Banking on banking woes?
Dividing your time between queuing up in front of the bank and criticizing the demonetization move in the country? Don’t have to do that anymore. Apparently, all you have to do is whip out your Smartphone and download the Paytm app. It allows you to conduct your financial transactions without the use of cash. Whether it is to pay for your groceries or taxi fare, Paytm has you covered.
On 8th November, the Prime Minister of the country gave a jolt to every citizen in India. He declared that Rs.500 and Rs.1000 would no longer be considered as legal tender. For an economy so dependent on cash, what followed was utter chaos and frenzy. But for Paytm, an e-payment website this provided the perfect opportunity.
ATM nahi, Paytm Karo
This tagline has probably never been more popular than now. And the adverts released by the company also focuses on the same.
The first advert is about a man complaining about the sudden economic change and the hurdles he has had to face in banks. He talks about how he has only Rs.2000 in cash, a part of which he needs to pay to his electrician but cannot tender a change. The electrician at this point chimes in and says that he need not worry about cash payment.Paytm app can help with his payment.
In the second commercial, a lady needs to pay her domestic help but does not have the cash. She says that the government should have at least considered about the position of those who do not have the privilege of online facilities. But her domestic help surprises her by asking her to transfer the money through Paytm. She is not that backward after all. (Edit: Paytm tweaked and upgraded this ad after much outrage on social media)
When everyone is assumed to have a Smartphone
The setting for both the commercials is a middle-class household and the conversation between the owner and some sort of domestic help. Both the owners consider themselves to be the one with the knowledge about the on-going affairs. But it is apparently actually their helpers who are more digitally updated.
But what percentage of the lower class population actually has access to such online facilities? Seems like a Utopian commercial making fun of those who are digitally behind. Condescending in its tone, the commercial is based on the idea that people are standing in line only because they are not digitally savvy. But the people queuing up in front of banks since the morning would surely like to differ.
Editor’s Take: Social media is a strange place. The brand might have gone overboard while delivering its communication but self-corrected its ads after the backlash on the social medium. The power of a consumer is above any strategy, after all!