Now, what kind of reaction would the brand behind this exercise be looking at? Is it,
1. Aaaah…gee…I really want to know who this girl is! Poor Kareena.
2. Wow, Saif had a girl friend when he was young. Boy, wonder who she is that he’s searching for her so publicly!
3. Is this is a publicity gimmick? I smell a rat!
4. This sounds like a carefully orchestrated marketing gimmick…wonder which brand is funding the big bucks to put such messages out on Times of India supplements!
5. What is this crap that has landed in my Bangalore/ Mumbai/ <other city> Times? I think I need to change my newspaper!
I’m a combination of 4 and 5. More importantly, do people in the first 3 categories really exist anymore – isn’t it obvious? The larger point, however, is a take off from my last post – on authenticity. Isn’t this ‘campaign’ just a bit too in-your-face and fake? There’s no disclaimer (in the newspaper) that this is an advertisement for a brand and not a part of the editorial…whatever goes in the name of editorial in such city supplements.
So, how different is this from the Malaika Arora – Arbaaz Khan divorce drama for a cosmetics brand? In that case, angry journalists supposedly threatened to boycott Malaika – so you cannot fake with journalists, but can do so with the marketing department of publications huh? Don’t the same publications realize that in both cases, it is the public who is being fooled?
When the social media world is crying hoarse on authentic communication between brands and its users, why is traditional media allowed to get away with such costly, thoroughly and obviously fake communication in the name of marketing/ publicity? Or is this what is called ‘showbiz’?
Does the fact that this communication has reached my blog…and that I’m talking about it justify the idea and its spend? I’m sure they do see that I have some uncharitable remarks about the campaign! And no, I’m not buying their campaign enough to start guessing which brand this could be for. Whichever product/ category/ brand it is…I’ll think twice before buying it.