All publications of The Moon Studioz . Mumbai , India
Survival in the time of the new normal
The Coronavirus global pandemic-inflicted lockdown has changed all things for all people. In India, with no certainty about when the lockdown will be lifted, ‘stay at home’ and ‘work from home’ have gone beyond fashionable mantras and become lifestyle imperatives.
People are slowly,even if painfully, learning to adapt to this new normal. But, especially for the youth, weeks of watching TV, surfing the net, cooking, cleaning, sleeping… and then repeating the same cycle over and over, have exhausted all indoor options of entertainment and is slowly ushering in a sense of utter boredom and restlessness. Suddenly, everyone is craving the life they took for granted – simple things like going out for a stroll or a spin, meeting friends, shopping…
In this scenario, even the silver linings – such as purer air, cleaner environment, Mother Nature reclaiming her space through flora and fauna – are turning into minor irritants in the minds of bored youth. The positives are degenerating into negatives!
Where there was a challenge, Water Communications saw an opportunity to leverage the situation for their client’s brand,Cornitos Nachos. The agency created an engaging film for the crisps brand, simply by empathising with the target audience in their lockdown situation. Creatively and resourcefully too – the entire film shoot, production and editing was carried out without compromising any of the stringent lockdown rules of social distancing and leaving home.
The huge lockdown negative of boredom or boriyat, was turned around to become the hook and the positive of the film.
In gist, the film revolves around a group of young friends, separated from each other because of the lockdown; each feeling like a prisoner in their own home. In expression, word and mannerism, the utter boredom of the situation oozes out of them. Over a concall, each expressing their views on the current situation in tones of boredom, laced with sarcasm. Tired of things they once enjoyed, even positive things have become negative irritants, simply because they are overwhelmed and overdosed by them.
Enter Cornitos Nachos and everything changes.Its analogy of different, delicious and exciting flavours translates into adding fun and zing to their boring lives. Suddenly there are options to doing routine things in fun ways. Suddenly they are enjoying their stay at home, and beating the quarantine blues. Suddenly life is beautiful!
Conceptualised by Water Communications and produced by The Moon Studioz, the entire film has been shot during lockdown. Each scene involves only one artist in their own home, thus staying true to the social distancing and stay-at-home protocol. Complete post production of the film was also handled from respective homes – grading, editing, music etc.
The film, created entirely during lockdown, is a powerful statement in itself. The media itself has become the message! Boldly proclaiming to the industry and world, that creativity and ingenuity know no boundaries – even when, ironically, they are restricted by severe boundaries. There may be a restriction on movement; but movement of creative juices remains unstoppable! The world may have paused for the moment, but Water Communications has proved yet again (to paraphrase Steven Hawking) that adaptation is the highest form of intelligence.
In working around severe limitations of movement, location and resources, Water Communications and The Moon Studioz have, with this lockdown film, opened up further horizons in what may fast become a new trend in the film business – creating high engagement films on low budgets and within high resource restrictions. This could become the new normal, even beyond the lockdown era.
Finally, staying with the first principles of marketing communications, Water Communications has kept its client’s brand in the TG’s mindspace – more than that, cheerfully engaging and empathising with the audience by putting a positive spin on a negative situation.
To draw from Charles Darwin this time, for both agency and brand, survival in the time of the new normal, is all about who can be the nimblest in ideation and communication.
Cornitos goes filmy with #CornitosFilmyFlavours campaign
Nachos brand Cornitos has launched #CornitosFilmyFlovurs campaign. The campaign created on Cornitos popular category Nachos Crisps, is pivoted on famous Bollywood dialogues, complete in intonation and style, mapping customers to specific brand attributes and the current situation with a well mimicked dialogues that add a distinct touch of humour.
"Especially at a time when people are feeling restless due to lockdown and worried because of the COVID pandemic, the light-hearted campaign provides happy relief in these grim times and timely distraction for people who have generally run out of all options to entertain themselves. The campaign narrative also molds itself into the lockdown experience, further leveraging the situation to convey to audiences that Cornitos delivers even in these difficult times, and while doing so, honoring all the rules and precautions every step of the way – from manufacture to packing to delivery and even transaction," the brand said in a statement.
Vikram Agarwal, Managing Director, Cornitos, said, “The challenge before any brand is how it stands up in tough times. And the current times are unique – a grim challenge like nothing else before. It is very important for any brand, but especially a retail one, to constantly stay in the public mind space. With this campaign we aim to create a recall value for the brand. The narrative allowed us to convey to the customers that we are scrupulously following all safe delivery rules. From another perspective, what we have is a fun product; the campaign assures the audiences that their fun times as sparked off by Cornitos Nachos are not compromised in any way. And, of course, the campaign lends a feeling of normalcy in these troubled times.”
Vandana Sethhi, Founder, Water Communications and Producer of the campaign said, “This is our second Cornitos campaign under lockdown, at the cost of sounding immodest, we are becoming something of masters of lockdown films. We love the challenge it brings; and as with all our other lockdown films, no lockdown rules or safe distancing mandatories have been compromised. From ideation to shooting to production, everything has been conducted remotely, and yet, who would be able to tell the difference from any other film created in normal times. About the concept, we were very confident that a Bollywood-spoof is a winning ticket. Who in this country is not a fan of films, and who therefore, cannot recognize and appreciate the famous dialogues?”
Director of the film Salil Jason Fernandez, delves further into the strategic insights behind the making of this film: “The spoof-treatment, humor and splash of fun are a perfect fit for the brand and category. Cornitos Nachos is perceived as a fun product. Coming as it does with several different flavors, there is a happy analogy in the film wherein the various ‘flavors’ of Bollywood are sampled via famous dialogues from popular films.”
Nevertheless, the lockdown months just gone by were especially challenging for businesses and their brands – especially retail brands. Cornitos with their communications agency Water Communications , worked right around the situation to engage their customers and even entertain them in the time of lockdown – and hence further enamor them with their brand.
Every individual has his own style and persona which he/she exhibits in everything they do. Clearly whatever they do is a reflection of their own personality. Even when it comes to cooking one can add their own signature style. And this is what the Indomie TVC stands for… adding individual style and flavour to Indomie Noodles. Dufil's #MyIndomieMyStyle campaign draws synergy with the customers own personal style.
It focuses on the different recipes one can create and how one can blend different spices and marry various flavours from around the world to create one’s own fusion and distinct Indomie Noodles recipe. It encourages people to experiment and add their own unique touch to the dish with Indomie.
NO LOCKDOWN ON CREATIVITY-EID MUBARAK !
As the lockdown extends — at least, especially in crowded red zone cities like Mumbai — beleaguered companies and businesses are growing increasingly apprehensive as to when they will be able to restart.
The Moon Studioz. The Mumbai-based ad film production house, while also suffering from the obvious blues and loss of business a lockdown brings, is going full throttle in creating opportunities for itself and its clients. And succeeding!
The production house has just released its third film since the lockdown was imposed; in the making of each, strictly adhering to all lockdown rules as laid down by the authorities. Amazingly, every one of these three films has been shot live, rather than taking the easy way out by merely piecing together stock.
The production house has been able to overcome restrictions on social distancing, location and movement by creating scripts where no scene uses more than one actor, except when they are from the same biological family, anyway living in the same home. The post production and has also been conducted in isolation, using professionals fully equipped with facilities at home.
The film is doubly topical — set as it is during Ramadan in the time of lockdown. At the same time, it conveys a much-needed social message of showing care and concern for those who are putting their lives on the line (in this case, a policeman) for our safety in the time of COVID.
Emotionally couched in a story revolved around a random act of kindness, the product itself is subtly, yet unmistakably, given a pride of place — a hero without being a force-fitted hero. In the narrative, the family is well-stocked in its food essentials, including Emperor Akbar cardamom, which apparently is an essential and popular ingredient in their cuisine. Further, that the same is now being used in their random act of kindness, gives the product an even greater aura. All in all, a film that is relevant, topical, creative and emotional.
Emperor Akbar Cardamom is the flagship product of Samex India Pvt Ltd, a leading exporter, backed by selected plantations in the very heart of cardamom country — Alleppey, Kerala. The company is the India’s largest exporter of cardamom, and its produce is the only brand of authentic GI-tagged Alleppey Green Cardamom.
Its own story is the latest chapter in the rich history surrounding the category ‘Alleppey Green Cardamom’, that goes back to the 15th Century. A history involving ancient wars and trade routes, as world powers of the time attempted to gain control over this Queen of Spices.
Another evocative chapter in these annals, dates back more recently to the Raja of Travancore who ruled that, under his watch, only the best quality cardamom were to be reserved for export. A standard that ultimately defined Alleppey Green Cardamom’s superiority over any other rival, anywhere in the world… and a tradition passed down to, and upheld by, Emperor Akbar Cardamom to this very day. Thus, its claim of being the ‘best cardamom in the world’ holds up to any scrutiny.
Mr. Hemen Ruparel, MD, Samex India Pvt Ltd substantiates this further: “Our cardamom is processed in state-of-the-art HACCP facilities. Aroma Lock technology and shipping in UV coated master cartons ensure that the unmistakable aroma of our produce continues to delight long after the pack is opened.”
Shifting focus to the latest film, Mr. Ruparel opined: “Our primary customers are in West Asia and the Middle East, hence the film leveraging an emotional appeal in the time of Ramadan makes for very sound strategy. I am amazed at the production values the production house has been able to infuse, despite all the restrictions that come with the lockdown.”
Vandana Sethhi, Producer, The Moon Studioz adds: “Life, work and business have to go on even in a lockdown. We are in the business of innovative ideas, and we appreciated the challenge of innovating, or at least re-inventing what we do, while working around all the stringent restrictions on movement and resources. We have not compromised any of social distancing or other rules, and yet have been able to create a film that any ad film production company would have been proud to own, even in normal times. This is our third lockdown film, and we think we may be showing a way for the rest of our industry to follow.”
“Another social message subtly embedded into the film, is that even while carrying out this random act of kindness socially, the family adheres to all the lockdown rules. Also we showed a new hugging style between the small girl and the police man while following social distancing, which can probably become a new way of greeting Eid Mubarak this year” adds Salil Jason Fernandez, director of the ad film.
Made for social media, the film will be uploaded on Instagram, YouTube and Facebook, with scientific targeting of the brand’s customers to ensure big bang for the client’s buck.