List of Articles  |  Excerpts

 

Make believe branding through advertisements give negative returns when the real beliefs on the fundamental characteristics about the brand continue to remain hopelessly negative. Longer they have, greater the loss – well beyond the cost of advertisements.

 

10 November 2013

Air India

 

At home, the TV and my work desk are placed on opposite ends which makes me turn around on my chair, as I work - to watch - every time interesting sounds trigger me to do so. I do that often and with all kinds of programs including the sas bahu serials but I do so mostly to watch the ads.

 

The Air India ad on the air currently has made me turn around many times and with more anguish every another time. I am drawn to the ad; not because of being surprised by the appallingly bland message, not because of the almost sure chance of the ad triggering the negative YIK (Yeah, I Know!!) response from most viewers - but because of the sheer angst the ad evokes, in most of us, by being typical of all the unjust ways this airline continues to be mismanaged unrepentantly, for years now, causing huge drain of country’s money.

 

Last time, I turned yet again, in sheer disgust when I heard "Great food, always", for, only a little while earlier I was reading the news article titled "Drink at your own risk: Air India serving milk in used plastic bottles" in the First Post.com. The article says “For the last 10 days, instead of uploading milk sealed in tetra packs as was the regular practice, Air India flights from Mumbai used unpasteurized milk procured from local vendors. These are filled in used plastic bottles and uploaded onto the aircraft…." The article also quotes one of the crew saying; "We usually empty cola cans, clean them and pour in milk. The cans are then immersed in the hot cups filled with water, the only way milk can be heated''.

 

The article is based on TOI news of 30th October which also reports "The tetra packs were reportedly stopped as Air India defaulted on payments to the milk supplier".

 

Two days later, I read another article at NDTV.com which says "The CBI has conducted raids in Parliament House and booked a Bihar MP from the Janata Dal United for allegedly using fake air tickets and boarding passes to claim special privileges". The article also says, "CBI sources say it also is investigating the role of officials of national carrier Air India in issuing fake tickets and boarding passes not just to politicians, but also government officials, airline staff and travel agents. It has booked an Air India official and some tour operators too."

 

I believe, 'The Descent of Air India', the book about the sins of the carrier, written by its own ex staff for over 20 years, talks of only lesser and lighter ones. The papers routinely talk of more incriminating stories. Mr. Jitender Bhargava, may we expect you to write part II with harder facts?

 

Branding Logic: (as evolved from my practice and research)

 

Make believe branding through advertisements give negative returns when the real beliefs on the fundamental characteristics about the brand continue to remain hopelessly negative. Longer they have, greater the loss – well beyond the cost of advertisements.

 

When branding calls for fundamental corrections, the task essentially is about correcting before indulging in any promotions.

 

Hard Marketing Logic: (as evolved from my practice and research)

 

A brand that does not belong to anybody, with responsibility, sails perilously by the market forces.

 

In any market, even dud brands generate revenue. To know what ticks the sales against all odds, helps to understand how wasteful it is to try to sell.

 

Adve Srinivasa Bhat

 

 

List of Articles  |  Excerpts