LG WHIRLPOOL Fiasco TOI, Lazy Advertising / Bad Marketing?
Posted 3 weeks ago
This festive season the shortcut used by these two leading brands in India, LG and Whirlpool, has made both these brands land in dilemma between marketing professionals as well as the consumers.
There are two critical questions to be asked when such a blunder takes place are :
- Are the marketing heads not willing to spend enough on getting a professional photoshoot done while spending so much on buying space in leading newspapers ? OR
- Are advertisers in agencies holding themselves back due to time crunch or festive time boundaries ?
Let’s Find out
WHAT ACTUALLY HAPPENED
Both these brands released huge festive season advertisements in the leading newspaper -The Times of India. The brands used a stock image of a family of four ( young parents and two smiling children) spending a joyous moment on an auspicious occasion. The Whirlpool ad headline read ‘Golden Diwali Offer’ with an attached strapline “Get an assured 0.5Kg Gold Coin”. Whereas the LG ad went like ‘India’s Largest TV Manufacturer, Now India’s Most Trusted Television Brand’. Interesting Fact : Both the brands unfortunately used the same family stock image. With the inexcusable blunder which both these brands caused whether it be due to lack of budget or time crunch to market the ad or simply ignorance, everything was at a standstill.
One would be lucky if one didn’t see and register both ads but considering both the sides have marketing planners and media buyers, keeping a track of their competitor’s patterns and past media buys, and also not to forget the same medium and platform , this was a huge risk taken.
SURPISED? HISTORY HAS REPEATED ITSELF
These two are not the only brands which muddled up. MarathiShaadi.com and Jeevansathi.com too published print ads a while back using similar stock images, giving the twitter community many more reasons to diss the brands.
It’s not so surprising because this embarrassing fiasco happened more than a decade back in 2013 when the Congress government in Maharashtra came out with a series of “Bharat Nirman” ads. Nevertheless, in one of the creatives, the celebrated long standing party of the India used a remarkably similar image as the Bharatiya Janta Party to showcase it’s ‘Antyodaya’ campaign
TWEETS : WHAT PEOPLE HAVE TO SAY –
What benefit does your brand gain if you give other marketers and advertisers an open chance to criticize and laugh at you? Making a mockery out of yourself on such big platforms is not publicity in form. The leading home manufacturer brands of India made a laughing stock by buying those stocks from the internet. You as a consumer, would position these brands much lower than what it originally was.
These gigantic MNC’s which rule the Indian market should preferably use original images or do damage control once such a thing happens. Considering past episodes which have taken place , such risks should be avoided at an cost. This is a true example of how shortcuts never take you a long way.
Let’s see what the experts have to say about this.
Shivjeet Kullar (Founder & CEO NFX Digital)
It’s an unhappy coincidence. When two brands inadvertently use the same visual has nothing lazy about it. Both the brands didn’t know if either one was doing something similar. They should not try and save costs since they’re anyway spending a fortune on buying space. Ideally they should not use a stock image but get a professional photoshoot done. The problem arises when these stock image companies sell the same photograph to both the parties.
MNC’s like these are emphasizing more on media than creativity. Company heads are spending a lot on media, who aren’t lazy but are short-sightedly giving a heads-up on using stock images. A photoshoot today usually takes half a day and it cannot be a budgetary dispute.
Moreover, it confuses the audiences. You get lucky if a consumer doesn’t get to see both the advertisements.
The mess which was made could have been avoided and published smartly. As quoted by the experts, such ‘unhappy coincidences’ hamper the brand positioning in the minds of potential and existing consumers in the market. Budgetary compromises shouldn’t be made on ad creation while no so compromises are made on media buying.