Donot underestimate the power of the Indian Consumer !!
(Decoding the success of Chennai Express)
There has rarely been a mainstream movie that has been debated so much for its success, that has been panned so badly by the critics and yet turned around to do well in terms of business.
If a “3 idiots” does 200 crores we all know why — it is a good, well made movie and was also liked by all.
How do you explain the phenomenon where a not so good one does better business.
Well we start with the definition of a successful movie :
1. Is it a well made movie?
2. Is it a movie that entertains?
a movie can be successful even if one of the above criteria starts going for it.
Chennai express is an entertainer !! period ! lets just not look behind that. (And you need brains to like entertainers too☺ )
Lets see why this movie has gone on to become the largest grossing movie till date in bollywood :
Delivering a Clean mass entertainer — worked for all ages from 6 to 60 !!
Basics of business — Wider audience, repeat viewing, refreshed and clean entertainment. A mass brand with a wider audience always wins bigs. Clean film with no item numbers, double meaning jokes and crap for front benchers. A colgate brand that appeals to everyone has a bigger market than Beetel ayurvedic paste that appeals to just a niche. Chennai express works for the masses and it has worked big. Indian consumers do like clean mass entertainment.
Managing aspirations and perceptions — the grass looked greener, the sky looked bluer, the water felt more crystalish…well there was a lot of digital enhancement to color in the movie thereby giving it a Dream world look. People pay to aspire for something better than their practical daily lives. Big brands give you big aspirations. They make you feel a part of a dream world. BMW doesn’t sell cars it sells you JOY. Chennai Express sells you an aspiration for an ideal world where we want to be in. Indian consumers are fed up with price rice, corruption and problems — they were waiting to escape to this SRK world. Boy it sold 200 crores.
Emotional connect — Straight from the heart — There is a lot of “DIL Se” in this movie. Right intent backed up with 100% effort from SRK, Rohit and his team. This emotion has translated into a product that relates to peoples hearts and not necessarily their minds. And what happens — they just open their wallets and lap up your offering. Just like how Nike connects to the emotion of winning and connects to any athlete, Chennai express speaks from the heart to your heart. Indian consumers loved it!
Dont underestimate MARKETING — An average product can be marketed intelligently to create a mass consumption. Coke and Pepsi are colored water fueled by great marketing campaigns that drive a want to drink them even though we dont need them. Without marketing and the right placement (read promotions and EID weekend) “Chennai express” might not have had the same numbers. Products need marketing to become brands. Not just globally but Indian consumers also fall for it.
Redefining the brand SRK — SRK has reinvented and redefined his brand through this movie. Here is a hero Rahul who plays his age as 40 years, who makes monkey faces, who tries to go to goa on a lie, who sings around trees, who fights the villains, makes cars fly like any other movie but yet still remains a HERO for the audience. We saw an SRK whom we hadn’t seen before. Chennai express has repositioned the SRK brand that DDLJ created. All marks to Rohits vision and SRKs belief in that vision. Indian consumer loved the Relaunched SRK brand.
Chennai express is 200 Crores plus and still counting…good for 250 Crs soon.
Congrats and thank to SRK and Rohit Shetty Team — the most important lesson you taught us is not to underestimate the power of the Indian consumer.