Monday, August 8, 2011

Blenders Pride and Bru- Common brand ambassador. Could have been avoided!!

The debate is never ending. Should brand ambassadors be used? What value do they add to the brand? What impact does negative publicity of the ambassador have on the brand e.g. the sexcapades of Tiger Woods on the brand he endorses? The point I am trying to make is about 2 brands currently being endorsed by National Award winner and former Miss World Priyanka Chopra.

The two brands I am talking about are Seagram’s Blenders Pride whisky and HUL’s Bru Coffee. In spite of being brands for the mass market, both cater to different target audiences. One is a liquor brand positioning itself as the drink for the elite while other is for families to move away from Tea to Coffee. The reason I am talking about it is that I find it disconcerting that an ambassador endorsing liquor is also endorsing a family brand.

I do not know whether Blender’s Pride signed Priyanka first or Bru. If Bru signed, then they should pull out all ads with Priyanka when she signed with Blenders Pride. Whereas if Blenders Pride signed first, then it is a major goof-up on part of HUL to sign her for Bru knowing all too well that she endorses a liquor brand.

Although different as chalk and cheese, the issue is problematic since it is a liquor brand. It would not have mattered had it been a soft drink or an energy drink. Indian society looks at liquor in a negative way. Moreover a female endorsing it would draw more attention since women in India do not drink liquor except may be the educated urban areas. It is still a thing that is looked down upon by Indians. I really doubt the efficacy of Seagram’s to sign a female for a Men’s brand. I doubt if women are the target audience here.

An unpardonable goof-up from a brand point of view. More so for Bru than Blenders Pride.