Saturday, May 02, 2009

Brand Update : Loreal

Business Line (30/04/09) had an interesting news. L'Oreal is going to bring out sachets. L'Oreal has been in the Indian market for the past 15 years. The brand is positioned as a premium skin care brand and enjoyed tremendous equity among the upper segments of the consumers. The brand have the famous tagline " You are Worth It " and the brand is endorsed by WHO is WHO of the glamour world.

The move evoked two set of reactions in me. The consumer inside me was happy because the brand became affordable while the marketing person inside me was apprehensive about the dilution of premium image due to this affordable SKU.

Sachet has been a double edged sword for most of the fmcg marketers. This SKU offered tremendous volume potential. In the game of sachets, there is no premium class . There is only one class -Affordable class. On the other hand, it is a tough task for marketers to get customers to move to the high margin bottles.

The question is whether the availability of Loreal products at the price points of Rs 5 or Rs 7 will dilute the brand equity ? Will the higher segments drift away from this brand because the product now has a low priced SKU.

Since this is India, the lower price point is only going to benefit the brand sales. Indians love value for money Masstige brands. The new affordable SKU will bring in lot of customers who once thought that the brand was unreachable / unaffordable.

This will enable the brand to get into a new set of customers who shied away from the brand. But the difficult task is to get the brand in all the shop formats ( if the company is aiming volume). Putting the brand in a sachet and restricting the distribution will not yield desirable results.

The only issue for the brand is to make the consumers trade up for larger SKU because sachets are low margin units.

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Read BL report here