PR Awards 2023
marketing interactive

Viral Airtel ad slammed for portrayal of working women

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A recent ad by Airtel has been making its rounds on Twitter.The Indian telco company released an ad in which a lady boss plays a dual role as both wife and the boss.In the ad, she first plays the role of the boss asking her employee to get his work done on time. After a long hard day, she then goes home and calls her husband (the same employee) and urges him to come home to a nice warm meal. Released on the 24 July, the campaign has already gotten over 380,000 views.Describing the video Airtel says: “Relationships often get strained due to professional demands. At such times, smartphones transcend their role of being a mere communicating device, and play cupid. Watch one such sweet story brought to life by Airtel, the network made for smartphones.”In a press statement Mohit Beotra, chief brand officer, Bharti Airtel (India) said: “Data is clearly driving the next phase of telecom revolution across the globe. In recognition of this phenomenon, we, at Airtel, have made significant technology and network investments to ensure we deliver the best data experience for smartphone users in India. ‘The Smartphone Network campaign by Airtel drives this very message in a manner that is intrinsic with our brand positioning."The campaign, created by Taproot, is in line with brand Airtel’s larger positioning around enabling relationships – the campaign’s television commercial (TVC) is a thematic film with a contemporary take on the role that smartphones and data networks are playing in bringing millions of data savvy Indians closer to one another.“ 'From ‘Express Yourself’ to ‘Har Friend Zaroori Hai, Yaar’ – enabling magical relationships have always been at the very core of Airtel’s brand values. Our all new campaign strengthens Airtel’s legacy of identifying fresh and relevant insights around relationships – and is a contemporary take on this very theme,” added Beotra.The TVC will run on all national TV channels with a strong digital push and will have a strong presence on static media platforms such as outdoor and retail.Check it out:
Public responseThe public seems to be split between liking the ad and being morally outraged that a woman should have to go home after a long hard day and slave in the kitchen. While I can see where both sides are coming from. What I found to be more amusing (and some not so amusing) were the tweets that were being posted about the ad:Here are some reactions: yes I do agree that by no means should a woman have to go home and cook after a long day, but if she wants to - hey why not?The only complaint I have about the ad is that had I not known it was an ad for Airtel, I'd have probably thought it was an ad for one of those instant cooking masalas. Yummy.

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