Short List
Product / ServiceGANESHA IDOL
CategoryA08. Charities, Public Health & Safety, Public Awareness Messages


Name Company Position
Rajiv Rao Ogilvy & Mather National Creative Director
Elizabeth Dias Ogilvy & Mather Senior Creative Director
Srreram Athray Ogilvy & Mather Senior Creative Director
Farid Bawa Ogilvy & Mather Art Director
Kunal Dangarwalla Ogilvy & Mather Account Manager
Gopal Prajapati Self Employed Sculptor
Sharad Malankar Self Employed Sculptor
Shantosh Dhadve Self Employed Sculptor

The Campaign

We needed a solution that took care of tradition and the environment, since idols over the years (because of all the harmful elements used in their making) have been polluting the waters and killing the fish. We created unique fish friendly Ganesha idols made from vegetarian food ingredients like soya, wheat, spinach and corn, all that the fish can consume and we painted them with natural food colours, like fuller’s earth, turmeric and earth colour. All this was encased in a river clay mould. Since huge idols cause more damage, we reduced the size to just 9 inches. The idol's outer river clay coating was designed to dissolve in just 4 hours, leaving the rest for the fish to enjoy. We introduced the idea on Facebook with the hashtag #GodSaveTheOcean, asking people to book their fish friendly idol online.

Creative Execution

We painstakingly handcrafted each fish friendly Ganesha idol with the expertise of Ganesha idol makers and sculptors, to bring this unique Ganesh idol alive. We introduced the idea with a poster on Facebook and the hashtag, #GodSaveTheOcean, a few weeks before the 10-day long festival could start. The demand for the product was overwhelming. People could book their fish friendly Ganesha idol online. The idea spread through word-of-mouth and became viral bring in inquiries for purchase.


Once we introduced this unique product idea with a poster on Facebook and a hashtag, #GodSaveTheOcean, it went viral instantly, reaching 12.8 million people. And demand was overwhelming. All the idols were sold out. The hashtag became the top trending topic. People loved the idea and couldn't stop sharing. Celebrities tweeted on their own. It was covered by newspapers and radio. Huffington Post, International Business Times, Times of India... just to name a few. The media couldn't stop talking about it. Over 300,000 shares on Facebook, 1000 conversations and comments, creating unparalleled support and awareness. Most importantly more people became more and more aware that we needed to protect the environment. We hope in the years to come the celebrations are not only for the humans but also the fish.

This idea used a century old tradition and festival to create awareness about the harm we are putting the ocean and its creatures through. This idea sets an example by execution and offers a simple and a viable solution for the problem of ocean pollution. The power and simplicity of this idea got people hugely interested in it and got them to spread the message on their own.

Our target audience were mainly the people who bring home Ganesha idols every year. But our idea had a far wider reach and created more awareness than we could have imagined. It started conversations with everyone who cares for the environment. This fish friendly Ganesha idol idea spoke for itself and people couldn't stop talking about it, thus spreading the message further.


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