How the Amul girl captured the spirit of the Rio Olympics in witty, pun-filled visuals

The utterly butterly girl has captured the essence of Rio 2016 and made a visual documentary for future generations to go back in time to experience the pulse of a nation

The 2016 Olympic games in Rio will always be remembered for the incredible feats performed by the best athletes in the world. Some of the games are sure to go down in history as one of the greatest sporting spectacles of all time. Rio Olympics was also mired in doping scandals, but, that however, did not dampen the athletes’ spirits. The ceaseless, relentless, painful and often lonely pursuit to break past Olympics records kept their spirits alive.

India sent its biggest Olympic contingent this year, over 121 Indian athletes competed with over 10,500 athletes of the world. Several brands, irrespective of sponsoring the event or not, came forward this year to stand with our Olympics contingent.

Some shared creative content in the spirit of the games, with each piece carefully crafted in sync with the brand ethos and Rio 2016. Read: How Indian brands won the visual content marketing game for Rio 2016.

Many brands also invested in video storytelling focusing on the athletes’ struggles and determination, with the aim to raise awareness about our athletes and their daily struggles. Read: Six memorable video-driven campaigns supporting Indian athletes at Rio 2016.

Amid the stellar athleticism on display for over two weeks, there was one Indian brand that also managed to shine or rather polish its storytelling strategy during Rio 2016.

India’s largest dairy brand and one of the sponsor of the Olympic India contingent, Amul nailed the brand engagement index armed with nothing but its creatively witty topicals that never failed to bring a smile onto your face, or provoked you into deeper thoughts about sports, politics and the undying spirit to win despite the odds. Amul topicals never fail to amaze us. Armed with witty  puns and a sharp commentary, these visuals make for a compelling content to be enjoyed as well as shared with friends. Be it current events, or the politics we are mired in, the utterly butterly Amul girl always manages to capture the satire in one memorable poster.

For the dairy brand, an association with the Olympics may be a strategic one, as it directly involves positioning milk and milk products as proponents of good health and fitness. But, the brand capitalized on the games and fortified its image one visual story at a time, bonding with Gen Z in the process.

Here’s a list of Amul topicals that captured the buzzy events at Rio 2016, the over-the-top wins by our athletes as well as the scandals by our ministers:

When promising Indian gymnast Dipa Karmakar got selected for the Olympics.

Announcing its association, a cool take on the ideals ‘Faster, Higher, Stronger’.

The ugly face of human desperation creeps up at Rio.

No Gold, Silver or even Bronze! Which country does not need the metals. When our top shooters and archers lost by a few points!

Ace swimmer Michael Phelps can teach us a lot about the power of our dreams and working hard towards it.

Usain Bolt is truly one determined superhero of this generation.

When our Sports Minister was caught taking selfies at Rio!

Sakshi Malik’s Bronze in women’s freestyle wrestling caught the nation by renewed hope.

PV Sindhu’s spectacular game leading to the first Olympic Silver medal in women’s singles Badminton.

And a tribute to her coach Gopi Chand who has never for once believed that India is incapable of Olympic wins.

What has been a tradition with Amul’s outdoor hoardings making our day over the decades, has also included social networks now, and with more and more social networks getting visual friendly, it only helps Amul to stay relevant to today’s social media savvy generation.

Moreover, the ever decreasing attention spans trying to keep pace with the ever increasing Everest of information flowing on the social web, has posed a unique challenge for brands to tell their story in the quickest possible time. And that’s where images come in – visuals and images make for better content compared to blocks of text. Our brains process visual information 60,000 times faster that it can decode text. Hence any content that can be processed faster by our brain will take precedence over other complex forms of content.

Amul probably knew this decades ago, and is one brand milking (pun intended) from this insight about images. At this Rio 2016 Olympics, it has not only extended a hand of encouragement to boost our athletes, the dairy brand also ensured continuous and entertaining audience engagement by way of its witty topicals capturing the spirit and the camaraderie of the games.

The Amul girl has captured the essence of Rio 2016 and made a visual documentary for future generations to go back in time to experience the pulse of a nation. A clever brand connect by a event sponsor in today’s times.