Accenture : High Performance , Delivered
Corporate Brand : Acccenture Agency : Rediffusion /DYR ( In India)

Brand Analysis Count : 307

Accenture is a unique marketing case study because of two reasons . It is one of the most aggressive corporate brand in the service industry globally and the

second re undertook in 2001.

ason is the rebranding exercise which it

Accenture was formerly known as Andersen Consulting. Anderson consulting was the consulting arm of Anderson Worldwide. Anderson Consulting was established in 1989 when the consulting practice of Arthur Andersen was hived off to form a separate company. Arthur Andersen had established itself as one of the major accounting firms and had a global presence. The consulting boom of 1990's boosted the image of Andersen Consulting. Soon Anderson Consulting had built a strong brand equity across various consulting domains. Both Arther Andersen and Andersen Consulting was independent business units under Andersen Worldwide. The fledging consulting business prompted Arther Andersen to enter the

consulting domain. This entry of Arther Andersen into the domain of Anderson Consulting started a messy fight between these two units which ended in the arbitrators courts. In 2000 Arbitrator ruled that Anderson Consulting was granted independence from Andersen Worldwide . Andersen Consulting had to forgo the brand in favor of Andersen Worldwide.

This forced the consulting firm to scout for a new brand name and identity. The brand name was selected among 500 alternatives. The process of selection of brand name was itself a unique event. Anderson Consulting had a huge brand equity among various business houses across different domains and geographies . Hence the new brand name had to reflect the existing brand values and sho

uld be relevant in the various geographies in which the company operated. More over the brand name and trademark should be available in the markets where the company was operating.

The company made use of legal experts from each country it operates to check whether the list of brand names are viable in respective countries. The process of screening also involved linguistic analysts from 47 countries and 200 languages to check the cultural sensitivities of the brand names considered. The company also checked with senior executives of the clients to get their perspective. All these efforts ended with the name ' accenture' . Incidentally the name was suggested by an employee named Kim Peterson . This fact itself that gave the name more charm.

On January 1, 2001, the rebranding happened. For the first 3 months 6000 TV spots were aired and over 1000 print ads were splashed across the world. The entire campaign cost the company around $ 175 mn. The new campaign highlighted new capabilities in consulting, technology , outsourcing & alliances. The brand took the tagline : High Performance. Delivered. At the end of 2001, the

brand achieved the same recall and equity of the earlier name Andersen Consulting. Now Accenture is valued at $ 6.5 Billion and is a respected consulting firm across the world. Now the entire brand promotion revolves round Tiger Woods who is the brand ambassador. Since 2003, Tiger Woods has been an integral part of Accenture's branding. Tiger Woods is the embodiment of high performance so is Accenture. The latest campaign runs on the theme ' We know what it takes to be a Tiger '

Accenture came to India in 2005. The brand now has serious business in India and the brand is running their campaigns aggressively in the Indian market. The branding campaign is predominantly in print. The brand looks at the following audiences a. b. c. Domestic and Potential Existing potential : clients employees employees.

What is more important in this brand's strategy is that Accenture celebrates performance. The campaign is not restricted to Ads but also lot of events and research. Accenture's research on High Performers and high performing companies are path-breaking. The website is also rich with case studies and insights. Accenture is a true case of a brand living upto its values and manthra.


Alpenliebe : From the Alps
Brand : Alpenliebe Company: Perfetti Vanmelle Agency: McCann Erickson Brand Count : 108

In the 1200 crore sugar confectionery market, Alpenliebe is the single lar

gest brand in India estimated to be worth around 160 crore. The brand is positioned as a family candy and has been one of the most successful brand in a highly competitive market. The brand came to India with the entry of the global giant Perfetti in India in 1994. Van Melle came to India in 2001. In 2001 the Italian and Dutch companies merged together to become Perfetti Vanmelle ( PVM).Now the Indian venture is the second largest of their global portfolio next to China. In the products of PVM, Alpenliebe is the star. With effective and aggressive brand building , this brand has grown to become the single largest brand in the segment. The brand is a unique case study because of its peculiarities ie the name and the size. Alpenliebe is a very complicated name. I searched for half a day to understand what it means. Their website does not have the answer nor do other marketing sites.

Then a friend

of mine suggested that it is related to

mountain Alps. Taking half hour on the , I found Liebe means Love. So by all probability Alpenliebe means From Alps with Love ( its my guess, inputs are welcome).

So it is a Herculean task to teach Indians ( with 24 languages and a million dialects) pronounce a brand name that does not have a meaning. Theory says that the brand name should be simple, reflect the brand values and easily pronounced. Alpenliebe broke all rules. It is said that the initial 30 second ad of Alpenliebe pronounced the name 5 times to ensure that the TG pronounce it correctly. Why such a complicated brand name is another question all together. But this risk paid of in that the name became the biggest differentiator and reflected an International image. It is known fact that Indians are crazy about foreign brands and Alpenliebe capitalised on that. The shape was also unique because most of the candies at that time was rectangular or cylindrical but Alpenliebe came out with a round shape. More than the shape and the name , the product was really good .The company changed the taste of this brand to suit the Indian Palette making it more Caramelliar ( my usage) than the international one. The brand is available in three flavours: milky caramel, Cream strawberry, Chocolate. A lollipop extention was launched last year. Perfetti knows the method to build the brand. It is not hesitant in spending lot of money on Alpenliebe through high decibel interesting ads. The brand is positioned as a Family Candy with kids and elders sharing the limelite. The ad where the boy imitates the "father at Home and Office" is a hilarious one. The market for Candies is expected to degrow in coming years. We have to see how Alpenliebe copes with this. Alpenliebe is a classic case of marketers defying the theory and also highlights a simple truth " If You have money to spend, you can make a consumer sing in your language without understanding a bit of it . " anything is possible"
Source: Businessline, Agencyfaqs, Strategic Marketing


Amul : The taste of India : Utterly delicious too.

Brand : Amul Agency DaCunha Associates Baseline : Taste of India

Amul has used the hoardings and advertising to perfection. Taking cues from new films, celebrities, the creatives are fun to watch. More over Amul has sticked with the creative messages throughout. They like to call it as TOPICALS

Given below is the history of Amul TOPICALS from their site Amul Butter Girl (Edited from an article by Mini Varma published in The Asian Age on March 3, 1996The moppet who put Amul on India's breakfast table ) 50 years after it was first launched, Amul's sale figures have jumped from 1000 tonnes a year in 1966 to over 25,000 tonnes a year in 1997. No other brand

comes even close to it. All because a thumb-sized girl climbed on to the hoardings and put a spell on the masses. Bombay: Summer of 1967. A Charni Road flat. Mrs. Sheela Mane, a 28-year-old housewife is out in the balcony drying clothes. From her second floor flat she can see her neighbours on the road. There are other people too. The crowd seems to be growing larger by the minute. Unable to curb her curiosity Sheela Mane hurries down to see what all the commotion is about. She expects the worst but can see no signs of an accident. It is her four-year-old who draws her attention to the hoarding that has come up overnight. "It was the first Amul hoarding that was put up in Mumbai," recalls Sheela Mane. "People loved it. I remember it was our favourite topic of discussion for the next one week! Everywhere we went somehow or the other the campaign always seemed to crop up in our conversation." Call her the Friday to Friday star. Round eyed, chubby cheeked, winking at you, from strategically placed hoardings at many traffic lights. She is the Amul moppet everyone loves to love (including prickly votaries of the Shiv Sena and BJP). How often have we stopped, looked, chuckled at the Amul hoarding that casts her sometime as the coy, shy Madhuri, a bold sensuous Urmila or simply as herself, dressed in her little polka dotted dress and a red and white bow, holding out her favourite packet of butter. For 30 odd years the Utterly Butterly girl has managed to keep her fan following intact. So much so that the ads are now ready to enter the Guinness Book of World Records for being the longest running campaign ever. The ultimate compliment to the butter came when a British company launched a butter and called it Utterly Butterly, last year. It all began in 1966 when Sylvester daCunha, then the managing director of the advertising agency, ASP, clinched the account for Amul butter. The butter, which had been launched in 1945, had a staid, boring image, primarily because the earlier advertising agency which was in charge of the account preferred to stick to routine, corporate ads.

One of the first Amul hoardings In India, food was something one couldn't afford to fool around with. It had been taken too seriously, for too long. Sylvester daCunha decided it was time for a change of image. The year Sylvester daCunha took over the account, the country saw the birth of a campaign whose charm has endured fickle public opinion, gimmickry and all else. The Amul girl who lends herself so completely to Amul butter, created as a rival to the Polson butter girl. This one was sexy, village belle, clothed in a tantalising choli all but covering her upper regions. "Eustace Fernandez (the art director) and I decided that we needed a girl who would worm her way into a housewife's heart. And who better than a little girl?" says Sylvester daCunha. And so it came about that the famous Amul Moppet was born.That October, lamp kiosks and the bus sites of the city were splashed with the moppet on a horse. The baseline simply said, Thoroughbread, Utterly Butterly Delicious Amul,. It was a matter of just a few hours before the daCunha office was ringing with calls. Not just adults, even children were calling up to say how much they had liked the ads. "The response was phenomenal," recalls Sylvester daCunha. "We knew our campaign was going to be successful."

For the first one year the ads made statements of some kind or the other but they had not yet acquired the topical tone. In 1967, Sylvester decided that giving the ads a solid concept would give them extra mileage, more dum, so to say. It was a decision that would stand the daCunhas in good stead in the years to come. In 1969, when the city first saw the beginning of the Hare Rama Hare Krishna movement, Sylvester daCunha, Mohammad Khan and Usha Bandarkar, then the creative team working on the Amul account came up with a clincher -- 'Hurry

Amul, Hurry Hurry'. Bombay reacted to the ad with a fervour that was almost as devout as the Iskon fever. That was the first of the many topical ads that were in the offing. From then on Amul began playing the role of a social observer. Over the years the campaign acquired that all important Amul touch. India looked forward to Amul's evocative humour. If the Naxalite movement was the happening thing in Calcutta, Amul would be up there on the hoardings saying, "Bread without Amul Butter, cholbe na cholbe na (won't do, won't do). If there was an Indian Airlines strike Amul would be there again saying, Indian Airlines Won't Fly Without Amul. There are stories about the butter that people like to relate over cups of tea. "For over 10 years I have been collecting Amul ads. I especially like the ads on the backs of the butter packets, "says Mrs. Sumona Varma. What does she do with these ads? "I have made an album of them to amuse my grandchildren," she laughs. "They are almost part of our culture, aren't they? My grandchildren are already beginning to realise that these ads are not just a source of amusement. They make them aware of what is happening around them." Despite some of the negative reactions that the ads have got, DaCunhas have made it a policy not to play it safe. There are numerous ads that are risque in tone. "We had the option of being sweet and playing it safe, or making an impact. A fine balance had to be struck. We have a campaign that is strong enough to make a statement. I didn't want the hoardings to be pleasant or tame. They have to say something," says Rahul daCunha. "We ran a couple of ads that created quite a furore," says Sylvester daCunha. "The Indian Airlines one really angered the authorities. They said if they didn't take down the ads they would stop supplying Amul butter on the plane. So ultimately we discontinued the ad," he says laughing. Then there was the time when the Amul girl was shown wearing the Gandhi cap. The high command came down heavy on that one. The Gandhi cap was a symbol of independence, they couldn't have anyone not taking that seriously. So despite their reluctance the hoardings were wiped clean. "Then there was an ad during the Ganpati festival which said, Ganpati Bappa More Ghya (Ganpati Bappa take more). The

Shiv Sena people said that if we didn't do something about removing the ad they would come and destroy our office. It is surprising how vigilant the political forces are in this country. Even when the Enron ads (Enr On Or Off) were running, Rebecca Mark wrote to us saying how much she liked them." There were other instances too. Heroine Addiction, Amul's little joke on Hussain had the artist ringing the daCunhas up to request them for a blow up of the ad. "He said that he had seen the hoarding while passing through a small district in UP. He said he had asked his assistant to take a photograph of himself with the ad because he had found it so funny," says Rahul daCunha in amused tones. Indians do have a sense of humour, afterall. From the Sixties to the Nineties, the Amul ads have come a long way. While most people agree that the Amul ads were at their peak in the Eighties they still maintain that the Amul ads continue to tease a laughter out of them. Where does Amul's magic actually lie? Many believe that the charm lies in the catchy lines. That we laugh because the humour is what anybody would enjoy. They don't pander to your nationality or certain sentiments. It is pure and simple, everyday fun. What I like most about the Amul brand is that they have been consistant over the communication campaign and brand strategy. AMUL has positioned itself as " Taste of India " and have ensured that their communication is in line with their positioning strategy. Now since Amul has unveiled its global ambition, we have to see whether they will change the communication strategy also MONDAY, MAY 15, 2006

Appy Fizz : Cool Drink To Hang Around

Brand : Appy Fizz Company : Parle Agro

Agency: Grey World Wide

In the 7000 crore Indian Soft drinks industry dominated by the cola majors, Parle Agro is fighting for its share with its mango- drink Frooti and the apple drink Appy Fizz. I have talked about Frooti in one of my earlier blogs. Appy was launched in 1986 as an apple drink in tetra pack after the mega success of Frooti. But Appy was not that successful compared to Frooti. This year we saw the new avatar of Appy in Appy Fizz. Appy changed in to nectar based drink in 1993.Appy was launched with a new bottle and communication this summer trying its luck in this large Indian market. In the fruit based soft drinks, Apple drink is perhaps at the lowest in the hierarchy. The taste is less popular compared to the Orange, lemon, mango and pineapple flavors and in all these flavors there is cut throat competition among the cola majors. So Parle is trying hard to create a new segment with this drink. As a customer, I was never attracted to apple drinks. The only branded apple drink I remember seeing is the Himachal Pradesh Apple drink counter at the railway station. May be the popularity of apple drink is low in South India because of the availability and price factor. Since there is less popularity for this flavor, even after 20 years, Appy has not become a major brand in the SD market. That may be one of the reasons why Cola majors are not looking at this flavor. Appy Fizz is now being relaunched as a “Cool Drink to Hang Around With”. With its champagne shaped bottle and smart advertising, Parle has succeeded in creating a Fizz in the segment, which is basically the Indian Youth. Going by the demand in the College canteen for this drink, Appy Fizz has been able to catch the fancy of the early adapters.

The ads created by Grey World Wide are cool and projects some thing unique about this drink that forced the TG to experience this product. The product itself is good hence there is a possibility of positive word of mouth. But it has to be seen whether Appy Fizz can be a volume player competing with Orange and Mango flavors. It is difficult because Appy is a heavy drink compared to Fanta or Mirinda. The taste may be popular with only a segment of the market hence limiting the scope of this brand. I would prefer cola or other flavors to this drink when I feel thirsty but will take a sip of this drink once in a while for a change (my personal opinion). In my home I feel it is risky to serve this drink to the guests because you never know how many will like this taste. These factors limit this brand to be a niche player but a profitable proposition if this brand is promoted seriously and positioned as a premium drink. Appy can ride on the health factor too in comparison with the other SD’s. Another advantage of this brand is the golden color of the drink, which makes it an ideal party drink as a welcome drink or a drink for those “tea totallers”. The brand will succeed if it can win the palette of the TG and with the current promotions, customers will give it a try.


Asian Paints: Every Color Tells a Story
Brand : Asian Paints Company: Asian Paints Agency: O&M Brand Count : 211 Asian Paints is the market leader in the highly fragmented and highly competitive Rs 7750 crore ($1.73 Bn) Indian paint Industry.The organised sector constitutes around Rs 540 0crore ( $1.2 Bn).

Asian Paints started its journey in 1942 with four young men in a garage in

Bombay. The name Asian Paints was picked randomly from the telephone directory. The brand has traveled from that garage to become a Rs 1000 crore brand.From 1968 ,this brand occupies a premium position in the Indian Paint industry. The story of the evolution of Asian Paints as a brand is interesting. The brand now has an iconic status in the industry thanks to some blockbuster big ideas from O&M. The brand once positioned as a mass market brand has evolved itself to Indian wood industrial paint a industry can be broadly paints higher divided into two plane. segments etc sector.

a.Decorative segment which constitutes the wall paints : exterior and interior, b.Industrial segment which consists of automotive paints, and paints for Decorative segment constitutes around 75 % of the total paint industry and Asian Paints is the market leader with around 44% share. In the Industrial segment, Nerolac is the market leader.

In the decorative segment, it is interesting to see how Asian Paints have changed the buying process of the product like paints.Paints are usually considered to be a low involvement product. In earlier times, the decision of the brand was taken by the builder/contractor and the home owners does not involve much in the process may be the decision of color rest with the house owners. Asian Paints realized the need for brand building even during sixties. But at that point of time, the company had a wide range of brands/subbrands. The focus of the company was on product innovation and service network and managing

quality proposition.Th

e brand focused on mass and

rural market. Asian Paints had a mascot called Gattu who was created by the

celebrated cartoonist R K Laskhman.These efforts made the brand a leader during the late sixties.

Then the company realised that although volume justified the leadership position, share of mind for the brand was very low.That was the result of the mass segmentation adopted by the brand. Rightly so because the industry was driven by channel driven promotions, building a brand at that time was" uncommon sense". During 1983, the company tried to reposition the brand as a premium brand. Asian Paints initiated the corporate campaign aimed to position the company as the number one player in the industry.The objective was to upgrade to a more margin premium product marketer .The corporate campaign " Spectrum of Excellence" was aimed to increase the Salience of the brand in a quiet market.

But this campaign failed to inspire any interest in the consumers and the company felt that the market is moving towards a commodity market where price is the most important differential. Asian Paints undertook a consumer research aimed at understanding the perception of consumers about the product category. The research revealed lot of interesting insights. Consumers felt that paints could change the mood of the space and it was a sign of festival and plenitude.It could make a gloomy place bright and pleasant. From this insight came the campaign of Asian Paints associating itself with festivals. Research also confirmed that customers tend to repaint their houses on the occasion of festivities. Thus born the campaign "Celebrate with Asian Paints". The campaigns were carefully crafted and there were different campaign for different regions. These campaigns effectively enhanced the brand equity of Asian Paints and established itelf as a premium brand. More than that , these campaign ensured an emotional connect with a brand in a low involvement category.The brand also phased out many subbrands and rest of the subbrands was brought under Asian Paint's umbrella brand. During the late nineties the brand had to be reinvented. Because no longer festivities formed an important part in ones life. Since many brands went after

festival seasons,the positioning platform has become cluttered.More over the consumer buying behavior has changed. The category was becoming less seasonal. People started associating more importance to home decor and interiors. The choice of color became a high involvement decision. From a low involvement category, paint was increasingly becoming a high involvement category. The brand also went in a brand overhaul. The logo was changed to a contemporary upmarket one designed by Entreprise IG based in Singapore.The logo/design was to convey self expression, sophistication and Technology.

Thus came the birth of a wonderful positioning strategy created by O&M. The insight was that the brand is about people and homes and homes reflect the people living in it. Hence " Har Ghar Kuch Kehta Hai" translated to " Every Home has a story to tell". This campaign is a perfect example of a brand laddering up and connecting to a higher level in the mind of the customer. The campaigns reinforced the brand as a premium emotional brand. Along with the campaign Asian Paints also ran parallel ads for its subbrands. Saif Ali Khan endorsed the premium brand Royale .For Apex Ultima, the campaign was View highly Asian localized Paints and ad was different here : in different :Saif market. Ad


Taking a cue from the success of Ghar campaign , the brand took ownership of the COLOR. The insight is that each color has a story to tell. The latest campaign reflects on the color and uses the campaign " Har Rang Kuch Kehta hai" translated to "Every color has a story to tell".The brand is so serious about the color that it has tied up with IIT to explore new colors and conduct research on colors.

Asian Paints is a classic branding story and the brand is still exploring and growing.


Axe : The Axe Effect
Brand : Axe Company : HUL Agency: Lowe Lintas Brand Count : 252 I was delaying writing about this brand for the reason that I doubted whether I will be able to do justice to my favorite brand. An Icon for sure Axe is a success story that is so difficult to emulate. One can only marvel and enjoy.

Axe has got every thing perfect for its success, It got its segments correct, the targeting was exemplary and Positioning : something to drool for. And more over Luck was on its side.

Axe was born in France in the Year 1983. 24 years later, this brand is Unilever's Best selling brand worldwide. It has an iconic status in whichever market it has entered. It is also one of the rare brands which can boast of replicating its entire marketing mix across geographical boundaries. The campaigns that you see in India is what the entire world is watching. For those who propound Glocalisation , AXE is an exception.

Axe deo was launched in India during 1999. The brand launch was very quiet and theoretically the brand was having the strategy of Slow Skimming i.e High Price Low Promotion. Axe at that time was the leading men's deo brand in Europe and was popular in India in the Grey market ( available in duty paid shops) .HLL may have launched this brand inspired by the volume of Axe sold in the Grey market. At that time, the deo market was a nascent one with an estimated market size of Rs 72 crore. HLL had the brands Denim and Rexona and was ruling the market. Axe was priced at a premium above the Denim brand which was positioned as a male deo brand. Axe initially was launched in the fragrance Java, Alaska and Atlantic. HLL did not bother to fine tune its Promotional mix to Indian market but just imported the promotions .... meaning, the company just ran the ads which was popular in the

Europe and other markets. At that time , the product was also imported from Europe. And IT CLICKED.... rest as they say is History... Axe in 2002 was having a market share of over 35% and soon HLL phased out Denim brand to concentrate on this Star.

Axe is the naughtiest brand in the Indian market. The brand is targeted at male aged 16-25 . Internationally this brand targets male aged 15-25. I personally feel that it targets all 'Young at heart" naughty guys. The brand has its brand values of Cool, Fashionable and Stylish. And world over, the brand sticks to its core values. The biggest strength of this brand is the underlying message or the DNA which is that the brand users are High on Confidence and always for the Axe users, Girls Makes The First Move. I think the biggest competitive advantage of this brand is its complete monopoly over this brand proposition. All its campaigns revolve round this central theme of Seduction where Girl makes the first move. I think it has lot of subliminal implications. The brand assumes that Men wants( Likes) to be Seduced . That feeling ( of being seduced) gives a big boost of

self confidence to a man. Although many brands take this proposition, Axe just made it perfect.

I have seen lot of ads where girls are seen drooling over Hunks in Motorcycle or in Readymades, or even in Innerwears, but in most of the Axe ads, there are no Hunks, only very ordinary or even skinny kind of people getting assaulted by beautiful girls. That makes the brand more approachable. Had Axe used a Hunk, the promotions couldn't have been so effective. The brand managers were so wise that when they used a celebrity like Ben Affleck, They ensured that the brand is made See the TVC here : My Favorite approachable Axe ad

Having said that, The males seen in Axe commercials are not Losers: the ads are careful to show them as confident ( in one way or other) or a better term will be self assured. That is ultimate execution. The power of this Big Idea has ensured that Indian consumers lap up the foreign commercials without any hitch. I don't remember any India centric ad for Axe especially in Television. And Indian consumers are not complaining either. Along with these , the brand also ensured that customers are constantly engaged with new fragrances and campaigns. In 2005, Axe had a high profile launch of its new fragrance CLICK and before that there was Axe Land campaign and followed by Axe-Academy then Axe Voodoo and the latest one Phenomenon. I have tried most of the fragrances and not all of them are good, but I try it because I like the brand. That is the power of brand. Axe is one of the rare brands that has embraced new media to the maximum extent. The brand has started its Internet based marketing initiative in India with Axe Land which involved a virtual trip to the Axe world. Globally also this brand has lot of online initiatives which are almost always naughty.In UK the Axe is marketed as LYNX.Checkout the cool web initiatives of this brand : AxeAxe Axe and also a blog called Evan and feather Effect Phenomenon Gareth

Not only the brand uses TVC's to its advantage, the print ads of Axe won several accolades in various ad events. The creatives run amok with the kind of flexibility that they get from the positioning.Besides Print, the brand also uses outdoors to its maximum impact. Axe is a classic example of 360 degree branding effort. Now Axe has a common message in over 70 countries where Unil

ever sells this brand. Iconic in a real sense. One of the reports term the marketing strategy of Axe as " Adventurous Marketing" .That is true because its risky because the brand deals with Girls & Seduction. Not always every one may like the theme or the campaigns. In India especially there are self styled Cultural Policemen/Women who cries foul for anything and everything. It is really surprising that so far, Axe has escaped their AXE. That also shows that the ad agency is also careful about the concepts put across the Indian media. While in a more liberal markets, Axe tests new levels of " Adventures" , here the brand plays really safe. It also ensures the campaigns run in Indian media is accepted because most often its the entire family who watches the TV. I know I just have touched the tip of Marketing Iceberg called Axe. For the axe fans, check out a blog dedicated to Axe at Axeads


Bajaj Pulsar : Definitely Male
Brand : Pulsar Company: Bajaj Auto Agency ;O&M, Leo Burnett

Brand Count : 226 Pulsar is one of my favorite brands both as a bike rider and as a marketer. This bike has virtually redefined biking in this country. Pulsar launched in 2001 is the market leader in the 150 cc + performance bike segment. More than that ,

this brand changed the fortune of Bajaj Auto Ltd. Before the launch of Pulsar, Indian bike market was divided broadly into Economy,Executive and Premium Bikes. In 1999 Hero Honda created a new segment of 150 cc performance segment with its CBZ. But Pulsar came and gave a new life into the Performance segment. Although not a pioneer, Pulsar made the performance segment one of the fastest growing segment in the two wheeler market. It was not only the bike's performance that triggered the brand becoming an icon, a major part of the success was due to the classic advertising campaign by O&M. According to agencyfaqs, the birth of the "Definitely Male " campaign is interesting. The creative honchos found the new product from Bajaj distinctly different. It was Bajaj's first bike without Kawasaki label. The new bike was an R&D and design marvel.Pulsar was designed by the renowned design house Tokyo R&D. O&M knew that the communication of this brand should also be different.Starting with lot of ideas, O&M stuck upon the Big Idea of India's HeBike. Although lot of bike take the persona of Macho bikes it was more oriented towards being "sexy". The Big Idea was to position the bike as World's first bike endowed with a Sex ( Gender).Thus born the classic campaign of all times " Definitely Male". The campaign together with the design and performance catapulted the brand into stratospheric sales level.

Bajaj targeted the 18-24 with Pulsar but later found that the brand appealed to a much older audience. This helped Bajaj to change its target audience to 21-35 years. Unlike its old ways of doing things, Bajaj did not rest with the laurels. It knew that Pulsar is the golden key to control the entire bike market. Hence Pulsar got undivided attention from the company. In 2003 another milestone event happened in the product lifecycle of the brand. Bajaj launched its new technology DTSI. DTSi stands for Digital Twin Spark Ignition which delivered more power and efficiency. The increased performance of the brand took Pulsar to greater heights. 2004 and 2005 saw some cosmetic changes in the brand which excited the customers and thus cementing Pulsar's position in the market.

Pulsar came in two variants : 180 cc and 150 cc where 180 cc excited the performance bikers, 150 cc was for the mileage conscious ones. The 150cc variant took lot of customers away from the executive segment to the performance segment. The brand had its share of marketing flaws also. According to reports, Bajaj reassigns its media duties to two brands O&M and Leo Burnett, every six months.When DTSI was launched, the creative duty was assigned to Leo Burnett. Leo Burnett did a big mistake on the brand by changing the positioning of " Definitely Male" to "Digital Biking". Although the ads were successful in conveying the technological superiority of DTSI and making that acronym popular, it deleted the most successful tagline from the brand's elements. After ruling the premium bike segment, Bajaj is taking their brand to another level. Bajaj recently launched Bajaj Pulsar 200 Dtsi to take on the comeptition from Hero Honda and the like. The new Pulsar boasts of spruced up engine, new digital console and new style. Pulsar is definitely getting better. Pulsar 200 is being launched with a new campaign revolving round the concept of Free Biking. Free Biking ( as defined by the brand Pulsar) is all about tackling

obstacles.According to company officials, its


how you ride rather than where you ride. The ads made by O&M is filmed at Hawana Cuba ( expensive). Set to pulsating Arabian music, the ad shows how two Pulsar riders discover new route when their main way is blocked by traffic jam. One word to describe this ad is HYPERBOLE and too much of it. What I feel is that the Big Idea od Free Biking is good but execution is ordinary. What made Pulsar a super brand was its ability to come out with different disruptive campaigns. But in the case of Pulsar 200, it is a sort of cut copy paste from some Hollywood movie (James Bond). More over, the Big Idea is also not properly communicated through the visuals. Also most of the time I was trying to make out some meaning out of the background song, later to find out that it was Arabic. See the new Pulsar Ad here: Pulsar 200

Now every one is waiting for the new Bajaj 220 cc DTSFI which will redefine the bike segment again. Sadly Bajaj is no longer using its blockbuster tagline " Definitely Male" but instead is using the corporate brand tagline " Distinctly Ahead". Bajaj earlier had another corporate tagline " Inspiring Confidence" when it completely redesigned its corporate logo and brand. I still strongly believe that not using "Definitely Male" is a gross injustice to the brand itself. That tagline and positioning has lot of fire with it and except for the initial two campaigns, Pulsar was not able to build on its Definitely Male Platform. But what ever I say and what ever the agency communicates through the ads, Pulsar has made itself into a position of strength. It has a brand equity so huge that what ever that comes out of it will be lapped up in no time. The success of Pulsar 200 DTSI is no longer dependent on the quality of ads but on the

performance it delivers. This brand shows the power of brand equity where customers buy ,irrespective of lousy ads...... Watch the Old Pulsar ads here: Pulsar Collection


Band-Aid :Continuous Care
Brand : Band-Aid Company: Johnson&Johnson Agency: McCann Ericson Brand count: 167 Band-Aid can be considered as an classic case of branding success. The brand which is almost 86 year old has become generic to the category. Band-Aid is an

Adhesive Bandage us

ed to cover minor cuts and bruises. The

brand has come a long way to become one of the classic marketing case study. The brand came into existence in 1920. The person behind this innovation was Ms Josphene Dickson, a homemaker and wife of Mr Eric Dickson who was cotton buyer at Johnson & Johnson. Josphene during her daily chores inevitably encounters numerous minor cuts and bruises, wanted an easy solution to cover the cuts to prevent it from worsening while continuing her work. Eric prepared a readymade bandage using cotton and adhesive tape so that Josphene can cut from the readymade bandage and use it when in need. Eric told his boss about the invention and and thus it the concept was took a shape huge of Band-Aid success. ( 1924 the world's first machine cut band-aid was marketed

In India, Band-Aid was launched in the year 1978. Band-Aid was successful because it identified the need in the households for wound care. But to reach the dominant position in India was not easy. Band-Aid had to fight the tradition rather than the competitors to succeed. Traditionally, Indians prefer not to cover the cuts and bruises because there is a feeling that wounds should be kept open inorder to heal faster. Further, Indian consumers typically used traditional methods to heal wounds. In earlier days most of the households had the bottle of tincture iodine which was considered as the best solution for cuts and bruises. Kids used to hate this because the pain will be excruciating when tincture iodine

is applied

to cuts. Band-Aid comes with red coloured

medicine inside ( I think it is Benzalkonium) which resembled Iodine. This had enabled early adoption of this brand and Band-Aid was called " Lal Dhawa Wali Patti" which became the USP . Had the medicine color was not red, Band-Aid would have tough time convincing mothers. The Kids also loved the brand since they were relieved of the pain of Tincture iodine.

Band-Aid also tried to educate mothers about the possible problems in keeping the wounds open because of dust infections caused by it. This also boosted the brand acceptability. One of the major factors that aided the success of this brand was the distribution strength of J&J. Band-Aid was a mass market product and hence it has to be there at every shop in the market.

Band-Aid was a brand that changed with time and it keenly watched the consumers and tried to identify their needs. The company had valuable consumer insights that created the first water proof band-aid in India. The main weakness for bandages was that it used to come off easily when wet. This prevented the category usage to certain extent. The waterproof band aid made the brand usable

in any condition. This innovation catapulted the brand popularity to newer heights. Band Aid focused on the area of application and was clever enough to come out with various size and shapes. This come from the insight that different wounds in different parts of the body needs different shapes. For example, a small cut in the forehead needs a round band-aid .These insights made the brand a market leader in the category with a market share of over 60%. Johnson& Johnson also saw an opportunity for the brand in the traditional cure for cuts. In India, turmeric is used as a medicine for cuts and blemishes. BandAid launched a turmeric variant of the plaster much to the delight of the Indian consumers. The brand was also promoted heavily. Band-Aid was the first in the category to advertise in electronic media. According to, BandAid was the first product endorsement of Sachin Tendulkar. Initially positioned as a wound care brand, Band-Aid was repositioned as a product that encourages kids to be active. Kids have the innate desire to be active and Band-Aid makes sure that cuts and bruises will not be hinder that desire. The brand also roped in Virendra Sewag as its ambassador during the cricket season. Band-Aid has been lying low in the media for a while. The brand has already become generic to the category. Being generic has its share of problems also. When the customer uses the brand as a generic name for the category , the retailer can offer him any brand in the category. There are many local players in the market who gain by a brand major becoming generic. Competition is also from players like Handyplast and Dettol. Although the Indian wound care market is estimated to be around Rs 512 crore, the domestic adhesive bandage category is small at Rs 25 crore. The brand equity of Band-Aid still going strong is a an entry barrier for any one looking to enter this category. The brand is currently being positioned on " Continuous Care". The positioning is pitting this brand against the ointments and other external applications. The concept is to educate the customers that use of plasters will heal wounds better than the use of ointments.



Body Shop : Profit With Principle
Brand : Body Shop Company: Loreal

Brand Count 164 Body Shop is a brand with a difference. Marketers consider this brand as an Icon. Body Shop has created a brand image without the aid of conventional advertising.2006 saw this iconic brand draw up serious business plans for India. Body Shop brand was created in 1976 in Brighton United Kingdom. The brand

and the brand owner share a comm the Brand created this brand from a small

on personality shop in

that is very much linked to each other. Anita Roddick the legendary founder of







Body Shop in India is sold through the master franchise Planet Sports . The brand is expecting to ramp up the operations to major metros by the year 2008.

Body Shop is differentiated from other conventional cosmetics by the values that the brand adheres to and the brand image created through the unique association with those values. The brand is famous for its association with ethical practices and the environment friendly world view. The products reflects these values through the use of only natural ingredients and the products are never tested on animals.The packaging and the merchandising are carefully prepared to highlight the brand values. For example , Body Shop uses refillable packs and recycled /recyclable papers. Although the use of refillable packs were used to keep the price low, it evolved into an element that reinforced the brand positioning. The brand also was careful in the messages displayed in the shop and other POP merchandises. The messages were simple, enthusiastic and informative. These elements made Body Shop a different cosmetic brand.

The brand was essentially an extension of the founder herself. Anita Roddick is an ardent environmentalist and naturalist. Her views about the nature supported with her activities and associations created a positive reinforcement for the brand. Customers were seeing a brand that does things while others just give hope. More over Body Shop was able to communicate with the custo

mers at a higher level rising above beauty and fairness that other cosmetics talked about. There was honesty associated with the brand. The shops also reinforced this attribute. All the shops reflected an environment of honesty, excitement and fun. It is reported that Ms Anita Roddick takes personal interview with the franchises to ensure that they share the same passion with Body Shop principle. Although Body Shop is starting serious business with Indian consumers only now, the association with India dates back to the initial years itself. India was a sourcing partner for Body Shop during the creation of the brand.

The success of the brand was because of the unique business model of Body Shop. The brand relies on PR and word of mouth to make sales. The Indian launch was also a low profile one . The brand has gone against most of the conventional marketing practices. The products are simple and the new product ideas are derived from the wisdom of the ordinary people. For example, When the founder was traveling in Srilanka she found women rubbing their faces with freshly cut pineapple flakes that gave a special look to the faces. This translated to a product Body Shop Pineapple face wash. Many products were resulted from this experiences of the founder from the numerous trip she made around the world. In 2006, Body Shop was acquired by Loreal for 650mn Pounds. Body Shop will function as an independent entity retaining the management and the principles that made this brand an icon. In India too the brand is expected to appeal to a niche market. Niche in the sense that the level of awareness about "environment friendly" and " ethical" product positioning is a novelty in India. We often relate environment friendliness with unprofitablity while the basic principle of Body Shop is " Profit with Principle" . Another factor is that in India, celebrities are not associated with nature activism. We have the prominent naturalists in Medha Padhkar and Baba Amte and not AB or Susmita Sen.

In the market where high decibel advertising and sales promotion rules, it will be interesting to see how Body Shop will gain the iconic status it deserves in the Indian market.





Boost : Is The Secret Of Our Energy
Brand : Boost Company: Glaxo Smithkline Beecham Agency:JWT Brand Count : 192 Boost is one of the major players in the Rs 1400 crore Indian Health Food Drink ( HFD) market. The brand was created in 1975 by the company R&D team and test

marketed in 1976. The

brand became national in in 1980's. Glaxo rules

the Indian HFD market with a share of around 64 %. The market is ruled by Horlicks and the leader is flanked by flanker products Maltova and Viva. Boost takes on Bournvita from Cadbury's which is the market leader in the brown powder segment. The HFD market is having two segments : White powder segment and brown segment. The market is dominated by white powders. Boost is a malt milk additive with the flavour of chocolate.Boost has a share of around 12% in the HFD market. HFD is targeted at children aged 5-18. The market is huge since this is the age group that demands some kind of energy drink. The kids are active and playing during this age and the pressure is on the home maker to keep the energy level of the kids high using some drinks.

Boost is positioned as an energy drink. The tagline " Boost is the secret of my energy" has remained a blockbuster all through these years.The tagline has highest recall among the TG. Boost is also the first HFD brand to be endorsed by a celebrity.

After the initial growth, the brand landed in the mature stage of PLC during 1980's with sales plateauing. The brand repositioned itself through a careful

planned strategy backed by consumer insigh

t. The

brand realised that kids are strong influencers of the purchase process for such products and once kids get hooked onto such drinks, brand loyalty can be assured. GSK also identified cricket as the vehicle to Boost the Sale of Boost. During 1980's Kapil dev was roped in as the brand ambassador for Boost and as a cricketer, Kapil was considered an Icon by many . Boost got the energy from Kapil and GSK had found the success mantra. During 1990's Kapil gave the baton to Sachin. Sachin endorsed this brand when he was in his teens. During those times, the ads showed both Kapil and Sachin together endorsing the brand and thus ensured that the transition is smooth. From 1990-present, Sachin has been endorsing this brand. I think Boost and Sachin hold the record for longest association between a brand and celebrity at least in India. (The kid who starred with Kapil for the ad was Nikhil Chopra who later played for India0 in 2000, the brand also roped in Sewag to endorse the brand. At that time, Sewag

and Sachin was at fire

as the opening pair.

Boost was innovative not only in the promotion front but also in product improvements. in 2002, as a part of its repositioning, the brand came out with Power Boosters : which contains Copper and Biotin.It was first of its kind in this segment.Boost also innovated in packaging. Over these years, the packaging became contemporary and stylish to reflect the changing consumer preferences. A brand will become successful only if the owner invests in the brand for the long term. Boost is a testimony of that. Over these years, the brand has been positioned and repositioned in tune with the consumer. During the late nineties, consumer insights showed that although the kids liked the promos involving

Sachin, they felt somewhat distant from the brand ( because Sachin was perceived to be extraordinary). Realising this the brand changed its tagline to " Boost is the secret of my energy' to " Boost is the secret of OUR energy". The ads increasingly gave importance to kids rather than the celebrity. In 2005, the brand came with Choco Blast ( more chocolate) and Advanced Energy Boosters to counter the threat from Bournvita who now has the Chocolate taste of "Five Star" in it. watch the commercial here: Boost chocoblast Boost is a super brand with lots of lessons for a marketer to learn.The brand continues to invest in it and has remained the favorite of marketers and kids..
Source: Imagesource; Superbrands,agencyfaqs. agencyfaqs,superbrands

Labels: beverages, celebrity endorsement, FMHG, Product life cycle MONDAY, NOVEMBER 12, 2007

Bournvita : Do You Have Bournvita Confidence
Brand : Bournvita Company : Cadbury's Agency : O&M Brand Analysis Count : 289 Bournvita is a power brand. Bournvita was launched in 1948 and is one of the oldest brand in the malted beverages segment. The brand is a market leader in the Brown health drink segment with a market share of over 17 %.

This is a brand that has sustained over time and competition. Cadbury's - true to its reputation has managed to sustain this brand over these years. The brand has sustained because of Cadbury's invested in the brand and also ensured that the brand changed in tune with the times. Bournvita is a chocolate flavored health drink. When the brand was introduced in the market, it tried to solve a perennial problem that mother's face : a need for a healthy food which is tasty. Bournvita offered that unique combination of health and taste. Its also interesting to see how this brand has evolved over these years.In 1970s t he brand was positioned as a product that helps in good upbringing. The brand used tagline the was tagline changed : to Goodness : Brought t Up hat Grows with You. Bright. During 1980's the brand changed its focus from Upbringing to Intelligence. The Right, Bournvita In 1990's the brand felt that it should be focusing on the overall health of the kid thus changed its focus on Body and Mind. The brand also took Energy as a main focus and thus evolved the famous VO ( voice over) : "Bournvita has proteins, minerals and carbohydrates" . Along came the famous tagline : Tan Ki Shakthi , Man Ki Shakthi. During 1998, the brand faced intense competition from Milo from Nestle. At this time, the brown health food drink segment was facing issues of stagnation because of lack of value addition. Bournvita then changed its positioning on the health platform. The brand used a marconym RDA ( Recommended Dietary Allowance) to reinforce the health positioning. The brand used a clever Nutritional meter to communicate the RDA formula : 2 cups of Bournvita for balanced nutrition.

The brand also set up a Bournvita Nutritional Center where nutrition experts recommended the right RDA percentage to kids. The brand at that time used the cricketer Ajay Jadeja to endorse the brand. The brand also harped on the taste and used the tagline " No Bournvita No Milk " to reinforce the taste attribute. In the current millennium, the brand has moved to the next level. In the typical laddering Up strategy, Bournvita has identified Confidence as its Core Brand Essence. The brand realized that every kid have a chance to excel in his chosen field of endeavour if he have confidence . The realization has enabled the brand to chalk out the current marketing strategy. The brand now uses the tagline " Do you have Bournvita Confidence ". In the Brown beverages segment, Bournvita faces intense competition from Boost. In order to defend the leadership position, Bournvita has invested heavily in product development, advertising and sales promotion. In the product development front, Bournvita had significantly changed its packaging and the latest pack is inspired by Boost. Along with packaging changes, the brand also had comeout with a new variant : Bournvita Fivestar Magic. The new variant has the unique chocolate with caramel flavor of Cadbury's Fivestar. The brand is using the brand association with Five Star The Five Star Magic variant further as a key differentiator. this positioning. All these years, Bournvita has used taste as a consistent theme to attract the kids. reinforced In the advertising campaigns, Bournvita has always been a heavy spender. When I am writing this post, Bournvita is running two different campaigns for Bournvita : one campaign for the Bournvita Fivestar Magic and another one featuring Bournvita Confidence Academy.


urnvita Confidence Academy is not a School but a reality

show. The show which premiered on July 2007 in the Pogo channel is different from the usual reality shows . The show features 7 kids who have exceptional talents in various fields like dancing, racing, singing, magic, studies etc. In the

reality show , these kids to act as Gurus and is expected to teach each other skills . So you have a magic whizkid learning to sing. The point is that "You Need Confidence" to venture into unknown fields. Bournvita Confidence Academy is not the first event that this brand associates with. Bournvita Quiz is the longest running quiz show in Indian Television . In the sales promotion front also , the brand was active with its share of freebies and gifts . The association with Cartoon Network enabled this brand to use the famous characters like Powerpuff girls and Dexter to the brand's advantage. As a marketer, I feel that the latest focus on Confidence is a smart move by the brand. Its arch rival Boost has built itself on the energy platform and recently has gained headway using Sachin. Hence to counter Boost, Bournvita needed to own an important differentiation point. Confidence is something that every kid look forward to. By featuring real whiz kids , the brand has been able to create an impact in the TG. But the challenge that Bournvita faces is not from Boost but from the Consumer Promotion trap that both these brands have fallen into. Now most of the sales are decided by the promotional gifts and freebies than the actual efficacy. Since mothers are happy whether the kids drink either of these , brand loyalty has become a thing of past in this segment. Source : Cadbury website, Labels: beverages, Brand Laddering, Cadburys, FMHG MONDAY, NOVEMBER 24, 2008

Bru : Happiness Begins with Bru
Brand : Bru Company : Hindustan Unilever Agency : O & M Brand Analysis Count : 359

Bru is a power brand from the HUL's stable. A brand which pioneered the instant coffee category in Indian market in 1969 is also an example of many successful

marketing market leader in coffee segment

practices. According to HUL, Bru is the with a value share of 46.9 %.

Prior to 2004, HUL had many brands in the coffee category. It had Deluxe Green Label and Bru instant as the main brands and small brands like Dilkush, Cafe and Cafe Gold. In 2004, as a part of the power brand strategy, HLL decided to phase out Dilkush and Cafe brands . It then consolidated the coffee brands under the masterbrand Bru.

Bru before becoming the family brand was positioned as a coffee that tasted just like filter coffee. But after the elevation to master brand, Bru took the positioning around happiness.

Bru was synonymous for instant coffee and had an astounding 21% market share in the first year of launch itself. All these years, the brand has been fighting for the numero uno position with Nestle whose iconic Nescafe brand was the market leader. But in 2008, the brand pushed Nescafe to the second position. Much of the success of Bru can be attributed to following factors Innovation in new products Innovation in packaging & Aggressive campaigns Nestle lost out because of lethargy. The company failed to consistently invest in its Nescafe brand. I do not seeing any memorable campaigns from Nescafe in recent past. This has cost the brand dearly. HUL's marketing acumen is vivid in the rise of Bru as the market leader. It has never stopped innovating for this new brand.

Bru was able to give new offerings to customers on a regular basis. One of the recent successful new product was the cappuccino packs. The new flavor gave the brand a new thrust in the market. The new flavors even prompted hardcore tea lovers like me to try out these flavors . The best part was that these cappuccino was available in single serve sachets which prompted consumers to test the flavors. Another innovation was the cold coffee. Bru launched the cold coffee variants which again captured the attention of the consumers. These thrusts in new product development and roll out is visible when one visits a super market. The coffee section is full of various flavors and packs of Bru which itself creates a positive vibration for the brand.

Another factor which made Bru successful was the campaigns. The brand is famous for two campaigns. One featuring Amritha Rao was a big hit. The theme revolve around the shy girl wanting to introduce her boyfriend Sagar to her father. Watch the TVC here : Bru Sagar

Another campaign which was highly popular was the 'little cup' ad. The ad shows the wife announcing the " good news " through a symbolic ' little cup'. Watch the ad here : bru Little cup

Bru is positioned on the theme of happiness. The brand has the tagline " Happiness begins with Bru ". The positioning and communication has been consistent with the brand's promise of kickstarting one's day with a Bru.

These slice of lif

e ads put Bru in a growth orbit.

Consumers started loving the brand for its innovation and campaigns. For the Bru Cappuccino, it had roped in the Bollywood Director Karan Johar to endorse the brand. Another critical factor that aided Bru's success was the innovation in packaging. The brand made the entry barrier low by launching small affordable SKUs. There are single serve and large packs at different price points making the brand affordable .The brand although is positioned as an aspirational brand is priced affordable thus making it a perfect example of a Masstige brand. Recently the brand has yet again came out with a customer centric innovation in the form of a flavor lock. Most of the customers worry about losing the flavor of coffee powder once the pack is cut open. The flavor lock is a plastic clip which will lock the flavor from escaping. More than actually locking the flavor, the lock gives a psychological belief that the flavor will not the lost.

This little plastic lock also gives more convenience to the home maker. Typically when buying powders in packs, home makers have to transfer the powder to a container to preserve it for long. This lock effectively eliminates the need for such a container. Bru is a brand which has reached the commanding position following methodologically all the critical elements for marketing success : customer centric innovation, aggression and new product development Labels: beverages, FMCG, Food brands, HLL, innovation, Masstige Brand

FRIDAY, MARCH 09, 2007

Center Shock : Hilake Rakh De
Brand : Center Shock Company: Perfetti Vanmelle Agency: O&M Brand Count:207 Center Shock is an interesting brand or rather it is a disruptive brand in the sense that the brand just makes all marketing theories look funny. Conventional marketing wisdom says that the product should deliver a promise ,satisfy a need

and blah blah . Here is a confectionery brand tha


tasted sour making itself a market leader in less than 6 months time. Center Shock was launched in 2001 and at that time, the chewing gum market was at cross roads. The market lifecycle was at the decline stage. Although the market was worth Rs 300 crore, it was declining at a faster rate at 25-30%. Perfetti then decided to break the category degrowth and make this category more exciting to the customers.

It still baffles me how a product like Center Shock become successful in the market. This peculiar gum gave a distinct fruit filled acidic taste to the customer which really gave the customer a shock. The TG for this brand was SEC ABC and age 10-19.The brand was an extension of the highly popular Center Fresh known for its Fruit Gel Center. Center Shock came in two flavors : Peach and Apple. Center Shock broke into picture through two clutter breaking ads crafted by O&M . The first ad of the barber ( View Here) created a huge impact in the market. The ads won lot of accolades for O&M. According to reports, the brand became

market leader within no time with a share of over 35% beating Center Fresh from the same company.The first tvc was followed by the second one featuring a dude visiting his girlfriend's home to meet the parents ( View Here) .According to Agencyfaqs, the creative brief for Center Shock was simple :break the clutter and make it funny and distinct and really shocking and the ads just did that. I have no clue how and why the brand became successful. I was tricked into taking a Center Shock by my friend and I swear I have not taken product again. I think the company also doesn't have any dreams about repeat customers. But the brand done the trick with the market. There was a rejuvenation of the category which grew from 1000 tonnes to 3500 tonnes . The lack of excitement in the category was corrected by this outrageous product. The brand adopted one of the most funniest and best taglines " Hilake Rakh De " which translates to " Will Shake you UP". The brand was positioned as a fun brand and customers liked the change. The brand had virtually shaken the market. During those days most of the chewing gum brand were sold on sales promotions and seldom marketers invested any thing more on ads . Center Shock brought back the trust on advertising in the category players.

To sustain a brand like Center Shock for longer period of time is a difficult proposition. After launching the product in 2001, the last ad was aired in December 2002 and for one year the brand went into silent mode. In 2004 the company. In 2003 the brand launched a variant Center Shock Mirchi with another outrageous commercial. But the variant bombed since the novelty was lost for this brand.The brand had a funny tagline " Pilake Rakh De".After this launch , Center Shock faded from the scene.Its long time since I saw any promotion of this brand. Although this brand had a very short PLC, the brand showed us the power of advertising. A good advertising can make people eat a sour candy and be happy about it . Hats Off to Perfetti for taking such bold and outrageous step .
source: O&M,businessline,perfetti website

Labels: confectionary, FMCG, innovation, Off beat brand, Perfetti, Product life cycle MONDAY, OCTOBER 09, 2006

Coffy Bite : Coffee or Toffee
Brand : Coffy Bite Company: Lotte India Agency: JWT Brand Count : 137 Coffy Bite is a power brand in the Rs 1500 crore Indian Sugar Boiled Candy market.This 100 crore brand has a history of 18 years of existence.

Coffy Bite is one of the brands which I grow up with. The brand is unique and its positioning and ad campaign was one of the best in that era. The brand is in the coffee category which is around 15% of the Sugar boiled candy category. Coffee Bite have around 9 % market share in the SBC segment. Coffee Bite was introduced in India by Parry's confectioneries of the Muruggappa Group. This was the flagship brand of Parrys. Later in 2004 , Parry's confectioneries was sold to The Lotte group. Coffee Bite is famous for the " Coffee -Toffee " argument followed by the tagline "

Its a Coffee in a Toffee" . All th

e campaigns of this

brand was a fun to watch and as a product, the brand offered excellent taste and quality. Overall this product was a winner. The brand enjoys a recall of as high as 85%. With the entry of Big names like Perfette, Parrys faced intense competition in the market for all its major brands. Along with this heat, the company faced

pressures in pricing coupled with rising raw material costs. Infact, these issues are still haunting the confectionery manufacturers. The candy market is faced with two marketing issues a. The product: since the product is purely an impulse product, lot of money has to be spent on the brand and also on developing new variants to create and sustain excitement. b. The Price: The consumers in this segment is price conscious. Because of the competition, companies cannot afford to price the product at a premium and renounce volume. With the 50 paise price point becoming the industry norm, most of the companies are facing profitability issues. The problem that Coffy Bite faced was again the issue of relevance. Because of some reasons, the brand missed the new generation. The brand was perceived to be " Old". Hence even though the recall was high, the actual purchase was as low as 20%. The task for the new brand owners "Lotte" was to make the brand more relevant to the new generation. By New Generation , I mean those kids born after1990's : the liberalisation child. Lotte changed the packaging to make the brand more contemporary and youthful. The communication also was changed. Thank God, the brand managers did not change the famous " Argument". So the argument continues. The new baseline is " Enough to start an argument" was an unnecessary change for this brand which is famous for its " Coffee in a toffee" baseline. The brand owners has to think as to who is bored by the old baseline, company or customer? As a customer I prefer the old one. I think that the brand need not change the taglines and positioning to become more relevant. Since the category is Coffee, you cannot have any other taste, that can give some consistency to the communication.I hope the owners will not come up with variants like Pineapple coffy bite. Besides the taste, the "Coffee -Toffee" argument gives the creative guys lot of things to work with.I feel that this brand should take the " Topical" advertisement route perfected by Amul( discussed somewhere in my blog) which will be enjoyed by all. One more major positive for this brand is that it is more of a family toffee that gives it a huge market to tap.

Coffy Bite is a brand that has a unique space in the mind of the customers. Is it a Coffee or a Toffee.. the argument continues.
Source: Businessline, agencyfaqs,,,

Labels: branding, confectionary, failed brands, FMCG, marketing myopia SATURDAY, DECEMBER 03, 2005

Colgate Dental Cream : ye hai hamari suraksha chakra

Brand : Colgate Dental Cream Agency : Rediffusion DYR

Colgate has been ruling the Rs 2200 crore oral care segment for long with a market share of over 50%. The flagship brand of this multinational giant is The Colgare Dental cream which alone has a market share of 35%. The toothpaste segment can be divided in to three segments : white, Gel and herbal based on the product characteristic. Colgate had enjoyed higher market share all through the years despite stiff competition from the likes of HLL and a host of regional brands. But the gaint shed its lethargy and stood up, fought the war and won. When Colgate was enjoying its leadership position in the market, HLL

successfully entered the market with a googly. It created a new segment with Close- up gel. While using Pepsodent to fight the Colgate Dental Cream (CDC), it created a market for itself with the gel that came in funky colours and excellent advertising. Every marketer has then signed Colgate off saying that it cannot fight with the marketing giant HLL. But colgate struck back with the launch of Colgate fresh energy gel and the famous campaign " TALK TO ME" starring the charming VJ Purab that stole the gel category from HLL . Close up never recovered from that blow. Then the multinational faced the onslaught of regional brands like Ajanta , babool that gave these guys a run for their money by selling toothpaste for ridiculously low price .These regional brands quickly gained market share from these MNC,s and a lot was written about the rise of regional brands. Colgate and HLL responded to this threat by coming out with low priced flanking brands. Colgate launched low priced Cibaca to counter the regional brand while HLL had Aim to counter it. The current figures show that the regional brands are finding it difficult to sustain the market share. Colgate' s flagship brand CDC had consistantly positioned itself in the germ fighting platform. It had the famous " suraksha chakra " platform from where it had built its brand to this level. All marketers know that it takes lot of smart thinking to keep the brand alive in a market. So Colgate launched many variants to ward off threats from the niche players and adapt to the changing tastesof the market. For example, it launched the herbal toothpaste when every one talked about the efficacy of herbs. The came the advanced whitening formula to fight the threat from Pepsodent whitening variant

The latest addition is the Colgate with power of active salt. The brand is developed after a careful study on the customers: the company says. Colgate undertook a study of a "day in the life of a customer" that gave lot of inputs about the customer's trigger and touch points. As of now it is great going for the brand

Labels: branding, Colgate, FMCG, personal care, Toothpaste MONDAY, DECEMBER 12, 2005

Colorplus : consistency pays

Brand : Colorplus Agency : Rubecon Company : Raymonds

Colorplus was launched in 1993 by Colorplus Fashions which was a unit of Coimbatore based Ambattur Clothing Limited.

It was launched at a time where no global brands were seriously exploring the Indian market. I would say that no serious branding effort was there in place during that time . The ready to wear segment was in a nascent stage.

Colorplus as a brand now has an iconic status in the readymade segment.The brand which is carefully crafted and brilliantly communicated is the perfect example of brand management. Rajendra Mudaliar, managing director, and Kailash M Bhatia, CEO has been clear on what the brand is and how this is to be communicated. In 2003 this brand was acquired by Raymonds. I thought that the communication and brand strategy would change but to my pleasant surprise , it is the same. Thank God... The brand falls under the Smart casual segment in the ready to wear market with its presence in South and west Asia. In this era of celebrity endorsement , this is a brand which uses no celebrity , and Colorplus is always the star. The brand is exposed through careful media selection and you never see a TVC of this brand. The copy and the layout is ever so consistent and the ads has maitained a classy look throughout its existence. Seen only in premium publications and business magazines reveals that the brand is clear about the target segment. Raymonds by acquiring this brand has now entered the premium casual wear segment which is now fast growing. With Parx at the lower end and Colorplus on the premium end, Raymonds is hoping to gain a major foothold in the Indian ready to wear segment in years to come. Hope Raymonds don't mess up this brand........... Labels: branding, iconic brand, readymade brands, textiles


Dove : The Mildest One
Brand : Dove Company: HLL Agency: O&M Brand Count: 102 Dove is a $2 bn brand waiting to spread its wings in the Indian Prem

ium soap market. Dove was globally launched in 1957. This brand came to India in 1995. Internationally this brand has a cult status and is a major player in the global premium soap market. The brand is positioned as the Mildest Soap. Dove is PH neutral and this makes the soap soft on all kind of skin types. Internationally this brand is positioned as a brand that celebrates the " Real Beauty" . Dove defines real beauty as " beauty is not about how you look but about how you feel". The Dove's official site "" highlights this brand value. I think this is one of t

he best brand values a beauty product can have. In India, the brand did not had the success of its global counterpart. One reasons are the small " Premium " market and another is the price barrier. Dove's initial price was around Rs50 that put off even the premium customers. The brand has undergone some repositioning in recent times. Earlier the brand

was positioned on the platform of " Trial for Results" idea. Later it was changed to the moisturizing platform. The brand is claiming that it is milder than the 25 leading soaps thus proving its legitimacy to being the mildest soap in the country. Globally also this brand is positioned not as a soap but a cream bar. Although the "Campaign For Real Beauty" and the mildness are excellent selling points, the brand is still not able to catch the fancy of Indian beauties. With lot of sales promotions happening with the brand like 1+1 free , there is a possibility of brand value erosion.With the brand now priced at Rs 28, the price has somewhat become reasonable. I feel that still the brand does not fit into the " value for money" proposition for the Indian consumer. It is a truth that Indian consumer looks for " Value " even in premium products. Dove have a negative point in that the soap usually does not last enough ( partly because of our bathroom habits). This have reduced the value proposition for this brand. With the emergence of an attractive market in the premium cosmetic market in India, Dove have lot of potential to become a key player, it has got the positioning right, now it has to set the " Value" right for the Indian consumer. Labels: branding, FMCG, HLL, personal care, soap brands FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 03, 2006

Fair & Lovely : Chand ka Tukda

Brand : Fair & Lovely Company : HLL Agency: Lowe

Fair & Lovely ( FAL) is the brand that revolutionized the Indian Skin care

industry. This brand is World's first and largest Fairness cream brand with a presence in 40 countries and a value of around Rs. 6 billion Indian skin care market was dominated by conventional beauty care products like Bezan,Multani Mitti etc. FAL changed all that. Launched in 1975, FAL is the

product born in the Unilever crore fairness market in India.

research center. In 1988 the brand

went international. FAL commands a market share of over 70% in the Rs 1000 FAL virtually created and owned this category for long. In the fairness market, FAL enjoyed monopoly till Cavin Kare entered this lucrative segment with Fairever. The success of Fairever prompted many players like Godrej to tap the market.

FAL sustained the pressure from the competitor by careful branding and new product launches. The brand never failed to emulate and learn from the competitor .When Fairever launched the ayurvedic variant, FAL launched a much better variant. Then came the competition from Ozone Ayurvedics with their brand No Marks trying to carve a niche. HLL countered with FAL Antimarks and launched a controversial comparative ad that took the steam out of No Marks. When Fair ever launched the soap, FAL also responded with soap. FAL never allowed the competitors to gain an upper hand in the market which it created. FAL achieved such tremendous success because of careful branding and ad campaigns. Initially HLL to do some ugly talking about fairness. Some of the ads were controversial because of gender inequality and stuff like that. It was necessary at that period because the category was new and the brand should first talk about the need to be fairer.

Now the brand has laddered up to more aspirational values like "Transformation

of Women" The insigh

t is that the transformation will be

more than skin deep. The ads showing a girl achieving the ambition of being a cricket commentator ( a male bastion) were very much effective in connecting with the TG. HLL has also extended the brand to more aspirational values by launching Fair& Lovely foundation that works for Women Empowerment achievement and Transformation which are the qualities for which FAL stands for. FAL have also launched a premium subbrand Perfect Radiance to tap the premium segment of the market. Fair & Lovely was able to dominate the fairness market because of careful marketing and is a showcase of the marketing genius of HLL. Labels: branding, FMCG, HLL, personal care, soap brands SATURDAY, APRIL 12, 2008

Fastrack : How many you have ?
Brand : Fastrack Company : Titan Agency : Lowe Lintas Brand Analysis Count : 320 Two years back when I wrote about Titan watches, I had mentioned Fastrack

brand as a sub-brand of Titan. Now this


has grown to become a fully independent brand. Fastrack was launched in 1998.

The brand was aimed at the youth segment (15-25). The brand was promoted with the slogan "Cool Watches from Titan "

Essentially Fastrack was a sub-brand endorsed by the Titan Brand. In most of the campaigns , the brand was promoted as Titan Fastrack. The brand was targeting young consumers who was moving towards the competitor Timex. It was during this time that Timex and Titan parted ways.

Fastrack had a good start . during the first year, the brand clocked a turnover of Rs 15 crore. The good run continued till 2001-2002 and the brand was worth Rs 25 crore at that period. But the sales stagnated. Although the brand appealed to the youngsters, price was significant dampener.The brand found that the target group which consisted of college students could not afford this brand. ( source : Business Standard)

During 2003-04, the brand went in for a repositioning exercise targeting executive segment aswellas casual watch segment. It was a suicidal experiment . The brand sales came down to Rs 23 crore. The change in positioning did not fit well with the brand. The consumers were not willing to pay Rs 1200-2700 for a watch that did not have the executive image.

It was in 2004 that Fastrack launched its range of sunglasses. The move was made after a consumer research which shoed that mobiles/deo/sports shoes and sunglasses are popular accessories in the purchase list of youngsters. And Sunglasses fitted perfectly as a brand extension for Fastrack. In my personal view, sunglasses offered a great opportunity for the brand. There was no Indian brand of sunglasses at that time. The brands available was Ray-Ban and other foreign brands which were imported. These brands was damn expensive and often consumers chose local unbranded sunglasses.

In 2005, the brand went for another repositioning exercise with a new logo and new positioning. The brand adopted the famous break-away positioning of Swatch. The brand decided to target the youngsters again but for that the brand







The brand discarded the steely look of the watches and looked at a mix of plastic and steel. It was a perfect cut-copy from the strategy adopted by Swatch . By doing so, the brand was able to reduce the price range to Rs 500. The brand then took the help of advertising to change the perception of watches as a functional tool to a fashion accessory. The brand launched a campaign with the slogan " How many you have ".

The campaign , the positioning and the price was a great hit . The brand sales zoomed to Rs 35 crore. The sunglasses also contributed significantly to this sales boost. Fastrack Fashionable Affordable the ultimate fashion accessory for the have adopted the following and core brand values trendy Pricing youth.

Fresh Communication to attract the young consumers. The brand wanted to be

For the sunglasses, the brand roped in the youth icon John Abraham as the brand ambassador. The celebrity fitted well with the brand. Taking a cue from the fact that most of the TG for Fastrack owned a bike, Fastrack launched a biker's collection which again is a classic example of consumer-centric product innovation. The latest innovation is the neon - disc range of Fastrack watches that does not have Hands to show the time but have electroluminescent disc that lits up to show the time.

Another advantage for this brand is the freshness that the agency had bought in its communication. Most of the Fastrack ads has been refreshing. The brand had adopted a 360 degree approach in its communication and it is an example of a brand Watch which some had of used the Social media campaigns to its here : advantage. Fastrack Fastrack

But the brand is facing a grave issue in the market. The issue is not regarding the branding but with the channels. In the case of Swatch, the brand had adopted an innovative approach towards the channels. According to the Harvard Case Study on Swatch, it is mentioned that Swatch launched a Veggie range of watches ( it had shapes of vegetables ) and this range was sold in vegetable shops. But in the case of Fastrack, the brand had not gained the support of the channel members.The channel does not support both sunglasses and watches. The above observation is from my personal experience. In the case of watches, except for Titan exclusive showrooms, other watch retailers does not stock the full range of Fastrack watches and neither they offer spares like straps. I went to replace the strap of my Fastrack but had to be satisfied with one which was local made and that does not fit with the design. The retailer to whom I went was a premium dealer of watches and he said that the reason for not stocking Fastrack is that the design changes very fast. For Fastrack sunglasses, the retailers are the usual opticians. I found ( in my city) that either these retailers does not stock the sunglasses or are not interested in selling . The reason they say is that Titan is trying to sell the sunglasses in stores other than opticians. Hence opticians are not interested in selling this brand. The fact is that 90 % of Sunglasses sales happen with Opticians.

Fastrack had tried to explore new channel for its sunglasses range. I have seen a couple of lifestyle stores displaying the range. But when I wanted to buy a specific model, I did not find that in any of the store. I had to go to the online store and buy the glass. No brand can escape the channel conflict when it tries to explore a new channel . In the case of Fastrack, it is facing resistance from the conventional channel when the brand tried to explore new channel.

It is a nightmare for any brand manager to handle the issues connected with a brand like Fastrack. One one hand, the brand have to keep the consumer interest growing by launching new models and also updating cool communication . One

the other hand, the frequent design changes calls for intense dealer support . The low price for the watches often translates to low margin to retailers thus dampening their enthusiasm for promoting this brand. The brand is trying to workaround this issue through its online store but the fact is that online cannot replace the conventional channel atleast in the immediate future.

Despite these issues, the brand has been a hit with young consumers. I noticed this brand in the wrist of most of my students . Once I asked a question to my students whether Fastrack watches are 'cheap ' ?To my surprise, none of the students think that Fastrack is cheap despite its ' cheap ' price. They corrected me that Fastrack is affordable and not cheap. That is a great achievement for a brand which has a price range which starts with Rs 500 but still is not considered cheap. The brand had successfully established itself as a fashion accessory rather than as a watch. My personal experience as a consumer for both watch and sunglasses is positive. The brand has not compromised on quality.

The brand need to sort the distribution strategy to move into the next level. Swatch also faced the issue of retailer resistance initially but the equity generated by the brand eclipsed the resistance. Fastrack also should be able to build the brand into a level where retailers have to stock this brand due to consumer pressure. Labels: consumer durable brands, Fastrack, Off beat brand, Tata, Titan, Watches FRIDAY, MARCH 03, 2006

Frooti : Fresh N Juicy
Brand : Frooti Company: Parle Agro foods Agency: Grey worldwide Frooti is the first tetrapak fruit juice in India. Launched in 1984, Frooti still holds a dominant position in the Rs300 crore tetrapak fruit juice (TFJ) market.

Frooti over these years have carved out a niche for itself in the market. Frooti instantly caught the fancy of Indian consumer with its tetrapak and some smart campaigns. Initially the drink was positioned as a kids drink. The product was perceived as a healthy fruit drink by the mothers . So within a short span of time ,the brand was an alternative to the “unhealthy” colas. The tetrapak had other benefits also . Fruit juice is a perishable product and tetrapak have extended the shelf life of Frooti because tetrapaks have 2 layers of paper and a plastic coating that ensured tamper proof and enhanced shelf life. Lured by the success of Frooti, there was a lot of new launches in the TFJ market. Players like Godrej with Jumpin, kissan etc tried their luck in this market but failed to dislodge Frooti.


ti was positioned as a mango drink that is “Fresh-n-juicy” For over a

7 years, the company promoted the product using that famous baseline. The product have tried to create excitement in the market through a series of new variants and packing. But in late ninetees the brand was facing stagnated sales. The company tried to excite the market with an orange and pineapple variant but both the variant bombed. The came the experiment with packaging . The YO! Frooti variant came with a slim paper can aimed at the college going youth. Worried by the stagnating sales, Parle tried to reposition the brand to appeal to youth aged between 16-21. The positioning changed to be more fun based. The package also changed. The old green color of the bottle changed to more bright mango color with lot of graphics added to it.

One of the most famous marketing campaigns India have witnessed took place during the repositioning. The campaign is the famous “ Digen Verma “ campaign. This campaign was considered as one of the most successful teaser campaigns in India. The campaign lasted for 15 days started in February 2001. The campaign was about a faceless person Digen Verma. There were p osters and

outdoors all across the markets that had messages like “ Who is Digen verma” “ Digen Verma was here” etc. This created lot of excitement in the market and “Digen Verma “became the most talked about faceless name at that time. The campaign was executed by Everest communication. But the campaign was not followed up and the hype was not translated to long term brand building. Frooti is basically a nectar based drink so it is not 100% fruit juice, it also have some preservatives added to increase the shelf life. Although Frooti did not face much competition in the category it created, competition came from a slightly different category, 100% fruit juices. Parle saw the emergence of the “ 100% fruit drink market and launched “Njoy” brand but it did not clicked. Parle could have extended Frooti to this market also .The brand Real from Dabur is the main player in this category. Real effectively positioned itself as a premium healthy drink for adults. Frooti was not able to appeal to adults and was considered as a mango drink while Real is not restricted to any flavour. Frooti also changed its positioning statement from ‘ Fresh-N-juicy” to “ Juice Up your life” which have not clicked with the customers. Although Frooti enjoys a commanding (75%) market share , Frooti is facing stagnation. May be some serious steps should be taken to increase the usage of the product. The launch of PET bottle Frooti is a step in this direction. Recently Frooti also launched a “Green mango” variant just to create some hype in the market. Frooti may have to reposition itself again to appeal to cola drinkers. Labels: beverages, branding, Parle TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 21, 2006

Funskool - Welcome to the World of Toys !

Brand : Funskool Company: MRF

Brand Count: 161 Funskool is the market leader in the Indian organised toys market. Pioneer in marketing branded toys, Funskool was launched in 1988 created a new beginning of high quality toys segment in the highly fragmented industry.

Indian Toy industry is huge. Some reports estimate the size of the market to be around Rs 2500 crore ( some say it is Rs 1000 crore). The conflicting market size estimates is an ample proof that the market is highly unorganised. The organised branded toys segment accounts for only Rs 500 crore. Rest of the market






Although the market for Toys is huge, the market is dominated by cheap imports from China.50% of the market is ruled by cheap imports. The China factor is the single most danger that the Indian toy industry face.

Funskool created in 1987 is a joint venture between the World's largest toy manufacturer Hasbro and the Indian tyre major MRF. The brand ushered in an era of toys with educational value and also healthy ( safe). Funskool has since then evolved into a complete toy manufacturer that also exports toys to other markets. The a. b.Building c. Dolls & soft Indian toy industry Board can be divided into games Blocks toys



While Funskool leads in board game segment, the players like Mattel and Lego leads in the building blocks and dolls segment. Mattel with its Barbie rules the premium end of the Dolls segment. Soft toys is another segment that is growing fast and gaining popularity. Hanung Toys is a major player in this segment.Funskool have a marketshare of around 25% in the branded segment. Funskool as a brand faces lot of issues in this market. The issues are more of environmental in nature rather than issues of the brand. The primary issue is the dominance of unbranded cheap toys that is available in the market. The market is price sensitive and hence the branded players face an issue of showing value for the premium paid by the customers. This together with cheap imports made the life difficult for brands like Funskool. The reason why people go after cheap toys is the lack of awareness about the hazards of using cheap low quality toys. In India Toys are seldom viewed as a

development tool. According to Indian

consumer, Toys serve

the entertainment need of the kids and to the parents it is an easy way to get relief from Pestering kids. While in more developed countries, parents look for educational or developmental value in toys. This makes the category more price sensitive. Then comes the lack of awareness of parents about the safety of low priced cheap quality products. Although Funskool and other branded toy marketers have run commericials claiming that their toys to be more safe, majority of the consumers have not bought that idea. The main factor is that there has not been too many issues that have arisen because of the use of local toys. We Indians used to make toys out of nature like toys from coconut leaves, wood etc. Hence to teach the Indians sophistication is a difficult task.

Then there is the issue of creative plagiarism or piracy. The rules regarding copying and reproducing toys are not in place or not executed ( copy right

issues ). Thus the branded players are not able to sustain the differentiation based on characters or range. Everything can be replicated in this market without much fuss.

Toys are products with shorter lifecycle. A model will survive in the market for 13 years. Hence the challenge for the marketer is to create newer toys frequently. Easier said than done, creating newer toys is a challenging task. In the buying process of toys, the marketer has to consider 3 individual minds and 3 different attitudes. While the child is the consumer, the mother acts as the executor of the order and the father controls the purse strings.

Funskool was perfect in creating and marketing new games and toys. The brand is churning out 70-80 new varieties every year. Positioned on the platform of safety, variety and education, the brand already have a huge equity in the Indian market. The major competitor for Funskool is Mattel. Mattel has its range of Fisher Price brand of toys taking on the Funskool range. Fisher Price is a premium brand in the market and has a huge range of toys and from my personal observation has an edge in the shelf space at shops.I have a feeling that the brand is resting on its laurels recently interms of promotions.Fisher Price also is catching the consumers young by below the line promotions involving young mothers. While Mattel is ruling the dolls market, Funskool is competing with Barbie using its Sandy range of dolls. Funskool have been constantly tracking the trends in the toys market. The brand has an agreement with Disney to market cartoon based toys. Cartoon characters became popular with the rising popularity of kids channels. Funskool effectively captured the trend of Bayblade by launching it at an affordable price. Other innovations include Playdoh which is non toxic syntehtic dough which can be used to make different shapes and sizes.

The challenge for Funskool is to encourage the Indian consumers to look at toys at a broader perspective than just an entertainment. Funskool cannot rest now

since the market is hotting up with all the players competing for their share of the pie.Products like Playdoh and Sindy needs lot of promotions because those brands have immense potential.

Labels: branding THURSDAY, JANUARY 19, 2006

WoodLand : Are you a Woodlander?

Brand : WoodLand Company: Aero Club Agency : Karishma Advertising Indian shoe market is one of the most dynamic markets in the world. India's production capacity ( not only kids but shoes also) is second only to China. Although there are different valuations about the Indian Shoe Market. It is estimated to be worth around Rs 11000 crores. Some media reports say that it is worth Rs. 93 billion . Any way it is huge. The market is traditionally price driven and dominated by the unorganised sector. The organised shoe market is dominated by Bata with a market share of 35-40% Woodland is an Indian Brand ( and am proud of it ) . Launched in 1992-93, this brand has carved a niche for itself. Like what Allen Solly did with the readymade

menswear, Woodland has done it with Indian Footwear. In a market dominated by sports and leather shoes ( read Bata and carona) Woodland created a category for itself.

Woodland never wanted to be an ordinary shoe . According to Mr Harkirat Singh MD , he never wanted this brand to be a mass market brand. So till now this brand is concentrating on the premium end ( above Rs 1500 shoes) of 2000 crore casual shoe segment. Woodland targets the upmarket segment and is positioning itself as a Rugged high quality premium casual shoe. It can be called as SUV of Indian shoes. The ads are catchy and tempting. The logo of Woodland was a status symbol during the nineties. The brand is excellent in quality and styling . I think that the brand pioneered Suede and nubuck type leather shoes in India. The brand carefully presented itself as an outdoor/ trekking kind of shoe which captured the imagination of Indian youth. True to its price, the brand delivered its promise on quality which ensured that the brand is perceived as a value for money brand. Woodland has extended itself to accessories and apparels. Latest reports suggest

that the company is

serious about promoting its apparel

business which constitutes about 30% to the company revenues. Earlier Woodland tried its hand in the formal shoe category with the brand Woods but it did not make much impact in that market.

The careful branding has helped the brand to garner about 40% of the premium casual shoe market. But this market is witnessing lots of competition with global brands flexing its muscle in India. Woodland is another example of an Indian Super brand.

Labels: branding, FMCG THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 15, 2007

Chandrika : Best Soap Nature Can Offer
Brand : Chandrika Company : Wipro Agency : FCB Ulka Brand Analysis Count : 290

Chandrika is a heritage brand. The brand came into existence in 1940. This hand made ayurvedic soap owes its existence to the founder C.R Kesavan Vaidyar

who identified the potential for an ayurvedic soap way back in 1940. From a humble beginning, the brand has come a long way withstanding the test of time. Its a brand that has survived all these years without changing any of the marketing mixes. Now after 6 decades, Chandrika is changing .

Chandrika is a 28 crore brand and has a loyal customer base in the southern states like Kerala and Tamilnadu. The brand was manufactured and marketed by SV Group till 2004. In 2004, Wipro acquired the marketing rights of this brand after a protracted battle with other suitors like Marico. Chandrika all through these years has been positioned as a traditional ayurvedic soap gifted by nature. The brand differentiates itself from other ayurvedic soaps

with Orange Patchouli Cinnamon Wild Sandalwood Lime and its




oils oil leaf ginger oil peel


oil. ingredients.

The brand boasts of being made from pure coconut oil which comprises of 70% of Chandrika is a handmade soap which is 100 % vegetarian. The brand faces competition from the likes of Medimix and Jeeva together with host of natural soaps and its variants. The brand has been promoted reasonably well through various media in South India, but the campaigns were ordinary . In the marketing front, Chandrika never was an aggressive player. I think that the company was happy with the sales and loyal customer base it had. Moreover ayurvedic soap market was small and was not growing enough to warrant a change in any of the marketing mix elements. The brand did not even bother to change the packing for a long time. However 2000 saw a rejuvenation in the ayurvedic soap market. There was a sudden interest from consumers towards green products. Now the ayurvedic soap market is estimated to be Rs 227 crore( Businessline). The increased customer interest has bought in many new players in the ayurvedic soap market. New brands like Jeeva began aggressive promotion which forced older brands like Medimix to sharpen their marketing strategy. This market also made some big companies looking for acquiring brands to gain a foothold in the ayurvedic soap market. The owners of Chandrika chose to sell out this brand than to fight the competition. The sale of Chandrika was a messy affair with legal battle between Marico and Wipro. At the end the war, Chandrika was acquired by Wipro. The one factor that made Chandrika attractive to suitors was its quality product

properties. Wipro felt that Chandrika had qualities which are scalable to a national market. There was a visible change in the brand after Wipro took over the marketing . Although Wipro was careful not to tamper the product attributes, the brand changed the shape and packaging. Original Chandrika was in the cake form ( rectangular) while the market was moving towards the oval soap form . Chandrika changed to oval form and the packaging was made more contemporary. The oval shape helps the soap to dry quicker thereby lasts longer. These moves were of important significance because most of the time traditional brands fail because it does not change with times. Hence the first task of Wipro was to make the brand contemporary. Along with the cosmetic changes , the brand was relaunched with a new positioning. Watch the ad here : Chandrika The challenge before Wipro was to make this traditional brand contemporary without losing its core values. The brand was stagnant hence had to attract new users especially the new generation. Then came the big idea. Chandrika took the two qualities : Natural and Exotic as its core brand values. Then came the challenge to communicate this values to the customers. The brand chose to use the brand imagery of a SPA to convey the new positioning. The big idea is to equate the bathing experience with Chandrika to an oil bath at a SPA. The experience of a SPA is unknown to majority of Indian consumers. Most of use have seen it in TV but may not have visited a SPA. Hence the new equation with SPA takes this traditional brand to an aspirational level. In order to communicate this new positioning, the new ad had to have an ideal imagery. The agency chose the luxurious Pangkor Laut Spa Resort in Malaysia as its location for the ad. Along with the new campaign , Chandrika also introduced a line extension Chandrika Amrutham. The variant has an innovation in the form of an aromatic oil that comes with the soap. The soap and the oil opens the pores of the skin and gently cleanses the skin and thus creates a feeling of freshness. The brand which claims to have 18 herbs is positioned as a soap that gives complete freshness for

body and mind. Although the variant sounds interesting, it has not clicked in the market because aromatherapy is not yet popular in India. Further the combination of soap and oil is new . But after reading about the variant, I feel that there is lot of potential for this variant if heavily promoted. In the early nineties, the ayurvedic soap market was in shambles because of price offs and cheap products. A shift in consumer tastes has bought in more serious non- price attributes to gain importance in this market. Wipro has " applied thought " on this brand and the result is evident in way this brand is promoted. Within a few years, Wipro was able to rejuvenate this brand and made it more contemporary. The brand has already running a new campaign these days. Its happy to see a traditional brand morphing to a new young brand. Labels: FMCG, Heritage Brand, personal care, Product life cycle, soap brands, Wipro Brands THURSDAY, APRIL 20, 2006

Zodiac : Finest Quality Shirt Makers
Brand : Zodiac

Company: Zodiac clothing Agency: FCB Ulka Zodiac is India's premium and one of the oldest brands in the readymade menswear category. The company started off as an exporting firm launched Zodiac in the domestic market in late 80's. In the Indian readymade menswear category which is estimated to be around 6000 crore, Zodiac have a market share

of 17 % in the branded premium category. Zodiac as a brand is promoted very subtly. You seldom see the campaigns in mass media. But if you read magazines, you are not going to miss the ads either in the back cover or inside cover. The ads are crafted in similar format and without any celebrities or fantasies, it is shirt all the way. Zodiac is positioned as shirts from " Finest Quality Shirt Makers". The core qualities of the product are the unmatched quality and the designing. Zodiac follows the design and retail focus. The shirts which is available across the globe take fashion cues from the west and the designers back in India puts it into the shirts.

From the e

ighties, the readymade menswear have

undergone drastic changes. We saw the emergence of categories like Smart casuals from Color Plus, Friday dressing from Allensolly, Premium range from Loius Philippe which changed the way Indians dress to work. Zodiac targets at the upwardly mobile executives and is still sticking to the traditional concept of formal wear. Not wanting to lag behind the emergence of new breakaway categories, Zodiac launched its club wear brand ZOD! in 2002. Zodiac have also an impressive range of Ties where it have captured a commanding position in that category. Zodiac have maintained its positioning through these years as World's finest shirt makers.But with the competition taking the categories and discovering new categories, Zodiac cannot afford to be silent. The brand needs larger doses of promotion to survive in the Indian market. Labels: branding, readymade brands, textiles

MONDAY, APRIL 13, 2009

7 Up : Bheja Fry, 7 Up Try
Brand : 7 Up Company : Pepsico Agency : BBDO Brand Analysis Count : 393 7 Up is a neglected brand. This brand despite being a Pepsico brand had failed miserably in the Indian market. Sadly it is not because of the product that the

brand failed but because of the marketing mismanagement. 7 Up was launched in India in 1992. According to reports, it had a wonderful start becoming the largest selling brand in the category by 2002 . 7 Up is a lemon drink similar to Limca. Seven Up globally is closely associated with its mascot Fido Dido. When launched in India, 7Up also bought in the famed mascot. Fido came to India in 1992 along with the brand but had a very erratic relationship with 7 Up.

Despite being in the Indian market close to 19 years, 7 Up was not a successful brand. The fault lies in the confused marketing strategy adopted by Pepsico with this brand. Pepsico is one of the world's best marketers. But when we look at individual brands like Mirinda and 7 Up, we see a confused product mix strategy from the company.

Pepsico never had a long term plan for 7 Up. When the brand was launched, the lemon flavored drink segment was perceived to be a small market with the market leader Limca ruling the market. But both Coca Cola and Pepsi was not interested in developing the category or the brand for a long time. Limca was killed by Coca Cola while Pepsi after the initial enthusiasm dropped investing in 7

Up. The problem with 7 Up was two fold. First was the company's lack of interest in the brand and the category and second was the positioning confusion. When launched, 7 Up was positioned as a cool drink. The brand used Fido Dido and certain imported commercial to position the brand as a cool drink for the youngsters. But the mascot and its international style failed to impress the audience. Every one liked Fido Dido but there was no connect with the mascot and the Indian audience. The company was in a dilemma because 7 Up had a strong association with Fido Dido but Fido Dido had a disconnect with the Indian audience. This is a typical problem faced by those brands that import their foreign mascots to India . Pillsbury had a mascot Doughboy which is very famous in US but less popular in India . Fido Dido was a foreigner and hence the lack of connect was evident.The brand was really confused on how to use Fido Dido in the Indian market. Fido Dido has an interesting background. The character was born in 1985 in a cafeteria napkin T he founders Susan Rose and Joanna Ferrone was in a discussion during which Susan Rose scribbled a figure in the napkin which later became Fido Dido. Fido became the brand ambassador for 7 Up in 1989. Another interesting fact is that Fido Dido trademark does not belong to Pepsi but belong to the founder Joanna. Hence the mascot is highly controlled by the owner and not the brand.

This lack of control has prevented Pepsi from Adapting Fido to Indian audience. It does not have the freedom to change the mascot's personality. This is an absolutely awkward situation for the brand where it had a wonderful mascot but could not change anything about the mascot.

Another factor that aided for the failure of 7 Up was the thinking among Pepsi marketers that taglines and positioning statements should not remain constant.

So they keep on changing taglines and statements. One of the highly popular taglines for 7 Up was " Keep it Cool ". But the marketers at Pepsi wanted to change it for the sake of changing it. " Keep it Cool' was perhaps one of the apt and best tagline which could have lifted the brand to new hieghts had Pepsi invested in developing it.

Seven Up and Fido Dido had a short affair. In 1995 Pepsico globally stopped using Fido Dido and in India too the company stopped using the mascot. Later in 2003, the brand began using Fido Dido but again it was a half- hearted approach. The investment of Pepsico in 7 Up was no where consistent. The brand tried some marketing gimmicks like launching a curvey bottle named 7 Up Curvey in 2006. The brand took the hot bollywood Diva Mallika Sherawat as the brand ambassador since she had those curvey look. There was an initial hype behind this launch but later it died a slow death. Beyond such stunts, there was no marketing thinking for this brand. The brand also faced competition internally from Mountain Dew. Pepsico launched its iconic brand Mountain Dew and put lot of investment behind the brand. As a consumer I do not see any difference between Mountain Dew, Sprite and 7 Up. Limca was perceived a little different because it was cloudy. Pepsico was also confused on how to clearly differentiate Dew and 7 Up when consumers perceived both as similar.

The easiest way to end the confusion is to sideline the brand. 7 Up was thus sidelined for almost 8 years. In 2007-08, the company began to look into this brand. A new theme was prepared to take the brand away from Fido Dido and focus on another theme. The brand took the tagline " Bheja Fry, 7 Up try " which talked about the refreshing feeling of Seven Up . The campaign featured many Bheja Fry situations and how 7 Up can lift your spirits in those occasions. This summer saw the extension of this theme. Pepsico realized that Lime Juice was the largest selling drink and most favorite flavor among Indians. So it started to pitch 7 Up as " The Lemon Drink " . The brand had the new tagline " Mood ko






In 2009, Pepsico launched another brand Nimbooz which is a drink having the original lemon juice taste. Nimbooz is launched as a brand endorsed by 7 Up.Nimbooz has been launched with the tagline " Ek Dum Asli Indian ". The brand is trying to compete with the ordinary lemon juice which is one of the favorite thirst quencher of Indian consumers. The question remains as to why a unsuccessful brand is used to endorse a new brand ?

The new launch is going to be further problematic for 7 Up. 7 Up has recently pitted for associating itself with Lemon Flavor. Now Nimbooz is saying that it is the original lemon drink. One is artifical and other is original .

What ever be the argument of the marketers, consumers seldom see the difference between a cloudy drink, a clear drink, artifical, flavored etc etc. These micro segmentation actually confuses consumers and force them to go for the simplest solution. Sprite became the largest selling beverage brand because it was simple for consumer to understand what that brand did.

Keep it Simple please..... Labels: beverages, FMCG, Pepsi Brand Save to • Digg This! • Stumble It!


Anne French : Smooth and Silky Skin
Brand : Anne French Company : Wyeth Agency : Grey Brand Analysis Count : 285

Anne French is a niche brand. The brand is a major player in the Rs 50 crore hair remover cream market in India. The brand owned by the pharmaceutical major Wyeth is now facing the heat of competition. The Indian hair remover cream market is small because of the fact

that hair removal is a touchy subject for women and this product category is seldom discussed across media.The campaigns are usually low key and brands gain popularity more through word of mouth and highly targeted advertising. Anne French is a Depilatory cream. Depilatory creams removes hair at skin line. These creams use alkaline chemical ( Calcium thioglycolate ) which dissolves the protein structure of hair and causes it to separate from skin. Although there are different method of removing unwanted hair like plucking, tweezing, threading, waxing bleaching, shaving etc, depilatory creams have gained popularity in Indian market owing to the convenience and ease of use. The only drawback is that it may cause allergy for some. This category was in a stagnant stage for long till 2004 when Reckitt launched the global depilatory cream major Veet in the Indian market. The brand caused a stir in the Indian market. Veet used the super model Katreena Kaif to endorse the brand . The entry of Veet threatened the leadership position of Anne French. Veet had the advantage of its Global image and also the high profile celebrity endorsement. Veet also tried to differentiate by launching this product in a tube form. These moves force Anne French to launch its own tube package and also increase the adspend. Anne French in 2007 launched the Squeeze tube and two perfume variants to counter the threat from the Global leader Veet. The ad campaigns are currently

on Watch the tvc

air here : Anne

. French

The brand has tried to add value by adding moisturizer and vitamin . Anne French is trying to position itself as the easiest way to have a smooth and silky skin. The latest campaigns are focused on promoting the tube variant. Although Anne French has been leading the market, now its position is being threatened by a global brand. It is expected that a marketing war between these two brand can lift up the category into a high growth path. Already Anne French has taken the threat head on. Whether Veet will take the market from Anne French will be an interesting story to watch. Labels: FMCG, personal care


Chandanam: Power of Brand Name
Brand : Chandanam Company: SD Pharmacy Agency: MAA Bozell Brand Count : 205 Chandanam is an interesting brand. The brand is from SD Pharmacy which is a small player in the traditional ayurvedic medicine market. SD pharmacy came

into limelig

ht with the huge success of Manjal

Soap( discussed elsewhere in this blog) which notched up an impressive turnover of around Rs 12 crore within a years time . Manjal Soap was later sold to Marico for an undisclosed amount.

Buoyed by the success of Manjal soap, SD pharmacy launched Chandanam Soap in 2006. The brand follows the same strategy of Manjal Soap i.e harnessing the

power of brand names. Like Manjal ; which is the Malayalam word for turmeric,

Chandanam is the Malayalam term for Sandal. The make the skin younger and also acts as a

brand deodorant.

talks about the ingredient Sandalon which has the essence of sandal which will The brand unlike Manjal faces stiff competition from giants like Santoor and the heritage brand Mysore Sandal Soap. Also brands like Hamam has variants with Sandal ingredient.

Chandanam is marketed just like Manjal Soap, the packaging and the TVC's are strikingly similar and the company expects the market to accept this brand also. Another interesting fact is that SD pharmacy has not stopped with Chandanam. In 2007 the company launched its third brand of soap branded Mullappoo which is the Malayalam name for Jasmine. More amusing is the fact that the entire communication and packaging follows the same formula except that in case of Mullappoo the USP is the jasmine fragrance.It raises the question Whether a marketing formula works for all brands ? everytime?

One of the reason cited by the company for selling the brand Manjal was that the company lacked the resources to compete in FMCG segment . But in a report the company MD says he has no plans to sell Chandanam brand and will be marketed by the company itself. According to the website, P&G has evinced interest in acquiring Chandanam.

The brands Chandanam and Mullappoo are classic case of the pulling power of brand names and these brands draw its strength from the ingredients. The brand names are derived from original generic local names.The brand is an example of a

Descriptive brand. This strategy works because the consumers can easily identify the brand and its USP ( a very simple use of commonsense) . The company does not need to tell too much about either Chandanam or Mullappoo to a Malayali . The brand is also following the higly successful sampling strategy followed during the Manjal launch. Chandanam Samples are carried by popular magazines like Vanitha and Grihalakshmi followed by print ads and TVC's.Although the brand calls itself as Herbal soap, the soap is actually a Natural Soap.

The initial reports from the market suggests that Chandanam and Mullappoo has been well received. But the task to create volumes for this brands remains huge. The company may need heavy investment because two new brands were launched in quick succession and that too in a highly competitive market.These brands has to sustain the share of voice because otherwise the scope of these brands will be limited to a niche. Whether the company has plans to take this brand further or will it be sold of at a premium is something that has to be seen.
source: businessline,economictimes

Related Manjal TUESDAY, MARCH 07, 2006


Cinthol : Get Ready, Get Close
Brand : Cinthol Company: Godrej consumer products ltd Agency ; Orchard Advertising Cinthol is a 54 year old soap brand from Godrej Consumer products ltd. This brand features in the Interbrand;s Super Brand 2004-05. This is a brand that has

withstood the s place in the Indian consumer’s mind.

o-called MNC onslaught. This very

own Indian brand has been carefully nurtured by the company and owns a special

Cinthol was launched in the year 1952. The original Cinthol comes with a red pack (still the old Cinthol is available in the market) and the unique Fougere perfume became a big hit during its launch itself. Cinthol have a market share of about 2.5% in value terms. The brand is contemporary and positioned as a masculine soap with USP of protection from body odor.

Godrej have always tried to experiment with this product, trying out new things and coming out with different variants. This has enabled the product be in tune with the changing consumer trends. Cinthol heavily promoted the product using celebrities of the likes of Vinod

Khanna and Imran Khan in 19

86 . In 1989

Cinthol tried to catch the lime freshness trend using Cinthol Lime which was a big hit. During 1992 it came out with Cologne. The brand went for a major overhaul in 1993-1995 with a new pack. But there was a customer outcry for the old Cinthol. Eventually the company had to relaunch the original Cinthol and the new range was branded as Cinthol International. Original Cinthol have the usp of deo + complexion is said to be the first of its kind

in India. Cinthol is also made of vegetable oils and not animal fats and was popular for this quality. Cinthol name is derived from SYNTHetic + phenol ( SYNTHOL) In 2004, the brand embarked on a new positioning of “ Get Ready ,Get Close” The brand also have extensions like Talcum powder and Deo but these extensions were not as successful as this brand. Cinthol was promoted using smart ads and the product quality was perceived to be excellent. But now Cinthol is lying low with virtually no advertisements. This is a great brand with huge potential. I feel that Cinthol Deo if promoted heavily can easily beat the likes of AXE. But these products are seldom available in the stores. Cinthol have to Get Ready to Get Close with the new Generation. Labels: branding, FMCG, personal care, soap brands THURSDAY, AUGUST 21, 2008

Clean & Clear : Clean Clear and Confident
Brand : Clean & Clear Company : Johnson & Johnson Consumer products Agency : DDB Mudra Brand Analysis Count : 344

Clean & Clear is the skin care brand from the house of Johnson & Johnson. The brand was relaunched last month marking the foray of J & J into the highly competitive skin care market in India. Clean & Clear is a global brand of J &J with a presence in over 41 countries. The brand was initially launched by Revlon in 1957. The name was chosen because the products had no fragrance and dyes and left no residue

after rinsing ( source : wikipedia). In 1991 Revlon sold Clean & Clear to J & J. J&J repositioned the brand focusing more on acne control. The brand was existing in India long back ( I don't have the launch date). But the brand was languishing because of the lack of support from the company. Infact I have never seen this brand before. The company has rejuvenated the brand and ads are now running in many TV channels. Clean & Clear is targeting the teens. The brand has launched a series of products like cleansers, oil and acne control creams. etc .The brand is using the cleansers as the flagship product to attract the consumers. ( source : campaign India) Clean & Clear is being positioned as a Teen Skincare expert . The campaigns are more functional oriented and the endorsement by Johnson & Johnson further strengthens the brand positioning.

The brand has the tagline " Clean Clear and Confident " which I feel has potential and flexibility for creatives to work on. Infact confidence is a virtue that will attract the attention of Teens. Teenagers has a view of themself as adults. So confidence can be a platform to attract these young minds into this brand. I

remember the ad that enabled Lifebuoy 's repositioning where the young girl says " I don't care " ( about my skin ) which is a show of confidence. Indian skin care market is huge and lucrative. Its estimated that the market is worth around Rs 2000 crore. But the market is crowded with local and global brands. So its not easy for Clean & Clear to break into this market. What Johnson & Johnson has is the enormous brand equity it has in the Indian market. I would say that the company has not quite leveraged the brand equity to other products. It had earlier burnt its fingers with the brand Savlon which may have prompted the company to focus on the babycare and female hygiene products. With regard to the Clean & Clear, the brand should associate itself with the core brand values of the parent brand. But have to be careful about not being perceived as a baby's product. When I visited a supermarket, I found Clean & Clear bottle along with other J & J baby products and not in the personal care section of the supermarket. I think its suicidal for the brand to be kept alongside baby products. In this era of competition there is no space for such mistakes. I had to spent considerable time checking whether the cleanser is for baby or for grown ups . What ever promotion is done, all of which will be useless if the product is not placed properly in the retail outlets. Marketing to youngsters is a different ballgame. The trick is to induce the trial first. Compared to the Point of Purchase displays of brands like Ponds and Lakme, Clean & Clear is almost invisible in supermarkets. In this market halfhearted efforts will accelerate failures.

J&J has the money , distribution and brand power to make it big in the skin care segment. The brand has done right in identifying teens as the target segment. But its marketing effort is not aggressive enough to push it through the clutter.

Labels: johnson and johnson, New Product Launch, personal care THURSDAY, DECEMBER 14, 2006

Clearasil : For Clear Skin
Brand : Clearasil Company: Reckitt & Benckiser Agency: Euro Rscg Brand Count : 177 <!--[if !supportEmptyParas]--><!--[endif]--> <!--[if !supportEmptyParas]-->Clearasil was a brand that was synonymous with skin care in India. The brand occupied a distinct space in the Indian market as the ultimate cream for Pimples and acne. But over the years this brand is facing the decline stage in its

product life cycle. The b reasons not of its own.

rand reached this pathetic state because of

Clearasil is a global brand famous world wide as a cure for acne and pimples. The brand is 56 year old. Mr Ivan Combe of USA invented the product in 1950. It was the first dermatological brand for curing pimples and acne made especially for young skin. In 1961, the brand came into the fold of Richardson Vicks. In 1985 P&G became the owner of Richardson Vicks. Later the company sold of these brands to Boots Pharmaceuticals in the year 2000. In 2006, Reckitt &Benckiser bought the brand globally. The brand came to India in 1967. Now you can easily see the reason why the brand failed. The brand went through too many ownership changes. Some companies did not feel that the brand was a part of its core portfolio. For example during the ownership of Clearasil by P&G there was no investment on the brand since for the company, the personal care business was not a core

area. Hence during this period the brand was not at all promoted. Even though the other owners had tried to revive the brand, frequent changes made the brand vulnerable. <!--[if !supportEmptyParas]-->

<!--[if !supportEmptyParas]-->Clearas

il during its peak years had the

reputation as a strong cream for fighting pimples and acnes. At that time there was no direct competition for Clearasil although there were many skin creams. For a family having teenage girls, Clearasil was an essential brand. But over the years, because of the lack of brand building efforts, the brand became irrelevant to the younger generation. Clearasil slowly became the brand that “my mother used”. When Boots owned the brand, lot of variants were launched. The brand changed its packaging and was extended to soaps.Rather than limiting to acne control, the brand tried to position itself as a skin care brand. But the effort did not bear fruit because by that time, the market was flooded with modern contemporary brands. The brand is now owned by Reckitt and marketers expect that the brand will get a new lease of life. The greatest challenge before the new owners is to make the brand contemporary and relevant to the new generation. Reckitt had to find a new differentiation platform for this heritage brand. It has to tap the existing brand equity and try to create a new space for Clearasil. Globally Clearasil is positioned on the basis of Confidence through better skin . The global positioning statement is “Get Clearasil , Get Confidence”. But in India, Cinthol uses this positioning . The brand faces tough competition from the likes of Ponds, Lakme, Loreal and so on .So to find the right space is going to be tough.I think that the brand could take the “ Clear Skin” positioning where by it is not limited to controlling pimples but overall skin care. With the brand Veet from Reckitt is in the same skin care market; the brand managers will have a tough time integrating Clearasil to the portfolio.

Related Brands Ponds Fair&Lovely Vicco Loreal Bodyshop Labels: branding, failed brands, FMHG, Heritage Brand, marketing myopia, personal care, Reckitt Benkiser


Clinic All Clear : Clear about what it does.

Brand: Clinic All Clear Agency : Lowe Baseline: No dandruff No hairfall Indian Shampoo market is estimated to be worth Rs1200 crore and is hotting up like anything.

This market has long been HLL fort and with a market share of around 55-60%, HLL was the king. The major brands being Clinic Plus - Positioned as family health brand Clinic All clear -positioned as anti-dandruff Sunsilk-- positioned as conditioner shampoo. With P&G getting aggressive in the Indian FMCG market which is estimated to be around Rs 50000 crore with aggressive product launches and price wars, we are now seeing marketing in practice. Globally P&G has been the market leader in the haircare segment. In India it was not able to replicate its marketing success. Having a share of only 15-20 %, P&G is now concentrating on building the market share and HLL is feeling the heat. Hll has been working on the best selling Clinic Plus brand with lot of noise in the media. From Shah Rukh to Shahid, the brand was promoted by film stars. Hll also gave a regional touch by roping in Madhavan for the south as its brand ambassador. But in the Anti dandruff segment, P&G 's Head & Shoulders was the leader with a market share of 35-36% followed by the brands of HLL. HLL having sensed that more growth is in the Anti-dandruff market has launched Clinic All Clear with a variant "Hairfall Defense" with a new packaging and positioned on twin benefit of Less hairfall and no dandruff. HLL also roped in Bipasha and John Abraham to endorse the brand with the communication executed with perfection by Lowe

The communication was followed with a 360 degree brand building exercise with presence in the Web, contest in association with and events featuring brand ambassadors. Hll has also relaunched a beautiful site for the brand which was designed to catch the young with lot of games and forums. HLL has put their marketing power behind the brand and expects it to deliver and I feel that it will. Labels: branding, FMCG, personal care, shampoo TUESDAY, JANUARY 03, 2006

Close Up : Kya Ap CloseUp Karthe hain?

Brand : Close Up Company: HLL Agency:O&M CloseUp is the original youth brand in Indian toothpastes. Launched in 1975, this brand is the first gel toothpaste aiming at the youth segment. HLL through CloseUp have created and owned a segment for itself.

The 2200 crore toothpaste market that was dominated by Colgate Dental Cream needed some competition and Hll used CloseUp effectively to fight the market leader.CloseUp was a disruptive brand that changed the structure of toothpaste market in India. With the red colour and smart advertising , it forced the market leader to change its strategy and launch a gel variant. The customer insight was that people are conscious about their breath and want to get close with each other with confidence. Based on this insight the brand was positioned on the Fresh Breath platform . The campaign was executed showing "Happy couples having fun together". Even film Theatres had corners called as "Close Up Corners". The brand had the aspirational persona in it. Close Up have used films and filmi songs to appeal to the Indian youth. Close Up was the f

irst brand to introduce the " Self Check" of breath. The famous " HA HA" was the idea of Close Up introduced in year 1987. In 2004 Close Up again was relaunched. During that period, the fight between Pepsodent and Colgate was hotting up. Both of these brands were owning the oral care platform and CloseUp 's share was coming down. Close Up found that its mono-attribute focus is losing the sheen .Hll relaunched CloseUp With Vitamin and Flouride . Thus CloseUp offered more than Fresh Breath it also offered Oral Care. Close Up launched lot of variants that bombed in the market. The variants like Oxy fresh and Eucalyptus Blue failed in the market. HLL decided that only the Lemon variant will continue. The reason behind the failure of variant is because Close Up is a Sensorial brand. And in such kind of brands, variants will not work. In categories which are more rational, variants will work. Colgate have given a run for money for Close Up with their gel variant. The "Talk To Me" campaign was a run away success. Colgate failed to capitalise on that campaign- that is another issue. But the gel variant took the breath out of Close Up.

Close Up had to reinvent to keep the category that it created. The account was shifted from JWT to O&M. Now the mother brand is focusing on three attributes : Fresh breath, White Teeth and Strong Teeth. O&M have brought out a campaign " Kya aap Close Up Karthe Hain" which was perceived as "cool" among the market. The recent campaign which aims at positioning on the "Smile " factor is a damp

squib, the campaign is poorly e

xecuted and treats

the target market as a bunch of adolescents who will do any thing to attract the opposite sex. Indians never was bothered about the way they look, let alone how their teeth look like. That is why 33% of urban market is not using tooth pastes and 67% of rural still use the traditional way of brushing teeth like neem sticks. So when the ad shows that a young person being conscious about their teeth, it does not click.( my opinion). I guess the agency have run out of ideas. This is a brand that have created a category for itself. It will be sad if it cannot dominate that category. But that is what marketing is all about " survival of the smartest". Labels: branding, FMCG, personal care, Toothpaste SATURDAY, JULY 15, 2006

Dove : The Mildest One
Brand : Dove Company: HLL Agency: O&M Brand Count: 102 Dove is a $2 bn brand waiting to spread its wings in the Indian Prem

ium soap market. Dove was globally launched in 1957. This brand came to India in 1995. Internationally this brand has a cult status and is a major player in the global premium soap market. The brand is positioned as the Mildest Soap. Dove is PH neutral and this makes the soap soft on all kind of skin types. Internationally this brand is positioned as a brand that celebrates the " Real Beauty" . Dove defines real beauty as " beauty is not about how you look but about how you feel". The Dove's official site "" highlights this brand value. I think this is one of t

he best brand values a beauty product can have. In India, the brand did not had the success of its global counterpart. One reasons are the small " Premium " market and another is the price barrier. Dove's initial price was around Rs50 that put off even the premium customers. The brand has undergone some repositioning in recent times. Earlier the brand was positioned on the platform of " Trial for Results" idea. Later it was changed to the moisturizing platform. The brand is claiming that it is milder than the 25 leading soaps thus proving its legitimacy to being the mildest soap in the country. Globally also this brand is positioned not as a soap but a cream bar. Although the "Campaign For Real Beauty" and the mildness are excellent selling

points, the brand is still not able to catch the fancy of Indian beauties. With lot of sales promotions happening with the brand like 1+1 free , there is a possibility of brand value erosion.With the brand now priced at Rs 28, the price has somewhat become reasonable. I feel that still the brand does not fit into the " value for money" proposition for the Indian consumer. It is a truth that Indian consumer looks for " Value " even in premium products. Dove have a negative point in that the soap usually does not last enough ( partly because of our bathroom habits). This have reduced the value proposition for this brand. With the emergence of an attractive market in the premium cosmetic market in India, Dove have lot of potential to become a key player, it has got the positioning right, now it has to set the " Value" right for the Indian consumer. Labels: branding, FMCG, HLL, personal care, soap brands FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 15, 2006

Eyetex : Eye On The Next Generation
Brand : Eyetex Company: Aravind Laboratories Brand Count : 126 Eyetex is one of India's oldest Kajal. Kajal is the traditional form of eyeliners. It is a Collyrium manufactured traditionally using natural ingredients. Eyetex was

started in 19

38 by Mr Srivasudevan and in 1958, the company

was taken over by Mr. AV Srinivasan. Eyetex brand is one of the largest selling Kanmaye or Kajal in India. The brand is

a small player in the Rs 2.2 Billion Indian cosmetic industry. The brand is facing competition from established players like Lakme , Revlon and other international brands and is facing with the problem of the product relevance in the changing Indian psychographics. The tradition of applying Kajal to the eyes dates back to centuries .Even mythology have references of this product. Traditionally grandmothers used to apply kajal to the infants to prevent eye ailments. Ladies used to apply kajal using the fingers and the Kajal used to give a smokey appearance to the eyes. Eyetex have been considered as a trusted brand in this segment. The brand although not much advertised, had immense positive word of mouth publicity and the through generations this brand has been passed on. The brand is now facing the threat from the changing lifestyle of its TG. I am not sure whether the younger generation uses Kajals these days. The place of Kajal has been taken over by the modern Eyeliners. With international brands having the full range of these products that too in different colors and features, the survival of the traditional Kajal is at stake. Eyetex is positioned as a trusted brand that is prepared from natural oils . With little or no promotions, the brand has a huge recall among the Indian ladies but with the new generations, Eyetex is not much popular. Eyetex too has tried to change with times. From the traditional round shaped pack, it had metamorphosed to user friendly stick and eyeliners also. But the brand did not change with time. Eyetex is still banking on the trust and the equity of its customers who are fast becoming old. When there is a Revelon or Lakme eyeliner will the new generation pick Eyetex? Compared to modern eyeliners, Kajal can be messy and there is a chance of the kajal spreading unevenly or smudge. With the modern eyeliners offering waterproof eyeliners and with different colors ( may be) and innovative

extensions like Loreal Voluminous Mascara, Eyetex suddenly may find

irrelevant for the modern consumer. The silver lining is that for the ordinary Indian women who may not have graduated to eyeliners and mascaras, Eyetex brand is still relevant and the price so affordable. Eyetex may have missed the urban kid but the core segment may be still there. I am also not sure whether the urban girls bother about putting kajal everyday. In this era of fast life, these products are used only on occasions. Eyetex has also taken a bold step to enter into color cosmetics with the brand Dazzler.Eyetex here is going to compete with the " Who is Who" of the global cosmetic industry. I am not sure whether Dazzler will be able to leverage the equity of Eyetex. Eyetex could have consolidated its position by introducing water proof eyeliners and modern " eye beauty care" solutions rather than venturing into categories that are too tough to crack. The task of Eyetex should be to make the brand relevant to the next generation. It is going to be expensive and in this case a celebrity endorsement will help the brand to a great extent.
Source: Divanee,indiatoday,

SUNDAY, JULY 29, 2007

Fair and Handsome : Be Fair , Be Handsome
Brand : Fair & Handsome Company Agency Brand Count : 256 Fair and Handsome is a brand that created the Men's fairness cream segment in India. Launched in 2005, the brand became the creater and the market leader of : : Emami Situations

this segmen compared to FAL.

t. Emami was looking for ways to challenge the Fair and

Lovely brand from HUL. Emami had a brand Naturally Fair which was small

Emami went for serious customer research which showed that 25-30% of customers of Fairness creams were men. That customer insight paved way for a specialized brand for men. Fair and Handsome is targeted at young urban men aged 15- 35. The brand was launched with much promotion across visual media. Watch the TVC here : Fair and Handsome The campaign for Fair and Handsome is one of the lousiest campaign I have ever seen. Here the main character is depicted as a fool who gets into a ladies hostel to steal a fairness cream ( or has he got in for some other purpose !) . I still couldn't understand why couldn't he just go to a supermarket and buy it. The brand is being positioned as the fairness cream that can make men handsome and also attractive to girls. The brand uses the tagline : Be fair Be Handsome . Whether the campaign is lousy or not , after two years of launch , Fair and Handsome is worth Rs 45 Crore now commanding a market share of over 30-40% in the segment.

The brand has to be appreciated for creating a category. It is true that men uses creams meant for women. Hence there is a logic in creating a brand for men in this category. The total fairness market is estimated to be around Rs 900 crore and men's segment is around Rs 160 crore. Although Fair and Handsome has gained the first mover advantage, already competition is hotting up. HUL has

extended FAL into men's category with a variant Menz Active. Nivea and Lo'real also have moved into this segment. Unlike Fair and Handsome ( FAH), other brands are little subtle in positioning their brands as a fairness cream. Nivea uses the term Whitening while Lo'real positions the men's range Men Expert has a range of skin solutions for men. However HUL directly positions its Menz Active as a fairness cream but the target market are older men aged 25-35 . These brands faces the issue of the reluctance of men to be seen using a cream because cosmetics traditionally is viewed as a category meant for females. Situations are changing and the Metrosexuals are least bothered about openly caring about their looks. The changing face of modern man is definitely indicating a big opportunity to these brands.

In the face of emerging competition Emami has moved aggressively to promote Fair & Handsome by roping in Bollywood icon ShahRukh Khan as its brand

ambassador. The TVC featuri

ng SRK is already on air.

According to a report in agencyfaqs, SRK was initially skeptical about endorsing a fairness brand for PR reasons, However Emami was able to convince SRK into endorsing this brand. Fair& Handsome is the first brand to target men. It was followed by Fair and Lovely extending itself to men's variant Men's Active. Now this segment is seeing lot of activity . Fair and Handsome is banking on its 5 power Fairness System : 1.Double Strength Peptide complex which was developed in collaboration with Activor Corp. USA. 2.Sunguard: 3.Stress 4.Anti 5.Herbo The brand Busters: Bacplus Cool website also : gives : Prevent prevent anti herbal an sunburn wrinkles bacterial ingredients. interesting chart

that explains why fairness is important. This new chart in a way explains the Brand's thought process. also. Fair and Handsome retains the original tagline : Be Fair, Be Handsome" in the campaign The brand gives an impression that the users are having a lack of confidence and feels insecure and have less self esteem. Again the brand assumes that Fairness gets women attracted towards men. I feel that the brand still lives in the stone age. I feel that FAH has got its assumptions wrong. By depicting the main hero of the ad as a person with low self esteem, the brand is repelling lot of self assured men who wants to take care of their skin rather than attracting chicks. Gone are the days where Indian men had a complex about the skin color influenced by the long oppression by the British. Now the urban male is a more evolved one . ( I am not denying the fact that there are people who have complex about being not fair) . Men are more exposed to sun and dust and the traditional creams may not be effective for men. Hence such brands should address the host of issues faced by men rather than talking about being attractive to girls. I feel that FAH by default is restricting itself to the Fairness proposition ( which is not a bad idea ). Even when you are addressing the issue of fairness, the brand have to project itself as an aspirational brand rather than as one for losers. Even the new campaign fails terribly in execution. The new campaign and the brand ambassador in SRK may spike the sale of this brand for a while, but in order to move up the ladder, FAH have to project itself as a winner rather than a brand for losers.

What do you think ?

source : agencyfaqs,business standard,fairand

Labels: Brand Laddering, celebrity endorsement, FMCG, innovation, personal care, product line extension SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 10, 2007

Hamam : Trusted Family Soap
Brand : Hamam Company: HLL Agency: Lowe Brand Count: 197 Hamam is one of the oldest soap brands in India. The brand came into existence in 1934 and over this 73 years has successfully built a space for itself in the consumer's mind.The brand has successfully fought the competition and the

changed environment. Th Tomco.

e brand was owned

by Tata Oil Mills ( TOMCO) and later became the HLL brand when HLL acquired

Hamam is a natural soap .Although many reports put this brand as a herbal soap, Hamam is more of a natural soap than herbal. The brand have a market share of about 9-10 percent of the Rs 4000 crore Indian soap market.The brand has a huge market share ( more than 25%) in the Tamilnadu market. When HLL implemented the Power Brand strategy, Hamam survived the axe because of the strong equity it had among the consumers. Hence the axe fell on Rexona which was also a natural soap with the same positioning as Hamam.

Hamam was positioned initially as a complete natural family soap.The brand was built on the Trust factor. The earlier ads typically showed Mother and child with mother explaining the meaning of Trust using the example of Hamam.The brand may have acquired this quality from its original creators TATA. Although the brand was able to manage the PLC, it had its share of problems. At one point, HLL was facing the competition from Herbal/ayurvedic soaps. HLL tried to position Hamam as a herbal soap by changing the composition by adding Neem ingredient and reducing the TFM. But that reduction of TFM disqualified Hamam as a soap and the brand lost many of their loyal customers. 2005 saw HLL repositioning the brand by adding more ingredients. The brand now talks about having a Perfect Balance of Neem, Tulsi and Alovera Extracts. The packaging also has been made more contemporary and the shape of the soap has been made oval.2006-07 saw a change in the communication of the brand. The brand no longer talks about trust but now positioning itself as a beauty enhancing soap.The brand has now come out with a variant that contains green gram, turmeric and sandal .The color of the soap also has changed to sandal from the traditional green color. This move is a marked deviation from the age old positioning of the brand as a natural green soap. Hamam for years has been able to sustain its market position because of the strong brand loyal customers .The brand now wants to be relevant to a new consumers ( younger generation). The brand also faces stiff competition from a plethora of brands offering the same ingredients and benefits. The latest repositioning exercise is aimed to keep the brand relevant and also leverage the brand equity it had built up over these years.

Labels: FMCG, HLL, personal care, Product life cycle, product line extension, soap brands WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 14, 2005

Liril : Bring back the Liril girl

Brand : Liril Company : HLL Agency : Lowe If you are looking for a case of an iconic Brand that is going to be killed by poor marketing strategy , look no further, here is Liril for you. Launched in 1975, the year I was born, this is a brand that built a segment or should I say category for it self in the Indian market. The brand is also the testimony to the genius of India's Ad man Alyque Padamsee. This is what he says about the Liril Brand The name Liril had been registered by Hindustan Lever from a list sent to them by Unilever in London. Levers were very keen that the soap have striations, wiggly stripes of different colours running across the tablet. I recommended the tablet be blue - because waterfall is blue with white striations. Hindustan Lever was very excited and produced 1,000 tablets for testing. At this point Derk Wooller, the Marketing Controller of Hindustan Lever's soaps division, stepped in and suggested we add the freshness of lime to our story. He

felt that though the waterfall had tremendous emotional appeal, Liril needed a rational ingredient to clinch the deal. I was not averse to this but suggested that we do an `As marketed' test: Blue Liril versus Green Liril with limes. I was wrong and Wooller was right. The rest is history." Alyque Padamsee in his book A Double Life. The brand was a run away success and the Liril girl became the talk of the town. The brand has

beenconsistentt with its communication and the effective use of brand imagery. Further on brand imagery can be found in this article , visit Liril was positioned on the freshness platform right from its birth. The girl and the waterfall with the unique jingle ensured that the freshness is experienced by the audience. Liril can be called as an experiential brand and the communication perfectly supported that. Liril did not change its positioning for 25 years although the models changed, the brand communication was consistent. Then some nut in the company or the agency thought that they should change the communication that worked so effectively. The rest as I say it " Liril became history".

Liril has changed the imagery and the jingle in the name of freshness .The new jingle or the ad never had that freshness. That is why Liril had to change the Ads twice with in a span of five years. Mind you Liril never changed its imagery or the Jingle for 25 years... Reports say that Liril had to change because of its stagnant marketshare. I think there are reasons for declining market share which can be that the brand failed to understand the changing consumer expectations. There was a flurry of brand launches during the past 10 years and Liril was sleeping all the time " may be resting on the laurels" . It should have hold on its positioning of ' freshness " not by changing its communication but by communicating more, developing variants, bringing in flanking brands or variants and thus owning the whole segment for

itself. But it never happened , Liril tried to introduce the Icy mint variant very late and that too with a different jingle and imagery. We knew that the Old Liril had died. HLL could have used the same communication strategy . Then came the horrible experiment of Orange Liril with a stupid Jingle OOFYUMMA.... excuse me what the hell is that? The product failed. Then came the new campaign involving a couple and a new jingle " La-ira -ela", the ad was good but where is liril ? Like Onida , Liril has to come back with the old imagery and old jingle that made liril what it Is ( or WAS?) [ It is a prediction]. When it does that consumers will take the brand to their heart . Laaaaa lalalala laaa ................... Labels: branding, failed brands, FMCG, HLL, marketing myopia, personal care, soap brands


Lux : Celebrating Beauty
Brand : Lux Company: HLL Agency : JWT Brand Count :190 Lux is a super brand that celebrated beauty across the world since 1925. The soap which was endorsed by the beautiful film stars came to India in 1929. Lux has been the largest selling personal wash brand in the country.

Lux has effectively managed its PLC through careful brand building and changing

the pro

duct in line with the changing consumer. The

brand is being positioned as the favorite soap of Film stars has been consistent interms of communication and positioning. The brand is also the classic example of successful celebrity endorsement. The first celebrity to endorse the brand was Leela Chitnis . From Leela to Aishwarya , From Madhuri to Madhubala, Lux has been endorsed by more than 50 film stars ( a sort of record isn't it). But in all these communications, the celebrity never shadowed the brand.

Lux was always changing with the times. Whether it be interms of the product or interms of promotions, the brand kept the consumers excited. Lux has two basic extensions interms of segments. Lux beauty soap and International Lux.

Lux was in

itially a premium brand. Lux was being

projected as an aspirational brand and the endorsements by stars further reinforced the positioning. The increasing competition in the soap category forced Lux to rethink on its targeting strategy. The brand had a choice either to compromise on market share and uphold the premium positioning or to retain the market share and dilute the positioning. Lux wanted to ensure that the brand be positioned as premium but also did not wanted to compromise on the share. Thus born International Lux which is the premium variant and the affordable segment was catered by Lux beauty soap. Lux beauty soap is available in Four variants : Exotic Flower Petals,Fruit Extracts,Almond and Sandal. Lux has a common ingredient of Milk cream in all the variants.

Although the brand enjoyed success and has sustained its leadership position, of late this brand has been facing issues of stagnation. The stagnation is caused by the plethora of brands competing for the market share and the scope for differentiation has reduced to almost nil. Together with the rush for celebrities to endorse anything from salt to cars, Lux is finding it difficult to sustain growth in this cluttered market.

In 2005 Lux celebrated its 75th anniversary sparking of a controversy. Deviating its tradition of roping in Bollywood Divas , this time none other than Shah Rukh Khan endorsed Lux. The ads created instant controversy with marketers discussing whether the brand has suddenly become MALE.Paul Newman also has endorsed Lux soap which shows that Lux makes such stunts to excite the market. Whatever be the controversy, the brand again succeeded in creating excit

ement in the market. Some argue that HLL was testing a new positioning to appeal to male users while others say that it was a one time endorsement to break the clutter. For marking the 75th year Lux came out with a celebration range endorsed by Kareena Kapoor . The Celebration range too created news because of its variant :Chocolate Seduction. These innovative products created lot of excitement that ensured that Lux remained in the top of mind of the consumers. Another variant which I like personally is the Lux with Orchid which looked cool in terms of packaging and looks. Over these years, the positioning of Lux also evolved. Earlier the brand used the positioning " Beauty soap of Film stars" . But as the customer evolved, the positioning lost its charm because customers began to doubt whether the film stars actually used this brand. Taking a cue from the customers, Lux changed the positioning appealing to the need for becoming a star. The new positioning is communicated with the tagline " Bring out the star in you".Although worldwide the brand is being endorsed by film stars, the actual package usually contains picture of international models and not film stars.

While Lux beauty soap is sticking to the age old positioning, Lux international has moved from being a soap brand to a skin care brand. Lux International has the tagline " Not Just Soap, Its Skin Care". Under the Lux umbrella brand, HLL has introduced variety of personal wash products like body shampoo,hair shampoo and Related Santoor
source: imagesource: superbrandsindia,superbrandsindia,businessline,yahoomoney

etc. explore more in the days to come.... Brands

Lux is the classic example of HLL's marketing genius. The brand will experiment

Labels: celebrity endorsement, FMCG, HLL, Lux, personal care, Product life cycle, soap brands MONDAY, FEBRUARY 27, 2006

Margo:lost in the Neem trees !

Brand : Margo Company: Henkel Agency: FCB Ulka

Margo is one of the oldest herbal soaps in India. The brand which is more than 85 years old is famous for its neem content. The product although famous for its positive effects to the skin is nowhere in the market. This is a brand which never changed with the customer. During its launch, the product had dedicated customer base and since the product was unique due to its medicinal value , customers tend to be loyal. The whole brand was having Neem as its core identity. But Margo failed to understand the changing dynamics of Indian consumers, more and more choices began to unfold before the consumer and Margo was becoming a niche brand. Margo was positioned as a "complete skin care soap". When market became fragmented with lot of products positioning at different attributes, Margo was sidelined as a medicinal soap. The product has inherent negatives, the fragrant was not attractive nor the shape. It was also less lathering compared to its competitors. Margo changed hands from Shaw Wallace to Henkel. Although Margo was relaunched in 2003 with a

new fragrance and shape , it has not excited the market so far. The new positioning is " Margo skin clear skin". The brand had a following in AP, Tamilnadu and West Bengal ( am not sure about its present status). The single mistake the brand made was to miss the new generation. It failed to attract the young users. With Lifebouy herbal variant and other established brands taking in the "neem" content away from Margo, this brand needs a hell lot of money to rejuvenate itself. May be a high decibel big celebrity endorsement may help this brand ( try Aishwarya for a change) . Can it change its avatar and fight lifebuoy in the health platform? This is a brand that failed to change with the customer or changed very late. Labels: branding, failed brands, FMCG, marketing myopia, personal care, soap brands SUNDAY, MARCH 04, 2007

Medimix : Taking Care of Skin Problems
Brand : Medimix Company: Cholayil Agency: Grey Brand Count : 206 Medimix is the second largest Ayurvedic soap brand in the country. This brand is a pure play ayurvedic soap and has been around in the Indian market for more

than 37 y

ears. The brand was born in 1969 by a

virtually unknown company Cholayil . Over these years , Medimix has grown to become a Rs 140 crore brand.The brand was targeted mainly at SEC BC segment.

Medimix is a pure ayurvedic herbal soap and take pride in its herbal heritage. This brand can be said as one of the pioneer in the herbal soap category. The brand was one of the few brands that had positioned itself as a herbal soap when the market was full of synthetic soaps. The brand had 18 herbs in it and was positioned as a curative/medicinal soap. The brand was even prescribed by doctors for skin diseases.Medimix is the only brand which reveals all the name of its ingredients in the packaging. The name Medimix was derived by combining Medicine + Mix ( my guess). Because of its quality and medicinal properties, the

bran and 3.2%

has around 30% market share in the d has carved out a share in the total soap market.

place in the Rs 660 crore herbal soap market. Medimixayurvedic soap market

Medimix was marketed heavily in South India. But often this brand fell into the trap of Sales Promotion driving the sales. The sales dropped sharply when the sales promotion schemes get over and company had to rely more on the sales promotion activities. The brand also went into totally unrelated Brand Extension into cough syrup category with Medimix cough syrup and also extended into Coconut oil segment : both of these extensions were not successful. In 2006, the brand took a major initiative to take the brand forward. Medimix

has realised comp

etition getting intense in the soap market

with brand coming out with variants and also taking the Natural/ayurvedic route. Although Medimix had the heritage, there was the issue of brand not being noticed by younger generation. Brands like Jeeva began to challenge the ingredient theory by promoting its 27 herbal ingredients vs Medimix's 18 herbs. In 2006 Medimix initiated a relaunch exercise for Medimix. Medimix changed its packaging after 36 years into a new contemporary packaging designed by

Bangalore based Ray+ Kesavan Designs.New advertisement campaigns were











crowd.According to company officials , the brand wants to be appealing to Mass Urban and younger crowd which is a tough task for any brand.The brand also came out with two variants : Sandal and glycerin to attract the Naturals segment. The brand also is tying to appeal as a beauty soap with out diluting its medicinal curative positioning.The brand also wants to appeal to SEC A segment . The company wants to take the brand national and make it a rs 500 crore brand.The competition is intense but Medimix has a heritage to bank upon. May be in this case the brand may have to seek a celebrity push to reach the next level.

Labels: Heritage Brand, product line extension, soap brands THURSDAY, OCTOBER 26, 2006

Nivea : Gentle Care
Brand : Nivea Company : Beirsdorf AG (JL Morrison in India) Agency: TBWA Brand Count : 147

Nivea is a German brand marketed in India by JL Morrison. This brand has a history of around 96 years. Nivea came into existence in the year 1911. The brand has derived its name from the Latin word Nivius meaning "Snow White". Nivea has been in Indian market for more than 30 years. But this brand which is truly a global brand has not met with success in India. Nivea globally is the brand that has its presence in around 20 product categories in more than 50 countries. But in the 1300 crore Indian skin care market, the presence of Nivea don't justify




Nivea is famous worldwide for its face cream. Nivea Creme created by Dermatologists was launched in 1911 . The brand is considered to be the first to take the skin care category from the elite class to the masses. The brand worldwide is known for its Trust, Reliability and Accessibility. Globally this brand is positioned in the platform of "Gentle Care" and " Wellness". The brand has its elements of Color embedded firmly in the minds of the customers. Nivea took its "Blue and White" color as its brand element as early as 1924. From there onwards, this color scheme has been a brand identity for Nivea.

In India, the brand is known for its skin cream. Nivea cream is but perceived as a winter cream because of its thickness and oily consistency. While in other parts of the world, Nivea has successfully came out of this narrow perception, in India, the marketers were not able to effectively take the brand forward. With most of Indian stated do not have severe winter, the market for winter cream is very limited.Nivea has a market share of 19% in the Rs 108 crore skin cream market which is dominated by Ponds.Now Ponds hold the position which Nivea could have taken had it been more aggressive in the market.

Although JL Morrison tried to extend the brand to soaps, the extension has not

been successful bec

ause of the halfhearted effort.

With salespromotion now being used to promote this brand of soaps,further dilution of the brand equity is inevitable.

Nivea face serious marketing issues in India. The brand has not been aggressive enough in this market which is crowded with established brands. Nivea was never bothered about strengthening its positioning as a skin care leader. While Ponds successfully extended itself to other product categories, Nivea is stuck with its cream.This is a brand that failed because of marketing laziness. Nivea have huge brand recall and equity. It has the global parentage, successful positioning opportunity but was not able to leverage the strength because the Indian marketers didnot want to invest in the brand. The problem is that when the brand is licensed to a marketer in a country, the objective of the brand manager will be to milk maximum out of the brand rather than invest in longterm brand building. Every ads and campaigns will be weighed interms of the ROI and sales growth. Successful brands required longterm investment that will yeild results over a period of time. But in the case of Nivea, no such brand building efforts were to be seen.

The potential of the brand is evident from the fact that in the Grey market, the brand is sold well. There is also significant difference in the quality of imported Nivea and the local one. It is said that Nivea Deo is the best selling product in the grey market.

Nivea is sad story of a brand that failed to succeed inspite of having all essential Brand qualities. If failed because of marketing laziness.

Labels: branding, failed brands, FMCG, Heritage Brand, marketing myopia, personal care, soap brands TUESDAY, JANUARY 10, 2006

Parachute : Branding a commodity.

Brand : Parachute Company: Marico Agency:Ambience Publicis This is a success story of branding of a commodity. Hair oils and its use are deeply ingrained in to the Indian Psyche. This is a 1500 crore industry which is dominated by unbranded oils. The branded category accounts to around 600 crore. The majority of the hair oil segment is occupied by Coconut oil. This is a market that have very low entry barrier and that is the reason why the market is dominated by unbranded oils. Marico in early 1990's made a bold step in launching a brand in this segment. Paracute manufactured by Bombay Oil Mills was acquired by Marico in 1990's. Marico was a sister concern of Bombay Oil Mills. Parachute is the market leader in the branded hair oil market with a market share of around 53%. Marico has positioned Parachute in the platform of purity. This

focus on purity clearly differentiat

ed the

product from the rest of the unbranded oils .The purity was reinforced by careful packaging and communication. The brand was established emphasising Caring and Mother - Daughter relationship.Parachute knew the pulse of the urban

market and emphasised that the oil is non greasy and prompted the TG to experience the brand During the early 2000's the market witnessed a shift. Marico found that the market for hair oil is degrowing, because the consumer preferences are changing. The youth now didnt want to have Oil - on- their hair look. This prompted Marico to look into the Value Added hair Oil market which was dominated by Dabur Vatika. Parchute's mother brand was also facing competition from Nihar of HLL stable. Marico decided to depend less on the basic Parchute oil and we saw a series of

new product launches. Marico

launched Parachute with jasmine

fragrance which was well received by the market. Also came Parachute Advansed and Parachute Sampoorna. Parachute Advansed account is with McCann while others are handled by Ambience. 2005 saw a Bold ( or foolish) step from Marico . We saw the launch of Parachute Aftershower hair cream. This is the first non oil product from Parachute . Marico roped in Yuvraj as the brand ambassador . The product is positioned as a Non sticky and with Zingy perfume. The product is launched with the base line " style on every day".

People in Marico and Ambience are better marketing minds than me. But I have doubts about this brand extention. Parachute has been a category leader & almost generic to coconut hair oil. Extending this brand to men's toiletories seem totally out of box or should I say out of mind? As one of my readers pointed out " there are many financial pressures that

outsiders cannot understand" . I do agree to that also. But when a brand known for its coconut oil, targeted at women and positioned along the mother - daughter relationship, extends it to a men's category, will it survive? Will men accept a feminine brand? If Marico advertises Parachute for men, will women accept that brand? Then what is parachute? a coconut oil, after shower for men ? hair oil? The price is attractive , so men may buy it. I am confused.......... Am I a target consumer? Labels: branding, FMCG, personal care THURSDAY, DECEMBER 22, 2005

Pepsodent : Dishum Dishum

Brand : Pepsodent

Company : HLL

Agency " Lowe

Pepsodent was launched in 1993 by Hll to capture the market from Colgate. Launched in the platform of Germ fighting property, Pepsodent now have a marketshare of 17% in the Rs2200 crore oral care market. Pepsodent have experimented with its positioning althrough its life. Initially Pepsodent was launched in the highly successful "long lasting protection for hours after brushing" platform. In 1999-2000 Pepsodent tried to fight the market leader Colgate by shifting to Benefits of germ fighting rather than Process of germ

fighting. But the positioning failed and Pepsodent had to come back to the old positioning by 2001. Pepsodent included the germ indicator to its pack in 2002 followed by an innovative Dental Insurance campaign which reinforced the germ fighting position.

HLL was trying hard to break the fort of Colgate which was holding a massive 4550% market share in the oral care market.Although Pepsodent and Close Up had together around 32% of the market , it was not enough. Then came the regional brands like Ajanta and Babool which really made a dent in the market share of the leaders. Hll struck back with the famous Dishum dishum campaign ( that won many accolades for the agency). The insight for this campaign was that Mothers were really worried about the eating habits of their kids. From that insight came the Big Idea " let Pepsodent fight germs for You". The campaign and the smart pricing virtually killed the regional brands in the oral care market. Pepsodent knew that they should expand the total market of tooth paste and decided to increase the market by increasing the usage of the product. Thus came

the Bhoot campaign that is currently on air. Pepsodent aims to teach the kids to brush at night ( with Pepsodent ofcourse)

.Research shows that brushing teeth at night can reduce chances of tooth decay by 30%. If HLL to be believed, 12 lakhs kids are brushing teeth at night now and mothers are happy Pepsodent is a brand that has been carefully crafted although it struggled to find its soul, now the brand is all set to take off. Labels: branding, FMCG, HLL, personal care THURSDAY, JUNE 08, 2006

Yardley : Immense Potential Wasted !
Brand : Yardley Company: Lornmead This 235 year old cosmetics brand from England is yet to take off in India(after crashlanding) despite its long life here. The iconic brand was a hit in 1950's among the elite Indians but some how missed the liberalisation bus.

The brand which has a rich heritage was marketed by P&G and since they did not have any interest in the cosmetic market sidelined this brand. The brand was relegated to Talcum Powders and with no promotions and poor pricing has dampened the equity of this brand. Yardley is now owned by Lornmead which is under the Jatania group : one of the richest Indian family in UK. If reports are to be believed, they have big plans for

India and Yardley may fit into their strategies. Yardley has been positioned as the quintessential English brand with its conservative look and royal touch. Although the brand was appealing to the TG in early nineties, the newer generation has not been kind to this brand ( or this brand is not existing to gennext). The cosmetic market is dominated by the likes of Revlon and Lakme, calls for a major rebranding exercise for this brand. A look at their website revealed a whole range of luxurious perfume and cosmetic range which was sadly not available in India. Yardley have the advantage of being perceived as a Unisex brand and thus can extend the brand to a larger audience. Since the perfumes market is still undeveloped, Yardley have a huge market waiting for it. What the company needs to do is to get its marketing mix correct and make the brand contemporary. If it does it fast, the brand has the potential to make it big Labels: branding, failed brands, FMCG, Heritage Brand, marketing myopia

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