#BounceBack from HDFC Life in one media to HDFC Life in another media

I saw this HDFC Life ad in today’s Economic Times with a lot of curiosity. Most insurance ads have photos or visuals that are usually relatable to a lot of people – father, mother, daughter/son, a full’ish looking family with parents, kids, or an obviously college-going son/daughter with parents and so on. This is to ensure that the visual is relatively relatable to a large number of people.

This ad was curiously interesting. It has a visually-impaired chess player.

So, what would you do when you come across such as ad? I’d most probably go to HDFC Life website to see what this story is since this is an outlier, not the norm, for their (and for most in the insurance industry too) most common customers.

HDFC Life’s first banner is the same visual, with 2 call-to-action buttons – savings & investments and click to continue.

Try clicking both to see if it tells you the story of this visually-impaired chess player and his parents. Nope. Both buttons get down to business.

The twist is that HDFC Life branding folks expect you to have seen either the 2-minute film on YouTube or perhaps an abridged version on TV and then see this ad with familiarity/recognition (“Oh that HDFC Life ad I saw about the visually-impaired chess player… yeah, I remember that. Let me buy that insurance now!”).

Is there any predictable way to assess the number of people who would have seen the video online or on TV AND then see the Economic Times ad? Should the marketing team or the agency work on that notion that people would have consumed one media AND THEN see the other which is a continuity from another media? Or, should they work on the assumption that this ad could be seen as a stand-alone communication for the first time and we simply need to tell our story well in this media?

Where is the dual-media confidence coming from? Is it from the YouTube media spend that led to the 1.4 crore views on the video on YouTube?

And extrapolating the 1.4 crore as being audience that would,
a. remember the ad and its crux
b. buy Economic Times or any other print media where the ad appears
c. relate to the video and the print and go, ‘Oh that?’

Does it seem far-fetched to make that sweeping an assumption? To be fair, HDFC Life is not alone in this. Many brands do this.

And to be sure, the HDFC Life film is not Baahubali, to assume that a majority of Indians would have seen it and understand if Prabhas is used in a Mahindra ad in the North (where he is not known at all). That film is just another film online, or an ad on TV.

I had alluded to this briefly too, in another context (pun intended) for The Economic Times, Brand Equity: Why context in communication is a necessary devil.

At the very least, shouldn’t HDFC Life add the video on their website because that is the primary call-to-action in the print ad?

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