Thursday, September 16, 2010

Brand Update : Fastrack Goes Celebrity Way

India's youth accessory brand Fastrack has gone the celebrity way. The latest series of campaign for Fastrack bags is featuring the brand ambassadors - cricketer Virat Kohli and actress Genelia. I think this is the first time that Fastrack has chosen to have celebrity endorsement as a part of the brand strategy.

In my earlier update, I have mentioned that Fastrack has extended itself into accessories like Bags, wallets and belts. The brand also went into retailing by launching exclusive Fastrack stores. The current campaign is the first for accessory and the brand has chosen to promote 'bags' in this campaign.
The brand has rightly identified a need for a branded bag targeting the youth. Currently the market is dominated by unorganized sector and a branded bag priced competitively and marketed properly is certainly a good idea.
Although I am principally against brand extensions, Fastrack extending into the bag segment will open up new opportunities of the brand although at the cost of diluting the primary product line - Fastrack Watches.

The brand is currently running a series of campaign featuring Virat Kohli and Genelia.

Watch the campaigns here : Fastrack lovemark

I was shocked at seeing the ATM ad and found it very very bold especially in the Indian context.Frankly I never expected such an Ad theme from Fastrack.

I am getting old and my understanding of Indian youth and their psyche is becoming outdated but I think Fastrack is moving little too much on the theme of " Move On ". The current campaign is giving an impression that " Move On " means only flirting and fleeting physical relationships. That interpretation will hurt the brand in the long run.

I understand that such kinds of relationships happen in campuses and encounters happen in dark corridors but that cannot be projected as the psyche of youth. Youth have an irreverent attitude towards life and are keen to experiment on everything including relationships. I hope that Fastrack will be careful and desist from narrowly interpreting " Move On " theme.
"Move On " as a theme has lot of creative potential beyond flirting relationship. There are other sides of this concept which is much more sticky and can take the brand to iconic status. Hope that the creative team will consider an holistic approach in this positioning.

Another interesting development for Fastrack is that the brand launched a sub-brand called Fastrack Denim.

Watch the ad here : Fastrack Denim

It is interesting to see Fastrack which was launched as a sub-brand of Titan becoming a full fledged independent brand and then having a sub-brand on its own.

Now looking at the logic of having a sub-brand Denim. I think Fastrack is looking at Sub-brand like Denim to cater to the lower-price points. If you notice, Fastrack brand ( primary brand) has been moving higher in terms of the prices. It started off in the range of Rs 500 and above and later moved over to Rs 1000 and above. Now Fastrack Denim range is priced at Rs 500 and above. So using the sub-brand , Fastrack is protecting its lower-price Flank from attack from competitors. Other than this I do not see any need or relevance of such a sub-brand.

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