Diwali, the Indian festival of light, is just around the corner and along with desserts and discounts, the festival also brings Diwali themed ads from different tech players. Nokia did one recently with mixed results (not for its brand ambassador, though). And now comes a new Diwali focused ad called, “Shor ya Sangeet?” from Saregama Carvaan. But does it fulfill its Diwali destiny and make the right kind of noise and be music to our ad-ears?

Short and sweet

Shor ya Sangeet?”, is a 46-second spot which starts with an elderly gentleman getting inside his house on what seems to be Diwali night. Visibly irritated by the loud sound of crackers outside, he gets inside and shuts all windows and doors to block out the noise. While doing so, he notices his dog that has buried his head under the bed and is whining, terrified of all the noise outside (a quick note to our readers – dogs hate crackers and noise. Dogs are our best friends) The noise from outside relatively drowned out, the gentleman then switches on a Saregama Carvaan Bluetooth speaker and music player (shaped like a retro transistor radio) and sits down on a chair. Hearing and seeing this, the dog pokes his head out from the bed and runs up to and hugs his master. The man comforts his dog, looks at his wife and the two share a smile, even as the diol rests his head contentedly on the shoulder of his “Hooman.” A voiceover says in Hindi: “This Diwali, what are you going to take for your loved ones, noise or music?” The ad then shows a close up of the gift card attached to the Carvaan that says, “Happy Diwali, Ma and Baba,” and ends with a close up of the Saregama Carvaan, with the over saying “a new gift of 5,000 old songs. Saregama Carvaan,” in Hindi.

A Diwali ad that’s not crackers, and is heartwarming

Many companies try to create ads around Diwali, there are only a few that really get it right, and this is one of them. The Carvaan is a very India-oriented product – it is actually a Bluetooth speaker, designed like an old-school transistor and comes preloaded with Hindi songs from old films. Which makes Diwali a crucial time for it to be advertised as a potential gift. And it literally makes the most of the opportunity.

The ad not only highlights the product and informs the audience about but just as importantly, it also educates the viewers about the problems animals and elderly often face because of the noise created by the crackers on Diwali. Its use of Diwali to also highlight environmental pollution make this ad so well timed, as it is at this time more than ever that people need to be concerned about the impact that they are having on their surroundings. And while the spot has not dived too deep in the matter of environment and pollution, it has very well addressed the first-hand impact of bursting crackers, the noise pollution, and how it distresses both the elderly and animals. We love the fact that while the ad serves an educative purpose, the company has not forgotten that it is an ad after all, and has highlighted the product impeccably in the scenario. It would have been tempting to have got carried away, but the ad does not.

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Diwali is a festival about the win of good over evil and in this very short ad, the company has managed to create a similar story of the triumph of good, which is the Saregama Carvaan over evil, that is the noise. Showing the world what Diwali is really all about. It is amazing to see how it has hero-ed the product as it comforts both the distressed animal and his human in the ad by cutting out the noise by the music.

The product is aimed at the Indian audience, features Indian actors but what we really appreciate is that it also has another Indian element in it, the dog. While many companies would conveniently choose a pedigree or a much “cuter” looking canine, this ad celebrates India in all the ways possible as it features an “indie” dog in the ad.
In just 46 seconds we connected so well with the ad that it has stayed with us even after watching it multiple times. It simply warms our hearts every time we watched it. We also think the use of background music in the ad is absolutely on point. How the ad first focuses on the noise and then how the old song melodies of the Carvaan simply push it out of the ad, presenting a beautiful transition.

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Yes, there is more to the device than just old songs (it can be used as a Bluetooth speaker, FM etc) but we think the company has played to its strength and highlighted what makes the product stand out of the general speaker league. Diwali is also the season of gifting and that is how the product has been presented in this ad, which very subtly gives you a hint of how great a gift the Saregama Carvaan would make. Clever, right?

One thing which we think might be a slight negative is that the ad restricts the audience of the product to certain age group, while anyone who loves music can really enjoy songs from the golden era using the product. That said, because it comes with old songs and looks like a transistor, we think the slightly older folk are likely to be its primary audience. Finally, we like the fact that the ad clearly mentions “no Internet needed” – highlighting how it can be used even by folks that are not so tech savvy.

A beautiful slice of life

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No one likes getting interrupted by ads while watching their favorite movies or shows but there are a few exceptions that make the whole ad-watching experience a delight. And the Saregama Carvaan “Shor ya Sangeet?” ad is definitely one of the few. The ad made our hearts melt and left us with a very wide smile. It not only talked making Diwali a celebration for all of us, and caring for the environment and our pets, but did not lose track of its purpose and made sure the product was the hero at all times. We love such simple, short stories. It does not seem extraordinary, just a slice of everyday life, to which many could connect, highlighting a product that made sense in that situation.

Wait, that DOES seem extraordinary.

Ads have a reputation for making people change channels, but this one will make you not only stay but also smile. Saregama Carvaan might have just given us one of the great tech ads of the year. Thank you, and happy Diwali!

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