Thursday, April 30, 2009

As I See It : Creativity Vs Extravaganza

Frankly I was shocked to see today's ( 30/04/09) Hindu Business Line. The front cover page was just a blank white sheet with the Business Line Masthead. A closer look reveals a two figures at the middle of the sheet with a "turn overleaf " message below.

In the middle it was written 2009 crore (2007-08) --- 3007 crore (2008-09)netprofit

Turning overleaf revealed that the ad was for Bank of India which announced its annual results. The results' details were published in the full innercover page advertisement.

The result is pretty impressive - a net profit growth of 50%.
But the Ad is not ....

White spaces are good... but too much white space shows that there is a hole in the pocket.

This is a time where every penny is precious. Whether it is a bank which is making huge profits or a business which is trying hard to survive. Here we see a full page wasted just like that with no purpose whatsoever.

There is no big idea . Remember it is not a brand building ad. It is an ordinary process for publishing annual results. That is why such a spending is nothing but a sheer waste of valuable marketing money.

There are many ways of telling the public about this stellar results. Let the top management visit all channels and give interviews, let the PR department make this result come in the front page of all newspapers. That is how such results should be marketed not by blasting money publishing white spaces in the front cover.

I had worked in media and I know how much such an ad costs. Definitely this is not the time for such lavishness. Every Paise counts.

John Wanamaker once said "Half the money I spend on Advertising is wasted;the trouble is I don't know which half ".


  1. Dear sir,
    According to me, this print advertisemnt was launched like this for one of the resonwhich is given below,
    to create word of mouth
    a. people may critisize it
    b. peple may talk abt it because they haven,t seen the front page blank.
    So by that people may also communicate the results or the growth of the bank.

    Same as blogger you have posted this article... and I come to know abt that particular bank is doing good in the business.

    As a reader of printed news paper I may overlook the details of the growth. So Probably they have done it differently with more expense.

    they must have spent aroung 2 crore for such ad.. but impact is more than other channels.

    I am quite confused about the move but according to me this ad will help the in good way.

    I am looking for your reply so that I can get better insight regarding the post.

  2. Hi Sir

    At the first sight this would seem to be a wastage of money as you said.
    but the objective as clearly mentioned by priyank would be to create an instant impact in a business paper where financial results are an every day affair.
    The fact that this caught your attention and made you to think and put few words about it on your blog itself reflect its success in creating the much needed awareness about its result.

    In practical terms when you are taking a power jacket(technical term for such ads) you are bound to take the immediate innerpage also. So the first page acts as the teaser, and prompts people to read more about it in the second page.
    And when u r making a profit of 3007 crores, a 2 cr ad of this does not make any holes in companys bottom line.

    This is my personal view being in this industry for the last two years.

  3. Anonymous10:46 AM

    Dear Mr. Harish,

    I am sure you would understand the challenges advertisers are facing. There is a huge clutter on the media vehicles and it is becoming increasingly difficult for the advertisers to fight the clutter.

    I personally feel, white space in that ad is actually not just white space. It accentuates the message and at once grabs the attention of the reader.

    Every advertser would want high visibility and consumer attention. And if that could be achieved by white space...what's the harm?

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