yet subtle message. And what is a better way to demonstrate that than to use one thing we see everyday – money. That very same coin that could be used to donate money to the cause of saving – lions.




Your phone is now a refugee’s phone

Screen Shot 2017-03-24 at 12.00.39 AM.pngTo help increase awareness about the Refugee Crisis – BBC Media Action took an immersive, super engaging approach:

Converting your phone to a refugee’s phone to help people realise what it is actually like to be in the shoes (should I say, hands?) on a refugee fleeing from a war torn country.

The video blows up into a full screen vertical video that uses the simplest of everyday functionalities to convey a message so proud: We are all just the same, do the same things and want the same things.

By getting pings from ‘Dad’ who was concerned about ‘you’ / the protagonist – BBC Media Action humanised the entire experience though everyday technology.

GPS location: 29 degrees NE. I had chills.


Burger King is Bold and Flamin’


Burger King is back in the game. And this time not in just a smokin’ way, instead in a flaming comeback.

In an amazing set of print ads, Burger King showed actual images of stores on fire – reiterating that their burgers are always tasty, juicy because they use real flames.

While most PR talk would insist to shy away from things that have been ‘negative’, Burger King took the bold step to actually turn that into something they are (in a rather quirky way), proud of.

No matter what, they wouldn’t compromise on their style of making some flaming, juicy grill burgers. Even if sometimes it leads to their own stores burning down.

The truth remains: bold is always beautiful.

Trump with Love

All these Trump domains seems to have hit gold.

Trumpwith.love is an interactive website that turns Trump’s words into Love. <3

Type something random and you get snippets of each word he has said, chop chop.

It is a little bit of a fantasy, but still – After a point: What else can you do, except just laugh.


They say, laughter is just the best therapy.

The 90’s style super bowl ad that blah’ed me out.

If you watched the super bowl, you’d see the spectacular site of everything new.

Drones, lights, cutting edge technology ads, political issues, and a few sneak peaks into Stranger things yet to come.

Amidst all of this was a ProClean ad that looked like advertising straight out of the 90’s. From an advertising era perspective, literally regressing 100 years in time.

The marketing nerd in me was enjoying all those creative – awe inspiring ads and Uhhgghh: ProClean. -_- (Even Don Draper would be disappointed, trust me).

For the most part, Bill Nye, the science guy – played the typical mad scientist role that people were apparently suppose to love and get all nostalgic about. Well, that wasn’t me. Neither was I feeling the ebbieess about how we did those ‘magical’ (not) advertising campaigns 20 years ago.

ProClean’s spot was a buzz kill for me. Uninspiring, lame and just so wannabe.

Impact on people’s lives: I’d say negative. 

How Super is the Super Bowl?

super-bowl-patriots-2015How Super is the Super Bowl? Well, super enough for a 1 hour game to last for 4 hours.

That means – loads of ads. Ads that cost $5 million for 30 seconds of airtime. That’s 30 seconds of intense eyeballs. 30 seconds of a make or break show. And 30 seconds that cost you a whole lot of $$$$.

Every brand aspires that one day – it will be able to afford to spend those dollars. But is it really all that?

The question is: Do these actually help sell product or create lasting brand awareness?

Bill Coontz from the Dalton Agency has his opinions, and I’d say strong ones. Bill believes the answer is a resounding no, especially considering consumers’ fleeting attention span.

A study by marketing data science company Genesis Media found that 90 percent of consumers aren’t likely to buy something they saw advertised during the Super Bowl. The reason? Brand metrics such as “favorability” or “recall” don’t result in purchases for products featured in Super Bowl ads.

Maybe that’s why Kraft Heinz is spent millions of dollars this year on a single spot that won’t sell one ounce of ketchup. The brand is running a $5 million ad to let us know that they’re giving all 42,000 of their salaried employees Super Bowl Monday off. (A company memo would have been about $4,997,900 cheaper.)

Is it corporate good will or a PR ploy? It doesn’t matter, because it’s generating millions in earned media, and it’s a great example of how brands are thinking differently about creative ideas, tactics and execution.

Are times changing?

It is also a sign of the changing times. For the last few years, the strategic execution of Super Bowl ads has changed from a one-time event on Super Bowl Sunday, to using an ad as a springboard to launch integrated digital and social media campaigns. Research from last year’s Super Bowl suggested that Super Bowl ads in 2016 generated as much as $10M in incremental exposure for advertisers.

Some brands go overboard on concept, like Mercedes-Benz, which last year relocated its N. American headquarters to Atlanta. The venerable luxury car brand hired The Coen Brothers to direct an “Easy Rider” themed Super Bowl spot featuring Peter Fonda. That’s easily an eight-figure budget for an ad that, if the studies are accurate, won’t sell many cars.

What about brand awareness?

So does that mean that Super Bowl ads are all about brand awareness? Not really. A full 75 percent of respondents from the Genesis Media study said they couldn’t remember ads from the previous year.

Advertising technology company Fluent surveyed 1,600 Super Bowl watchers in 2015 to test the effects of five first-time ads, finding that the average “brand lift” – whether viewers could recall advertisers after their first Super Bowl ad – was just 12.7 percent.

That’s not an ROI that many brands can readily justify, and the main reason why the Super Bowl will remain the ultimate arena for the advertising budget haves and have-nots.

The final verdict:

ROI, Product Sales – No

If you integrate the campaign as part of gripping 360 degree, well executed campaign using the super bowl as a spring board – Probably Yes.

Is it the best bang for your buck – I’d say, probably not.

This article was written in collaborate with Bill Coontz from the Dalton Agency. 

Bill brings large agency-management experience to the Dalton Agency.  Bill’s 25 years of advertising experience include work for many domestic and global brands, including United Healthcare, Optum, 3M, Cargill, General Mills, Kraft and Ameriprise. Bill has also served two terms as president of the Advertising and Marketing International Network (AMIN).

That’s not fair. BNB.

Screen Shot 2017-01-22 at 11.05.56 AM.png

We are sometimes so disconnected from the truth. It’s like almost a shell that we create around ourselves. A bubble where everything is fantastic, beautiful and full of our petty little problems.

‘Solidarité Grands Froids’ (Solidarity in the Great Cold), an organization defending the interests of the homeless launched a website to spread awareness of the day to day reality of homeless people.

It’s an effort to expose and demonstrate a sight that you may not see everyday – to strike a cord of authentic empathy.

I feel uncomfortable about how closely they have ‘ripped’ what AirBnB looks like, but nonetheless – it does convey a powerful message.

Everytime you hit ‘book’ – you donate money to the organisation – a meaningful way of demonstrating the exact cause your money is going towards.


0 or 1: The two kinds of people.

Zomato is like the trip advisor of food. It provides information about restaurants, ratings and recommendations.


In a super witty campaign, they pledge that there are two kinds of people. It’s hyper relatable, funny and true.

Although there is no clear call to action or tag line – it sends a message that no matter what’s your type, Zomato will give you enough information to make the right choice about food. As they say, never have a bad meal.

I’ll share my type too. What’s yours?


Pizza: I’m the one on the left 


Fries: I’m the one of the left



Chocolate: I’m the one on the right. 


Dinner: I’m on the left. 


Metabolism: Let’s not talk about it. I’m cursed.  LOL. 



Girls, Cars & Audis.

Boys = Blue and Girls = Pink. Since childhood, we assume sharp gender roles for boys and girls and any deviation is looked down up.

Hint, Hint: I grew up playing  WWF cards and beyblades.

Girls and Cars can be used in the same sentence – without a negative connotation.

Audi hit it’s top spin when it launched a thought provoking story set in the back stage of a toy store. A Barbie racing F1 drivers in her wonderful Audi. Zip. Zip. Zip.

Boys = Cars? Let’s change that equation. Let’s change the game.



The man who kept runnin’in’ing

My heart always goes out to Kevin Hart.

He’s cool, funny and perfect for Nike.

Nike launched a series of youtube videos about a story of a man who kept running. I love this because it’s something that is catching up so quickly – a series of small clips tied together to make a story.

Most of the times, we just binge watch these multiple clips – but if we ever see a 40 minute youtube video, you can pause the though of # of views, right there.

Kevin Hart introduces Apple Watch Nike+’s features and functionality in a hyper animated way (what else were we expecting? Haha). You go along with him on a journey about survival (fancy much) and running to save himself.

Branding: 4/5

Product Placement: 3/5

Humour and engagement: 10/5





If you were wondering what Mr. Hart was upto?

Well, he was working on his beard. Haha.

Cough it up this 2017

Kick that cigarette butt, really far away.

A pharmacy brand in Sweden, Apotek recreated a realistic effect of a man coughing to remind people of the ills of smoking.

The billboards were plugged with smoke detectors and whenever, you smoke – the man on the billboard coughs.


No more coughing, no more smoking.

I want to break free.

“And oh, the things that keep us steady:

Sometimes they are teddy’s.

Sometimes they are shoes.

That remind you of your moves”

Adidas created a powerful commercial that definitely makes you feel lost for words. The grit in the video didn’t need words to share one simple thing – Never take away something that someone lives, breathes and runs for.

The story is of an old man – perhaps in a care home, lost and sad. There is one thing that he seems to cherish of his younger days – sports. The one companion throughout all those times was a pair of Adidas shoes.

No branding, no spanking new shoes. Just a pair of dirty, old shoes that lightens up his face.

The video leaves it up-to your imagination to piece the story together. But it sure as hell has one ending – running into the wild and breaking free.

It’s snowing in Asia.

The winning formula: Copy + Paste + Localise

Snapchat’s cloned brother – Snow is crystallising 50 million flowing users every month.

How does it work? Well – it’s exactly like Snapchat – expect with a lot more relevant filters: Soju bottles, cats running around in clouds and with motion stickers that will make you crack up.

It’s surely snowing like cray in China, Japan and Korea in just one year. I am a huge Snapchat fan (read: addict) but I would strongly consider moving to Snow just for their Soju stickers.

And come on, do our Snapchat friends really think that we care about using Joker and Bob Marley filters? Asia is tired of being an afterthought. Localise quickly or compete with faster, stronger and more relevant clones.

It’s a frankenstein’s circus out here.

<ends with dramatic music>