KFC ad with Khali
The inimitable Khali. What a smart guy and what a good sport! And of course, what an Ad!

Have you seen Khali’s latest ad, I asked my son, as I thrust my phone under his nose to share this latest gem from the advertising world. He took one look and said “ya ya, it’s a cement ad about a wall that doesn’t break na”.

“Just take a look,” I replied, hitting the play button.

How did this one get past non-adventurous brand managers, and more importantly how did it get approved by the client’s wife?It’s funny, it’s self effacing and in this day of taking ourselves much too seriously, it actually unhesitatingly makes fun of stereotypes. What is the best thing about the Ad one would ask. It’s charming and it’s funny – yes it sure is. But more importantly – it blatantly ignores all the so called brand values of KFC. Is that a good thing you ask. I am not so sure.

The writer, the film makers and the client showed a lot of courage in creating this piece. They were probably hoping it turns into an iconic ad that transformed the fortunes of the brand. The kind of ad that advertising people will talk and write  about in the years to come. Sadly, that is not going to happen here. Because viewers are going to see Khali and even before the ad is played they are going to assume its a cement ad about unbreakable walls. (now that was brand value matching celebrity personality)

To me the centre piece of the ad is Khali using a sewing machine and then taking to embroidery. Eating the chicken just doesn’t seem to be central to the story.

Now take a look at this 12 or 15 year old TVC:

Somehow this iconic ad still remains beyond compare. The attention to every detail, right from the broken cycle wheel on the bridge, the music and the insects buzzing around the smiling light source make it a winner.  Actually what makes it a winner is that the product is integral to the story. Happydent white  for shining teeth. and no one is going to look at it and misjudge it for different product endorsement.

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