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Exclusive | There's a lot to be done beyond TVCs for IPL6: JWT's Pardiwalla & Mathias

When there is religion involved and lot of emotions running high you know this is going to be tricky and sticky. But what happens when this combination of things is experienced in India? Well we say best of luck, for you are sitting on the edge of the sword, tricky as well as sticky and if you don’t get it correct with the emotional touch to pull in the crowds, things are going to be shitty. This is exactly what is experienced year after year by Priya Pardiwalla and Steve Mathias VP & Sr. Creative Directors. JWT

In a cricket frenzy nation like ours they are given the responsibility to design the campaign for the hugely loved and popular cricket tournament-the IPL Season. They have to ensure that the campaigns have to have the tadka to become popular not only amongst those who love them but also to those who are averse to it and are turned into IPL fans and joined the bandwagon of the crazy lovers of cricket. It is not only the task of getting new viewers but also getting the right chord struck with the emotions of the regular fans to bring them in front of the idiot box day after day to watch the IPL match.

We say tough task, but well, both Pardiwalla and Steve Mathis have lived up to our expectation every year and so when they announced the new marketing campaign for Pepsi IPL 2013 called ‘Sirf Dekhneka Nahi’ which features a series of three short films, 3 dance instruction videos and one big grand film, all featuring Farah Khan, Adgully couldn’t resist the temptation to know behind the scenes preparation that went into to make this campaign. We had a chat with Priya Pardiwalla and Steve Mathis and this is what they had to reveal in all the behind the scene information to us

What kind of brainstorming went behind this campaign? How much time has been spent working on this campaign?

eve and I started working on this campaign sometime in November. Every year the standard is raised. Everyone waits to see what the new IPL campaign is going to be.
There is always a lot of pressure. Which is why, in all, we cracked 20 different positionings. Shortlisted them further and presented 8 to Max. Sirfdekhnekanahi was our recommendation as well as the client’s.

Once the scripts were finalized, a lot of time was spent in writing and rewriting the campaign with Rajesh Saathi (Director, Keroscene Films), till we got Farah’s dialogues, attitude and situations perfectly right.

What kind of an appeal are you looking forward to with Farah Khan on board?

Farah Khan is a Rockstar. She has a very strong presence, is extremely hard working, entertaining and has a crazy sense of humor. Also she has the unique ability of being bitter sweet, which makes her truly likeable. Farah has helped us reach out to a larger audience by literally walking into their living rooms.

IPL has a huge fan following amongst the men and youth. How are you going to ensure women’s participation through this campaign?

IPL is probably the only format of cricket, which is watched by a sizeable female audience.
We feel the addition of entertainment, dance and this special x-factor called Farah Khan will turn even more women into viewers.

How much of a challenge was creating a campaign for something big as cricket which is next to religion in India?

Creating the new campaign for the IPL was a joy. The pressure to top last year's 'Aisamaukaaurkahanmilega' was high but with a brave client by our side and an idea that engages with people instantly, it was a fun journey.

How is the execution and treatment of this campaign different from the last five?

The last five campaigns while extremely entertaining and insightful mainly say, ‘IPL is coming, so don’t forget to watch!’This time's effort is more unconventional. We’ve told people to not just watch, but dance and celebrate every moment in full form.The attempt is to not just create a campaign, but build 3 strong properties, which is a step for each 4, 6 and wicket.And hopefully these steps will go beyond just this year and become an integral part of the IPL like the bugle.

Also in terms of treatment, while last year's 'Aisamaukaaurkahanmilega' campaign borrowed heavily from real insights and was more a reflection of life, this year's campaign is loud, crazy and a complete entertainer.

What emotional connect are you trying to achieve with this campaign?

We don't want people to just sit, watch and be well behaved. We want viewers to start celebrating, screaming, dancing, jumping in full form. Gentleman se Mentalmanbanneka!

Do you think these signature steps will create the necessary hype to bring about viewership for the IPL season?

The hype will be created only if more and more viewers actually do the step. While we're confident that the campaign will create a buzz, it was also very important that the steps created in the first place were unique, simple and not too intimidating.
Thankfully, the 3 steps choreographed by Farah can even be done by the worst dancers in the world. So we think we’re on the right path.

How did the track and lyrics come about?

Vishal-Shekhar has created a track that's sticky and keeps growing on you. We still haven't been able to get it out of our heads. However the starting point was when Rajesh Saathi gave the duo 4 crazy words to work with, 'JUMPAK JUMPAK, TUIYAAN TUIYAAN'. Vishal-Shekhar instantly asked Rajesh what he had been smoking and if they too could try the same.

You are currently working on the 7thcampaign. Will it have a similar theme and story line or is it going to be a surprise package for the audience?

We’re still working on doing this 6th edition really well. There’s a lot to be done beyond just the TV commercials. We’re right now in the midst of finalizing the on-ground activations, radio, programming, digital and outdoor. There are miles to go before 3rdApril. 

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