Union Bank of India Gold Tooth Ad

on October 12, 2008

First thing first, this post and future posts under this label are courtsey this blogger - EmptyHead. Also I have used this as a guide.

Today, I start this new exercise of reviewing advertisements. As a potent form of publicity, ads have fascinated me a lot, be it the print, radio, TV or Internet version. Please be aware that the reviews are going to be totally non-technical since I'm yet to fufill my MBA dream. So, the perspective you'll get is the consumer's.

If you watch TV regularly, you could not have have missed the above advertisement. And for all you software engineers slogging at places far away from the comforts of your "Home Sweet Home", you can watch it here.

Re-branding has been the hot trend for some time now (remember Ceat and Axis Bank). Union Bank of India has undergone a complete makeover too. But it has retained its punchline - "Good people to bank with". This ad looks like a move to consolidate that idea.

Now, let us delve deep into the ad.
  • First Reaction - Like all ads featuring cute children, (the girl in this ad is an angel!) this ad too manages to establish a mushy connection with the first-time viewer.
  • Music - The background piece is very nice too, but you get so lost in the ad that it's hard to notice it, the first few times.
  • Novelty of the idea - The catch is that the idea of getting kids to win hearts in favor of banks is not a new one. I remember a memorable ad in which a cute boy takes his piggy bank all the way from the village, protecting it fiercely from prying eyes along the way and parts it with it happily only when he gets to the bank cashier, who shows him the way to his own locker. So, whether this ad would actually appeal to the consumer to the extent where he opens an account, is questionable.
  • The concept - The concept is fairly good, where the kid tries to help out the young guy in fulfilling his dream of developing a racing car and the bank tries to convey that it will help its customers in the same vein (almost like an angel investor) because "Aapke sapne sirf aapke nahi hain!". It does sound a bit cliched, but aren't ads supposed to be that way? There is a slight chance that young girls may tug at their respective (to be precise! LOL) dads to open an account in this bank, but a slight one only.
  • The Appeal - The ad does hold a certain emotional appeal to the consumer as well as inherent motivation for the average bank employee since it is an ad that is straightforward, carries no extra baggage and the message does get across.
  • Negatives - The ad has very few blatant negatives, neither does it confuse the viewer nor is it too familiar or irrelevant. But, yes, it is a bit far-fetched.
  • Recollection - Ads are most effective when they stay in the almost schizophrenic public memory for some time. This ad definetely scores highly on this scale, primarily due to the superb acting of the kid who wonderfully exhibits a very likeable cheerfulness in collecting broken teeth from everywhere. Also, the camerawork is good.
  • Overall - 4/5
Readers, please pour in with your comments. I would definetely want to improve here.


Axe said...

Another negative thing about the ad is that she collects teeth from everywhere for it. She picks up the tooth that another kid lost, she takes teeth out of an old man's dentures and she takes teeth out of a skeleton.

I feel the message from that could be that when you want to build your dream, you should go to all ends to get what you want.

The other way they could have shown it was by showing that the girl asks her friends to help her out or just stores her own teeth or something like that.

But, it's good to see your review of the ad. Keep up the good work.

Abhishek Chopra said...


Thanks for your comments. The message about going all out after your dream is certainly true!

The Empty Head(Ashish) said...

This ad follows in the trail of some excellent advertising that indian banks do, be it the 'rishto ki jama punji" campaign of Bank of India, the "Jeetay raho" of ICICI Pru, the other union bank ads. Most of these ads use the strong indian family values as their recipe, and this is something I really like.

Nice review abhishek, I am glad I inspired you to get started :) Keep up the good work.

Abhishek Chopra said...


Thanks. That's encouraging!

Hussain said...

I've been thinking about writing Ad reviews for so long now. Can't help it really, considering the amount of time that gets lost in the maws of CAT and CA Final studies. Khair, I'd do it sometime after Mid-november. Inshahallah.

I did not know you were an Ad-fad, by the way. :)