Has Anyone Called You ‘Tubelight’ When You’re Hungry?

Animesh Das, November 8, 2017

Snickers India now gives you company approved packaging to do just that through its latest iteration of the "You're Not You When You're Hungry" campaign.

Each one of us has traits that aren’t really welcome. Mine, most often, flare up when I’m hungry. It starts off with a mild headache, and a slight annoyance towards any person or thing that doesn’t behave as per my expectations. The hungrier I get, the crankier and more irritable I become. And sometimes, it can cause my inner Hulk to unleash itself and take over my body, mind, and soul.

And yes, I’ve been called several names when hunger gets the better of me. Most of these are extremely colourful profanities, especially the ones my colleagues tend to spit out in their mother tongues. But never have I ever been called “Tubelight”, “Princess”, “Drama Queen”, “Pakau” or “Nautanki”.

Oh well. Those words may not define the hungry me, but Snickers India is hoping they do define a substantial portion of their target audience. Launched online last week, the latest iteration of the now seven year old “You’re Not You When You’re Hungry” campaign gives customers a chance to define who they are when they get hungry, and hopefully, are tempted to eat a Snickers bar.

I’ve spotted hoardings on the morning commute in Mumbai. I’ve seen the spots on YouTube, and some communication on Facebook and Twitter.

What I’m really hoping to find are Snickers bars with the various adjectives on the packaging in place of “Snickers” itself.

The American office of Mars Inc (the company that owns, produces, and markets the Snickers brand) was brave enough to do just that back in 2015, when Snickers replaced its brand name on packaging with 21 hunger symptoms, including some delightful words like ‘Cranky’, ‘Grouchy’, ‘Whiny’, ‘Ornery’, ‘Testy’ and even ‘Curmudgeon’.

I’ll be pleasantly surprised to know if Mars Inc, India, has done the same.

I’m no expert, but the personalized packaging will surely make me look at the product twice while I’m perusing various options at a store.

And I really hope the company and the brand can let the campaign play out, introduce a plethora of hunger symptoms as packaging options, and fuel the fire with smart social media chatter. The opportunity for some zany advertising and PR stunts are huge! Maybe we’ll get a chance to customize the packaging and get exclusive made-for-gifting bars, in the vein of Coca-Cola’s Share A Coke gift store (sidebar: Hey Coca-Cola India, when do we get our very own Share A Coke, huh?).

Then again, it may all just backfire. In these times when most of us are ready to take offense at the tiniest of things, the brand manager may just be treading the waters one small, cautious step at a time.

Let’s see what happens next.

One more thing. I hope we get some quality celebrity-starring advertisements this time too. The one starring Rekha was quite enjoyable.

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