More than a decade after this campaign had been aired, I shared it in a training session with a young DDB Mudra team. ‘This is goose pimple stuff’ muttered one of the team members who had not seen it earlier.
Indeed, it is. One that was a hard act to follow even for Bajaj. Nothing they did after this came even close.
As it happens with great work, a lot of pieces fall in place just about perfectly here – the brand’s problem definition, a larger life insight that was particularly sharp at the time of this campaign and a wonderful category and brand connect.
The opening up of India’s economy and media created an interesting tussle, both for Indians and Indian brands. As sexier western values of individualistic freedom started to waft across, so did first time access to many international brands we had only wistfully fantasised about.
As the youth celebrated, the society worried about its corrosive effects on our culture.
In automobiles, it was an obvious threat to brands like Bajaj, up against Japanese brands like Honda, Yamaha etc. who had clear advantage in technological expertise and even greater edge on desirability.
Instead of responding defensively with an ‘India can make it better’ message, Bajaj & Lintas located the sweet spot between the insight and the brand’s problem.
That Indian youth were not going to ‘lose it’, even as they adopted what they liked from the west. Not in areas that mattered.
In addressing the conflict, while it reassured the society, it simultaneously won over the youth for having redeemed them on a public platform.
2 wheelers were emerging symbols of individualistic freedom, specially for the youth (from the bygone era of family riding on scooters). So a message on what Indian youth would do with their freedom was a great category fit.
Coming as it did from the quintessential Indian brand that had been associated with the images of mummy, papa, bunty and pinky on a scooter, it was a great makeover even as it did not forget its roots.
What have been your all time favourite campaigns?