When 11 cricketers came together to promote BharatPe’s push for small shop owners

Art-E-Media, who is spearheading the ad campaign for BharatPe, recently created 4 TV commercials for India’s largest merchant payment network. The ad campaign communicates the message ‘Hum Hain Team BharatPe – Jo Desh Ke Har Dukandaar Ke Saath Hain Khade’.

BharatPe onboarded no less than 11 of India’s best cricket stars as its brand ambassadors – Rohit Sharma, Jaspreet Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, KL Rahul, Ravindra Jadeja, Suresh Raina, Shreyas Iyer, Prithvi Shaw, Sanju Samson, Yuzvendra Chahal and Shubhman Gill.

Art-E-Media and ‘Student of the Year 2’ director Punit Malhotra joined hands to make the TV and online commercials for the brand. A series of ad films involving notable television and film actors such as Manoj Pahwa, Rajesh Balwani, Kanchan Pagare, Krunal Pandit and others showcase BharatPe’s range of financial products for small shop owners across India. Art-E-Media’s in-house production house, Gibbous Films, created the commercials.

In conversation with Adgully, Tejender Sharma, Co-founder and Chief Creative Officer, Art-E-Media, speaks about the idea behind the campaign, his experience working with top class cricketers, the making of the ad films amid COVID conditions and more.

How did you come up with the idea of ‘Hum Hai Team BharatPe? What was the brief given to you for this campaign?

In times of uncertainty, people are on the lookout for assistance and assurance. The line, “Desh ke har dukaandaar ke saath hain khade”, signifies the assurance that people seek. It is also essential to deliver that message through a credible voice. It could be celebrities or high-achievers in society. We went with cricketers, as they follow a strict practice regime, stay fit, deliver winning performances for their teams, break records and achieve successes for real. We felt that the impact could be multiplied if the brand is represented by 11 outstanding cricketers, when they deliver the line ‘Hum hain team BharatPe. Jo desh ke har dukaandaar ke saath hain khade’.

What was your experience in the making of these ad films with India’s top class cricketers?

It was exciting, challenging, and at times harrowing. However, it was nothing short of an edge-of-the-seat 20-20 game. Beyond the COVID-19 situation, we faced multiple hurdles as we had to organise the shoot for cricketers who were in different cities, while some of them were in another country. It would have been impossible to bring everyone together in the studio under one roof. We had to use geometric graphs to plan their walk so that it could be stitched together later. A lot of work had to go into matching the lens, camera height, lighting, focal length, the angle of their walk in, etc. It was worth the effort as the end product was great and client liked the output.

What is the response that you have garnered for this campaign?

The films have been really well received. We are getting very good reviews from industry experts. Most reviews are around how seamlessly we achieved the feat in an otherwise cluttered advertising environment. We were able to cut to the chase and explain a solution to the problems by integrating the brand and its offerings. The merchant community has also loved the ads as we are seeing very decent traction to the creatives on the app. Once again, these are early days and we are hopeful that the ad will do phenomenally well in the ecosystem and provide higher returns.

What were the difficulties faced and what measures did you take while shooting for the film?

The biggest challenge was ensuring the safety of the crew and cricketers especially. With the IPL scheduled for the subsequent months, we couldn’t afford any mishaps concerning the cricketers. Further to this, new research and instructions were being rolled out every day, which created a dynamic situation. However, both the client and Art-E came together to take all the necessary measures such as having doctors, ambulances, face shields, oxygen meters, UV tents for equipment, etc., on the set. I attribute the smooth completion of the shoots to the above measures we undertook.

How has the current scenario pushed brands to re-strategise creative thinking leading to a new Era of marketing technology? Do you think that there is a need for new-age marketers to prioritize innovation in the post COVID world? 

The pandemic has tested the limits of brands with respect to their adaptability. With an overwhelming majority of working professionals working from home, all processes have moved to the digital realm. Moreover, people are practicing social distancing to the extent that they’re either making purchases on e-commerce platforms or having their groceries and essentials delivered through contactless methods.

With more users spending time on their computers and smartphones, brands are diversifying their ad spends by investing on digital marketing. Within digital, they’re capitalising on the reach of social media influencers, affiliate marketplaces among others.

There definitely is a need to innovate as people are hooked onto their computers and mobile devices. The post-COVID-19 situation has no end in sight and people will continue to limit their movement outside their homes. There are incredible opportunities arising in the current times, including augmented reality-based marketing, virtual trade shows instead of the in-person tradeshows, etc. Additionally, Artificial Intelligence and machine learning applications are now providing incredible insights and data analytics to marketers, allowing them to make targeted marketing decisions.


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