Cadbury Dairy Milk Adds A Saas-Bahu Angle To Its Friendship-Themed Communication

Cadbury Dairy Milk adds a creative twist to 'badthi dosthi', new ad features the budding friendship between a middle-class saas and bahu

Celebratory brands are always on the lookout for that perfect brand message to increase occasions of consumption. For Cadbury Dairy Milk, the chocolate brand from Mondelez Foods, this meant a whole lot of transitioning in its communication. What worked for years for the chocolate brand reflected in its tagline ‘Kuch meetha ho jaaye’.

Big B would often remind us when to celebrate with a Cadbury Dairy Milk. From the popular ‘Pappu paas ho gaya’ to the Waheeda Rehman starring ad film telling us that Cadbury could be a great replacement for after-dinner dessert, the brand has tried to play around multiple occasions that deserved to be celebrated with a chocolate.

The numbers are good. Mondelez India enjoys a market share of 65% in the chocolate category, with Cadbury Dairy Milk accounting for 40.8%. But, chocolate consumption has dropped by 11% compared to last year. Consumption is fine in the 20-24 years age group but there has been a decline of 9% in the 25-34 year age group, reports IMRB’s Target Group Index.

As a market leader, the onus of growth lies on the chocolate brand now. Cadbury Dairy Milk is looking for more and more people to have it most of the time.

This year, Cadbury Dairy Milk (CDM) is all for celebrating friendship. Around Friendship Day this year, the brand had launched ‘Flavours of Friendship’ with the idea that a flavour tastes better when shared with a friend. The ad film conceptualized by Ogilvy & Mather and directed by Vikramaditya Motwane showed a girl gang comforting one of their friend who has had a breakup, each in their own unique ways.

Meanwhile, the Facebook and Twitter pages of the brand began sharing visuals of the new flavours and tied them with symbols of friendship like friendship bands, shared gossip, laughter, and more.

A couple months later, CDM rolled out another ad film around the theme of friendship but the setting, the characters and the storyline is something the brand has never stepped into. It featured the budding friendship between a middle-class saas and bahu, over a bar of CDM.

Inspired by the brand’s new tagline - “Badhti dosti ke naam”, the new TVC directed by Vinil Mathew of Breathless Films, is set at a chawl where a baraat out dancing away to Bollywood numbers. While the daughter-in-law has her eyes set on the celebrations below, she is also enjoying a CDM.

Soon her mother-in-law joins her and there is an awkward moment between the two. CDM comes to the rescue. Bahu offers saas a piece and soon they are seen dancing away with the crowd to the classic ‘Saat samundar paar’ song. The voiceover at the end says ‘Badhti dosti ke naam’ while the two return holding hands with each other and laughing away.

While YouTube does throw up a similar dance number by a lady in a saree, when you type “Desi lady dancing to saat samundar”, Cadbury’s leverage of the budding friendship between saas-bahu around the popular dance number could just be a lovely coincidence.

Vinil said to Brand Equity that the intention was to break all holy cows of sanitised advertising. “The idea was to make it charming and fun without a condescending eye to small town India”. The real challenge is to sell more chocolates, even if it means moving away from the top stars of Bollywood and their upper-class celebrations and looking at the teeming millions in chawls who worship Bollywood.

Prashant Peres, director- marketing (chocolates), Mondelez India said that the brand isn’t undergoing any shift in positioning. The saas-bahu ad is only a creative rendition of budding friendship.

A new ad film shows a teenaged boy gang and their growing friendship over cubes of CDM.

CDM’s social media pages have been sharing relevant visuals with cubes of CDM and the hashtag #BadthiDosti. There’s an adorable visual on the recent cricket match too.

Cadbury Dairy Milk goes to the masses

The ideal saas-bahu relationship is a tough one to crack, despite many Indian television soaps having mastered the art of saas-bahu themed stories for years. Cadbury Dairy Milk seems to have discovered the winning saas-bahu story in its new ad. Having CDM act as a catalyst in their budding friendship is way too cool. Besides, two saree-clad ladies dancing away to a popular dance number is bound to catch your eyes and stay on your mind.

Each new ad is further helping CDM establish its goal in friendship between various age groups. The next in the series could be newfound friendship between oldtimers. In fact, “Badhti dosti ke naam” lends itself to many brand stories. Hope it will also translate into sales.