Monday, February 15, 2021

Brand Update : Amul puts the butter narrative into its biscuit entry

 Launched in 2019, Amul's foray into the highly competitive and fragmented Rs 37000 biscuit market has become national. The ads for Amul Butter cookies are now streaming across various markets. Although the brand is not yet in stores in Kerala, I guess it is a matter of time that the brand will be in the stores. Amul has been on a roll in the last couple of years with a slew of launches in various categories. The brand has decided to leverage the full potential of the equity and is experimenting with various products and categories. 

Biscuits is a tough market to crack owing to the low entry barrier and fragmentation. The consumers in the category have fleeting brand loyalty and are swayed by new variants and innovative flavours. So it will not be an easy walk even for Amul. Just like what it did with the ice cream market with its " made with cow's milk" proposition, in the biscuit category, the brand is pivoting the market with the proposition of " 25% Amul Butter" ingredient. In a subtle way, the brand is referring to the presence of vegetable oil in the competitor's products creating jitter among the competing brands. The powerful narrative it created in the ice cream market with the education of consumers about ice-cream and frozen dessert made Amul a strong contender in the category. The same narrative is applied in the biscuit category also. For a consumer, the very Amul brand name is enough to enthuse trial and rest will depend on the product efficacy. 

The challenge for Amul will be to create the variants and innovate in the product category. Sunfeast, Parle and the likes are bringing in new flavours, variants and new products and getting into the market quite fast. Amul is known for its distribution prowess and marketing muscle, it will be tested to the fullest in this category. 

Monday, February 08, 2021

Nimwash : The First Step in a Recipe

 Brand: Nimwash
Company: ITC

Brand Analysis Count: # 607

Covid-19 has made some category like sanitisers, handwash etc penetrate the market very fast and became a part of the consumer basket within a short span of time. In a way, consumers were forced to adopt those products. Along with these essentials, marketers are trying to push their luck in some other categories taking advantage of the new normal of fear and personal hygiene. One such category that is witnessing a lot of product launches is the vegetable and fruit wash category
The category of fruit and vegetable wash is not a new one, in fact in 2008, I had written a post about a brand Bio-Fresh which is in the same category. The difference in 2021 is that many brands from famous companies are in the fray. One such big launch is Nimwash from ITC. 
The interest behind such new launch in this category is to take advantage of the general sentiment of the consumers towards personal hygiene and fear of getting sick. While sanitsers have reaped the benefit of direct connection with the pandemic, the fruit and vegetable wash category is trying to go with the flow.  
Having said that, there is a very real benefit that these products are offering. It is real that the fruits and vegetables that we consume are laden with pesticides and chemicals and these are potential threats to our health. So just like the santisers, it makes immense sense to clean the vegetables from the chemicals and pesticides.
Nimwash is pitched as a healthy vegetable wash with natural contents like Neem. The proposition seems to be very logical and attractive. The brand has chosen a celebrity endorsement route with the celebrity chef Sanjeev Kapoor as the endorser. The brand has smartly put the tagline as " The First Step in  Recipe" highlighting the importance of cleaning the vegetables and fruits before confusing. 

Nimwash along with the competitors like Marico's Veggie Clean, Raho Safe are already available across various supermarkets and consumer offers like 1+1 free also have started coming highlighting a sense of panic selling by the marketers. 
As a consumer, I was also tempted to purchase such a product because I am aware of the core issue that this product is solving. So the issue is not the need-identification or problem recognition, the challenge is the repeat purchase and continuous adoption of this category. That continuous adoption requires a change in consumer behaviour in terms of cooking and eating fruits. These marketers need to teach consumers to use this product to wash the fruits and vegetables before cooking/ eating. That is not a small task. The same issue was faced by sanitisers before and Covid was a good teacher in that aspect. For a brand like Nimwash, despite the product being beneficial, it is a challenge to shore up the volume by making these products a part of the daily life. The benefit of washing the fruits and vegetables daily with such products does not offer any visible pieces of evidence other than a mental satisfaction. Products like floor cleaners, sanitisers have already created that mental feeling of germ-free/ cleaning picture in the mind of the consumer, it is now the task of Nimwash and others to replicate the same.