Coke, HUL.. are arguably amongst the biggest brands in the world. tell me how many people will buy merchandise of these brands without any push marketing (coke logo on Aamir khan's poster.. people are buying Aamir's poster, not aligning their identity to coke)
What does your brand mean to people? why should its symbol be cherished by people?
I took this picture at a stall on the way to a temple near Pune (where I was dragged to unwillingly, by parents as only parents can do. the trip was I think to alay fears of 'me getting lost' to them.)
The letters on the key chain is the name of a populist maharashtrian political outfit (with loud nasty agendas). It is populist, with its leader always portrayed with raised upright hand pointing in a vague direction. well, its not exactly vague... he is pointing to the 'others/outsiders'. The posture is allegative, on front foot.. saying 'you better do it our way, or else'. I wonder how was the revered german dictator's posture in then propaganda communication.
anyways, the point is, like all populist communications, some people love it with all hope that they can muster through their frustrations. while some hate it silently, for the sheer madness of it and their apparent helplessness.
with only this kind of love/hate polarity can a brand find a way in a people's psyche and become a proactive choice of advocacy or derision.
The brand is talking to the 'faithfuls' of a certain deity. its merchandise is sold at stalls selling faith in trinkets. people walk up the 200 steps in submission, collecting evidences of their faith on the way. They are most receptive to suggestion now. the brand is aligning faith in itself with the faith in the deity.
talk of activation. talk of engagement. the Rs. 5 key chain is doing it all.
Ofcourse, this doesn't hold true for all brands. brands like Volkswagen which are all about 'unassuming understated excellence' can't really afford a polar emotion. I wonder why then, they are doing 'the fun theory' experiments in some geographies. (well increased awareness can't possibly harm i guess. hmm.. )
but for tata tea which has aligned itself to anti corruption and waking up people from their reverie of citizenry's right without citizenry's duties, the measure of its success would be the consumer's adoption of brand identity to his bosom. waiting for the day when the consumer sports the tata leaf around its neck or on the wrist.