Update – October 22, 2012: This is the TVC Acer was advertising for!


Original post:

It happened with SF Sonic car batteries earlier. Now, it’s Acer’s turn.

In SF Sonic’s case, the agency behind the campaign seemed to have convinced the client to actually spend money on billboards to merely tease people with the image of Salman Khan, since he’s the lead in the Power Ka Chakkar campaign, directed by Nikhil Advani. I had almost assumed – now, when trying to recall which darn brand of car battery it was – that it was for Amaron – but a Google search for ‘car battery salman khan’ helped me place SF Sonic. That’s the problem with celebrity-led campaigns that take the celebrity and the ad film more seriously than the product (and the client who is paying for the campaign).

Acer’s turn, now.

Today’s The Times of India carries this ad, in the middle of the paper… which is news heavy, to perhaps mask the fact that it is an advertisement, in a phenomenally clunky way.

Go ahead, click on the image to read the text. It talks about – in a very silly and funny way – how the new ad’s concept made Hrithik jittery that he ‘almost’ walked off the set. From an editorial stand point too, it seems hardly convincing. And it talks extensively about the advertisement and not the product or the client. On Acer, it merely says, “We at Acer believe in thinking beyond the obvious. Every Acer laptop in the market is an example of how we have achieved what most people think and believe are impossible. The concept for the commercial is also an extension of the idea.”

Huh? That’s interesting. So, is this an advertisement for an advertisement? In these days of severe attention deficit and multiple media crying for attention, you actually have someone spend money on a print advertisement in a national daily that asks people to look out for… no, not a product or its benefits, but an advertisement that will eventually talk about the product and its benefits!

Now, I’m sure Acer folks have something good up their sleeves. Something to do with thin and thinnest laptops, as usual, in the Intel UltraBook category?

Whatever it is, this, like SF Sonic’s Salman Khan starring Power Ka Chakkar, is a new high for Indian advertising given that it has convinced a client to pay for an advertisement for an advertisement. It is a teaser, no doubt, but not for a product, but for an advertisement which will talk about the product. And that’s quite different from recent teasers of products like Maruti Suzuki’s Ertiga that teased us with snapshots of LUV, the Life Utility Vehicle it is. It was about the product, specifically. Not about a television commercial featuring a celebrity brand ambassador who will… phew… eventually talk about the product.