Surrogate Advertising

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Surrogate Advertising-Enforced Innovation:
An inside-out overview of Indian Liquor and Tobacco industry

Presented by:


ROLL NO: 107/MBA/080004
REGN NO: 19779 of 2001-2002


I deem it a privilege and pleasure in submitting the dissertation paper “Surrogate Advertising-Enforced Innovation : An inside-out overview of Indian Liquor and Tobacco industry” which is in partial fulfillment of the requirements of MBA program of Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management, Kolkata.

I would like to extend my sincere gratitude and profound thanks to Dr. S.N Roy (Head of the Department, MBA (Day), Dr. Tanima Roy (Faculty, MBA (Day)) and Dr. Archana Sharma (Faculty,MBA(Day)) for their guidance, co-operation and valuable feedback extended to me to complete the dissertation paper.

I also would extend my gratitude towards Mr Shubhadeep Nag(Brand partner, rediffusion D Y & R), Mr Kaustuv Bhadra (Vice-president and Branch-head, Mudra communications,kolkata) and Mr Sudarshan Banerjee (Vice-president and branch-head, Genesis Advertising, Mumbai) for their valuable suggestions which enriched this study.

Besides this, I would also like to place on record my thanks towards the number of people that I met during the course of research study. Due to constraints of space, it would not be possible to name all of them.



We live in a complex world where we respond in extreme ways to what we view as extreme pressures. The ethical debate rages around surrogate mothers. Yet it is difficult to deny they perform a great service for those who use them. Closer home, surrogate advertising has been around ever since someone decided that certain things were probably not good in the interests of the community at large. It is really difficult to express an opinion, leave alone pass judgment on matters that are personal. There is also the question of personal rights and many of them are happily enshrined in Constitutions of progressive nations the world over. Who is anyone to decide whether I can sip my daily quota of what started off as eau de vie, or the water of life and then rapidly transformed itself into its present day avatar, Scotch? People have spent years perfecting a heavenly blend of spirits, and imparted to it the smoky flavour that could come only from the peat of Scotland and the pristine Highland water. Several others have made methode champenoise into a fine art and have succeeded in bottling the very soul of France in green bottles that, when uncorked, seem to scream celebration. Who has the right to decide if I can deeply inhale the rich aroma and full-bodied flavour of carefully rolled Virginia tobacco? Every time I nonchalantly put one of those sticks to my lips I feel I have mounted a wild mustang and I am riding down the lonely mountain trails of Colorado. Forget the hype. Forget the imagery we have all grown up with. The Government has the right, invested in it by you, to decide whether you will get transported to the chalky fields of Champagne or the misty heights of Scotland, or for that matter the Wild West. And the Government in its wisdom has decided that advertising for tobacco and liquor is a big no-no. So does that mean you lose the right to tipple or smoke? Certainly not. The wisdom of the Government extends only to banning the advertising of tobacco or liquor. Not to the manufacture or marketing of these supposedly deadly substances. It is legal to manufacture liquor and cigarettes or bidis. It is legal to sell cigarettes at every roadside stall, even to unsuspecting children. It is illegal to advertise it. And that is precisely why you have to live with surrogate advertising. The literal meaning of ‘Surrogate advertising' is copying the brand image of one product to promote another product...
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