Forget Hindi, Forget English: Hinglish is the Language of Advertising in the Modern World


Language plays an important role in the lives of people especially and it becomes true in the field of marketing and advertising. The present paper focuses on the usage of English in Indian advertisement. The selection of language is to convey message with the purpose of influencing people. However we are very much aware of the fact that in the present scenario audio-visual content and print advertising have a greater impact on the mind of customers, but apart it is the language that helps people to identify a product and remember it. However, one thing is sure, that Hinglish will keep on developing and evolving so long as it remains in the public space. It is the bitter truth that the translation approach does not work for the vast majority of Indian whose English is not always great. However the study aims at :
What will be the impact of usage of hinglish on business in India?
What are the major motives to use hinglish in the Indian advertisement?
Will Hinglish advertisements remain prominent communication tool in the world of business and advertising?


Language plays an important role in the lives of people especially it becomes true in the field of marketing and advertising. India having under the British Rule for over four hundred years has had a deep impact on India. After completion of 69 years of independence , among other accepted things many of them have accepted a language which was never a part of our culture. Today many of Indians feel comfortable with English language usage and it may sound paradoxical. In reality English language has opened a new window to the word that empowers us. Due to English language , India is able to stand up to global economy and global culture. In other words English has now reached virtually every corner of the globe. But however the Indian English is combined with influence of Hindi and other local language is called ‘Hinglish’.

What is HINGLISH ?

According to the Oxford Advanced Learner Dictionary, “Hinglish is a language which is mixture of English and Hindi especially a type of English that includes many Hindi words.” The last few words required to be read again: English that includes many hindi words and not Hindi that includes many English words. In a book “Chutnifying English : The Phenomenon of Hinglish it is cited that the debate of hinglish could neither be on either end, Hindi mein English or English in Hindi the two are not mutually exclusive. In short there is no clear cut definition of hinglish provided by any Indian Institute- private or government working on language. But the paper focused on usage of English with some Hindi words to create Hinglish. In the world of communication and globalization, advertisers have begun using bilingual advertisements to reach a large number of customers.


Since the birth of English language and it is extent all over the world as International Language unanimously. As it is stated that the first recorded use of Hinglish dated back to the era of Indian freedom struggle in the later of 19th century. A prominent Hindi poet named Ayodhya Prasad Khatri wrote Gazal against the British Government where on e find sprinkling of some English words. This could be the first example where the writer used English words in Hindi poem to strengthen the impact to give satirical tone. The mixing between Hindi and English vocabulary has occurred ever since colonial times. Only in the last few years, however, has Hinglish matured and found its place in India as an effective communication tool. Television channels and radio stations in the country now move freely between the two languages, as do music and movies. Nowadays cheaper television s and greater access to the internet facilities Hinglish is no longer confined to the cities but also spreading to rural areas as well. The impact of Hinglish is therefore finding its way into other areas of everyday Indian life, making it the language of the home, work and business.


According to Graver, the powerful tool to influence customer depends on the interaction among three factors:

  1. 1. Ethos, which refers to speakers personal traits.
  2. 2. Pathos, which refers to the audience emotions and state of mind.
  3. 3. Logos, which denotes the content of the message ( the terms are the creation of Greek Philosopher)
The usage in bilingual advertisements positively affects each of these factors. However the creator of advertisement knows English, an attractive identity and with the help of it they make personal traits (Ethos) to appeal customers. Further, by the use of English in various advertisements it creates impression in the mind of customers (Pathos), who already know English. Thus it turns positive affects towards the advertised commodity. The advertising messages (logos) which are associated to customers and appear attractive too. Interestingly, the usage of English in bilingual advertisements serves as a powerful tool to influence customers.

Code –Mixing and Code Switching in Indian Advertisements:

India is multi lingual country and English language since several decades enjoying very privileged position in life. Nowadays, lots of liberalization in borrowing, mixing and switching words is seen in Indian advertisement to attract multilingual customers. Code mixing between English and hindi has become a common advertising strategy in metropolitan cities in India. Advertisement related to beverages, household products, food, cosmetics and media are use appear with code mixing slogans.

Example :
Product name : HINGLISH
L G Oven : Tasty Khane ko Healthy Banaye
Action Shoes : Action ka School time
Dominoz Pizza : Yahin rishton ka time Hungry kya?
Pepsi : Yeh hi hai right choice, baby
Kit-Kat : Kit-Kat Break Banta hai
Hero Motorcrop : Hum mein hai hero
Coca Cola : Life ho to aisi
Nestle : Taste bhi health bhi
Mother dairy : Piyo Pure
LIC : Insurance Bhi, Investment bhi
Close-up : Kya Aap close-up karte hain ?
Coca Cola : life ho to aisi

Thus code mixing between English and Indian languages has become a common advertising strategy in India. Furthermore, the position of English in Indian advertisements is incredibly high and regardless of Indian’s level of proficiency in languages. And the strong usage of English in advertisement may raise the question of India’s national identity.


IN field like advertisement, Hinglish has become choice for advertiser. Hinglish has been accepted not only by advertisers but by customers too. It has been noted that in India the media has recognized the bilingual nature of the population and is exploring it to reach a wider target audience. To spread message among the customers English words with hindi words are used. However it is not confirmed to English, because Indian languages borrow from other languages. –Dominoz pizza- Hungry Kya? / Bheja Fry? And “Gorgeous Hamesha” are punch lines of popular companies of India. The common threads in these statements are they all are appeared in Hinglish.In addition there are many popular Indian Advertisements, where their slogans are only in English but they are not popular than Hinglish slogans.

Example :
Name of the Company :====== Slogan
Sony ====== Make. Believe.
Apple computer ====== Think Different
Nike ======= Just do it
Subway ======= Eat fresh
Adidas ======= Impossible is nothing
Loreal (New) ======= Because you are worth it


As per Indianised English urban youth are often called as “Youngistaan”. Moreover Hinglish is also the language of campus, where students use common funny abbreviations. Some unique phrase are used by youth are :
• I am going to vaastu ceremony.
• Tera kya scene hai?

Many college students have a habit to express best themselves in English words like Computer, cinema, phone etc. there are hindi words but native speakers hardly use them.


India is a country still struggling to establish an identity. It is fair to say that Hinglish has a big role to play moving forward. Well, judging by how the language is used at present, it will remain a prominent communication tool in the world of business and advertising .Thus the impact and status of Indian advertisement have reached its peak due to the usage of English. As creativity plays an added advantage, Indian advertisements have given a boost to English language through the advertisement industry. In addition all Indian cinemas, street hoardings, daily newspaper have always kept space for these advertisements. Apart, commercial advertisements have proved that how creative and important Indian advertisements can be. People are not just mixing Hindi and English words, but they are creatively, actively and energetically reinventing them instead. Hinglish, therefore likely to continue pushing the barriers of advertising in India.


  1. 1.
  2. 2.
  3. 3.
  4. 4. English Language in Advertising- book by Pandya Indu Bala
  5. 5. Hindi in Advertising –book by Kumar Suresh
  6. 6. https:/ use of hinglish in Indian Advertisements

Madhvi Acharya, Assist. Professor, P.D. Pandya Mahila Commerce College, Ahmedabad