Thursday, November 02, 2006

Garden : Creating A New Woman

Brand : Garden
Company: Garden Silks
Agency: Ambience Publicis

Brand Count : 151

Garden sari is one of the oldest sari brand in India. Garden Silk Mills was incorporated in 1979 as a public limited company. Garden Saree have unique place in the Indian consumer's mind. Garden and Garden vareli were household names during the eighties and nineties.

The Indian women's wear market is estimated to be around Rs 28500 crore. While the ethnic wears constitute around Rs 17000 crores, the branded saree market is estimated to be around Rs7000 crore.

Garden faced a crisis in the late nineties because it failed to change with the changing psychographics of the Indian consumer. In eighties to nineties, this brand was enjoying a cult status among the upper middle class Indian consumer segment. Garden sari was the choice of the working women in the nineties. The brand was built on quality , affordability and style.
Garden brand was a well nurtured brand and the brand owners were never hesitant in spending on brand building. The ads of Garden were famous for its design and models. Famous models like Meher and Lisa Ray have featured in the campaigns.
But somewhere Garden lost its magic. The brand was not able to foresee the changing lifestyle of its TG. Saree was slowly becoming less popular among the modern Indian women.

The rapid urbanisation and the influence of western wear contributed a shift in the dressing habit of Indian women . Saree had its share of product problems. Working ladies began to look for dresses that are more convenient and easy to wear. Since the urban working class travel long distance to work , slowly Salwar and western dresses began to take the place of the traditional sari. This was not anticipated by Garden. The brand was losing relevance to the new generation which had new lifestyle priorities.
When we look at the new TG for this brand , the working women, the dressing habits especially in the metros and mini metros have changed drastically. Salwar has become the norm and sari has been restricted to occasions. Although this change is yet to trickle down to the larger part of the country, the brand like Garden was affected most. I am not forgetting the fact that majority of Indians live in small towns and villages.

At the lower segment, Garden faced intense competition from the unbranded sari and at the top end from the designer wears. Garden was not able to position itself in the changing market. During this stage, the spend on the promotions were also reduced which further eroded the equity of this brand.During this time brands like Kunwar Ajay and Poonam took the market away from Garden

2006 saw the rejuvenation of Garden in a new form.The brand is making noises in the media and is keeping its old flashy style that made this a big brand. The brand is now trying to create its equity in the young generation. The ads are positioning this brand as a youthful and flashy designer range of womenwear. Reports suggest that this brand is also extending into readywear segment. The introduction of ranges like Cenza has created some excitement among the consumers. At the retail end also this brand is being increasingly noticed by customers. This is a good move by the brand because womenwear segment is dominated by retail brands rather than manufacturer brands. Hence there is a space for a national brand in this segment.
Challenges are plenty for Garden because it has lost touch with the new gen. Hence the brand has to spend more on ads and also keep the brand more exciting by
a. launching new varieties
b. associating with events and
c. creating designer labels

Garden is on its way to rejuvenite and retake its past glory. To transform from " MY Mother's Sari Brand " to My brand is a tough task.

Garden : Creating a New Brand.

Source : economictimes,businessline, agencyfaqs.