His fans may not be able to recognize him through the number of films that he has acted in, be it NAMESAKE, or AAJA NACH LE or SUNDAY, but he has got a recognition value by his association with the Vodafone advertisement campaign which is running now for more than an year. It is now in its third avatar and in every avatar the quotient of recognition for Irfan Khan has been increasing exponentially. He is also one of the rare stars who belong to the so-called genre of art films or films that are not in the category of mainstream commercial cinema, but he has been emerged as a brand icon of Vodafone.
Abhishek Bachchan has also got a second series of campaign of Idea which has again become hit with the audience and his Motorola campaign is also going places and has given him recognition and visibility in each and every nook and corner of the country. It indeed is interesting that the campaigns related to communication devises and communication service providers, if they are written in a manner, which has got an association with the day-to-happening of the common life, they hit bulls eye instantly.
The campaign of Airtel as well in which children are able to establish a rapport with one another and play football in the no-man's land is also a campaign which stresses on the value of communication that helps to strike a chord in a common man and a common child.
These campaigns have provided clear evidence that the role of communication and communication devices is to communicate the message of simplifying the process of communication in most germane manner and then it is able to strike an instant chord. The approach of these communication campaigns inspite of using the stars is to underline the importance of communication rather than use the brand value of the star as a star to communicate. When the star is used as a common man to communicate, it strikes the chord as it has happened with Irfan Khan and with Abhishek Bachchan but the same does not seem to be happening with Shah Rukh Khan in the Nokia campaign or with Hrithik Roshan in Sony Ericsson campaign.
On the flip side it indeed is interesting that no female star has been able to strike such a chord with the audience by becoming a brand ambassador of a communication service provider or a communication device merchandiser. This may be owing to the fact that the stars have not been given a copy that does away with the image of being a star in the campaign but rather harps on the market value of the star as a star to sell the product. Wherever it was done, it has attained success. An example is that of Kajol whose Tata Indicom campaign had much recognition value than that of either Priyanka Chopra or Preity Zinta who were brand ambassadors of Spice and BSNL.
Campaigns of communication have indeed opened a new vista for the stars to open a new window of communication with the audience, the catch is that vista has to provide the communication keeping the star value aside then everybody can go laughing all the way to the Bank.