How often have we seen brands fight for the top spot in the industry? Answer: Almost every day. Some use conventional ways to advertise their brands and some take a leap of faith and go over the top to be there. Rarely, the battle gets ugly, but most of the time, the competition is a healthy one, even if the brand uses “Ambush Marketing” the right way. Speaking of yet another debatable topic, Ambush Marketing is a forbidden fruit that many brands try to avoid biting. But, if you look at successful brands, they use this fruit in their salads for success. Here’s the newest #DotsFired and here’s what we have to say about it.
History has it that Ambush Marketing grabs more eyeballs. Take the banter between Wendy’s, Burger King & McDonald’s or the ugly fight between Pepsi & Coke, Ambush Marketing has surely helped the brand gain more engagement. The very nature of Ambush Marketing is to hijack another’s brand campaign and raise awareness about their brand. The most recent event was when Apple launched its brand new phone and made the charger chargeable (pun, intended). Samsung and OnePlus were quick to take a dig at them mentioning that their chargers were FREE IN THE BOX.
There are many other examples that made headlines in the past when Coke was announced the official sponsor for the 1996 Cricket World Cup, Pepsi came up with a campaign – Nothing Official About It! The latter captured the consumer’s minds more than the actual sponsor of the game. In this case, PepsiCo didn’t hijack Coke’s brand campaign, but it hijacked the entire cricketing event. If you look at it from the brand’s perspective, the purpose of the campaign was solved right there.
Though many brands consider Ambush Marketing as a questionable and unethical practice to gain undue advantage, here’s the thing – we have the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI). It is a self-regulatory advertising body in India for over 30 years. Ambush Marketing ads that lead to a trademark or copyright infringement will definitely face the consequences.
Here are some of the examples of indirect Ambush Marketing ads that made headlines in the Indian market.
Snapdeal vs. Flipkart FrontPage Battle
A ‘small’ play on words can make a ‘big’ difference to a
Amul vs. Good Day Butter Banter
When two giants who are in the business of making people
smile, they had to show their ‘butter’ side to the world.
Sebamed vs. The Daily Soaps: Not so sensitive
When Sebamed suddenly came in limelight, it was because of its attack on the soaps that we ‘believed’ were sensitive on our skin. The brand took a direct Ambush Marketing approach to state the facts.
At 3 Dots Design, we believe in putting our best ‘creative’ foot forward and use creativity, research & design as our weapons to fight the battle of the brands in healthy competition. Though our opinions on Ambush Marketing are not etched in stone, you have all the rights to question us about why we think what we think and how we think it works or doesn’t. Write to us, comment below or if you have stronger dots to be fired, or reach us out on our social media handles.