Of all the ads launched this World Cup, Dettol was the only one to be severely thrashed on social media for its utterly ridiculous ad. The Reckitt Benckiser maker of hygienic soaps and handwash liquids, chose the Cricket World Cup as the right platform to launch its mass appeal ad on television during the India-Pakistan match.
The campaign titled, ‘Maa Maane Dettol Ka Dhula’ showed how mothers only trust Dettol when it comes to safeguarding their kids from germs and infections, with the help of two TVCs.
One of the 40-second TVC is set at a school playground where young girls in the age group 7-12 years are playing football. One of them falls down to severely bruise her knee. She washes the wound with some water from a bottle, when her concerned mother stands up to clap, while singing a jingle that cheers everyone up including the other parents who join in. The coach also joins in.
And, while everyone is singing the magical jingle, the coach is seen dabbing some dettol on her wound. The voice over talks about how Dettol kills 100 types of germs and how mothers can always trust ‘dettol ka dhula’. Simple concept that could have been just another ad but alas….the magical ad lyrics only repeated ‘Dettol Dettol Ho’ umpteen times, till it drilled inside your head and sat there like the greatest brand recall ever.
Worst of all, it played every time during the key moments of the India-Pakistan match. Understandably, viewers were annoyed and took to social media to vent it out. A Reddit discussion thread was also created to help vent out viewers’ frustration. Mainstream media wasn’t too far either, with many picking up the negative sentiments floating for Dettol ad on social media.
— Ashwin Mushran (@ashwinmushran) February 15, 2015
Best job in the world is of that guy who got paid to write the Lyrics of the Dettol jingle.
— Gabbbar (@GabbbarSingh) February 16, 2015
To have great impact, you either make a kickass ad or a totally idiotic one. Both get the people taking. #dettol
— Nandita Iyer (@saffrontrail) February 15, 2015
Afridi hit Kohli by throwing a ball at him Kohli stared with anger Misbah looked around, started singing “Dettol Dettol Dettol Dettol ho”
— Bhak Sala (@bhak_sala) February 15, 2015
My god this Dettol ad needs to be banned for eternity.
— Kabir Taneja (@KabirTaneja) February 15, 2015
Dettol and its agency received severe flak by viewers and other agency folks. There was a need to ‘undo’ and relaunch the campaign with imaginative lyrics. This time it chose the IPL when India is again enveloped by cricket fever, to get people to listen to yet another ‘Dettol Dettol Ho’. No!
There are lyrics this time and adorable little voices are singing it. The TVC is set at a wedding where this guest asks the caterer when will the food be served. Out come a group of children and a band singing about the importance of washing hands with Dettol before eating.
This time there is a whole lot of rhyming lyrics with ‘Dettol Dettol Ho’ forming the chorus. The TVC promotes the new Dettol Squeezy.
Brands are heeding to the heat from social media (Can Social Media Force Brands To Rethink Their Ads?). It is good to see positive changes in brand communication, especially after the message has not gone down well with the masses. Brands that are social media listeners are the ultimate winners in this fight for visibility and positive branding. Sadly, there’s not much social media buzz for the new Dettol ad.