A screen grab of BookMyShow’s ‘Touchy Topic’ ads campaign
A screen grab of BookMyShow’s ‘Touchy Topic’ ads campaign

BookMyShow’s ‘Touchy Topic’ Padmaavat ad goes viral with 8.4 mn YouTube views

BookMyShow's advertising campaign promoting Sanjay Leela Bhansali's 'Padmaavat' goes viral. The ads have a fun take on the fear of missing out factor and urge viewers to book tickets in advance

New Delhi: As Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s ‘Padmaavat’ hit the theatres on Thursday, online movie ticket booking platform BookMyShow’s advertising campaign promoting the film went viral.

Clearly, anything related to the controversial film is drawing attention both offline and online. The ads, made for digital as well as television platforms, have a fun take on the FOMO (fear of missing out) factor and urge viewers to book tickets in advance.

While protests continue to shadow the film, the campaign appears to have resonated with viewers, garnering over 8.4 million views. The film was uploaded on the brand’s YouTube channel on 19 January.

Made by advertising agency BBH India, the aptly titled ‘Touchy Topic’ begins with a voiceover saying whoever does not use BookMyShow should be ready with the excuse that Padmaavat is a ‘Touchy Topic’ for them. The video features people sharing what they loved in the film with friends and ending up irritating all those who have not managed to watch the film. The campaign aims to make advance ticket booking a habit among viewers.

Apart from the TV ad, the platform has also created a digital campaign playing on the missing ‘I’ in the film’s title. The Bollywood epic, which was earlier titled Padmaavati, was renamed ‘Padmaavat’ in December by the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC).

This is the second time BookMyShow has done a film centric advertising campaign after creating a spot for Salman Khan starrer Tiger Zinda Hai in December last year.

“When we decided to use television as a medium to bring on board new users on BookMyShow, we wanted to come up with a simple ad film that would resonate with many of us. We are confident that viewers will find the ad film’s honesty reassuring and comforting when they see that they are not the only ones to feel left out when they haven’t seen a film and that, more importantly, there is a solution to this problem on our platform," said Marzdi Kalianiwala, vice president - marketing and business intelligence, BookMyShow.

Naresh Gupta, strategy head and managing partner at advertising agency Bang in the Middle thinks it is brave of BookMyShow to create an ad like this. According to him, ‘Touchy Topic’ employs a decent creative device and has been done well. However he feels that ‘Excuse’ is not a new insight, and many brands have done it. “Yet the ad is sticky with its slight slapstick humour. At the time when everyone is waiting and watching the possible mayhem, BookMyShow is bravely rattling its sharp sword," he said.

Gupta also noted that the platform has cleverly used the context of current movie to build a habit of early booking. “The advance booking is one facet that a brand like BookMyShow should own," he added.

Padmaavat which stars Deepika Padukone, Ranveer Singh and Shahid Kapoor has been at the centre of a controversy ever since the announcement of the project. Sets of the film were vandalized severeral, and the Rajput Karni Sena has threatened violence even after the CBFC granted the movie a release certificate. The group has accused Bhansali’s film of distorting historical facts and hurting the sentiments of the community

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