In an aggressive move to take on the giants of Indian detergent market, Ujala has launched its premium range of detergent brand Ujala Techno Bright. Touted as an advanced stain removing detergent, the brand is currently promoted in the southern Indian market.
Jyothi Laboratories which are the owners of Ujala brand, which is the market leader in the cloth whitener category, have big plans for the brand. Ujala Washing Powder which was launched in 2003 so far was catering to the lower price segment. The brand is very popular in the Southern states. Jyothi Laboratories wants to take this brand to the next level and fight against the mighty Surf , Rin , Tide and Ariel.
For this Ujala has roped in none other than Sachin Tendulkar to endorse Ujala Techno Bright. The launch ad is currently running across Southern States. According to news reports, Sachin will endorse the Parent brand : Ujala and Techno Bright may be the first sub-brand to get the endorsement from Sachin.
It seems little odd that a cricket maestro is endorsing a detergent brand but such a move is going to give a big boost to Ujala's brand equity. Across the diverse Indian geographical markets, Sachin's endorsement of Ujala brand will improve visibility and to a certain extent positively impact the image of Ujala. Further, the presence of Sachin Tendulkar will add momentum to the acceptance of Ujala's brand extensions across India.
Ujala Techno Bright 's attempt to challenge Surf is no small fight.Surf has incredible brand equity and premium perception which is not easy to break. Ujala through Techno Bright is aiming for an upward stretch ( low priced to premium) which is a difficult strategy. Consumers perceive Ujala Washing Powder as a medium/low priced product and to make them pay the price of Surf for this product-line- extension is not an easy task. The presence of Sachin Tendulkar may be of some help but will that be enough to break the perception is something to watch for.
The launch ad of Techno Bright is nothing much to talk about. The creative is average and talks about the efficacy of the product in a rational way. The brand right now has not attempted to talk about anything more than functional aspects.
It is interesting to see that despite having a strong personality like Sachin as the brand ambassador, Techno Bright has not used him in the package . I do not know whether the contract restrict such a usage , but the brand would have gained so much if it used Sachin Tendulkar on the brand package because it can impact the purchase decision at the store.
With Ujala Whitener generating cash for the company, Jyothi Lab is attempting bigger role for Ujala brand. Having Sachin as the brand ambassador at this point when his brand equity is at the peak is a very smart marketing move. The company has a strong distribution network and has shown its capability to humble mighty competitors like Reckitt Benckiser. It will be worth the time to watch how Ujala plays this game.