Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Redmi Note 7 Pro – A Close-up


Many a times advertisements talk about product features but do not properly explain how these features benefit consumers. This has been happening in various product categories but in case of digital cameras it keeps happening almost all the time, I would also include smartphones in the category because these are digital
cameras as well.
From the time digital cameras made their appearance in the Indian market, which was a little over two decades ago, the number of megapixels the camera has to offer was always highlighted the advertisement. It was hardly ever explained what happens when you have more megapixels, how does it improve your photography. Thus the general impression the ads created in the consumers’ minds was that higher the megapixel better the performance without explaining how. This is not necessarily really true, experts say that there is more to digital photography than just megapixels; there are other aspects which together with megapixels decide the performance of the camera. But higher megapixels definitely helps in maintaining clarity when it comes to zooming, and this is what the new campaign for Redmi Note 7 Pro is trying to communicate. In case of a regular camera you could use the optical zoom function which is
superior to digital zoom. We are not discussing photography here, so I would not like to go into too many details. All I would like to say is that in case of Redmi Note 7 Pro, the disadvantage of not having optical zoom function has been compensated by increasing the megapixels to 48.     

The Redmi Note 7 Pro ad campaign comprises two ads that I know of, the campaign has taken the celebrity endorsement route, the ads feature a popular Hindi film actor – Ranveer Singh. In the hostel ad it is shown how Redmi Note 7 Pro helps in revealing that the person who was thought to be a woman is actually a man; in the classroom ad Redmi Note 7 Pro helps in revealing that the student who was thought to be reading his text book is actually reading a comic book. All this was possible because of the remarkable image clarity when the zoom function is used. The treatment of both these ads is meant to be humorous, both the situations shown are intended to be relatable. The ads have been embedded below:
If for some reason you are unable to watch the embedded video here, you may watch it on YouTube, here is the link: https://youtu.be/foqCuouu5gQ
If for some reason you are unable to watch the embedded video here, you may watch it on YouTube, here is the link: https://youtu.be/1jMA-jftg_0
For a change the ad campaign for Redmi Note 7 Pro explains how with higher megapixels (MP), in this case 48MP, you get a clear and detailed image even when you zoom close. The ads have gone beyond the product feature and has converted the feature into consumer benefit, this is what I like about this ad campaign – this I feel makes better sense to the consumers rather than just saying that our smartphone camera is superior because we offer you 48 MP. 
I personally think that the creative execution could have been a lot better and effective, I will tell you why, here are my observations:
The campaign does not seem to target a certain kind of customers, there seems to be no core audience, the communication generally aimed at everyone who can afford this smartphone model. It is my personal opinion that this campaign would have done better if it was fine tuned to address a certain kind of customer.
The product benefit the campaign is trying to communicate is rather weak; if the purpose of the smartphone to spy on others, it is frivolous.
Using celebrity endorsement does not seem to add any special value, it is like several other celebrity centric ad campaigns. In the classroom ad Ranveer Singh play the role of a Catholic priest who could be the principal of the school, in their bid to have a humorous script the school principal is portrayed as some kind of joker which I find rather disrespectful. The ad is not humorous either. As for the hostel ad, it is based on a decades old joke; it was not at all original and I did not find it funny.
Long before the days of smartphones camera ownership in India was one of the lowest in the world. With smartphones the camera ownership has shot up to dizzy heights, after all a smartphone is also a camera and the quality is getting better every day. So today we have a huge community of amateur photographers and videographers who use only their smartphone cameras to produce content and share the images and videos produced by them on social media, this community is growing rapidly. There are free downloadable apps which make the quality of the images even better, this further encourages this community. The feature of 40MP which results in better quality zoom is a great advantage and needs to be leveraged keeping this community in mind. Being a YouTuber myself I would like to know how the 40MP feature can help video makers in making better quality videos, perhaps the company, in their future campaigns, should talk about how the phone can help in making great videos also.
I think the company and its ad agency should rethink their entire communications strategy for better results. I do not think a celebrity is essential when you have a strong product benefit to offer.
Before signing off I would like to mention that Xiaomi India has also introduced Redmi Note 8 Pro which gives you 64MP and also has Alexa built in. They have two distinctly different ads, one purely on the Alexa feature and the other shows how the smartphone camera helps in solving a bank robbery. I am glad that both the TV ads do not feature any celebrity, you do not need a celebrity when you have a strong product benefit. The second ad is a spoof on the popular TV serial CID, once again they have used humour to convey their message that 64MP gives far better image quality; I feel this ad is better than the Redmi Note 7 Pro ads.


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