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We all have seen the ubiquitous Trivago ad either on television or the Internet or both. And every time the ad comes, we flinch a little. Many attribute the irritation to the guy in the ad. He is unusual looking, not average, under average or over average, just unusual. He is skinny like a teenage boy with a handle bar moustache and a slightly effeminate voice. He piques your curiosity. Many of you would even have tried to find out who the guys is. For those of you who haven’t searched him, he is Abhinav Kumar, Trivago’s Germany based country head for India.

He has been trolled and memed on social media for his unusual demeanor and irritating (I know I sound mean, but to my credit, I do not find him irritating at all) presence. Some people have also complained about him saying they will not visit Trivago just because of the guy. One would expect the company to change their ad or at least not use this person for their succeeding advertisements. But Trivago has come up with a second advertisement with Abhinav Kumar.

For those who are questioning the decision, Trivago’s response is, their revenue increased 100 % after the first ad; that is why they have decided to bring in Abhinav Kumar for the second installment. Moreover they think Kumar is in line with their strategy of casting regular looking people in their ads. Ironically though, Kumar would stand out among a group of regular people. Moreover, the company does not want to make decisions solely based on social media reaction.

To his credit, Kumar has taken the trolls and memes about him quite sportingly. He also actually shares some of the trolls and memes that he finds funny.

Moreover, there are good chances that much of people’s irritation can be attributed to the fact that the ad has played over a million times. And even if that was not the case, everybody recalls Trivago and knows what Trivago does because of or not because of Abhinav Kumar. And I have my personal example as proof. When I had seen the Trivago ad initially, I did visit the site for my hotel booking the first three or four times. But I stopped visiting the site as Trivago did not collate data from all hotel booking websites.

In times when you are bombarded with advertisements via n number of channels, it becomes hard for advertisements to stand out. And even when they do manage to stand out, they are not able send the intended message across. But Trivago has nailed this difficult task. Not only has it managed to stand out (in spite of the lack of a very creative video commercial), but has also managed to deliver its message. And cherry to the cake is the fact that Trivago is amongst the top five recall for hotel booking websites for many people. If this is not successful marketing, then what is? The decision to recast Abhinav Kumar doesn’t seem so bizarre now, does it?


Thanks you for reading and have a nice day!

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