Mili Mishra .

So, this ad irritated me today.

Well, some people don't think about it, and dismiss it as just an ad. I am certainly not one of them! I feel that whatever we see and consume influences us, whether we want to or not.

Few things I didn't like about the ad:

The headline: It implies there is a perfect version of a man, that women(wives and girlfriends) should be chasing, and that men should aspire to be. And somehow a man who has the interests advertised by the <cringe> "MAN Pack" are the ones of a better man.

The copy:

Let's begin with, "Find your man boring?"

Then comes the copy advertising the channel pack:

"make him romantic and funny", "make him money-wise", "make him a master of hot debates", "bring out his macho, adventurous side"

Simply yuck!

Now let us replace it for women

"Find your woman boring?"

"make her cute and chirpy", "make her homely and nice", "make her good at parties", "bring out her sexual, playgirl side"

Gussa aaya? Mujhe bhi aaya! Key word I dislike - "make", coz I believe you can't make people do anything, and neither should you want to. It's manipulative and disrespectful.

What's your take on this ad?

Originally Posted Here

Suneil Barsaiyan

Just to catch eyeballs , copywriters are loosing sense.

Mili Mishra

Clickbait has become the in-thing and anything goes...

Suneil Barsaiyan

Cultural consideration is an important aspect while crafting messaging. This ad may be good in other markets but annoyingly cheap in our context

Aditya Khanduri

There is a better version of all of us, and we must aspire to be that. I don't understand the outrage.

Darshana Mukherjee

You don't 'gift' yourself a better person. Why doesn't it ask if the woman concerned is money-wise or adventurous or a master at debates. Issue is that the ad is forcefully trying to use some widely accepted 'masculine' traits to call a man interesting or not.

Aditya Khanduri

Where does it say woman can't be money wise or adventurous?

Darshana Mukherjee

Exactly the point. Instead of 'Hey you could be a perfect version of yourself' they are like 'Hey these qualities are perfect for a male. So make your man perfect by gifting him these channels'. Probably Times Network doesn't bother whether a woman is lacking in any of the qualities (as long as the rotis are round, who cares?!). None of the traits mentioned is wrong to be expected from any person, it is an individual's choice of what you prefer in an individual. What hurt me is they explicitly called out a man for lacking those.

Mili Mishra

Aditya Khanduri If you don't understand the outrage and are willing, I am sure you will find volunteers :) But rest assured nobody can "make you" angry about something you are not.

Aditya Khanduri

I try to make a conscious effort to not get angry at anything nowadays :)

Darshana Mukherjee

And obviously watching *English* channels make people smarter. This is such a disgusting ad in this day and age. I understand certain qualities are still seen as masculine but to shamelessly put across such lame remedies which apparently can mould a man into a classic perfect example is sickening.

Mili Mishra

Darshana Mukherjee it is quite appalling, but probably not so much, as is clear in the comments. The things we find outrageous and the things we don't, say a lot about us all, doesn't it? :)

Darshana Mukherjee

Probably it depends on what catches our eye. I remember liking the Gillette ad and then later realised why peoplel were outraged. Probably that what makes debates interesting. Although there are people who just refuse to budge. What hurts me is that these ads must have gone through rounds of discussion and cleared all tests.

Kamonasish Aayush Mazumdar

With ads there are mostly just 2 questions - 1) does it work? 2) is it legal?

Unfortunately or fortunately the ad passes both those criterions.

Mili Mishra

Kamonasish Aayush Mazumdar You are right. Let us do our job in expressing our disagreement when commercial interests distort our version of society. Else, we will simply be walking from one sexist era to another..

Harshal N Shroff

The fact that it's Getting disscussed, means it's job is done...the emotions you feel are personal...

Advertising...like this is to get attention...the fact that it got you Interested in copy and this debate means...it GOT ATTENTION.

Mili Mishra

Harshal N Shroff I guess that is subjective, I can say about myself that I get repulsed by brands which use cheap tricks and treat me as someone who cannot differentiate right from wrong. On finding things like this, I go farther away from the buying from the brand and it creates an extremely wrong image of their interests for me. Consumers are getting smarter and would only become more so in my opinion.

Harshal N Shroff

Mili Mishra ofcourse it is. And you are entitled to it... however the copywriter is working on a brief....largely based on the demographics and customer behavior pre searched.

So this tread would count as an engagement...on a negative note with you giving more information about your preferences.

But would you be unsubscribing the paper ? Or never look at it again because it carries bad ads...no right.

As put above is it legal..yes. does it work....well we are ENGAGING on it. Toh win.

Mili Mishra

Harshal N Shroff A win by alienating consumers? Not a win in my book. Also, not everything that a copywriter thinks they know about a customer is right. I operate an agency and I know how consumer research goes, and these kind of mistakes happen when companies have a superficial understanding of the customer. And I have unsubscribed from this newspaper long time back when I counted their news/ads ratio :D, also have stopped buying from brands who advertise objectionably, and there are cases studies of advertising gone wrong which impacting brands unfavourably. When you subscribe to the notion that anything goes (in business or advertising), remember that it doesn't stop when your personal interests are on the line :)

Harshal N Shroff

Mili Mishra long back in my graduation...this one professor for consumer behavior told me one line...

There is no bad ad....if you feel it's a bad ad...you are not the TG.

He headed DDB for quite sometime.

There is no MISTAKE here per se. But your PERSONAL belief is probably clouding it...to see that it actually works.

Again. We can agree to disagree :). Something that also he taught us. Creative disagreements and being in your face are part of "advertising".

Mili Mishra

Harshal N Shroff Ofcourse :) Like I mentioned in one of my previous comments, I can't "make you" angry about something you aren't.

Soham Sarkar

If your offended by a print ad with sub par copy you probably have too much time on your hands? Not trying to be mean but it's a print ad with 0 consequence..a bad one at that.

Mili Mishra

0 consequence? I disagree. There is ample evidence of how popular culture and messages in media and advertising <including but not limited to print ads> play havoc with the mind. And, I will always have time to raise my voice against things I find wrong :) Lazy or sub-par or just bad, doesn't make it less of a worthy of a reprimand...

Soham Sarkar

Unless you can cite relevant data that can suggest causality between print ads and behavior I can't agree with you. You can't just lump a single ad, from the dying print media no less, with pop culture as a whole..thats super disingenious. It's a bit like saying alt goth punk music shapes society because music shapes society and alt goth punk is a part of music..sure but how many people are influenced by that particularly?

No one really reads print media anymore and print ads are of no consequence.

Also I don't really believe the onus is on corporations to be considerate/ethical. They just need to be legal and then let the market decide.

To me its much ado about nothing

Soham Sarkar

Instead check out gilettes new toxic masculity commercial which got severe backlash and completely failed. That I can understand because it was a social campaign and got massive attention and consequentially the market reacted appropriately.

Semantically I suppose there is little difference about getting emotional about an ad on social or print but it's about picking your battles to me

Mili Mishra

Soham Sarkar To each her own, like you mentioned about picking battles, and I choose mine. In my mind, wrong messaging such as this print ad which boxes people into stereotypes deserves discussion in forums with young people like ours, and you clearly don't think that. Guess you can also see from the comment thread, that opinions are not as unanimous as one might assume, so please excuse this thread while I stick to my opinion that a discussion on this is worthy enough :)

Darshana Mukherjee

Soham Sarkar I do not think the issue was with hw many people can it affect.. It might affect not a single soul and still be wrong cos it was created by one of us.. and that POV was not questioned. Also, i do not think we could really draw a hard line saying - hey this was a commercial ad so fine but if a social campaign then nope, damn wrong. We never know what affects whom. I understand we cant choose to fight all battles but then if someone does, maybe not question that.

Shanthi Kiran Komaravolu

Our emotions are their currency.. We all know that watching channels doesn't make much of a difference in one's personality or make a guy more desirable or better. Why so much reaction..if we have an issue I'm sure one can report it officially to authorities. That's the path than discussion on Social Media. We can complain and ask others to help. That's better. Outrage doesn't solve it.

Mili Mishra

The post is not for finding a solution, it is for discussion and as you can see from the comments thread, not everyone thinks it is a problem, which I have acknowledged in my post also. And if we stop having discussions about things we find problematic, I think that's a bigger problem. And not everything that is wrong, is illegal. So, can't report it all :) Also, I have answered a similar objection in the comment thread with Soham Sarkar. Please check it out πŸ‘† You don't think this is worth a discussion, I do. So, we can agree to disagree and you can move on to the next post in Pushstart. Lots of great discussions going on πŸ‘

Zain Siddiqui

Having read everything so far - I give full marks to the advertiser. I wish I had such talent to entice such engagement through print campaigns in fb groups far and wide. Is ad vale ko koi bonus dedo ye maheene

Mili Mishra

Zain Siddiqui That's one way to think about it :) Personally I am never in favour of anything goes in life or in business. Ethics in general and in business is tough, but by supporting things which are wrong, we get more of then. And we only complain when things get personal. Our choice what we get served :)

Amit Ghosh

We debate for television and then spend the whole time with Netflix and Prime video. abb Tv wale kuch toh karenge... :P attention ke liye.. :P

Join India’s
most active community
and interact with 20k+
like-minded entrepreneurs