Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Brand Update : Thru a horrible campaign,Old Spice asks you to be Mantastic

In my marketing communications class, I used to show the globally famous " The man, your man could smell like" campaign featuring the Old Spice man Isaiah Mustafa ( watch here) as an example of a highly successful marketing campaign in 2010. Three years after, in 2013, P&G started showing that advertisement in the Indian market. The disconnect had started.

To my surprise, the brand owner decided to adapt the globally successful campaign to Indian market with Milind Soman taking the place of Isaiah Mustafa. And the outcome was hopeless.

Watch the ad here : Old Spice India ad 1
                               Old Spice India ad 2

I would say that Old Spice has done a horrible job in adapting a global campaign. I am not sure what the agency had in mind when they conceived this campaign ? While the original global ad had a strategy behind it, the Indian brand failed miserably in making any sense and  succeeded killing the brand's whatever image that is left in the Indian consumer's mind. 

There is total confusion in what the brand is aiming to convey and to whom ? While the Old Spice man from original campaign talked to the ladies with his famous " Hello Ladies " opening, the Old Spice Indian man doesn't know what he is talking about and to whom ?  And sadly at the end of it, the brand talks about " attraction " thus falling into the  same language that other brands are talking about. 

When a brand adapts a globally successful campaign, its inevitable that people will compare and its brand and agencies duty to do justice to the original creative. Here in my opinion, the brand fell flat in the adaptation. The ads are neither attractive nor share-able and is desperately trying to be funny which is sad. The new tagline Smell Mantastic is as horrible as the campaign itself. 

 The new campaign had virtually killed the earlier brand image of Old Spice. But instead of creating a new image, this adaptation had put a confused picture of the brand interms of the image. While the 2010 global campaign put Old Spice in a leading position in western market because the ad theme and message connected with the consumer. But thats not the case here. The adapted campaign neither connects nor conveys any message or makes sense. Hope in the subsequent ads, the creatives will do justice to the brand.

What a horrible waste of a good brand !


  1. Thank you. The only good thing about it was they have a catchy name "Mantastic Man". Maybe they can capitalise on it.(May-be). Since its launch, all it has been greeted with is an awkward silence, borne out of indifference on part of those who didn't care or a deep-rooted disappointment in those whose expectations had been set high by the Issaih Mustafa and Terry Crews ads abroad. When will people learn that you CANNOT just take a foreign ad and run it here and hope it will work? (Axe {successful by chance} and now Old Spice)

  2. Anonymous3:17 AM

    Dear Harish,
    I beg to differ with your opinion on this. The original old spice ad was a success primarily for two reasons:
    1. Communication was done to "Ladies/Girls"
    2. The model Isaiah Mustafa exuded confidence.

    The Indian Ad is correct on the 2nd point however it lacks on 1st point as the communication was done to "Men/boys". So even though this ad is not as good as the original one but still its not a complete waste as well. I agree that it could have been better.

  3. Anonymous2:44 PM

    I totally agree with you Sir. I think the brand image has already got tarnished. Even the loyal customers would run away from the brand after seeing the ad. And the all ad agencies has to stop diverting to the thought that men and women are made for only one thing in the world.Shame.

  4. As somewhat different in addressing the audience, this Indian version should not case of direct feeding international ad to Indian market. Although this to give a Classic Royal touch, they use 'modern' language so some impact is weaken. Anyway your remarks and judgement is outstanding. More on advertisement and marketing please visit http://successfuladmarketing.blogspot.in

  5. i felt the same..when i saw the ad campaign

  6. Anonymous9:54 AM

    I think the ad is actually good. The confidence exuded by Milind Soman is brilliant in its regard and if you see the western ad before this, there's a chance that you might consider this to be a better one, just my opinion.
    Although, I do agree that the message conveyed of "getting the ladies" aligns it with all the other ones and not as something unique, which might be the best part of its western counterpart.

  7. it depends on the time and the true message behind the actions..

  8. Couldn't agree more with you Sir, The only reason I watched the ad till the end, because of 'the brand' and that good old ad I saw umpteen times in my advertising class.
    Total waste! Could have been different, though 'Mantatstic Man' seemed a good catch.

  9. Advertising should be done in very creative and innovative manner.
    TV advertisement agency in Indore


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