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3 minutes read

Ad Wars Part 2: 5 Iconic Battles Of Brand Rivalries

| Published on January 6, 2020

There is nothing called advertising anymore, it is all about what you can add to the old-school advertising ideology. Marketing has gone way past simple print ads or hoardings, its gone on social media and has become more honest, quirky and catchy. One such form of marketing is Ambush Marketing where it isn’t just about an ad, it is about going on a battle and embracing the concept of healthy competition in the industry.

Wondering what we are talking about? Take a look below:

1) TOI and The Hindu – The Reading war

Two big newspaper brands went against each other in a subtle way. Times of India first launched a ‘Wake up!’ campaign, motivating readers to get out of sleep after reading from a newspaper filled with boring news.

The Hindu wasn’t going to let that happen without giving a fight. It launched a follow-up campaign by saying ‘Stay ahead of the times’, a dig at the rival newspaper. The Hindu even went ahead with print ads and the Times responded with more sarcastic replies.

2) BMW and Audi – The German High-ends

Luxury car brands, BMW and Audi went on a billboard war in Los Angeles which even got their fans involved on social media. Audi launched a campaign stating ‘Chess? No thanks. I’ll rather be driving instead’ which it later switched to a direct challenge against BMW saying ‘Your move, BMW’.

BMW didn’t back out and responded with a billboard beside Audi’s message which said ‘Checkmate’. This even motivated many fans to come with quirky replies while supporting their favourite car brand.

3) Micromax and Samsung – The handset war-time

Micromax, the Indian mobile manufacturer was not going to let Samsung win easily. Samsung had launched a series with its title catchphrase ‘aapke pass nahi hai Uncle?’ highlighting its product features.

Micromax came up with its own line to mock Samsung saying ‘Aapke pass nehi hai Aunty?’ It then even launched a dig at Samsung’s Galaxy Y phones and its slow-paced features.

4) McDonald’s and Burger King – Who eats first?

Known for their dominance in the fast-food market, McDonald’s and Burger King are commonly known as forever rivals. However, McDonald’s is comparatively more widespread with a larger number of stores. The battle started when McDonald’s launched a billboard talking about how a McDonald’s brand was just 5Kms ahead while a Birger King store was 258Kms ahead.

However, Burger King wasn’t going to let it go, it launched it’s own response campaign too, crediting McDonald’s for giving its customer relief before they travel the mile to reach Burger King. These ad battles called ‘burger wars’ haven’t stopped amusing customers for a while now.

5) FedEx and DHL – Don’t just deliver it

Logistics and delivery competitors, FedEx and DHL went against each other via what defines them, the trucks that do the job. FedEx creatively coloured its truck and said ‘FedEx always first’, a direct jab at DHL’s yellow brand colour.

However, DHL took the opportunity to talk about how ‘DHL is Fed Up’. Let’s just say, it was a well-sought and within-budget ad war to remember.

Each brand and its brand advertisement wars on both print and social media make for interesting stories. They are all a learning curve that new-age marketers must take inspiration from!

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