Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Dabur Chyawanprash : Zaroorat Hai

Brand : Dabur Chyawanprash
Company : Dabur
Agency : Mccann Erickson

Brand Analysis Count : 306

Dabur Chyawanprash is an interesting brand for anyone who is interested in marketing. Two factors makes it special. First factor is that this is a truly Indian product and a product which is very close to our heritage and mythology. Second factor is the effort of market leader in rejuvenating the category.
Chyawanprash is an ayurvedic health supplement. The name is derived from Hindu Mythology. The story goes like this. Chyawan was the son of Bhingu and Puloma. He was physically weak and later in his life Ashvini Kumars came to his hermitage and offered him a divine medicine " Prash " which made Chyawan young and healthy. The name Chyawanprash came into existence based on this mythology.
Dabur Chyawanprash ( DCP) is a heritage brand which came into existence in the year 1949. The brand is now ruling the market with a marketshare of around 60 - 70 %. The total Chyawanprash market is estimated to be around Rs 300 crore ( AC Neilsen Retail Audit 2006-07 ).
Chyawanprash is popular as a kid's health tonic. Parents used to rely on this product for their kids especially if the kids are between 6-16. Because the tweens are usually hyperactive and less inclined to taking foods. Hence Chyawanprash offered a solution to the worried parents. The ayurvedic tag also alleviated worries of side-effects .

Over a period of time Dabur Chyawanprash began to face tough competition not from other chyawanprash marketers but from health food drinks market . Infact the generic competition was hurting DCP more than the brand competition. The health food drinks like Horlicks, Bournvita, Complan etc appealed more to kids than the Chyawanprash. The modern lifestyle also made this product look dated. There was also a perception among the consumers that Chyawanprash is something that has to be consumed when you are not feeling healthy.

From my own example, I was not considering this product category for my kid. But when my child had a series of cold and fever, I started looking at this product category. Hence this perception was limiting the potential for a brand like DCP. Another perception in the market was regarding the user profile. The category is perceived to be of use to only 'kids and aged' and not for adults. These issues severely restricted the growth of the category.

DCP although was ruling the market faced the issue of stagnation. The stagnation was a result of category stagnation rather than saturation. The only option left for DCP was to rejuvenate the entire product category.
In 2007, Dabur undertook a major repositioning exercise for this Rs 150 cr0re flagship brand. The purpose of repositioning was to :
Stretch the market for Chyawanprash
Make the brand more contemporary
Reinforce new set of attributes.

The brand identified two segments : Adults and Kids as the focal point in the repositioning exercise. A series of TVC and print campaigns were released to target both the segments. The campaigns were aimed at parents. The consumer insight was that people care about their loved ones than oneself ( source : Hindustan Times).

The entire campaign was based on the theme of 'role reversal '. The ads featured the brand ambassador Amitabh Bachchan asking the audience to understand the challenges of being a kid, a father and a mother. The campaign involves mother taking the role of a kid, father and son taking the role of a mother and thus understanding the physical and metal exertions involved in each role. The ads end with the Voice-Over ' Dabur Chyawanprash , Zaroorat hai sabko ' ( meaning - DCP : essential for everyone ).

DCP earlier had the slogan - Zaroorat Hai and was positioning itself as a health tonic which is essential for kids. The new tagline broadens the segments by including every member of the family. In the new positioning the brand retains the core brand manthra of ' Natural health tonic' but stretches the segments to include adults.
By positioning it to adults does not mean that the brand has lost its sight on kids. The brand makes itself relevant to kids by a series of campaigns featuring a new brand ambassador Vivek Oberoi.

By positioning itself to new segments, the brand aims to realize its full potential . DCP now stresses on the new set of attributes : health , stress and diabetes. While the standard Chyawanprash takes the health attribute, Dabur launched Chyawanshakthi to take on the stress platform. Chyawansakthi is positioned as a stress reliever and energizer.

DCP also makes the category attractive to diabetic/ diabetic prone consumers by launching Dabur Chyawanprakash. Chyawanprakash is targeting the high density of diabetic patients in our country which makes a highly lucrative market.To take on the competition from the health food drink market, Dabur is planning a foray into the HFD market with a new brand.

News reports suggest that the new gamble has paid off pretty well. What I liked about the repositioning is the execution of the entire idea. Without making much hue and cry, the brand had very subtly made itself relevant to adults.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Brand Update : Reid & Taylor

Reid & Taylor is currently running a new campaign " Dress Code " .The campaign features Amitabh Bachchan in his usual self. The new campaign is aimed at stretching the usage of the brand. The campaign involves a series of print and TVC. The message is simple : You are constantly being watched. Whether you are in office or enjoying life, there are lot of eyes watching you, hence be in your best always.
The TVC is little difficult to understand but the ' idea' is worthy.
Within a short period of time, Reid & Taylor had made an impact in the market. The brand is perceived to be an expensive one ( it is !!) so there is a chance that the customers will use the brand only on certain 'occasions' . The new campaign aims to counter this perception.
It has to be recalled that the earlier campaigns stressed on occasions like Boardroom , marriage etc. Even in the new campaign some hangover is there since they talk about boardroom, M&A etc.Focusing on occasions to use a brand can severely restrict the usage of the product. Once this is registered with the mind of the consumer, it will take a lot of money to change that perception. However the new campaign brings back the style factor in the brand which was missing in the earlier ads.

Related Brand
Reid & Taylor

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Brand Update : Cadbury Dairy Milk

Cadbury has been aggressively promoting the latest positioning " Kuch Meethi ho jaye " . The brand has for a while using Amitabh Bachchan to maximum. The latest story involves BigB craving for Dairy Milk when the car driver mention the word 'Meetha ' or Sweet.
Watch the Commercial here : Diary Milk

The brand want itself to be synonymous with Sweet. The new campaign comes after the successful ' Pappu pass ho gaya ' and ' Miss Palampur " campaigns. Both these campaigns were aimed at generating social acceptance of consumption of chocolate during occasions to celebrate .

The new campaign want to increase the Brand Salience of Dairy Milk. Theoretically Brand Salience refers to the depth and breadth of brand awareness. While depth talks about how easily the brand is recalled. Breadth talks about the range of purchase and usage situations that this brand has been recalled ( source : SBM by Keller). Dairy Milk has immense depth of awareness and now the brand wants the consumer to remember it whenever he/she thinks about sweet.

Through these campaigns , Dairy Milk wants to move above the category constraint of " Chocolate " and spread its awareness whenever the consumer thinks about having something sweet. This strategy is to tide over the limitation that a product category can create regarding consumption of a product. The first two campaigns was to popularize Dairy Milk connecting it to various usage situations while the new campaign is to increase the breadth of the purchase situations by saying that buy Diary Milk whenever you want to have something sweet.

This time the brand has taken a 360 degree approach towards brand promotion. The brand has an interactive website meethamoments.com which contains lot of interactive fields and downloads.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Brand Update : Surf Excel

An SKU is commonly defined as an inventory control count or a unique identifier for each of the products that can be ordered from a supplier ( Wiki). This is a common term used in relation to inventory control and often represented by a numeric. Another definition goes like this ' SKU or Stock-Keeping Unit is actually what is stocked i.e the unique combination of a particular flavor, quality/ price level, packet size , color / model specifications etc and also the identifying brand name ( source - a paper published in South London University by Jaywant, Andrew,Gerald)

But for a marketer, SKU's are something more. It is a tool which is used by marketer to realize some of his objectives. It can be used to
fight competition,
acquire new customers,
provide more choice to the customers
trade pressure
enable sampling etc.

The reason for all these fundas is because of the latest launch from Surf Excel - Sixer Pack. Most often , small packs are used by marketers to make the product affordable to a larger market. We have seen the success of Shampoo sachet and later the rush of the marketers across categories providing smaller packs.
Here Surf Excel is trying to promote the sachet customers to higher volume SKU's.
The logic behind Surf Excel Sixer Packs is simple - Surf Excel now comes with a unique pack of six chota packs (sachets) . Each sachets is for one day's use hence the sixer pack is for a week. The Sixer pack costs only Rs 10.
What I liked most is the way in which the brand communicated this idea to the consumers . Watch the ad here : Sixer Pack
Lowe has once again used the charm of kids in communicating the message.

The question arises as to the purpose behind introducing this new SKU. I think that it is to encourage the current sachet users to buy a convenient sixer pack rather than buying one or two sachets. The price is also psychologically comfortable . Another purpose is to make the brand more affordable to a larger market. The new pack will encourage those who use low priced brands to tryout Surf Excel on a regular basis. Those price conscious consumers may still buy low priced brands but will also buy Surf Excel Packs for their best clothes ( a possibility ! ).

Related Brand
Surf Excel

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Book Review : Kellogg on Branding

Book : Kellogg on Branding
Editors : Alice M Tybout & Tim Calkins
Publisher : Wiley India

Price : Rs 399 ( paperback)

Book Review # 5

If you are interested in brands, this is a book that you should not miss. Kellogg on Branding is the first book on branding from the faculty of Kellogg School. One should not forget that the legendary Philip Kotler teaches in that University. The book comes with a foreword by Professor Kotler.
Kellogg on Branding is a collection of 20 articles written by Kellogg's Professors as well as practicing managers. But the editors have made sure that these articles is in line with a common theme.

The entire book is divided into four sections.

The first section titled : Key Branding Concepts talks about the basic nature of the brand, the concept of positioning , meaning and design of brands. For uninitiated, these chapters give a thorough insight into basic branding concepts.

The second section is on strategies for building and leveraging brands. This section covers the areas of brand strategies to combat competition, portfolio strategy and brand extension.

The third section titled : From strategy to implementation dwells on the concepts of implementing brand building strategies. This section is a highly relevant section since it talks about the challenges and methods to branding in diverse domains like Technology markets, business markets and branding services. This section also deals with the relevance of building a brand-driven organization ( internal branding) .

Fourth section is titled : Branding insights from senior managers. This unique section gives seven terrific case studies ranging from Building megabrands to naming a brand.

Kellogg on Branding is a book that will give the readers lot of branding insights. While Kevin Lane Keller's Strategic Brand Management is known for its exhaustiveness and Kapferer's book is known for its theoretical strengths, Kellogg on Branding can be considered as a capsule of branding insights. For a busy executive, this book will be of utmost help since it is easy to read and also since chapters are disjoint, one can read selectively also. There is also an issue with these disjoint articles since there is overlap of concepts . One concept is explained using different jargons by different authors and this can be a little confusing.

What I like most about this book is the thrust it has given on branding within an organization . Not only the authors explained the importance, they have also prescribed methods or guidelines for building internal brand equity.The chapter on Branding in Technology domain deserves special mention since it gives lot of new insights . The final chapters give a practitioners insights into brand building across various domains. Chapter 18 - Branding and Organizational culture is written by Gary A Mecklenburg , CEO and President , Northwest Memorial Healthcare is a memorable read of building a brand - centered organization. Chapter 11 by Mohanbir Sawhney gives a concept of " Vectors of Differentiation " which has terrific application across industries.

Kellogg on Branding is a useful book for the brand managers since it relates the branding concepts to practice . The book should be an essential read for marketing students since it gives a systematic framework for understanding the brand building process.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Power Mosquito Swatter : A worthwhile Hobby

Brand : Power Mosquito Swatter
Company : Tera Impex

Agency : NA

Brand Analysis Count : 304

If you ask me to name the most useful product I have seen in 2007, I would say that it is the Electric Mosquito swatter. I would also say that this product was one of the hottest selling product in Kerala in 2007.
Kerala is facing one of the most severe mosquito menace of recent times. The mosquito density is as high as 95%. This menace caused a severe attack of Chikunguniya ( a virtually unknown disease till 2006)in the state which took lives of many. I live in Cochin which can be termed as the headquarters of mosquitoes in the state.

Cochinites has been experimenting with all sorts of methods to keep themselves protected from mosquito attack. Most houses in the middleclass and above are insulated with Netlon but still these smart intelligent pests enter the houses at will. Mosquito repellents acts as energizer for these devils.

Then came this product : Electric Mosquito swatter. The product is a tennis racket shaped bat with a wire mesh and electrically charged grid inside. The bat when slowly waved traps the mosquito inside and it dies out of an electric discharge when it bridges the terminals of the device. The mosquitoes die instantly with a spark followed by a splitting sound.
As soon as this device was introduced, the entire city embraced this new found savior. During the dawn , just walk through the lanes of Cochin city, one can hear the sound of mosquitoes getting electrocuted .
For many this bat provides a physical exercise and mental pleasure. The pleasure in the sense that you are able to pay back for the irritation that these small creatures give you. For once the mosquitoes are at the receiving end. There are even households where husband and wife plays a game as to who kills maximum mosquitoes. It has also become a favorite time-pass for husbands when their wives are engrossed in those " Kyon Ki " Soap operas.

Mosquito swatters are popular in West as Bug Zappers. Bug Zappers was invented in 1934 by William Folms and Harrison Chapin. Electric Zappers was developed from these Zappers.

These bats are priced anywhere between Rs 225 - 700. The entire market is dominated by Chinese products. While Indian products comes with warranty, consumers prefer the cheap Chinese products only because of the price factor.
The success of this product is without a single ad. The consumers buy this because it offers a solution to one of their major problems . It also shows the threat that Chinese products give to Indian marketers. But it is also an opportunity for marketers to brand this product. So far there is no well known Indian brands in this category.

Searching the internet for Indian brands, I just found one brand - Power mosquito zapper. Although I hav'nt seen any promotion for this brand, the site offers some differentiators like : Twice Speed Recharge, Leak-proof net etc.
A prospective Indian brand can take on the following differentiators :
a. Battery life
b. Safer than the Chinese products
c. Child safe net
d. More quality
e.Better killing power etc.
d. Healthy option compared to repellents.

My take is that the potential for this product is going to grow in coming years. I also feel that there is an opportunity for an Indian brand in this category.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Brand Update : Maruti Esteem RIP ( 1995-2007)

One of India's most reliable sedan is now a part of history. Officially Maruti Suzuki pulled the plug on Esteem on December 2007. According to the reports, Esteem is likely to be replaced by Swift Sedan branded as Dezire.
Suzuki Esteem is a perfect example of a brand moving through its Product Life Cycle. Within 12 years, the brand moved through all the stages. The reason for the withdrawal if Esteem is the fact that the brand is being perceived as dated brand. With high profile competition from brands like Ford Fiesta, Indigo, Verna , Accent, Logan and host of other sedans, the customers are spoiled with choices. Esteem in a sense has lost the esteem value for the customer.

With the price tag of 5-7 lakhs , the customer had a choice of more luxurious sedans that too with diesel options. Maruti could not afford to sell Esteem at a lower price and even after its makeover couldn't attract the buyers.
But I feel that like the good old Zen, Esteem's withdrawal may be a mistake since it could work as an excellent flanker brand for SX4 and the proposed Dezire. The brand would have made a terrific comeback if Suzuki could cut the brand's price to 4-5 lakhs. There is a huge potential for a sedan at the price range of Rs 4 - 5 lakhs ( on road) .
How ever Esteem now does not fit into Suzuki's new scheme of penetrating into the luxury sedan market.Hence the brand is being phased out.

Related Brand

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Tata Nano : A Promise is a Promise

Brand : Nano
Company : Tata Motors
Agency : Rediffusion ( Rumour)

Brand Count : 303

As a die-hard fan of Ratan Tata , I could not resist joining the euphoria around the Tata Nano. Yes, the world has seen and heard enough of the Tata's one lakh car. Today , every news, talk show talks about this revolutionary new product. Tomorrow newspapers and mags around the world will be celebrating this brand.
Seldom one gets an opportunity to witness a product launch that has the potential to change the dynamics of an industry as such. When the world boasts of an Ipod , we Indians did not had something to talk about. Now we have.
I am a big fan of Ratan Tata because he is someone who could be considered a true representative of Indian management ethos. The way he took the leadership of a whithering empire and the controlled aggression through which he tookover Corus and the way he came out of his initial failures at Nelco all makes him look attainable and inspiring . The dignity with which he handled the situation when his foray into starting an airline was torpedoed by the Government and now the one lakh car exemplifies the qualities that a young mind should aspire for.

The launch of Nano is a valuable lesson for all aspiring entrepreneurs. The brand is a symbol of VISION. In 1998 , Ratan Tata announced his dream of giving a car for one lakh. Many critics scoffed at the mention of the dream . Auto majors around the world questioned the business logic of the dream. Months back, the chairman of Suzuki Motors categorically ruled out the possibility of such a car at such a price. Now the product is now in front of all of us to see. In a sense this product is also a reminder of the vast potential of a human mind. Just like Roger Bannister who broke the four minute barrier, Ratan Tata has broken the one lakh barrier. Ofcourse he had the money but remember he is the first one to do so in the world. The words he spoke on the launch " A promise is a promise " makes a perfect tagline for this car.

The launch had raised thousands of questions about the quality of the car and the performance. But the look of the car silenced many critics. Tata proved that cheap does not always mean bad quality. Nano looks better than most of the small cars that are there in the Indian market. C K Prahlad in his pathbreaking book " Fortune at the bottom of the pyramid " reminds us that Indian consumers at the bottom of pyramid looks for value even at the low prices. Brands which focused only on low prices and produced junk products always have failed in the Indian market.

The new brand Nano will do two major changes in the Indian markets :
a. It will open up a new segment in the Indian Four Wheeler Industry
b. It will inspire many Indian entrepreneurs to have grand vision.

I think Nano will redefine the pricing in the Indian small car market. Either companies like Hyundai , Maruthi may have to cut the prices of existing small cars or they have to comeout with a similar priced car.

Nano will be making cars an affordable luxury for many Indians. To a limited extend it will affect the two wheeler segment but only to a limited extent. The reason is in the running cost and maintenance of four wheelers. At the current oil prices, Cars are still expensive to run & maintain. It cannot in the near future replace the functionality of a two wheeler until cars match the fuel efficiency of two wheelers.

So Nano will be the first car of many Indians who dream of a four wheeler . For those who travel less than 300 km permonth, Nano is definitely an alternative for two wheelers but more kilometers than that will burn a hole in the pocket of an average Indian consumer . Indian consumers will make a careful balance of usage of his two wheeler and Nano to make sure that his budget does not go out of control.There will also be many who could not buy Nano because their flats or houses didnot have parking space ( just joking! ).

Nano also will inspire many to think big. While Ambani brothers make us watch their progress with awe rather than inspire, the success of Ratan Tata will inspire us because he strikes a chord. The fact that Nano was put in reality within four years will also mark a significant turning point in the way we look at our engineering and design talent. The 1700 crore investment that Tata made in this project will be an eyeopener to many who are reluctant to put their money in R&D.

In the marketing front, Nano had the dream start . Infact Nano may need no ads but heavy dose of positive PR during the launch. The brand may have to counter the skepticism surrounding the performance . Another nightmare is managing the initial rush of the customers. Since this is a car for the common man, there is every possibility that the customers could be given a raw treatment at the dealership touch- points. Indian marketers are still to wake up to the possibilities of a good customer service. How Tata and its dealers handle the initial euphoria will be something to watch for in the Customer-relationship perspective .

Whether the car performs or not, Nano is set to change the dynamics of an Industry. I am happy that my favorite business leader is making that change.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Marketing Funda : Building Brands in India

Brands need to have an Indian heart to win the Indian customers. My article on building brands in India was published in 'The Strategist ' of Business Standard on 08/01/2008.
Read the article here : Having An Indian Heart

Monday, January 07, 2008

Brand Update : Parachute

In December 2007, Marico entered the kid's personal care market with the launch of a sub-brand " Parachute Advansed Starz" . Marico believe in extending its brands to new categories. It has done that for entering Men's haircare market by launching Parachute Aftershower . But once these new brands reach a position of awareness and recall, the sub-brands take up the position of a primary brand. Now Aftershower has an independent existence from Parachute.

By launching Starz, Parachute is entering the Rs 2000 crore shampoo market which is dominated by HUL brands. Parachute AdvansedStarz is not restricted to shampoos but positioned as a haircare brand that offers different haircare solutions.

Currently the brand offers
Hair Oil and
Hair Gel.
The brand is taking on a demographic segmentation and is targeting the kids of age group 4-12 Yrs. The Indian shampoo market has not seen a brand focusing specifically on this segment.

Clinic All Clear is a brand that has targeted this segment but the brand is also used by adults.Clinic All Clear has used campaigns to target both adults and kids. For example the Chulbulli campaign is targeting Kids but the Bipasha + John campaign targets the adults. The product is the same. The new brand of Marico is different because it is designed especially for kids.The product, the packaging and the promotions are directly targeting the kids.
Parachute Advansed Starz comes in attractive Pink bottles and features cartoon characters. The brand takes up the tagline " Gentle care for young hair " . Starz takes strength from Parachute and relies on the goodness of coconut to differentiate. The brand also claims advantage of Vitamins , Proteins and Strawberry. The brand essentially takes up Nourishment as the main brand benefit.

has used two "cool" characters whose names are not yet publicized. If properly used , these characters can become powerful brand ambassadors.They look smart enough to appeal to the younger ones. I liked Starz because it shows the use of brand elements to the fullest. Starz. ( infact they remind me of Archies comic characters ). The brand is priced Rs 54 for 100 ml for the shampoo.

Marico intends to develop a new category of specialized hair care solutions for the kids aged 5-10 and even the tweens. This is the age where kids develop lot of hair related problems because of their active & careless lifestyle. So far, Mothers used their own brand of shampoos or may have used Johnson's shampoo for this age group. The success of Starz may seen a new category opening up for marketers.

The question that comes to my minds is whether there is a need for a kids-only haircare products ? The answer lies in the increased exposure of kids towards brands. The new NUF ( Nuclear Urban Family ) structure gives marketer an opportunity to target these segments. The success of Starz will depend on how Marico motivates the younger ones to pester their mothers to buying these products and also on how the brand captures the trust of the mothers. The first task is difficult because mothers are already convinced about Parachute.

Parachute has done a smart work is positioning the brand as a haircare brand and not limiting itself to shampoos of hair oil. This gives more leverage and flexibility to the brand from the start itself.

Related Brand

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Parle Golgappa : Goli Mein Golgappa

Brand : Parle Golgappa
Company : Parle
Agency : Grey Worldwide

Brand Analysis Count : 302

Parle has launched a new unique confectionery : Parle Golgappa. Parle these days are very active in the confectionery business. Along with Mintrox, Parle has launched Golgappa . Golgappa is a traditional chaat dish which is very popular in North India .
Golgappa otherwise known as Paanipuri is a crispy dough "puri" filled with a watery mixture of potato , tamarind and chilli. This is a famous street snack in the North.
The launch of this flavor is a move by Parle to take on the ethinic route to increase its share in the confectionery market. As we know, confectionery is a low involvement product and often customers make spontaneous decisions rather than a planned purchase decision. Hence to survive in the market, one has to innovate in taste and come out with new flavors at regular intervals. Parle has been successful in its experiment with flavors like Kacchaa Mango ( raw mango).
It is a common trend among marketers to introduce traditional flavors in the market to attract the customers. Maggi introduced Sambar masala flavor for its noodles while Mcdonald also adapted to suit the Indian palate. Lays and Bingo build its popularity around ethnic flavors.

What I liked about this new product is its commercial.
Watch it here : Parle Golgappa TVC

This TVC is a simple one with powerful execution. The message is perfectly delivered and I am sure that the ad will prompt trial purchases. The tagline " Goli Mein Golgappa " ( Golgappa in the candy) also is simple funny and descriptive.
Since the flavors can be easily copied by the competitors, Parle Golgappa if successful will see many competitors launching similar tastes. For example Parle Mangobite Kacchaa Mango saw immediate competition from Candyman who launched a similar taste in no-time The fact to look for in this paanipuri flavor is whether the customer will buy this flavor repeatedly. But it is good to see Parle building its lost glory in the Indian market.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Brand Update : Close Up

Close Up has come out with a unique set of variants with a unique brand name Flavalicious. Close Up was concentrating on its parent brand - the ordinary Red Close Up and was trying to build the core brand. In 2004, the brand had made a decision to limit the variants. It even cut down some of the variants like Tingly red and Eucalyptus blue.

Close Up has been positioning itself on the Freshness + Tooth whitening platform . The latest commercials talks about the brand giving confidence to young people to smile freely ( without thinking about their teeth or bad-breath) .
Close UP Flavalicious - as the name indicates focuses on the flavors . The new variant comes in two flavors : Tangerine Burst and Luscious Lyche .
These variants are launched as Limited Edition products. That means these products will be available only for a limited period of time.

These two flavors are new to the Indian consumer. The packing are also different and more flashy. The brand is targeting the young ones and those who are bored by their usual toothpaste flavors.
The Flavalicious variants were launched in Indonesia by Unilever in 2005. In Indonesia, one more variant is available i.e Chocolate flavor. That has not being launched in India.
According to Businessline,the product is priced at Rs 30 for 80 gm. But I found only bigger pack in stores that costs Rs. 50 .
The new launch is aimed at bringing in the young customers back to the Close Up portfolio. The brand has been facing stiff competition from the market leader- Colgate who has launched successful variants like MaxFresh. Colgate ( Gel variants) also gave itself a younger look by using Saif Ali Khan and Asin as the brand ambassadors.

Close Up off late was not getting its communication acts together. Most of the campaigns are far below average in terms of execution . The brand is now trying to bring back the excitement with these new variants. The campaigns are not yet started in the mass media while instore promotions have already began.

Related Brands
Close Up

Limited Edition : Funda

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Hit : Quit India Movement with a Difference

Brand : Hit
Company : Godrej Sara Lee
Agency : Publicis

Brand Analysis Count : 301

Hit is a major brand in the Rs 900 crore home insecticide market in India. The home pesticide market can be divided into two segments : one that is used as repellents like cream ,coil, lotion ,liquidator etc which does not kill the insects and the other category is the Insect Killers which consists of aerosols, chalks, poison etc. Hit belongs to the insect killer category.

Godrej Sara Lee are considered as pioneers in creating and developing the home pesticide market in India.Brands like Goodknight, Jet, Banish ,Hit makes the company the industry leader.
Most of the marketing action takes place in the repellent segment where there is war between brand like Goodknight , Mortien, Allout etc.

Insect killer category is minuscule in size compared to the other segment. According to a report in Equity Master, the insect killer segment is only 15% of the total market. Hit is a major player in this segment especially in the aerosol category.
What is interesting about this brand is the effort that the company has put to develop the aerosol category and also to build this brand.
Hit was launched in 1991. The brand came with two variants : one for killing flying insects and another for killing cockroaches. The brand separated these two variants by using two different colors : one red and another black.
Hit was well received in the market but there was issues regarding the price. The aerosols were too expensive costing around Rs 120 for a pack. Consumers found it less value-for-money and this severely restricted the popularity of aerosols. Only large 350 ml cans were available which again inhibited customers from buying the product. The use of aerosols were restricted to households which had grave insect/cockraoch problems and other households managed with crude methods . Within the two variants, the Cockroach killer was more popular among households.

Hit was marketed heavily by Godrej Sara Lee. This brand is in a product category that is less glamorous. But Hit was promoted smartly by the company. The brand was giving an important promise of a "Pest Free Home " to the homemaker. The brand was essentially targeting the homemakers.

Hit started a series of ads with the theme of a smart homemaker killing all the cockroaches and making her home ' pest free' . The homemaker after killing the cockroaches said " Kyonki ye mera Khar hain " ( This is my house ! ) . That was a perfect tagline for a pesticide. The ads were very effective in positioning Hit at a place above the functional utility of the product.

Another interesting campaign showed the homemaker in a James Bond style chasing and killing cockroaches. The idea was communicated effectively and humorously by these campaigns. The consumer insight is very simple : We feel that pests are intruders. So when the house is infested with pests, we feel that our house is taken over by them and by killing them we take back OUR house.Unwelcomed guests/pests are not allowed.

Despite these campaigns , the category did not grew because of the higher price. Then came the price reduction. Along with the price reduction brand also came out with smaller cans of 250 ml .The price of Hit was dropped drastically . The brand launched smaller SKUs and when the price went below Rs 50 , customers began to look at this product category.

In 2007 Hit ran a very interesting commercial to announce the price cut. It talked about a QUIT INDIA Movement with a twist. The news-like commercial showed a Chinese news reporter reporting an insect invasion of China. Lakhs of insects invading the country. In the climax , it is shown that because of the price of Hit being reduced to Rs 49, insects from India are fleeing to neighboring countries.
Watch the ad here : Quit India

The ad is aimed at bringing the customers into the category of aerosol and thus developing this category as a preferred solution for the problem. The brand also has a cockroach- killing chalk which is highly popular solution for the cockroach menace .
Besides these campaigns, the brand also improved upon the product by introducing a unique applicator which can reach many places where the cockroaches hide.

Hit faces competition from Baygon brand from Bayer. Baygon is not as aggressive a marketer as Hit so not much problem in that front. But a threat is brewing in the form of some new brands that has hit the market. One brand is STOP and another is Quitmos. Stop is running a campaign in the visual media highlighting a major differentiating factor : Non Pesticidal.

As a consumer, I have a strong belief that all these pesticides are harmful to humans. Since it kills insects, some harm is done to us also. But the problem force us to take the risk of using such products. STOP promotes itself as a safe insect protector ( especially flying insects) . On a closer look at STOP reveals that it is not an insect killer but a repellent. I bought it because of its non- pesticidal property which I found a compelling reason to choose it over other aerosols. There is a possibility that such 'safe' aerosols can eat away the market share of the Hit Fly Killer variant.

However there is going to be a huge potential for brands like Hit because the insect menace is going to stay . Consumers like fast and effective solution of such menaces. Hit has rationalized the price making the category more affordable. The heavy investment that Godrej has made on this brand is definitely going to take this brand to new heights.