Marketing a product well is as important as any other process in developing it. If the product one has created is not marketed well, there is a good chance that the audience it is targeted at, might never even get to hear about it. All brands in the market know this, which is why it is no surprise that we are often bombarded with ads and information that try to sell these products. Different companies use different approaches to get the attention of their audience. And one of the oldest tricks in the books of advertising is celebrity endorsement. And it is this card that Oppo is playing in its new ad for the F11 Pro, featuring Bollywood star Vicky Kaushal. But as we have discovered in the past, celebrity endorsement can be a double-edged sword, with the celebrity totally overshadowing the product. So is the #BeBrilliant ad going to help Oppo slay its competition or end up hurting itself?
So much phone ogling!
The 40 second ad titled, “Experience Brilliant Style,” starts with a small group of guys at a restaurant or cafe all set to dive into this one phone that Vicky Kaushal holds in his hands (such is the level of attention that they are paring to it) but a hint of the conversation taking place at another table grabs their attention. Kaushal turns around and finds a small group of girls looking right at their table adoring something (well, he assumes it is him). These girls then walk up to the table and ask for a picture (and he again assumes, it is with him). But just when Kaushal thinks that the girls want to take a picture with him, one of them picks up his phone, the Oppo F11 Pro from the table and take a selfie with it, getting dazzled by the way in which its selfie camera rises from behind the display.
As poor Kaushal sits down, a little embarrassed by this lack of attention in front of his friends, one of the girls asks him if he could send her the picture they just took on his phone. He agrees but asks her how because he does not have her number. The girl blushes and our hero basks in the glory of his presence of mind. This is followed by a small clip of the smartphone and voice-over saying, “Oppo F11 Pro. Brilliant style, brilliant design“. The ad ends with the company’s logo.
Excuse me, can I take a selfie with your phone…REALLY?
Have you ever walked up to a random person in a restaurant and asked to take a picture on THEIR phone or vice versa simply because the smartphone looked so irresistible?
Fat chance, we think.
But believe it or not, this is exactly what happens in this ad.
A group of girls walks up to a group of guys, asking for their smartphone, to take a picture! And honestly, we would have understood if this was a move by the girls to initiate a conversation but the ad shows that the girls genuinely were so impressed by the smartphone that they decided to walk up to total strangers and take a picture from their smartphone, which not only seems inappropriate but also kind of unsafe on so many levels. We would not be comfortable knowing that a stranger has our photos on their phones!
Even after that, the spot then shows Vicky Kaushal asking for the girl’s number to share the picture. Hello! There are “n” number of applications that allow you to share an image without requiring the recipient’s number. Ever heard of ShareIt? Or good old Bluetooth technology? Or even e-mail? Why is even a phone number needed? But we guess this how it had to pan out to make some sense. Because otherwise as per the ad, all women want to do is take selfies, so much so that they would walk up to total strangers to take pictures and all men want is to pen down their numbers.
The ad does have its good points. It focuses on the looks and design of the smartphone, and we think it managed to give enough attention. What’s more, in celebrity endorsements, the celebrities can often overshadow the product, but that has not happened in the ad – the Oppo F11 Pro still remains at the center of the ad (hey, the girls literally ignored Vicky Kaushal in the ad for the phone). But while the ad is short and highlights the design and the pop-up camera on the device, it does nothing more for the product. It just shows they F11 Pro as a good looking smartphone and shows a bit of the front camera. Considering the wide array of features (low light photography, a 48-megapixel rear sensor, fast charging, and more) the Oppo F11 Pro has, this seems a bit of a pity.
Not quite being brilliant
Oppo’s latest ad for the F11 Pro comes with a very weak plot. In fact, it seems like it has taken a page from one of those mainstream deodorant ads where the sole purpose of the existence of the product is to get the opposite gender’s attention. Which is such a shame, simply because the company could have done so much with a device that has so much potential and a celebrity who is so well known. Instead, the ad uses the centuries-old stereotyped idea of advertising where women are obsessed with themselves and men are obsessed with women. And the worst part? We are not too sure the company has even executed that well. It may have convinced some people that the F11 Pro comes with a stylish design but we think the company forgot to highlight what is so pro about this Pro. There is a lot more to both the Oppo F11 Pro and Vicky Kaushal. Hopefully, the other ads in the campaign will bring those features to the fore. And #BeBrilliant. This one, alas, is not.