2700 Crores Wiped Out in Single Day: Tanishq's Disastrous Ad Campaign


A still from the controversial ad

While making bold statements in marketing campaigns is a trend in countries like the USA, Indian companies have mostly shied away from making controversial advertisements for their products. Nike and Gillette have faced huge backlash and support for their controversial ad campaigns in developed markets. The latest storm brewing in India is the Tanishq's ad featuring an inter-religious ceremony taking place. 

The Ad by Tanishq (Tata groups jewellery division) as a part of its Ekatvam campaign which celebrates people from different backgrounds coming together, showed a pregnant Hindu woman escorted by her Muslim mother in law to her baby shower ceremony. The woman then asks her mother-in-law " this ceremony is not held at your home" to which the latter replies " Isn't it a tradition to keep daughters happy everywhere?"

The ad went viral and received a huge backlash from netizens who slammed it for promoting interfaith marriages and love jihad. Netizens on social media platforms asked why wasn't the roles reversed and due to the huge uproar #boycotttanishq started trending in India and due to this bad publicity 2700 crores were wiped out from Titan(Tanishq's parent company) in the stock market in a single day. This was a historic slump.

Things became even worse when celebrities like Kangana tweeted on the advertisement and labelled the makers of the ad as "creative terrorists".Tanishq apologised and deleted the ad. But the damage has been done. Now people who earlier supported the ad were angry at Tanishq for bending due to pressure and deleting the ad. 

What Can You Learn From This Incident?

  • We as Indians need to be secular and respect every religion, No religion is so fragile that a 30-second video can offend it.

  • Now you might have heard of the term target audience. You always need to appeal to your target audience. And that's where Tanishq failed. In India, Gold jewellery is not just a commodity but an emotional subject and bought mainly by Hindus. So if you are selling something to a target market what benefit would you get from offending their feelings? Tanishq needs to understand this and try a new marketing approach in the future.

Written By - Adarsh Krishnaa V

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