Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Hide&Seek: Building brand on bull shit again!

Brand : Hide & Seek
Company : Parle
Agency : O&M

I have no personal grudge against Parle but seeing how they waste their money in so called brand building is terrible. First it was Parle Digestive Marie now it is their Hide & Seek. Parle is so scared of ITC and Shahrukh endorsing sunfeast that they are pumping in money on celebrities ( not brands) desperately.

Hide & Seek is India's first and only chocolate Chip Cookie, Although the basic difference between a biscuit and cookie is that Cookies are considered to be more Sweet and chewy while biscuits are brittle.
Hide & Seek was launched in India in 1998. Although there were certain variants of Hide & Seek like orange flavour, only chocolate flavour survived. Later Parle tried with butter and cashew variant to fight Britannia Good Day brand but failed miserably. Now Parle is concentrating on Chocolate Hide & Seek.
Hide & Seek is positioned as a premium snack cookie. The cookie market is estimated to be around 500 crore in the 5000 crore biscuit market. The baseline for Hide & Seek is " Taste itna ki Dil Aa Jaye" meaning your heart will love the taste( I suppose, since I am a south indian, these hindi baseline are sometimes difficult to understand: are marketers listening?)
With ITC tasting success with Sunfeast and the dislodging of Parle from Premium market of biscuits, Parle is trying out the celebrity game. This time the agency O&M has roped in Hritik Roshan against the mighty SRK of Sunfeast. Playing the supporting role is Isha Shravani .
I watched the TVC of Hide & Seek with horror. I am not explaining the story board but believe me it is ridiculous. Like the Digestive Marie ad, this ad does not talk about the product but its Hrithik and his dancing skills, nothing more nothing less. Celebrity should endorse the brand and the brand should be the star.... but alas. Any one who have seen that ad for the first time will miss it for a cola ad. May be the Star discovering the taste Hide & Seek in a party makes more sense than this Dance hungama. It is hyperbole at its worst form.
Hide & Seek is a good product with certain premium touch to it. You have signed Hrithik which still have some brand value but this ad is nothing but a waste of money. The ads should have talked about the chocolate and the taste and surprisingly there are no kids around? May be parle is trying to target the adults then it is competing with Lays not sunfeast. Look at how Lays is using Saif and how it had understood the youth's psyche perfectly. But the current Hide & Seek campaign is uncool.
Once again " You cannot build a brand on bullshit".