School children put colours into Hajmola Candy

By Chhavi Tyagi , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Advertising | January 22, 2009
Dabur returns to schools to establish the repositioning of Hajmola Candy as an "audio candy"

Dabur & #BANNER1 & # came out with a new identity for its brand, Hajmola Candy, in July 2008. The new identity was promoted through television commercials (TVCs), which repositioned it as an "audio candy". The message spread by the TVCs was that popping a Hajmola Candy into your mouth is always accompanied by an involuntary lip-smacking sound.

To take the repositioning a step further and to give its target group, children, a taste of the new positioning, Dabur launched an extensive school activation campaign, called Chatkara Lagao aur Rang Bharo, in September 2008. Dabur aimed to interact with at least eight lakh children in 1,500 schools in 30 cities. In the first phase, it reached around six lakh children. The activation was restarted a few days ago to meet the set target.

Rajeev John, senior marketing manager, Dabur India, tells afaqs!, "The initiative was essentially started to give schoolkids, Hajmola Candy's core target group, a wholesome brand experience. The campaign strategy was to come out with an extension of the new positioning of the product and to take it to the ground level with our target group."

The on-ground campaign, which is being executed by Kidstuff, Mudra's activation agency, includes a painting competition, along with some interactive games and a sampling exercise. The activity engages students of up to Class 5. The students are given a black and white print of a scene taken from the TVCs, which they are then asked to colour. The games are designed as extensions of the TVCs.

Amit Bajaj, manager, brand communication, Kidstuff, shares the insight provided by Dabur. He says, "Dabur wanted to get in touch with its target audience in their own base, and children being its target group, what could have been better than a school activation programme? The campaign is an infotainment exercise which, while engaging kids in interactive games, also informs them about the product."

Even before launching the TVCs, Dabur did a pilot activation exercise in September 2007 to test the waters with its new repositioning. The pilot activation saw the involvement of 1.2 lakh students from 200 schools across nine cities in India.

Speaking on the overall marketing strategy of Hajmola, John says, "The whole issue with confectionery is that its sales are impulse driven. Therefore, along with mass media campaigns, it pays to remind consumers time and again of your brand. We at Dabur always try to be visible outside the homes of the consumers across many touchpoints."

John adds that the response to the activation has been great, with almost 25-30 per cent of the targeted schoolchildren participating in the painting competition.

The activation will wrap up by mid-February, after which the winners - city winners and national winners - will be announced and awarded prizes such as sports bicycles. The entries will be judged by a panel comprising reputed art teachers and representatives of the Dabur team.

Though nothing is confirmed as yet, Dabur may plan an exhibition of the paintings to showcase the creativity of the children.