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HUL launches Election Commission endorsed campaign encouraging citizens to vote

Advertising gurus Piyush Pandey and R. Balakrishnan lend creative expression to IIM-B proposal.

Hindustan Unilever Limited (HUL) has produced in collaboration with leading advertising professionals and top B-school students, a campaign that encourages all eligible citizens to fulfil their duty to the nation by casting their votes during the 2014 Elections. The campaign will be on air from 5 April 2014 across leading TV channels in India gratis, and has been endorsed by the Election Commission of India.

The initiative began taking shape during the fifth season of Lessons in Marketing Excellence (L.I.M.E.), a popular inter B-School challenge conducted annually by HUL and CNBC TV18. With the elections around the corner, the four finalists were challenged to effectively tackle voter apathy and ensure increase in voter participation. The jury panel for the grand finale of the competition was chaired by the Chief Election Commissioner Mr. V.S. Sampath.

The winning case study highlighted that while there are more than 78 crore eligible voters in India, there is a stark difference between how rural and urban citizens approach to elections. The urban voters are more politically apathetic and therefore less likely to vote as they feel disconnected from the political candidates. Among urban elector reasons such as “too busy to vote”, “don’t care about these candidates”, and “live away from home” were cited as the top reasons for not voting. The voter turnout in last Lok Sabha Election across India was around 58.19% only.

The Election Commission challenged the L.I.M.E. competitors to submit solutions for a problem that it had been facing. After presenting their winning entry, Amrit Nanda, Ankur Chaudhary, and Anurag Katiyar, students from IIM, Bangalore were asked to write a creative brief for an advertising campaign encouraging citizens to vote. This campaign was then scripted free of charge by Piyush Pandey, Executive Chairman and Creative Director, South Asia, Ogilvy & Mather and R. Balakrishnan, Chairman and Chief Creative Officer, Lowe Lintas together. Scripted to resonate with urban first-time-voters, the theme of the film is ‘Voting as a coming-of-age moment’.

The objective of L.I.M.E is to provide students with an exciting opportunity to work on live cases across various sectors. Each year, the final case study requires students to think on and offer solutions for an issue of national importance. L.I.M.E. participants have worked on case studies for the Unique Identification Authority of India, Railway Ministry, Urban Housing and the Olympic Gold Quest in the past.

About Lessons In Marketing Excellence

Lessons in Marketing Excellence (L.I.M.E.) is India’s biggest marketing and business case study competition. Started in 2009, L.I.M.E. runs as a collaboration between Hindustan Unilever Limited and CNBC TV 18. It provides business school students a shot at developing real life marketing skills across sectors and generates fresh marketing ideas. In its fifth edition, L.I.M.E. is proud to have associated with the Election Commission of India that challenged the finalist teams to propose innovative and insightful solutions to run a free, fair and participative elections in India.

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