The Missing Link

Indian Oil is one of India's biggest oil marketing companies. State-owned, the company has seen better days back when crude had not scaled up as it had. And then disaster struck, but things have calmed down somewhat.

So, this is not about their fortunes. This is about their karma. Now, there are only so many ways you can sell your company once you're done peddling your propane-boosted special petrol. You can even get a brand ambassador, or you can keep harking about your lubricants (the automobile kind) or choose to do a CSR-cum-brand-building campaign.

Yeah, the last one sounds good. It does all those tingly things to the brand that makes the brand manager go weak in the you know what. So, IOC calls for a pitch. The agency, knowing what a rich old goat it has, decides to close in.

They decide for a plan where they talk about saving the world, through environmental conversation. So one of the angles they take on it is how the world would be dark in a few years if we don't conserve oil. Makes sense to me.

Then they place it, where else, but in their petrol vending stations. You know, prime real estate, large no. of people go to a petrol station each day, so we can share with our customers how deeply we feel about the environment.

There are a couple of lacunae. We print the flex, a huge 50X20 ft piece of CSR-speak. We place it. Where do we place it? We place on the inside corner of the petrol station. Where no one can see it. And then we light it up with 4 state-of-the-art halonix lamps.

And here's the post-err of the decade. The copy in Hindi reads- Maybe, in a few years, our bright world can drown in darkness (Literal translation). The real kick is the tag-line- Door ki Soch- Thinking Ahead.

Yeah, you are thinking ahead. By plotting media with lights on, about lights being off. Where no one can see it anyways.

The campaign features at IOC petrol stations all over the city. I've counted out atleast 13 such hoardings at different locations where they have done this. Just imagine the carbon footprint of this one!


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