Monday, June 29, 2020

Brand Update : Neutrogena drops its fairness range

In an interesting move, Johnson&Johnson decided to drop the fairness product range from the Neutrogena brand line. Launched in 2005, Neutrogena wanted its share in the $450 mn fairness market in India but failed to catch up to the market leader HUL. The brand relied heavily on celebrity endorsements to gain traction in the market. 
According to news reports, J&J's decision to drop the fairness range is due to the growing pressure from the activist groups which consider fairness products as unethical products trying to exploit colour-based discrimination. The fairness product category has always been on the wrong side of marketing ethics. Activists feel that these products embed the seeds of colour-based discrimination and thus be banned. However, marketers feel that they are fulfilling a need of the consumers to look fairer and there is nothing unethical in that. This debate has become more prominent among the mainstream media with the recent racial discrimination issues that happened in the USA. The debate forced many marketers to relook their personal care portfolio through the lens of discrimination. 
Recently HUL also decided to remove the mention of fairness on their flagship brand Fair and Lovely. 
Marketers cannot be fully believed in what they say. The current actions can be another marketing move aimed to project the ethical side of these brands and owners. However, it is good to know that marketers are responding positively to the ethical issues raised by activists and reinforces the fact that the impact of society and activists group have a greater impact on marketing than ever before. 

Monday, June 22, 2020

Brand Update : For Savlon, Ownership changes everything

Since the launch of Savlon in India as early as 1993, the brand has struggled to become a mainstream brand in any of the segment it aspired to enter. Launched as a fighter brand against the market leader Dettol, Savlon couldn't make a sustained fight against Dettol. Even the brand owner Johnson & Johnson's equity did not help Savlon.
Then in 2015, the brand changed hands in India. ITC took over Savlon and the landscape changed to the brand. 
ITC had serious plans for Savlon and expanded the product range by launching sanitizers, liquid handwash etc which not only increased brand visibility at stores but also gave the brand entry to emerging categories in the personal hygiene segment.
The Covid-19 pandemic has proved to be a big boost for the brand because of the huge demand for sanitizers and handwash products. Savlon leveraging ITC's strong distribution network was able to make big inroads into the consumer's choice set.

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Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Kopiko : Anytime , Anywhere

Brand: Kopiko
Company: Mayora 

Brand Analysis Count: 595

Kopiko is a simple brand. It is India's popular pocket coffee candy brand. I was surprised to know that Kopiko is an international brand that too from Indonesia. The brand derives its name from the name of a Hawaiian coffee bean (Wiki). Kopiko was launched in India in 2008 and since then it has been a favourite candy brand. According to a report, Kopiko was the second-largest selling hard-boiled candy in India in 2017 with a sale of more than 350 crores. 

The brand has a simple proposition - it tastes like real coffee. That simple proposition and actual deliverables are what can create a good brand. And Kopiko was found to be delivering its promise and the brand was successful in gaining a fair share of the market.
India is a coffee-loving nation and that also has benefited the growth of this brand. There is competition for Kopiko in the market such as Coffy Bite which is a coffee flavoured confectionary but it is not a hard-boiled candy. Indian confectionery market is worth more than $1 billion and the market growth is more driven by the hard-boiled candy segment. 

Kopiko has been running various campaigns highlighting its major value proposition. Watch the new campaign :

The new campaign further extends the positioning by talking about the main benefit of coffee ie to keep awake. The advertisements of Kopiko is simple and straight forward and it conveys the brand's propositions well. The brand so far has not been adventurous in launching extensions or variants, which makes sense for such a simple brand. Internationally Kopiko is available in different coffee flavors. 

Wednesday, June 03, 2020

Brand Update : Fair & Lovely extends to soap again !

It was to happen and it happened (again). Fair & Lovely extended itself to the soap category. The creator and the market leader of fairness cream category have put a brave new front into the highly competitive and cluttered soap market. Although F&L created the fairness cream category, it was Godrej Fair &Glow who first created a fairness soap product. It is often seen in the marketing world, that pioneers often find themselves missing opportunities in related categories. 
It is not the first time that F&L is launching a soap. The first launch was in 2015 and then somehow nothing happened with the product in the market. 
In late 2019, the brand relaunched the soap extension as if nothing happened in 2015.
In a marketing perspective, the soap variant takes a dig on the competitor Fair & Glow by creating parity on the 'glow" proposition. The soap is promising glowing skin and the fairness promise is there from the parent brand. The launch ad is in line with the overall F&L positioning.

The soap is priced in line with market and this can be considered a masstige brand which is a strategy where the product is aspirational but priced reasonably so that a larger segment of customers can afford to purchase. 
Through extending the F&L, brand HUL is trying two outcomes. Firstly it wants to leverage the existing equity of F&L in the soap category. Secondly, HUL wants to reinforce its supremacy in the soap category by covering the entire category and not leaving any gap for the competition to take advantage.