Friday, June 08, 2007

Amul Innerwear : Crafted for Fantasies

Brand : Amul
Company: JB Hosiery
Agency: Saint &Warriors

Brand Count : 239

Amul brand of innerwear is in the limelight for all the wrong ( right?) reasons. This brand from the Kolkata based Hosiery is a major brand in the Rs 5162 crore Indian innerwear market. Amul shares the brand name with the famous diary brand Amul and I wonder whether the two had fought a legal battle on trademark?

Amul innerwear have a huge share of voice. In 2005, the brand was the leading advertiser in TV among the innerwear brands. The brand was mainly targeting the mass market and the ads were also designed for the SEC B&C.According to agencyfaqs, the company is targeting mainly UP and Bihar which is their core market.
Now this brand is the hot topic in the blogosphere with a real controversial ad.
watch the ad here : Amul innerwear
Now that is clutterbreaking. The ad features a young bride washing her hubby's innerwear at a dhobi ghat. The ad has created so much controversy that it was challenged at the ASCI .But interestingly ASCI ruled in favour of the brand. The agency is all set to release a sequel to this advertisement.
According to the company officials the brand has reported a 35% increase in sales after the release of the advertisement.I was very much intrigued with the ad when I first saw it. And I must say that my first reaction was to change the channel since my whole family was viewing the TV at that time.I thought it was either an ad for condoms or for an aphrodisiac or a spoof. But never in my life I had an idea that it was for an innerwear. Did I liked the ad ... No not at all. My personal opinion is that the ad is of bad taste.

As the article in agencyfaqs aptly titled an article about this brand as " Crafted for controversies". The brand wanted controversy and publicity. The best way to get that is to create a controversial ad. That worked wonders for the brand. Just type Amul Macho and you will get all commentaries and opinions : some supporting and some criticizing. But people are talking about the brand.
Innerwear advertising is always challenging to the marketer. You have to find the differentiator and also convey that to the customer. The market is full of unorganised and unbranded cheap products. Only a section of the market is brand loyal. While VIP, Jockey etc are taking up the premium segment, the brands like Amul, Lux, Rupa etc are trying their luck at the mass market. Hence Amul was forced to take the clutter breaking approach to build the brand. Even I feel that celebrity endorsements had lost its sheen this market. Hence this brand 's new campaign qualifies for a guerilla tactic which was successful.

I feel that the agency has taken an easy path to publicity. Most of the publicity generated was negative. The iconic brand Axe uses sensuality to perfection without repelling the customers. The ads are watched and discussed. We marketers wait for the next creative.There the agency is enlightened. Here whether creative or not, the ad for Amul lacks that enlightenment or refinement.
Compare the amul ad with the latest ad of VIP : No Adjust
which is more sensible than the controversial one. Ofcourse the Amul ad delivered results , I am not sure whether VIP's ad delivered results.
Amul Macho uses the tagline " Crafted for Fantasies" which I am not sure as to its relevance.But for the TG I think it conveys the meaning.
The ad makes sense to the market it serves because it created instant brand recall and that is what is important in a cluttered mass market.


  1. sir,

    I dont agree that the ad is bad!!!it is a brilliant strategic thought though naughty!!whats harm in making women feel nice about their mans machine!!!????? hahah

  2. Aptly written, my views mirror yours.
    The ad is definitely in bad taste, and for the retro indian households ,a very bold concept.

    Guess inner wear advertsising is extremely difficult.
    Amul has played along the lines, negative publicity is better than no publicity at all..

  3. Anonymous6:48 AM

    What bad taste? It is an ad about underwear. That implies a certain amount of "personal" contact. So the ad plays on that. I agree that it is bold for the Indian audience, but bold does not imply bad.

  4. Anonymous6:51 AM

    What bad taste? I agree that it is bold. But how does that translate to bad taste?
    An underwear is by definition something "intimate". I thought the ad certainly was less obvious than having a bunch of guys walking around in their underwear. Not sure why the more subtle (yet lascivious) approach is in bad taste.

  5. THe ad has the best RECALL VALUE the ad has done its work even though its been banned....tats wat creative is all about

  6. Hi all..
    nice to see different views!!
    but initially need to say something...
    The company name is J.G. , but not J.B as mentioned...

    The ad created ripples in the market what the concern wanted and now the sales had even gone up in the south india too..

    What nirav had said is 200 % right that ad has recall value and we all are discussing it even though it is banned!!!And what ever marketing stragy might be..!!

    The point is that you should buy the product... and you inorder to contine the same brand, the concern need to give a gud quality and hope they assure it on time being a BIG brand...!!

  7. lakshmi..5:32 PM

    also ple note that the brand had registered its TM well far brfore then the FMGC amul had entered into the market...

  8. Anonymous5:01 PM

    then again, i totally disagree that it is of bad taste. And then again in an Ad of Jockey, there is no human being acting but its highly sensual(the one with a male underwear hanging on a line, while a panty blows and lands on it), and much more suggestive. isin't it?


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