When the Scorpions were inspired to ring in ‘Winds of Change’, little did the German band know that it would go on to be hailed as the song of the century, celebrating hope and positive change. Nearly 25 years later, a fan company is ringing in social change in our society with its ‘Winds of Change’ advertising campaign.
Part of its ‘Hawa Badlegi’ campaign that seeks to inspire a change in our mindsets, Havells India, one of India’s largest electrical and power distribution equipment manufacturer, launched a series of television commercials centred around gender equality, religious conversion, period taboos, and orphan inclusion for its ‘Winds of Change’ campaign. The TVCs have been created and conceptualized by Lowe Lintas.
In ‘Censor Board’ TVC, a censor board has just finished watching a film. One of the member says the movie should be given a ‘U’ certificate as it qualifies to be a ‘family film’. When others agree, one member named Tripathi asks the movie to be given an ‘A’ certificate as it has adult content. Members are confused as to what content was adult and ask him to explain.
He points out the numerous scenes in which the hero was topless. And ends with making a hard-hitting observation about society – “Ladki kare tho nude, ladka kare tho dude.”
In ‘Conversion’ TVC, a daughter is getting her father to meet her boyfriend who is Muslim. When the daughter asks, in anticipation, whether he is ok with their marriage plans, the father talks about conversion. The daughter isn’t amused at this attitude by her father and begins to object.
The father explains that by conversion he meant a conversion from smoker to non-smoker, and not a religious conversion. He emphasizes that he is not that old-fashioned as they thought about him.
The ‘Wedding’ TVC sees kids from an orphanage being invited to a wedding by a young couple. The caretaker expresses his happiness that for once someone made the kids really happy, other than making the usual donation to the orphanage.
Branding for the new-age consumer
Havells is one brand that has long been endorsing social awareness messages through its advertising campaigns. ‘Respect for women’ has been one of its underlying themes with a series of ads focused on getting society to understand that ‘women are not kitchen appliances’. During the last IPL season, it had launched a series of five tongue-in-cheek ads for each of the kitchen appliances like coffee maker, steam iron, mixer, etc.
Then it launched a music video ‘The Humma Humma way’ with music created from its kitchen appliances. The duo – Vasudha Sharma from pop band Aasma and renowned percussionist, Sarthak Mudgal demonstrated that a women’s place is not in the kitchen alone, but it is wherever she wants to be and she could do whatever she wishes to.
The ads were well received on social media and helped establish Havells India as a socially aware brand. This time around, it has touched upon a larger set of social evils – gender inequality, religious conversion, period taboos, and orphan inclusion. Going beyond product features and taking a stand in its communication has indeed added to its brand image and built a stronger bond with the new age consumer.