“Simple. Smart ako.” That three-word slogan for Smart Communications has been a hot topic for some viewers of TV advertising ever since last year. It was a surprise in 2020 when Hyun Bin, lead star of K-Drama “Crash Landing on You,” figured in a Smart commercial shot in the COVID-deserted streets of Seoul, then signed off with the slogan above. Months later, his leading lady Son Ye-jin got in on the act and said the words. This past March, “Captain America” actor Chris Evans said the words. Despite some comments on the cost, the “Smart Ako” ads have had some inspiring positive messages to share. Now, it is BTS’ turn.
Inquirer.net reports that after first being announced as a new brand ambassador for Smart Communications way back in January, juggernaut K-Pop boy band BTS finally got their “Smart Ako” commercial on air last week Thursday, April 22. As part of the well-established Philippine mobile network’s ad campaign for their prepaid services, the K-Pop group’s theme for their ad was “Live Your Passion with a Purpose.” And it has got to be the most epic Smart commercial aired yet, featuring the song that defines BTS in the COVID pandemic period: “Dynamite.”
Shot way back in January 14 at Seoul, just like their fellow South Korean celebrities, BTS’ Smart ad is set in an elaborate decorated interior with an architecture that calls to mind the lithograph “Relativity” of artist MC Escher, with the stairways that can be climbed up and down a variety of ways. The septet of Jimin, Jungkook, RM, Jin, J-Hope and Suga, sing their 2020 hit “Dynamite” as they pass by or interact with various signage on the wacky topsy-turvy set, bearing messages from Smart: “Keep Inspiring,” “Keep Learning,” “Keep Chasing Your Passion,” “Keep Living Your Purpose,” and more.
Artistically it was a different approach to shilling Smart Communications compared to the “Crash Landing on You” leads or the “Captain America” star. Rather than a speech punctuated by visuals of the outside world, this commercial simply had BTS do what they do best while the slogan text is shown around them. The general theme is easily interpreted as Smart encouraging people not to let the tedium of COVID and the resultant quarantines destroy their joys and likes. Smart Senior VP Jane Basas acknowledges the sheer hurdles needed to be overcome to get BTS on board, but the results are more than worth the challenges.
Image from K-BOB YouTube channel