oooooh, shiny!- War of the shiny ones

I remember fondly the most wonderful era of advertising, the direct challenge. Maybe there is something amazingly romantic about the wars, and thus I like it, in one form or another. If you go back to the most famous wars in advertising, the ‘cold war’ between coke and pepsi comes to the mind immediately. The way coke and pepsi fought tooth and nail over a sweetened carbonated drink was amazing. Who could have thought that a fortune would be on stake over something so simple as a sweet soda. It was sheer marketing that lead to the see-saw of market share. It was a common site to see them have a dig at each other. Making fun of the campaigns of each other, trying to make campaigns of competitors, this was a period where everything and anything was okay. Sprite topped it all by mocking every other drink. Everybody mocked thumps up, and thumps up hit back at them. Wonderful days, alot of business for ad agencies. Most interesting was how apple hit at IBM, Microsoft and everyone else on a regular basis, with the Iam Mac campaign and even before that the Think Different campaign. ( Microsoft made an attempt to counter I am Mac campaign by trying to promote PC users. Needless to say it was a lame attempt. )

Just when I thought nothing noteworthy has happened lately, something completely shocking happens. I have never seen a bigger upset. A few weeks before, I noticed teasers of a supposedly ‘Mystery’ shampoo doing rounds everywhere, on the OOH, Print and everywhere else possible. I didnt think much of it, its a normal teaser campaign I thought. As expected a few days down the line, the campaign was launched and now I was impressed. Dove had used the teaser in an amazing way, by denying the teaser completely. This was different. Their campaign line was/ is “There is no mystery that dove is┬ábest ” . This was when the entire teaser series talked about a mystery shampoo helping most women etc. Very creative, but wait, it was not over. After another few days I saw the ad which made me applause and very interested in the whole thing. The ad was by Pantene, saying The New Pantent is the Mystery shampoo. I felt how I had felt when I saw the pirates of the silicon valley for the first time. Dove, somehow had managed to steal the campaign completely. This was a level up from attacking competitors campaigns. I couldnt stop laughing at it for a while!!

But Pantene, I hope isnt going to take this without having a word or two, I expect a wittier reply, an act that will fuel this further. Pantene by no means should sit quiet or ignore this, their reputation is at stake afterall. For a company which came up with You can Shine campaign, it shouldnt be impossible to handle this with care. One thing is for sure though, this open attack would surely drive coming quarter with counter- attacks, and attacks on each other. The rounds have begun, and they will last till the knock outs. Surely, there will be blood.

We are sure you can spot similar stories by yourself~ why not share them with us? you can reply to the same thread and include stories of business rivalries which you have spotted.


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