It is that time of the year again. Apart from being the awaited Holy Month, Ramadan is also a special ‘Holy’ time for brands and marketers in a Muslim-majority market such as Pakistan. Thanks to one particular brand, this season is marked by a frenzy of brand activity accentuated with remixed religious tunes and feel-good visuals.
Here’s our Mandatory Ramazan Brand Happenings Round-up with comment on only the most remarkable campaigns this year, for various reasons as you will find out.
Hmm. With international superstar Veena Malik being away, tirelessly building her international career, Pepsi has taken it upon itself to make fun of and disrespect Ramadan’s spirit- and they’re doing it with this latest piece of shit campaign. Rozay Mein Dikhay Pepsi Aas Pas, really guys?
Olper’s certainly has the credit for highlighting the Ramadan campaign season with its yearly mega Ramadan-specials back in the day. With a shift of focus from a family brand to one dominated by feminist overtones, there had to be some sort of shift in the communication too. So this year Olper’s has come up with something that’s like the result of a threesome between a pure CSR drive, a celebrity-ensemble endorsement and a limited edition packaging collection with patriotic overtones. All three of those sound nice and practical on their own, but when mashed together into one 60-second TVC, it makes for a very unpleasant experience.
More problems: The markers for the different provinces are barely visible on on-demand internet viewing, so you can imagine they would be virtually invisible when actually running on TV. The transitions, both visual and musical, are too abrupt and jagged – again too much happening in a one minute TVC. Also, why do we have 5 ladies and 5 localities, but only 4 package designs? The pack designs are really not to our taste, either: too overpowering. Streamline it, stupid!
And finally, did someone notice Hareem of Humsafar fame masquerading as a disadvantaged northern areas girl?
Being a follow-up to last year’s best ad, this one had large shoes to fill. Although it is a commendable feat highlighted by consistency, on the whole it is a mixed bag.
What we like: the recurring characters and the ‘iss ki tension, uss ki tension’ bit.
What we have gripes about: Fawad Khan is becoming annoying as a boy next door type- he should stick to playing the suave gentleman while the fame lasts. The jingle could have definitely been a lot better. The reporter pun feel unneeded and gimmicky, ala Ufone.
What do you get when you brew Faiza Hasan’s potent talent with Vital’s unassuming authenticity? A gem. A true, authentic, polished gem. Absolutely brilliant. We love it.