‘Our intention wasn’t to hurt anyone’s sentiments’ Amanté answers questions on their advertising campaign

A five year old brand selling lingerie to the Indian market, amante’s recent advertising campaign ‘break up with the wrong bra’ attracted International attention due some perhaps controversial connotations of domestic violence against women, and an unusual lack of cleavage in their adverts. Here at followmycurves.com, we decided to speak to amanté’s C.E.O, John Chiramel, and get some feedback on the thought process behind the advertising campaign, and the response it has generated from their target market, the Indian customer.

What was the thought process behind your advertising campaign?

The sole thought behind the advert was not to objectify women. Most of the lingerie ads are seen more by men than women. Women are embarrassed to see a scantily clad woman in an advert, and it isn’t really possible to portray these types of images outdoors on billboards. Women are embarrassed by it, and it isn’t really culturally acceptable. We don’t want to objectify women so therefore didn’t want to use a beautiful woman in fancy lingerie. It has been said for years that 8 out of 10 women wear the wrong sized bra but here in India, the industry isn’t doing anything about it. amanté has come up with the concept of a body band which helps you know your right size by measuring your underbust and cup size without the need to do any calculations. It’s a one stop solution which will make it easier for women to wear their right size. In the advertisement, we’re not telling the customer to only buy amanté, as the tagline of the advertisement is saying ‘break up with the wrong bra’ rather than ‘buy our lingerie’. We want women to be more aware of their size, and buy lingerie that fits them correctly.

Why did you choose phrases such as ‘suffocation is the worst kind of abuse’ and other phrases that may have connotations with domestic violence?
Our intention with this campaign was never to hurt anyone, but more to be a slightly tongue in cheek reference to the difficulties wearing lingerie can give you. The lines themselves were written by a female copyrighter, but after receiving feedback from the campaign, ‘suffocation is the worst kind of abuse’ has now been taken from the billboards. We tried to treat the bra as a partner, and suggest that a woman gets out of wrong ‘relationship’ with her bra. We used words such as ‘adjust’ to refer to adjusting your bra straps, ‘little nicks and cuts’ to refer to the bra cutting into your skin and chafing if the bra is too tight. The intention wasn’t to hurt anyone’s sentiments and come out with a controversial campaign.

What challenges do you face trying to advertise lingerie in a world where public images of women in lingerie are not culturally acceptable?

We want to focus upon education, and as we don’t want to have to show cleavage we used women from different parts of India ranging in age from 26-40 to make thestatements in our campaign. We felt a female to female message would be more powerful rather than anything else. We cannot change attitudes people have, and it is the sad reality that advertising a Bollywood film allows heaving cleavage, but when you wish to advertise lingerie, it is seen as embarrassing and dirty if you use a picture of a model. With digital media such as blogs and facebook, you can go ahead and use a lot of images to get your point across. We have tried to maintain consistency with this campaign, so have ensured that in our microsite www.breakupwiththewrongbra.com is also very illustration oriented rather than using images of real models.

What has been the feedback from the campaign?

Many women have really appreciated the campaign as it doesn’t use cleavage as a method to get attention. Amanté is the five years old in India now and thisis the first campaign we have launched. We haven’t done any mainline advertising, as we wanted to have a critical mass of products available first before we can begin advertising. Now Amanté is registered in the mind of women as a lingerie brand, and they are more aware us and the message we give out about wearing a well fitting bra. We’re using the amanté Bodyband to get this message across. We are helping the women fit themselves using the amanté Body Band at various retail stores and will encourage them to ‘break up with the wrong bra’.

Thank you amanté for agreeing to speak to us.

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