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‘The Future is exciting. Ready?’, says Vodafone in new global brand positioning

The rebranding is designed to underline Vodafone’s belief in new technologies and digital services playing a positive role in transforming society and enhancing quality of life

(Left) Sunil Sood and Piyush Pandey (Right)

As part of its global rebranding exercise, Vodafone has announced the evolution of its brand positioning and visual identity in India. The brand focuses on the theme of optimism about the future and positions Vodafone as a modern contemporary, inspiring and future-fit brand, using the new tagline, "The Future is exciting. Ready?".

This new positioning, part of its rebranding across 36 countries, is designed to underline Vodafone’s belief in new technologies and digital services playing a positive role in transforming society and enhancing individual quality of life in the years ahead.

Google, Apple and iPhone are also trying to enhance consumer experience with technology. With Vodafone launching its new brand positioning along with services using technology, does that mean it is competing or collaborating with the tech giants?

Sunil Sood, Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer, Vodafone India, said, “The answer is both. We do compete with them and also collaborate with them. They help us get revenues. After all WhatsApp and Facebook are used on the connectivity layer that is provided by the telecom companies. Each of the technologies is dependent on the layers which we provide. We are friends as well as foes. That’s the art we have learnt to live with.”

Talking about if the Vodafone-Idea merger will have any impact on the branding exercises done by both the brands separately, Balesh Sharma, COO, Vodafone India, said, “We are very optimistic about the merger. Our options are open to the branding. We have not yet decided what our brand journey would be.”

The new visual identity will place greater emphasis on Vodafone’s iconic 'speech mark' logo – the biggest change to one of the most recognised symbols of Vodafone since the hallmark logo was created in 1998. The ‘speech mark’ will now appear as the central graphical focus laid on all marketing and marketing communications collateral. The logo will appear in a new 2D design in place of a skeuomorphic 3D approach.

Siddharth Banerjee

It is unusual for a brand to use question mark in its tagline. Explaining the rationale behind the same, Siddharth Banerjee, EVP – Marketing, Vodafone India, said, “The new tagline of Vodafone is based on the insight that the way that technology helps us connect is evolving, and it makes the future exciting, but a little bit unknown. Ready is an invitation to everyone to benefit from these new, exciting technologies. ‘Ready?’ hence is not a question but an invitation. Consumers believe that the tagline is optimistic and invitational.”

Launching the new brand identity, Sood said, “India is entering a new exciting era – an era of digital, convergence, big data, IoT, cloud, augmented realities, robotics and artificial intelligence. The real and virtual worlds are converging at an unprecedented pace to create a bold new future.”

He said, “Our new brand positioning emphasises Vodafone's mission and purpose to help customers and communities adapt, navigate and prosper from the remarkable new trends reshaping the world. At Vodafone, we are excited about the possibilities ahead and are ready to enable our customers to conquer this new world.”

Following a dramatic rise in digital literacy and adoption in India – a trend that’s being reflected across demographics and geography, Vodafone’s new brand positioning is a visual and intrinsic representation of its ‘readiness’ to equip and empower customers to stay connected with their world.

A multimedia marketing campaign will look at simple human stories of embracing technology through the eyes of recent ‘common man’ icons Asha-Bala. These stories will be told across multiple media with a high-decibel 360-degree Campaign – from TV to digital incorporating the latest technologies.

Explaining the rationale behind using Asha and Bala in the rebranding campaign, Piyush Pandey, Executive Chairman and Creative Director, Ogilvy & Mather, South Asia, said, “Asha-Bala represent the people whose degree of difficulty of technology is higher. Vodafone helps them to understand and use technology in a simple manner.”

Over the years, brand Vodafone has been iconic with the much loved Pug and the Zoozoos. This new positioning further strengthens brand Vodafone and takes it to the next level.

Banerjee concluded, “Our new brand positioning focuses on the theme of optimism and emphasizes our belief in new technologies and digital services playing a positive role in transforming society and our lives ahead. We are fortunate to be a part of industry that will power these technologies and provide the critical connectivity layer. Our mission at Vodafone is to ‘connect everybody to live a better today and build a better tomorrow’. Vodafone is READY to play our due role in transforming the possibilities into to reality.”

The campaign promoting the new brand identity will be heavily spread on the digital front.

Vodafone global rebranding campaign:

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