Friday, 25 June 2010

Sab Miller- Haywards beer ad in India


Sab Miller has been a late entrant into the Indian beer market. The market leader Kingfisher has positioned itself as 'the king of good times' with its ads focusing on the young generation having a great time at parties and enjoying KF beer.

Now SabMiller has launched a TV ad for its Haywards beer. And i find it remarkable. Its about a typical day for a sales rep in India who earns little, depends on the very poor public transport network and often has to travel miles and miles to make his quota. The protagonist in this ad talks about his challenges, and his enthusiasm to rise again the next day, before the sun shines- and then to outshine the sun.

A remarkable way to capture the spirit of new India.

And as he returns weary after the day's work, he looks forward to his Haywards!

What a fabulous position for a beer- as an end of day way to relax! Really beats the pants off the party positioning of KF. Really classical marketing- STP- segment the market, target a segment and position yourself uniquely.

Brilliant. Really connects with me. ( I did the sales man grind!)

On another note, here is a link to a new campaign for Pepsodent toothpaste from Unilever in India. My only thought was, 'how the mighty have fallen'. Unimaginative- boring....and as appears to be the trend for Unilever in India, relying heavily and solely on the crutches of Bollywood superstar Shah Ruck Khan. The link is below.

Friday, 18 June 2010

Segmenting the coffee market

Beyond Coffee is the maiden attempt by Hyderabad-based entrepreneurs who have created a boutique facility that blends the best of coffee seed brews and art in a tastefully done-up setting in the upmarket Jubilee Hills.

Its catchment area is the bustling IT hub of Hyderabad - the Hitec City and the neighbourhood.
(Please click title to read more on this).

So what do you want? Premium pricing- or volume market share. I am really happy to see a new player segmenting the coffee drinking market and creating an outlet that caters to clearly a 'high end consumer'. Bravo.

Cafe Coffee Day/ Costa Coffee/ Barista- all started selling coffee in India on the Starbucks model- and now are all at each others throats- serving horrible coffee in joints that see no face-lifts for months on end....No wonder same outlets sales at these joints show little or no growth at all.

On a side note, we visited Caffe Pascucci in Bangalore and found the coffee truly exceptional ( well to our CCD and Barista destroyed taste buds!)

Its a critical but very basic step in marketing. STP- Segment the market, identify your target and position your brand. The brand that wants to be everything to everyone, ends up being nothing to anyone!

Thursday, 17 June 2010

what brands would i buy into today?

I enjoy reading. I enjoy learning about our world and about business- other companies and the way they do business. My fav magazines are BusinessWeek- Time- Fortune- Newsweek- Nat Geo- Forbes. (these were what my father read and brought home regularly).

The earliest brands that i was attracted towards were American ones or those trying to win in the American market- since i read about them in Time/ Newsweek and Nat Geo- magazines i read since i was 14 years old. Coke- Chevy- Buick- Honda.....even though these brands never sold in India, through the print ads built a lot of credibility for me.

I bought BATA shoes because my parents always bought that. I use only Colgate since my parents only used Colgate.

My first car was Maruti (an Indian brand) since choices were few in 1999. Since then I have bought 3 other cars- none of Indian make.

So most of my brand choices were governed:
1. By what advertisements appeared in well known magazines.
2. By my parents' choices
3. By what was available.

However over time, these preferred brands have reduced significantly.

In the last 10 years, the only brands I have gotten loyal to are:
1. MamiNova ( a very yum French brand)
2. Tropicana
3. Kelloggs

Brands educate their consumers. To me, this education should be centered around health and/or the environment. Clearly i have found very few brands building credibility by educating me.

Otherwise, my choices are determined from within a group of brands (usually 5-7 per category) depending upon my state of mind at the time of purchase.

I am intrigued by this. What role does habit/ choice and true credibility play in your brands market share?

Friday, 4 June 2010

HTC- and YOU

These links take you to two ads released by HTC (, the smart phone design company. The ads were released in 2009, but we took a while to find them. HTC is not yet a big company in India.

We think the ads are brilliant and put so succintly the consumer at the centre of the smartphone. Not a monologue about the technically brilliant product, but a fast past set of images, where most consumers would be able to find themselves.

Nothing more re-assuring than this for a consumer. A company that understands how i use the product.

Does your company create ads that state clearly their interest in understanding their consumers?

The 'quietly brilliant' position of HTC is pretty mind numbing in our view. Cant get our heads around it.

ritu and venkat

PS: We dont own any HTC products or shares :-)