Superstars before they were ‘Super’!

They are now the superstars that most of the nation is crazy about, but long before they embarked on the journey to stardom, they all were normal individuals toiling it out for their share of the limelight. Once they hit the big screen, they have ruled it from the word go; be it Salman Khan, Deepika Padukone, Shahid Kapoor, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan or Vidya Balan et al. What made it easier for them and for their long-standing innings is the fact that these stars are superbly talented and have proved that they have the acting skills to make it big in the industry with their power-packed performances.

But do you remember when they first hit the limelight, albeit off the big screen? Do you know about their debut performances which weren’t their first on-screen offerings? Here we have compiled a list of ad films that these stars did, way back at the very beginning of their career much before their first movies.

Salman Khan
Who doesn’t know him? Voted the 7th Best-Looking Man in the world by People magazine, Salman’s looks continue to turn heads across the globe. Long before Maine Pyar Kiya or even before Biwi Ho to Aisi, Salman Khan was seen in a cold drink commercial.

Deepika Padukone
Deepika Padukone walked straight into the hearts of millions with her dual role in her debut Bollywood release, the blockbuster Om Shanti Om. Winner of many many awards, the daughter of famous badminton player Prakash Padukone, as a teenager she played badminton in national level championships, but left her career in sport to become a fashion model. Take a glimpse at her in this toothpaste ad.

Shahid Kapoor
At the height of the Kuch Kuch Hota Hai phase, this cool drink ad brought together superstars Rani Mukerji, Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol with a very young Shahid. But he actually started off as the adorable ‘Complan boy’ with Ayesha Takia, before venturing out into music videos with the ‘Aryans’ and then paved his way to stardom.

Ayesha Takia
Ayesha Takia also happened to feature in the same advertisement as Shahid Kapoor, as the ‘Complan girl’. Armed with an adorable smile and pigtails, Ayesha was the cutest kid on the block then.

Preity Zinta
She was noticed in this ad for her cute looks and bubbly attitude. And before long she was picked up for a dream debut opposite Shah Rukh Khan in Dil Se. Notice the sparkle in her eyes and her natural exuberance in this ad.

Rajkumar Hirani
Long long ago much before he became one of the finest and most successful directors of all time in the Indian film industry, Rajkumar Hirani was an ad-man and here we see him as the merchant  who is insisting that we buy the brand with the elephant logo.

Diana Penty
She made her memorable and much-appreciated acting debut in the commercially successful romantic comedy Cocktail alongside Saif Ali Khan and Deepika Padukone.  But she had actually begun modelling in 2005, walking the ramp for Italian designers Trussadi and Ferre. But much before that, she featured in a mobile phone ad, along with Genelia Deshmukh and Ranbir Kapoor.

Genelia Deshmukh
The cute and talented actress was just 15 years old when she bagged her first ad commercial after being spotted at a wedding, where she was dressed as a bridesmaid. She shared screen space with none other than veteran actor, Amitabh Bachchan in her debut ad for a pen brand.

Aishwarya Rai Bachchan
Much before she was crowned the most beautiful woman in the world, Aishwarya was better known as ‘that-beautiful-girl’ from the cool drink ad. Even though it features Aamir Khan, she stole the show hands down.

Vidya Balan
Vidya Balan is now known for her author-backed roles and power-packed performances. Everyone remembers her from the TV serial Hum Paanch but do you remember Vidya playing a South Indian wife in a idli batter ad?

Latest new media trends!

Here’s our list of 8 new media trends that are posed to impact consumers in the New Year!

All brands are media companies
Remember, every single brand is a media company. RedBull is a great example of this. They are giving the media a run for their money with the content they produce. Singer Beyoncé using social media to release her new album can also be taken as an example. Growing your brand with great content is the most valuable thing you can do for your customers, hence keep this as a top priority.

The Internet of everything
From ‘wearables’ like Google Glass to internet enabled home automation devices like Nest, internet connected devices are increasingly becoming a part of our daily lives. Wearable internet devices are also becoming more fashionable. This makes it clear how important it is for one to stay connected using the internet.

The currency of connections
Your network and the influence you have is very valuable. Brands are beginning to recognize this. American Airlines lets those with high ‘Klout’ scores in their airport clubs for free. Ceasar’s Palace (Nevada) revamped their loyalty program to include gaining points from tweeting, that you can cash in at one of their restaurants.

Social selling
Many start-ups are currently using social selling for increasing their brand value. ‘Stella & Dot’ have thousands of “stylists” that are not paid, but can go out and sell products on their own through their personal networks. ‘LiketoKnowIt’ enables your Instagram followers to shop your products; and many other apps and plugins exist to enable commerce within social platforms.

JOMO (joy of missing out) over FOMO (fear of missing out)
JOMO means checking out of social networks and actually living life. Tools that help you do this include ‘RunPee’. This app tells you the best time to leave during a movie to go to the bathroom. ‘RescueTime’ gives you a breakdown of your day to see where you’re wasting time and when you are being the most productive. Apart from these, there is also ‘Anti-Social’, an app that shuts down access to social networks when opened. What’s best? There’s no way to turn it off, unless you completely close the app and deny background refresh!

Visuals take centrestage
Images are proven to be more effective and known to inspire significantly greater engagement on social content. Getty has released 35 million images for free, Dunkin Donuts uses images to celebrate their fans, Ben & Jerry’s uses imagery extensively in all their social content and Pinterest enables people to become experts or at least attract a huge following through circulation of visual content.

Mobile for saving time
Mobile apps are increasingly focusing on saving us time. An upcoming ‘Starbucks’ app will let you pre-order your coffee so that your coffee is ready as soon as you arrive. Companies are making it easy to pre-order or pay on your mobile device rather than going through a teller at their respective store. ‘Apple Store Quick Scan’ is one such example. Hence, think of ways you can create tools to make it easier for customers to do what they want to do, in the shortest time possible.

Likes for motivation
People are relying on technology for feedback and motivation more than ever before. The ‘Alarm Clock’ app donates money to charity every time you hit the snooze button. ‘Nike Plus’ notifies your social networks that you’re going for a run and when anyone likes your update, the app plays applause. Likewise, ‘Gym Shamer’ posts on the same when you don’t go to the gym.


Rewind: Best of 2015!

The year 2015 finally came to an end a couple of days ago, and like each year, we look back to see what gems the year had to offer. Without any further ado, AISFM presents ‘Best of 2015’. Our list includes the most downloaded apps, music, films, TV shows, and much more. There are a few surprises on it, but for the most part it’s pretty straightforward and you’re probably already a fan of most of the mentioned items.

Most Downloaded Song
(Mark Ronson’s ‘Uptown Funk’ featuring Bruno Mars)uptown funk
The track, which features Bruno Mars, notched up a combined sales and streaming total of 1.76 million to finish at the top of the end of year chart. The song’s total combined sales since its release in November 2014 stand at 2.25 million! This was followed by Ed Sheeran’s ‘Thinking Out Loud’, and Adele’s ‘Hello’ which, to be fair, came out a lot later in the year than the aforementioned tune, which came in at #6.

Most Downloaded TV Show
(Game of Thrones)
On the small screen ‘Game of Thrones’ (Season 5) was the #1 download. Here’s a nerdy statistic for you ‘Game of Thrones’ fans: There are more illegal downloads of the show every week than there are people in King’s Landing. That’s according to piracy monitoring service Irdeto, which monitored illegal TV downloads for two months earlier this year, and found GoT to be increasingly popular. Around 116,000 copies of the show were downloaded each day on an average. (King’s Landing, according to the George R.R. Martin books, has a mere 500,000 souls.)

Most Downloaded Movie
According to figures from Excipio, which tracks BitTorrent downloads, the Matthew McConaughey flick got a whopping 46.7 million downloads from the start of this year to December 25. Compared with ‘The Wolf of Wall Street’, which was number one on the same list in 2014, with 30 million downloads, 56% more copies of the film were downloaded. This is so out of this world!

Most Downloaded App
(Trivia Crack)
trivia crack
When it comes to free iPhone apps, social media definitely ruled. If you had a hunch that Instagram and Snapchat were in the top 10, you’re right. They were #5 and #4 respectively. The #1 spot in this category went to Trivia Crack. When talking about paid iPhone apps, the games ruled. Heads Up!, Minecraft: Pocket Edition, and Trivia Crack were the top three downloads.

Most Visited Website
Alexa ranks websites based on a combined measure of page views and unique site users. Alexa creates a list of “top websites” based on this data, time-averaged over three-month periods. Only the site’s highest-level domain is recorded, aggregating any sub-domains. According to Alexa Internet, is the most visited website of 2015.

Most Used Instagram Hashtag
Instagram is slowly but surely becoming the new Facebook. With hash-tagging becoming the most used thing with every passing day on instagram, we just could not complete this list without including the most used hashtag of the previous year. According to Webstagram, in 2015 the hashtag used the most was #love. This was followed by #instagood, #me and finally #tbt.

6 Apps that will help keep your New Year’s resolutions

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There is always so much hype around New Year resolutions each year. Sadly, old habits die hard and we are back to our usual self by summer, sometimes even by spring. It is not very easy to keeping those pesky resolutions, and this is where your smartphone comes in and saves the day! Here are a few apps that will help you keep your New Year resolutions, this year!

1. Learning A New Language:

It’s never too late to learn a new language. Each year about 48% of the population of the world makes up their mind to learn a new language. This year, keep up with your resolution with Duolingo. This app offers a 9 lesson course, which is easy to understand, concentrating on the area you want to improve/learn, be it reading, speaking or comprehension.
Platforms: iOS, Android

2. Save Money:

Stop wondering where your money goes and plan for your financial future with Mvelopes. This app uses the concept of “spending envelopes” to track your spending and create a plan for your income. To make your life as easy as possible, it syncs with your bank securely and seamlessly. Oh, and once you’re set up, you can see in just seconds the funds you have left in each virtual envelope for your customized budget categories.
Platforms: iOS, Android

3. Get In Shape:

Always wanted a personal trainer on hand every time you hit the gym? The Nike+ Training Club app now makes this possible. It provides a bunch of detailed workouts from trainers and athletes across the globe. Set your fitness goals, and this app will make sure you achieve them!
Platforms: iOS, Android

4. Read More:

Remember what it’s like to spend all day curled up with a good book? Me neither! But I still need to—and want to—keep up with my reading. That’s where an app like ReadMe! can be a lifesaver. The app’s colorized streaming text reduces the amount you have to move your eyes so you can read more quickly. You can amp up the speed if you’re really in a hurry, or slow it down if you want a more relaxing experience.
Platforms: iOS, Android

5. To Stop Hoarding:

Do you have a hard time letting go of the things lying in your closet or around your house? Fear no more, because now you have Poshmark, an app that will help you clean out and upgrade your closet. It simply connects fashion conscious buyers and sellers so that they are able to de-clutter and upgrade their closets!
Platforms: iOS, Android

6. Live Better:

If you have all of the resolutions mentioned above as your New Year resolutions, fear no more. We have an app for you! lets you set goals in a number of categories like eating better, practicing a skill, getting in shape and so on. The app lets you set your targets and connects you with a coach and other users on the platform, so that you are definitely staying on track.
Platforms: iOS, Android

The funniest print commercials ever!


Every company sets their own target advertising campaign. Some prefer the more serious type of ads while others like a bit of controversy, but what seems to get most viral these days, are the funny ads. These ads, sometimes ironic, sometimes mocking, are surely those you wouldn’t want to Skip. Here is our compilation of the quirkiest print commercials, which are absolutely brilliant.


WMF’s Cutting Board Comercial:

This ad was created to show the sharpness of the new Damasteel blade of WMF’s Grand Gourmet knife. The tagline that goes along with it, ‘Shaper than you think’, suits it perfectly as in the picture, we see that the knife is so sharp it manages to chop not only the carrot but also the cutting board on which it was placed.


Kiss FM 97.9 Commercial:

This ad is a poster of a tape that’s saying “Ipod…I’m your father”.  It is a really clever ad, as it’s not only making people remember the good ol’ days of the tape recorder, but also playing on Star Wars’ famous line, “Luke…I’m your father”. This clever reference made the ad go viral when it was released back in 2007. Creating a very nostalgic feeling this ad invites people, in a very innovative and witty way, to tune into its radio channel for a blast from the past, playing songs from the 70’s and 80’s.


Findus Fraich Frites’s Granny Fries Commercial:

This quirky ad campaign by Findus Fraich Frites revolves around our grannies and their doting love. It shows two children who are the victims of their granny’s smothering affection, while the granny does her typical ‘granny things’. With the main idea being ‘To make home cooking hassle-free’, this ad is clean, simple and effective.


Glassex Window Cleaner Commercial:

This ad features a magician in the middle of his magic trick where it seems as though he is ‘magically’ making his beautiful assistant float in mid air. The secret behind his trick is not suspending wires or mirrors. Its actually is a pane of glass that has been cleaned with Glassex’s window cleaner, which makes it seem as though nothing is there beneath. This is a really clever ad from the JWT Agency for Glassex.


Lifebuoy’s Pets Commercial:

This ad is for all the pet lovers out there. With the tagline ‘You eat what you touch’, the makers behind this ad show first, a pug that looks like a loaf of bread and then a cat a cat sleeping on a plate looking like a croissant. The brilliant minds behind this ad are of the people of Magic Cube, who came up with this very innovative way of showing the importance of washing one’s hands before each meal, in a very creative way using one of the most effective tools of marketing- Humor.


Wrigley Orbit’s Commercial:

One of the best prints we’ve seen so far, this ad by Orbit is simply clever.  Built around their campaign’s line, ‘Don’t make breakfast meet lunch’, it shows a chicken and a cow having devastated looks on their faces when they see an egg and milk with cereal spilled on the floor. Witty in its approach, this ad is an all time favorite.


Bose’s Noise Reduction Headphones Commercial:

Bose’s tagline for this particular product is “Bose Noise Reduction Kills”. The ad takes this quite literally and focuses on how a man wearing these headphones is headed toward a waterfall, completely oblivious to this fact, thanks to its noise reduction technology. It is a very eye catching ad because of the colours that were used. The target market for this product seems to be people who are athletic or busy doing some type of activity, and who do not like to be continuously annoyed by any sort of noise when they want to enjoy some good music.


Queer Travels de’s Other Side Commercial:

Sebastian Kaufmann’s idea of showing the ‘other side’ of Mount Rushmore brought out this super funny ad literally showing its other side (the back side of the presidents).  With their target audience being the queer audience, we feel this ad is well suited.


Chupa Chups’ Lollipop Commercial:

This ad was made mainly to promote Chupa Chup’s new range of sugar-free lollies. They came up with this clever and funny idea, showing one of their lollipops fallen on the ground and a line of ants dodging it and walking away. We think that this is one of the best sugar free ads ever.


Volkswagen’s Precision Parking Commercial:

The people at Volkswagen wanted to increase the sale of optional equipment that comes with their new cars. Hence, they came up with this innovative ad that brings out one of its features: precision parking. Using a hedgehog as a VW car and bags of goldfish as other cars parked in a lane, it shows how parallel parking has been made a cake walk, all thanks to its precision parking technology. The simplicity in its use of humor and analogy was innovative and brilliant and as expected, the ad was successful in increasing sales.


India’s top ad gurus

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They can captivate you, make you laugh out loud, start debates or merely flip the channel. Ads have the power to make you sit up and take note – good or bad.

Beautiful and touching to bold and controversial, some of India’s most creative minds have been behind memorable ads.

Here’s presenting some of the country’s top ad men, who not only changed the face of ads in India but have given us some memorable commercials as well.

Piyush Pandey

Piyush Pandey

Piyush Pandey

The No 1 ad man in the country is undoubtedly, Piyush Pandey, the Executive Chairman and Creative Director of Ogilvy & Mather India. The ad guru is responsible for coining the defining slogan for PM Narendra Modi’s Lok Sabha campaign, “Ab ki baar, Modi sarkaar”. This slogan helped in fetching delightful results for the current government during the elections.

The big daddy of Indian advertising has had a long and remarkable career at O&M. He is also the man behind popular ads like Cadbury’s – Kuch Khaas Hai, Fevicol – Fevicol ka mazboot jod, Asian Paints and even Fevikwick.

Thanks to Pandey, O&M today is one of the most sought after ad agencies in the country.

Watch the old Fevikwik ad here:

Prasoon Joshi

Prasoon Joshi

Prasoon Joshi

Poet, lyricist, script writer and ad man – Prasoon Joshi wears many hats. Having begun his career at O&M, Prasoon is now the Chairman of McCann World Group Asia Pacific.

He is the man behind notable commercials like Alpenliebe Chlormint, Thanda matlab Coca-Cola (which won an award at Cannes) and many more.

Joshi was conferred the Padma Shri this year and has also composed the anthem for the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.

Check out Aamir Khan in the award-winning Coco Cola ad:

R Balakrishnan

R Balki

R Balki

The Chairman and Chief Creative Officer of Lowe Lintas, is also known as the filmmaker R Balki. Balki’s agency recently picked up three Gold Lions at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity in 2014.

Some of Balki’s popular works have are Daag Achche Hain for Surf Excel, Jaago re for Tata Tea and the Walk And Talk for Idea Cellular. Balki is also the one who captured the late superstar Rajesh Khanna in his last ad for Havells fans.

Watch Rajesh Khanna in the Havells fan ad:

Sam Balsara

Sam Balsara

Sam Balsara

A prominent figure in the Indian advertising industry, Sam Balsara has over 30 years of experience in the ad world. The Founder, Chairman & Managing Director of Madison World, Sam’s company has worked with the most prominent brand available in the market.

And not just that, Madison worked along with Team Modi to pull off the biggest political campaign the country has ever seen.

Prahlad Kakkar

Prahlad (1)

Prahlad Kakkar

Who can ever forget Aishwarya Rai’s first ever TVC. “Hi! I’m Sanjana. Got another Pepsi?” mouthed Ash. And since then she has never looked back. The man behind the discovery and the commercial, Prahlad Kakkar is a brand guru and a man behind Genesis.

Candid, bold and sometimes just outrageous, Kakkar’s ad campaigns have captured the imagination of the county.

Some of his memorable campaigns have been for brands such as Pepsi, Kit Kat and Maggi.

Watch Aishwarya Rai Bachchan in her first-ever TVC

Arvind Sharma

Arvind Sharma

Arvind Sharma

Arvind Sharma has been the longest-serving CEO of an ad agency, having headed Leo Burnett as chairman and CEO for 21 years. When he quit Leo Burnett in 2013, in a way it was an end of an era.

A veteran, Sharma has been the force behind popular ads like McDonalds, award winning radio ads like Tata Salt Lite, Thumbs Up, Tide and more.

Sharma has now turned entrepreneur with the e-commerce venture,

Josy Paul

Josy Paul

Josy Paul

In the last two years, the man behind BBDO India and RMG David has won more awards at Cannes and Spikes Asia than any other creative in India.

Having been part of O&M and Lowe Lintas, Josy formed his own company and has been the mind behind Johnson’s Baby Cream, Pillsbusry, Visa Debit card and more.

Taking a different route from conventional advertising, Josy’s ads are steeped in social messages like Aviva’s Great Wall of Education, Gillette’s Women Against Lazy Stubbles etc.

Watch Josy Paul talk about the craziest way he sold an idea:


What’s the highlight this Cricket World Cup 2015? It’s the Mauka Ads!


Cricket season is back with the ICC Cricket World Cup in full swing. This time however, there is something else that is keeping people entertained. Yes, we are talking about the ‘Mauka Mauka’ ads.

Viewers are glued to their television screens even after the match is done, just to see the new installment in the series. With #MaukaMauka posts flooding timelines, tweets and inboxes; let’s have a look at the videos that have taken the nation by storm.

How it all began:

The first video in the series was released before the India-Pakistan match. It showed how the protagonist, a Pakistani man, buys a box of fireworks to celebrate with if and when Pakistan defeats India in the 1992 world cup. Sadly for him, he doesn’t get a ‘Mauka’ to use them, even for the sixth time in 2015. This hilarious promo ad for India V.S. Pakistan became a huge success and started the #MaukaMauka trend.


And it continues:

This trend continued and the series currently has 3 other installments. The second installment was the promo for Indian V.S. South Africa match where two South African players hand a young boy in an Indian jersey a box of crackers, so that they maybe get a ‘Mauka’ to use them, since India never won a match against them.

In the third video the protagonist is back. Disappointed that India won against South Africa, he kicks the box of crackers. Just then a UAE player hands his team’s jersey. He puts it on, hoping that at least they defeat India.

In the next video that follows, you see the protagonist wearing a UAE jersey and he sure looks irritated, since India won for the third time in a row. He gets a delivery from YepMe and finds a West Indies jersey inside. What happens after he opens the box is absolutely hilarious…

The latest installment to join the rank has a bit of a twist. The Pakistani supporter is seen in an Indian Jersey entering a news room with a box of crackers in his hand. Find out why he wears the blue jersey by watching the new Mauka video.

Also, the tagline they use, “This is not the World Cup, it is India versus the world” has spread like a wild fire. Here are some of the reactions we could get from various social networking sites:



5 Indian television ads that we’ll always love.


With more and more TV channels launching in India, and more and more companies trying their hands at TV advertising, we face a never-ending deluge of new ads every year.

Despite this, there are some ads that will always stick in your mind, for years to come. It could be the story, the humour or the emotion, but here are five ads we can’t forget:

Surf Excel: Cricket 

This simple yet delightful advertisement begins with a group of children playing cricket, till the ‘big boys’ barge in and bully them out of the ground, pushing one of the kids in to the mud.

Instead of attempting a backlash (or crying), the tiny victim stands back on his feet, glances at his soiled t-shirt and scurries to hug the older boys. The other kids ape their friend by throwing themselves into the puddle of mud and running behind the repulsed bullies.

It ends with the tiny kid saying, “Sab pyaar se darte hai yaar!” (Everyone fears love!”) and his friend replying, “Chal mei galey lagta hoon!” (Come on, I’ll hug you!), making people hate dirt a tad lesser.

Seagram’s Imperial Blue: Men Will Be Men 

This hilarious series of ads depicts the nature of men and how they react in various situations. These ads were hugely popular when they were released (with both men and women). Ashutosh, an engineering student, said that the first time he saw the ad with his family, it made him chuckle with embarrassment. The following week was marked by an outflow of these videos on his Facebook homepage.

This is one of the best – a young man jumps into an elevator and lets the doors close, ignoring others who want to get in. He is rushing to his floor and is ready to quickly get out, when a beautiful woman enters the elevator. Watch the video to see what happens!

Dairy Milk: Shubh Aarambh

A wife rehearses in front of the mirror on how she will break the pregnancy news to her husband. When he walks in and surprises her, she blurts out that she wants to eat something sour. The husband understands, gets a Dairy Milk bar for her and says, “Pehle kuch meetha hojai?” (Let’s have something sweet first?”).

“I could completely relate to the anxiety and nervousness which the wife felt in the ad while disclosing the pregnancy new to her husband. The tension between them was beautifully depicted and their chemistry seemed very realistic”, explains Anmol Bhore, a medical student, on why the ad tops her list of favorites.

Coca Cola: Haan Main Crazy Hoon!

Coca Cola’s ad campaigns are always fun, focusing on branding rather than trying to sell on features or price. One of the best ones in India was the “Haa main crazy hoon!” (Yes, I am crazy!) campaign.

Starring Varun Dhawan, Alia Bhatt and Siddharth Malhotra (who had all just appeared in the film Student of the Year) the ad is about the happiness we get from putting a smile on someone else’s face.

“My friends and I mainly love the ad since it does not urge people to buy their product on the basis of its taste, price etc, unlike the other in-your-face commercials. It shows us youngsters new ways of bringing about a smile on distressed and often ignored strangers, even if it may sound crazy to others”, says Amina Hajiani, who studies mass communication.

P&G: Thank you, Mom

An endearing compilation of several P&G commercials, the campaign is a beautiful presentation of the ceaseless number of things mothers do for their children, without expecting anything in return. Tagging them as “Mombassador” for their talented children, the ad also aims to empower the status of mothers in society.

Shwetha Balagopal, a dentistry student, says, “This ad was a strong reminder of how incomplete I am without my mom. It made my eyes well up with tears thinking that never once did she ask for a simple “thanks” for her never ending love and concern for me, in spite of me taking her for granted sometimes.”


About the Author

Najah Sameen is a freelance writer and journalist.

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