In an interview of Your Story, with Shradha Sharma, Tanmay Bhat was asked about the story of CRED Ads. He explains it in this way.
Tanmay Bhat’s experience in writing
Tanmay Bhat wrote many jokes and ad campaigns for Television shows, Radio, Movies, Corporate shows, and live theatre. He also composed music and wrote lyrics for some songs. Tanmay also performed on Radio. He was a Radio Jockey for a brief period of time.
He started writing at an early age. Tanmay started writing in 2005. He is a very experienced writer with an experience of 17 years. Tanmay Bhat wrote for almost half of his life. He says that creativity is a muscle.
Due to his exercises on comedy over these many years, it compounded over time and it is showing its effects now. He says that the longer you keep exercising, the easier it gets to adapt later. Tanmay Bhat says that this is why it is relatively easier for him to adapt himself to advertising than it would have been if he didn’t do comedy.
Tanmay Bhat’s journey in writing
People focus on their end goals from their childhood onwards. He says that, in the olden days, people wanted to become astronauts because everyone was talking about astronauts.
But today, they want to be Logan Paul, they want to become a creator because that is the first thing they are exposed to. But what they don’t realise is the skills required to reach there have to be developed.
Tanmay Bhat didn’t look at the end goal. Because, in his childhood, didn’t know about standup comedy or content creation. He just knew that he had a skill that makes people laugh. Tanmay has developed all the other skills.
He shares his achievements of writing for India’s Got Talent’s first season, Star Parivaar Awards, scripts for MTV, and Disney. Tanmay wrote a wide variety of scripts.
He says that this is the reason why he can now write scripts in sleep (easily).
How did Tanmay Bhat write CRED ads?
Tanmay Bhat wrote many ads for CRED and Smallcase. They were very creative and got everyone’s attention. These ads especially CRED ads featured Neeraj Chopra, Rahul Dravid, Venkatesh Prasad etc… Tanmay was asked to explain how did he write it.
Tanmay’s writing strategy revealed
Tanmay says that he is not an Ad Guru, a Brand Strategist. He says that he doesn’t have those skills. If he likes the ad and enjoys it, he writes it. He says “I should enjoy the ad and say “Maza Aaya” to myself, then, I will write it. I do any work if I get that feeling.”
His aim for the CRED ads was to make a person watch the ad and make it truly enjoyable. He says that this is his approach to anything he writes.
Tanmay says that a person should enjoy the 30-40 seconds of the ad so that the person sticks to the ad till the end. He doesn’t concentrate on the brand, he’s not a specialist in branding. Tanmay always needs a “guardian” to help him out in this stuff.
For CRED ads, he says that it was Kunal Shah ( Founder of CRED ). Tanmay found Kunal Shah from some of his interviews. Tanmay Bhat says that Kunal surrounded himself with many creative people like Harish, Neelaksh, and Gayatri ( From Sequoia Capital ).
One of them was 23. So, Tanmay says that Kunal gives many opportunities to youngsters and talented people. Also, he says that these people don’t get attention and credits. He says these ads are the result of a high level of judgement and high freedom.
He says that this is why creativity is not consensus, usually. Consensus is if broadly everyone is on the same page (opinion). He also says that you can get everyone to agree on one particular idea. They all like the taste of the idea.
So, he says that the credit goes to CRED team. Writers are not given freedom and get crushed by bureaucracy. “I was just incredibly lucky that I was able to work with this CRED team”, said Tanmay.
Tanmay’s 1st CRED ads ran on IPL. He just wrote 2 to 3 ad campaigns for CRED.
Tanmay Bhat ‘s Writing Process
Tanmay assumed the people at CRED office as his audience and performed the ads he wrote to them. He said, ” They are very digitally savvy, very smart, young, focused.” The same is CRED’s audience.
His idea was that if they enjoyed his writing then the audience will also enjoy it. Tanmay didn’t think about how it would work out or how it would look. If CRED’s employees enjoy it, then broadly the audience would also enjoy it.
Working with Celebrities
If we try to make Rahul Dravid angry, it will be fun. The room laughed, they enjoyed it. So, they proceeded.
This process was fun to pitch to various people like AR Rahman. Some made fun of him. Many laughed. He wrote a parody of “Dil Se Re” which was “Bill Pay Re“. He pitched this to AR Rahman.
Tanmay targeted many celebrities and wrote the funniest scripts for each of them. Once they were successful with Anil Kapoor, Maduri Dixit, Govinda, CRED gave him more freedom to write.
Director behind CRED ads
Ayyappa was the director of these ads. Tanmay Bhat gave credits to Ayyappa for executing these ads perfectly. In the past, Ayyappa directed ad campaigns with kids for Flipkart. He also worked with AIB.
Tanmay says that Ayyappa doesn’t like working with celebrities. Tanmay said that he was proud to make Ayyappa work with celebrities. Ayyappa was very helpful in Rahul Dravid’s ad. Ayyappa gave many ideas to Tanmay in this ad.
When someone sees any ads and they are happy, they check about the agency which made it. The agency gives credit to the writer. But the director goes unnoticed.
Nowadays, when Tanmay writes a script, Ayyappa will be in the script room from day one. “This process is very rare”, Tanmay Bhat said.
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