Marketing Featured South Asia

TBWA\ India names Amit Kekre as new CSO

Mumbai, India – Advertising agency TBWA\ India has appointed Amit Kekre, former national strategy head at advertising agency DDB Mudra Group, to be its new chief strategy officer.

With 23 years of industry experience, Amit has worked with agencies globally, including Lowe, JWT, and Ogilvy, as well as Grey, and McCann in India, Malaysia, and Australia. During his recent stint at DDB Mudra, Kekre led marketing, brand, and business strategies for the group’s clients, namely Diageo, Pepsi, Unilever, and Future Group, as well as Godrej, amongst others. He has also championed the group’s diversity agenda – and has been pivotal in establishing diversity as a key strategic growth capability for the group. 

Moreover, Kekre is the chairperson for the India chapter of Open Pride, Omnicom’s ERG for the LGBTIQ+ community at the workplace, and will continue to lead these chapters from TBWA.

Kekre said, “We live in times when the question of growth cannot afford to be linear, it must be discontinuous. So must be the ways to achieve it, we need a fundamental shake-up from comfort zones – of how we see our brands, our businesses, the consumers they serve and the world they must create. No better place than TBWA, the @DISRUPTION company to make this happen.”

Meanwhile, Govind Pandey, TBWA\ Inda’s CEO, shared that Kekre is an exceptional leader and an impressive strategist, and his ambition to discover and understand goes well beyond the books, tools, and processes.

“Amit will be responsible for developing and executing an elevated strategic approach across our planning department while working closely with the agency’s portfolio of brands,” said Pandey.

Marketing Featured South Asia

Edtech LEAD’s latest campaign uses fun, educational ads to boost admission

Mumbai, India – LEAD, an Indian edtech that has recently reached unicorn status, has launched its newest campaign focused on the visible learning outcomes of children studying in LEAD Powered Schools. In addition, the campaign is also running on activity-based, practical learning methods that depart from old, lecture-based passive modes of teaching and learning that the parents’ generation was accustomed to.

As part of the campaign, two ads are released, which are conceptualised by creative agency TBWA and directed by filmmaker Nitesh Tiwari. These ads will be aired across multiple GEC and regional channels, and will be a part of LEAD’s 360-degree campaign via outdoor, digital and BTL activation.

The first film, ‘Syllabification’ is an endearing story of two fathers bonding over the right way to pronounce big English words by breaking them up into syllables – a trick taught to them by their kids who go to LEAD Powered Schools. Said ad touches on the subject of visible advantages of one of LEAD’s flagship programme, ELGA (English Language and General Awareness), which teaches English as a life-skill rather than a subject.

Meanwhile, the second film, ‘Aloo Se Electricity’ shows a dad who says he would have been a scientist and inventor like his kid, if only he had the opportunity to study in a LEAD Powered School when he was growing up. The ad is built around the innovative ways in which science is taught in a LEAD Powered School via ‘learn by doing’ approach.

For LEAD Chief Marketing Officer Anupam Gurani, through this campaign, they want to help parents find the right LEAD Powered School in their vicinity, thereby bridging student learning gaps and enabling parents to provide world-class education to their child, right in their hometown.

“The pandemic continues to impact all of us, especially those belonging to the lower economic strata. There are plenty of students who have not gone to school in the past 20 months and this has resulted in severe learning gaps. This is where LEAD comes in. We are building India’s largest network of schools that provide International standard of education at an affordable price,” Gurani said.

Speaking about the filmwork process for the ad, filmmaker Nitesh Tiwari said, “It was fantastic to work with LEAD again on their new campaign. The latest films are as relatable as the previous ones for parents who are always trying to get the best education for their children. These films beautifully capture the emotion of how parents want to give more to their child and equally be a part of their learning process. The scripts felt quite personal and I ended up drawing a lot from my life experiences.”

Meanwhile, Govind Pandey, CEO of TBWA\India, commented, “LEAD is leading a movement in India to provide access to a world class education to as many kids as possible regardless of which town or city they are studying. We see many progressive and proud parents joining in and giving their kids the foundation that opens all kinds of possibilities for them in the future. This campaign reflects this and invites more and more parents to join this movement.” 

Parixit Bhattacharya, managing partner at TBWA\India, also added, “There is nothing more reassuring for a parent than seeing their child display clear, visible signs of learning. Fortunately, for parents who have enrolled their children at a LEAD powered school, this is an everyday reality. We wanted to dramatize this through the new campaign while keeping true to the insight that seeing their kids learn so well can cause a tinge of jealousy while they are flushed with pride.”

Marketing Featured South Asia

IDFC’s new campaign explores emotions’ role in investing

Mumbai, India – IDFC Mutual Fund, finance company based in India, has launched a new investor awareness campaign themed #InvestmentMeinNoEmotion that delivers the message of disciplined investing in the face of market volatility. The campaign highlights the Balanced Advantage Fund category as a potential solution to control the behavioral dilemma. This was done in collaboration with creative agency TBWA \ India.

A Balanced Advantage Fund is a hybrid fund that invests in both debt and equity markets, adopting a dynamic asset allocation strategy that can actively rebalance the portfolio depending on the market.

The campaign composes of two short videos, titled ‘Chef’ and ‘Shiromani’, that highlights a chef and a musician, who unintentionally reveal embarrassing information about the inspiration behind their ‘talent’ while being swayed by their emotions, offering the viewer a chuckle while triggering an introspection. The campaign conveys the message of getting carried away by emotion when dealing with key professional situations. The short films are a metaphor for investing hard-earned money with too much emotion like anger, joy, agitation, and greed.

Speaking about the campaign, famous Bollywood director Sagard Ballary, who directed the films, stated that the creative team chose humor as an expression to convey the idea which always works when you have to get a point across, especially one as complicated as investing.

‘’Nobody likes to be preached to. Subtle thoughts implanted while you are laughing always works – so my challenge was to create memorable characters that everybody could relate to and situations and expressions that the viewer would identify with,’’ shared Ballary.

Meanwhile, Vishal Kapoor, CEO of IDFC Asset Management Company Limited, commented, “It is only human to be emotional, whether it is anger, joy, fear or greed. However, avoiding these can help with better investment outcomes. For many investors, the fear of missing out or the greed of supernormal returns can override sensible investment decision-making. A Balanced Advantage Fund, through its dynamic allocation to equities and debt based on market conditions, can provide stability and better risk-adjusted returns over the long term.’’

The campaign was produced by Bolt, a division of Omnicom group, to which TBWA belongs.

The #InvestmentMeinNoEmotionshort films will be rolling out across different media platforms namely television, digital and social media, as well as a series of innovative creatives through outdoor media including hoardings across 15 cities that will create additional visibility.

Marketing Featured South Asia

New ad by India-based EdTech bares the ‘intimidated’ parents in the face of new gen education

Mumbai, India – Most of the time, ad campaigns in the education sector focus on the children or students as part of their messaging. After all, they’re the main stakeholder of education providers, and parents as decision makers would want to know what the school has in store for them. 

One India-based EdTech solution provider, LEAD, which aims to disrupt the education landscape in the country is also breaking the norm when it comes to promoting educational services. 

In collaboration with creative agency TBWA\India, LEAD has released a TVC that puts the spotlight on parents rather than children. In the ad, we see a young mom and dad having an intimate conversation and baring their sentiments about harbored feelings of jealousy towards the wide exposure their child is getting, specifically through a LEAD Powered School. 


LEAD, which has presence in over 400 districts in India, offers EdTech solutions for both parents and schools. For parents, it has developed a LEAD Parent-Student app where parents can monitor and accompany their children in learning sessions. The EdTech has also been partnering with schools to make their institutions ‘LEAD powered’ by integrating its innovative curriculum that puts a premium on English and coding skills. 

According to both TBWA\India and LEAD, parents’ view on the newer modes of academic instruction has long been an unexplored insight in communication. A progressive educational landscape inevitably requires progressive parenting and this poses a challenge to parents. 

LEAD’s CMO Anupam Gurani commented, “Growing up, I have witnessed how my parents wanted to provide me with better education but limited opportunities always posed a restriction. Now as a parent, I echo a similar feeling for my child. With our first ever PAN India campaign, we want to reach out to all those parents who are looking to provide better school education to their child but have felt constrained due to lack of options.” 

Gurani adds, “LEAD Powered Schools [solve this] by providing International standard education in small town India, which is our core market. The underlying thought of the campaign is based on a beautiful insight tapping the emotion of how every successive generation of parents wants to give more to their children and in the process learn from them.”

Furthermore, both the agency and LEAD said that the film reflects an often side-swept result of witnessing the significant shift to new ways of schooling and this is the adaptation of parents which at times bring to the surface their unfulfilled desire of the interactive and innovative methods in education that is present today.

“[This is] a clear departure from the old, lecture-based passive modes of teaching and learning that the parents were used to growing up,” both said in a press statement. 

The execution of the film was helmed by acclaimed Director Nitesh Tiwari and he commented, “The ad film captures a parents’ perspective of how a LEAD Powered School is imparting interactive and enriching education, both at school and at home. I admire the brand’s vision of transforming conventional schooling in India.”

Parixit Bhattacharya, the managing partner of TBWA\India, also candidly said, “We often joke about being jealous of our kids because of the exposure they have in a world that is markedly different from the time we were kids. Though universal rules of child rearing still apply, today’s parents are dealing with an entirely new playing field. And the pressure to choose wisely is heavy.”

Meanwhile, TBWA\India’s CEO Govind Pandey, commented, “LEAD has a noble social mission to provide excellence in education to all. This commercial recognizes the role of hardworking progressive parents in the middle India of tier 2 and tier 3 as the real heroes who despite the odds of their generation have made something of themselves and now have the exposure and the determination to know the difference the right school education can make and do not want to compromise in that. Even more so in these uncertain and turbulent times.”

Marketing Featured South Asia

TBWA\ India launches new data practice, unveils new appointment

India – Advertising agency TBWA\ India has recently launched ‘Weapon’, a new data practice that aims to solve key growth problems and challenges faced by CEOs. 

‘Weapon’ is a mix of creativity and data that seeks to solve the growth, profitability, and efficiency challenges of today’s organization in an increasingly complex and ever-changing business landscape.

Following this endeavor, the agency has also appointed Vishwajit Vyas, former senior manager of software company Automation Anywhere, to be its new head of data practice, effective immediately. 

Vyas brings with him his broad experience at high-growth startups. He specializes in data analytics, leading large teams for clients across technology, banking, financial services, and healthcare, as well as retail, and consumer packaged goods. Vyas has also led the development of new products and services that met the analytic needs of Fortune 500 companies and has been on founder teams developing strategic initiatives for long-term business growth.

Aside from working previously at Automation Anywhere, Vyas has also spent five years working at India’s decision sciences firm Mu Sigma across many roles spanning delivery, product, and strategy, as well as the founder’s office.

In his new role, Vyas will be responsible for developing and delivering TBWA\ India’s data strategy, while working closely with the global collective, leveraging TBWA’s unique capabilities to implement intelligence, which will continue to shape its clients’ thinking and execution across the marketing and advertising value chain.

Commenting on his appointment, Vyas said that he is excited to join TBWA and help fuel the level of innovation and strategic thinking the agency can offer the brands, finding opportunities to unlock growth using the power of data.

“The CEO is faced with a multitude of factors that are affecting brand performance and growth. The ever-changing customer needs and behaviors across channels have necessitated the use of data in creative and meaningful ways. At the same time, the need for a nuanced understanding of the customer and the market is ever-present,” Vyas said.

He added, “‘Weapon’ is an opportunity to become a trusted partner of the CEO, helping them articulate the problem, define it with data, design a solution, and finally execute it efficiently at a tactical level.”

Meanwhile, TBWA\ India’s CEO Govind Pandey shared that TBWA is on a continuous journey to find new avenues through which they can deliver disruptive growth, and ‘Weapon’ is their way to be strategic partners to the clients throughout the value chain.

“Our deep consumer focus, cultural creative design – now combined with our expertise in data-led insights and execution – is critical in framing and answering the key growth questions that every CEO has,” said Pandey.