A new campaign by ITC Hotels entails a creative on Mona Lisa. Advertised under the theme “Experience the world with an Indian soul”, this creative has been done by JWT and was launched to highlight the culture of India and ITC as the representative of that culture. According to Express Hospitality, the Ads are a “visual representation of the fusion of the rich Indian culture and heritage and world class standards in the context of hospitality” and “bring alive and showcase world class hospitality with an Indian touch”
But what exactly is the campaign about? The intention of the campaign is to capture the essence of Brand India, and subsequently, route this equity to the ITC group of Hotels. That’s why the tagline ‘Experience the world with an Indian Soul’. According to JWT, “Mona Lisa is synonymous with universal beauty and intrigue and this universal symbol of feminity doing the classical Indian namaste sent the message across”
Though the recall value was very high and the article reports that the Ad was really well taken by the target consumers, I am not sure how much of professionalism and seriousness does it reflect, when it comes to International standards of advertising! If one has to communicate a symbol of international standards of service and perfection meeting Indian warmth and hospitality, the advertising and the theme should be commensurate with that too.
Consider the original masterpiece. From this art, remove the finesse and add the local flavors and Indianize it !….You would get the ITC’s campaign. Here is the contrast presented…rather the “Before” and “After” of the campaign!
It is definitely an internationally recognized icon customized to local flavors, but in terms of brand equity, it does not reflect creativity. In fact, if you just google “Mona Lisa” you would find enough morphs and modifications on the beauty that would discount the innovative creative by JWT in this case!
There were other ads also highlighting the fusion of local service with an International perspective – “a ballet dancer dancing with ghungroos, Indian figurines on chopsticks, a christian bride with mehendi on her hands”
ITC group recently reorganized its hotels into four categories – ITC Hotels, WelcomHotels, Fortune Hotels and WelcomHeritage. ITC Hotels are the premium deluxe hotels for business travellers, WelcomHotels are business and leisure hotels, Fortune Hotels offer first-class full services hotels and WelcomHeritage include heritage hotels, palaces, forts, havelis, resorts and homes.