Brands create a splash this year at Kumbh Mela
Every 12 years, millions of priests, people, and Hindu devotees come together to bathe in the sacred river to cleanse their sins, and feel the hand of god gracing them. Sangam – the confluence of the Ganga, Yamuna and the mythical Saraswati rivers at Allahabad, situated in Uttar Pradesh, India is considered one of the holiest spots of Hinduism. Acknowledging the opportunity to establish their brands, a lot of brands did on-ground activation, leaning towards purpose-driven marketing campaigns.
- Swachhata Ki Sawari – HUL collaborated with Boatmen Community this year to start a little good, by cleaning the rivers. The Sangam is not accessible by roadways, which restricts the devotees and priests to reach their destinations only through boats, and as the volume of visitors is high, the littering that goes on is a huge concern. HUL addressed this issue in the simplest way possible, the incessant, back-and-forth boat rides were used as a means to clean the river. Once the boats are in the river, a closed net will be tied to each boat, which will collect all the garbage along the route. At the shore, cleaners will empty the nets and fresh nets will be hooked in again.
- Swasthya Chetna Thalis – Lifebuoy since its inception, has struck with only one core value, that is to pass on the message of leading a healthy and safe lifestyle to millions of Indians over numerous decades. This year at Kumbh Mela, the brand chose to educate the masses who are consuming to food to wash their hands before. This deed, the brand achieved by inscribing the words. “Please wash your hands before eating” on all the plates.
- #GosafeOutside – Conceptualized yet again by Ogilvy and Mathers, Hamam made a stand that it not only aims to make a difference in people’s skin but also to the safety of people when they are outside. At Kumbh Mela, Hamam came up with sarees that have layers of waterproofing for woman who come out of the river after taking a holy dip. This was done in the light of safeguarding the modesty of woman, who are often photographed in such instances, and also to make a strong statement in the society.
- Mobile Banks – State Bank of India set up two branches for the pilgrims. They also had Forex features set up for foreigners. Other facilities provided by the brand included 2,000 life jackets, 10 changing rooms for pilgrims and 65-70 dedicated individuals working at the Kumbh Mela acting as facilitators.
Many other brands gave out a strong message in Kumbh Mela by pursuing cause-led marketing. The brand’s focused on leveraging this peaceful gathering to carter mutual interests of the company and the society itself. This ranged from new companies launching their products, to already established brands ensuring that they get brand recall.
Sridhar Venkateswaran15 Posts
A voracious reader who is highly opinionated and, on a philosophical quest to find meaning. Sridhar loves to be in solitude and, listen to the silent screams of his dualistic soul. A true believer in the phrase — “A word after a word after a word is power”