Storyboard18's Brand Blitz Quiz, India's First Panel Business Quiz decided to have some fun with brand nerds from the Indian advertising and marketing community. We got Sai Ganesh, founder, India Wants To Know and the quiz master of Brand Blitz Quiz to quiz angel investor and business strategist Lloyd Mathias, communications strategy consultant Karthik Srinivasan and indie creative shop - Talented's founding member Sanket Audhi.
In what we call the pilot episode, Ganesh asked the guests, "Which brand introduced a mascot to compete with Polson’s mascot?" Mathias was the one with the right answer - Amul. Polson was a dairy products brand that was started in India by Pestonjee Eduljee in 1915. Amul was launched much later in 1946 as a part of the white revolution movement.
However, it was only in 1966 when the little girl with big blue eyes in polka dots frock made her first big appearance. Created by Eustace Fernandes, the mascot appeared on a few lamp posts in Mumbai, with her very first line, "Give us this day our daily bread: with Amul Butter."
Mathias also highlighted that prior to the introduction of the mascot, the packaging of the brand was simply butter paper. Further, he went on to narrate an interesting story on why Amul chose to continue working with daCunha Communications. Dr. Verghese Kurien was the chairman of National Dairy Development Board (NDDB), and Amrita Patel was the head of the board. Patel is the sister-in-law of late Sylvester daCunha. She mentioned to Kurien about that her brother-in-law is an ad man, and to give his agency a chance to work with the brand. Rest, as they say, is history!
Srinivasan shared another fun fact about the iconic mascot. Since the Amul Girl has as a point of view on topical news, many consumers still are under the impression that it is a part of the many newspapers’ editorial line up. But, in reality, it is a branded ad, which Amul pays for.
Mathias believes Amul is the pioneer of moment marketing. He recalled a conversation he had with Sylvester's son Rahul daCunha. Sometimes the Amul topical ads get by without any formal approval by the client. Most of the time, the conversations would happen telephonically with the MD of Amul on the topical themes and they release them the following day.
Watch part one of the pilot episode here: