Skip to main content

As always, 'Old Wine, New Bottle'

'Actually all assertive messages in the media that seek to relaunch a backward area as a newly arrived miracle require a serious rethink. Relaunching anything from a flagging product to a failing state in India, mostly turns out to be an exercise in pouring old wine in attractive and expensive new bottles by clever copy writers.

Flights to all state capitals today carry tieless, fast-talking young ad agency reps, summoned to devise a saleable product relaunch. They then congregate to enact an expensive ritual behind closed doors in the best hotel in town, also known as a “presentation”. Despite their utter lack of ground knowledge or of the local languages, their presenters deliver hypnotic sermons in English, to an audience of Hindi or Bhojpuri or Maithili-speaking clients in all high seriousness using mysterious abstract terms such as— “brand identity”, “brand value”, “market share” and “core value”, just as the wily Brahmin priests once used terms such as swaha, swadha and namo namah!

The clients, by now happily soporofic after the substantial “working lunch” that must accompany each ritual in India, are usually quite pleased with the linguistically enhanced and flattering image of themselves and so the “relaunch” package is okayed. The success of bagging such contracts hinges on how convincingly the client’s goals can be made to “look” like a radical departure from their predecessors, even though substantially they may be no different. And how can they be, given the specific caste calculus and financial compulsions that drive state government formation from Chandigarh to Patna?

- Mrinal Pande, 'Rethinking relaunches'.


Unknown said…
An amazing blog, left a whirlwind of thoughts in my brain. Would like to get your view on my statement which I personally believe has the power of elimination of any false showcase in relaunch procedures. "Lets not look at the reasons of the failure of mass level only but also at the molecular level of sucess to understand the anatomy better and make it a healthy procedure rather than an obituary."

Popular posts from this blog

Situational Involvement of Consumers

There are two types of involvement that consumers have with products and services, Situational and Enduring. Situational involvement as the term suggests, occurs only in specificsituations whereas Enduring involvement is continuous and is more permanent in nature.

Decisions to buy umbrellas in India are driven by the onset of Indian monsoon. Monsoon rains arrived in India over the South Andaman Sea on May 10 and over the Kerala coast on May 28, three days ahead of schedule. But then, after a few days of rain, South India is witnessing a spate of dry weather. Temperatures are soaring in the north of India. The Umbrella companies in the state of Kerala are wishing for the skies to open up. So is the farming community and manufacturers of rural consumer products whose product sales depend totally on the farming community. The Met. department has deemed this dry spell as 'not unusual'.

India's monsoon rains have been static over the southern coast since last Tuesday because of a…

Prior Hypothesis Bias

Prior Hypothesis bias refers to the fact that decision makers who have strong prior beliefs about the relationship between two variables tend to make decisions on the basis of those beliefs, even when presented with the evidence that their beliefs are wrong. Moreover, they tend to use and seek information that is consistent with their prior beliefs, while ignoring information that contradicts these beliefs.

From a strategic perspective, a CEO who has a strong prior belief that a certain strategy makes sense might continue to pursue that strategy, despite evidence that it is inappropriate or failing.

Ref : Strategic Management : An Integrated Approach, 6e, Charles W L Hill, Gareth R Jones

Wearing Cuba means Walking Cuba

There's something ethereal about wearing 'Cuba'. Suddenly its the streets of Havana, smoke filled and lit by the groovin', more than the lights. The bars are packed to hilt and dreamy women seem to glide by. The feeling's beyond magical.

How did I get there?

Before I explain, I gotta tell you about the power of brands to take you places. Brands bring with them an ability to prompt you to conjure up the unreal. They can transform your reality into fantasy. And consumers are more than willing partners to brands as the drudgery they face in everyday life begs an injection of fantasy. Brands that operate in a zone of the unreal do the conjuring act as there's nothing else that consumers can call for, while making judgements. For instance, what should I be judging the lip paint on? Its colour and tone or its ability to turn me into a diva?

Cuba's a perfume. The moment I wear it, I am traipsing the streets of Havana. Its smoke filled bars I see. Its music I hear and…