• Rishi Gaurav Bhatnagar

my mind on cred's new ad (9th April 2021)

I must admit, I am a little sentimental about things. I am the kind of person who would cry on a well-made short film, that is pretty normal to me. So if you are reading this, please take everything hereon with a pinch of salt.


I came across CRED's new ad (artwork) featuring Jim Sarbh and Rahul Dravid and I am experiencing many states of emotions: surprise/amusement/a-state-of-emotion-hard-to-put-a-label-to. So I tried to draw it out for myself. Here is my mind on CRED's new ad (artwork).



Graph-ish: My Brain on CRED's new AD


There is something about CRED's ad that opened so many different threads in my brain that I had to write it down.


While I know nothing about what must have gone to create a work of art like this one, here are all the things that stayed with me:

  1. I noticed the very chilled-out and rather in-character version of Jim Sarbh. Made me feel a little posh. I experienced curiosity as shown on the graph-ish.

  2. I then noticed how the self-referencing phenomena that CRED has used in some form or another show up rather humorously. My energy levels are still ascending because of the consistency in content strategy.

  3. Jim then mentions Rahul Dravid, and in my mind, I am like: ‘oh Rahul Dravid, I haven’t seen him or thought of him in a while, I wonder how is he’. In that split second the image that shows up for me is the one that all of us except those who know Rahul personally would remember: a cool guy, calm demeanor, always showing up for the team, and someone who takes pressure like a boss.

  4. What happens next is what I wasn't prepared for:

  5. I see Rahul, but not a version that is familiar:

  6. I see him wearing clothes that don't match the image in my mind.

  7. I see him wearing sunglasses (aviators) that I have never seen him in.

  8. I have never seen him driving a car.

  9. My mind: Wait that’s Rahul!

  10. WAIT IS THAT RAHUL!?

  11. I see a version of Rahul that is extreme and I could never imagine. This is where the beauty lies. The emotions I feel at this moment are so high from the state of emotions I was coming from that there is no way I would not be ‘thrown off my chair’ and move into a state of surprise. This is the emotion you are leaning into, but this isn’t it. There is more! It builds up further.

  12. He speaks in Kannada - you would not see him do that very often on National TV. He is using a bat like a rowdy - you would never see that, and then he shouts in Hindi. All signs of a total rowdy. This is not him!

  13. And then it ends with a punchline. According to me “Indiranagar ka gunda moon main” has the potential to be on merchandise and memes (although considering the crimes on 12th main, Indiranagar it may not happen anytime soon).

Now, LOOK AT THE TARGETING!

  • Who are the people that remember Rahul Dravid?

  • What would be their age group?

  • Who will be surprised the most?

  • What platform would they use?

  • What would make them share this?

  • What would catch them by surprise?

  • What messaging would stay with them?

  • What would they think about when they think about CRED?

  • What would they speak to their friends about?

All of these questions are so beautifully answered!


I may not know (and never remember) why this Ad created. But, instead of continuously creating new content to establish the messaging about CRED coins, just one ad created enough of an impression on me that I had to write about it. (And I also know what to do with my coins now!). I am going to remember this ad (artwork). I think it will go viral! It is so beautifully done!



I have massive respect for CRED’s team. They are a unicorn now and it doesn’t change anything in my personal life, but this execution does. I want to build this skill! The depth with which they understand their audience is extremely hard to match. It is a piece of art. TGundahis is why CRED will continue to win and it will be extremely difficult to beat them at this long-term game.


Dear Kunal and CRED’s fantastic team, thank you. My neurons are on fire at the moment. What a way to end the week!


Few things that may help you go deeper into this:

1. TED talk on Memorability: Memorability and why some things stay with you

2. An AD film that has stayed with me for many years now. Watch this, I bet you will feel something shift in you, and you won’t forget this ad either!


Pumped, excited, inspired to do meaningful work. Onwards and upwards!

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