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Indian TVCs that rapped with consumers

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MUMBAI: Rapping, a type of popular music of the US coloured origin in which words are recited rapidly and rhythmically originated as early as 1920 but the first mainstream rap song to get commercially released was ‘King Tim III’ by the Fatback Band. It was only in 1994 when rapper Wu-Tang Clan was part of a campaign for St. Ides, a low-cost, previously obscure brand of malt liquor, the first to weave a hip-hop aesthetic into its central messaging . The idea instantly became a hit amongst advertisers and brands.

But, it took coon’s age before Indians were exposed to rap and hip-hop culture. It was Baba Sehgal who introduced Hindi rap to Indians in 1992 with his famous album 'Thanda Thanda Pani' which was the desi version of Ice Ice Baby, a famous song by Vanilla Ice. With the advent of MTV in India, early 2000s saw a surge in Indian rappers who rapped mostly in English, following the suit of American rappers.

Although it might pain the hip-hop purists to admit it, but rapping and advertising are inexorably linked today but that wasn't always the case. It took a while before the ad industry really recognised the marketing potential of hip-hop and rap, but once they did the floodgates were forever opened. It was only in 2015 when the trend of having rap songs integrated in an advertisement became the new ‘Cool’ in order to boost the CPM and CTR (cost per 1,000 impressions, and click-through rate).

Indiantelevision.com takes a look at the most distinguished and leading advertisements that innate rap words and became an instant hit among consumers.

Syska accessories TVC (launched in 2015): Launched by Syska Accessories, the ad features bollywood actor Irrfan Khan rapping about Syska power bank. This was reportedly the first advertisement to use rap words in an ad.

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Nestle Munch Macha TVC (launched in 2016): In order to celebrate the revamp of the popular Munch wafer chocolate, Nestle launched its campaigns that featured the youth icon Shruti Haasan and the legendary musical trio of Shankar, Ehsaan and Loy.  The commercial shows Shankar Mahadevan singing a breathless song and then challenging Shruti to do the same. A trained classical singer and composer Shruti Haasan accepts the challenge and croons the peppy number 'Munch Macha' breathless.

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Yamaha RayZR Mera Swag TVC (launched in 2016): Yamaha released a peppy theme song for its bike, the Cygnus Ray-ZR last year. Named “RayZR Mera Swag”, the song was composed and created by the popular rapper Badshah, who also created a song by the same name. The campaign and original song became instantly famous among the youth aiding in driving up the sale for the bike.

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OLX Mundi danceTVC (launched in 2016): Taking its popular Bech De (sell it) proposition forward, OLX launched its ad called Mundi dance that showcases a rap face-off between father and son set over a dining table. When the son’s demand for extra money to buy a sports bike is turned down, his sister suggests him to sell unused things to fund his purchase. The entire sequence is a quirky rap in the film was  executed by Lowe Lintas.

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Jack & Jones' #DontHoldBack TVC (launched in 2016): Ranveer Singh associated with Jack & Jones in 2016 for the brand's national campaign #DontHoldBack which was nothing less than a euphoric success. Taking this concept further, Singh launched Don't Hold Back 2.0 in 2017 where he was seen rapping second time for the brand. The strong and snappy lyrics of the song invite listeners to boldly display their true individuality and celebrate the power of inner strength.

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Subway Rap for SubWrap TVC (launched in 2017): The global sandwich restaurant chain, Subway, launched a campaign this month for two introductory Subwraps. Titled, Rap for SubWrap, the TVC showcases a group of youngsters eating subwrap and getting lost in the taste and flavour of the sandwich.

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Danone TakeAChillFill TVC (launched in 2017): Danone’s new campaign for its chocolate flavoured drink – Choco Smoothie is the latest addition in the list of campaigns that integrated rap songs. The attempt of the rap song is to place Choco Smoothie as a nutritious alternative to snacks and mini-meals, perfect for the youth who is always on-the- go. The rap has a matching quirky video, showing college-going youth choosing to Take a Chill-Fill instead of stressing over small problems that nothing can be done.

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