Dabur gets a new face for Bihar and UP

By Poojya Trivedi , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Advertising | October 18, 2010
The company would use the Bhojpuri star, Ravi Kishan to promote Dabur Chyawanprash in UP and Bihar, through on-ground activities

The FMCG major, Dabur has signed Ravi Kishan as its brand ambassador for below-the-line activities, in an effort to increase brand visibility in the Bhojpuri-speaking belt. In a first-of-its-kind initiative, the consumer products company will use the Bhojpuri star in direct promotions, such as dealer and consumer meets, for Dabur Chyawanprash.

The company will use the star in the eastern UP and Bihar region, where he is extremely popular. "Associating with Ravi Kishan will help us build a connect with the local audience. Also, these areas are important for our brand," says Praveen Jaipuriar, category head - health supplements at Dabur India.

The region contributes almost 40 per cent to the overall sales of Dabur Chyawanprash, says Jaipuriar.

The 61-year-old product, Dabur Chyawanprash will now be endorsed by Amitabh Bachchan and MS Dhoni in television commercials; whereas Kishan would be used in consumer engagement programmes.

The objective behind signing the brand ambassador exclusively for BTL activities is to grow faster than last year. Jaipuriar shares that the brand grew by about 14 per cent last year and is now aiming at a growth rate of 20 per cent.

On an average, the company spends about Rs 3-4 crore on BTL activities. However, it plans to increase its spends this year.

According to the market-research firm, IMRB International, the product has seen a decline in volumes by 4 per cent in both Bihar and Uttar Pradesh. The association with Kishan would thus provide much-needed regional attention to the brand.

Although companies have previously used celebrities for promotional activities such as road-shows and product launches, the use of a brand ambassador solely to connect with regional masses is new.

Sudha Natrajan, president and chief operating officer, Lintas Media Group says, "If brands are regional in nature or have disproportionate contribution of a few regions in their portfolio, I think it is a great idea to pick up local celebrities and go on with them, even if it is just BTL."

She adds that in the cow-belt, Kishan is more popular than anyone else. "His popularity in these regions is as much (if not more) than Amitabh Bachchan's. So, if they want to show it as a completely local, grassroots product, he is a great idea," Natrajan says.

Talking about the ROI, she says that Dabur should also leverage Kishan in local ATL activities. "For BTL, a brand like Chyawanprash would not spend so much. So, using him in the local ATL activities would make sense."

The bulk of Chyawanprash sales happen during the winter, that is, between November and March. Keeping this seasonal demand in mind, the company would roll out the engagement programmes beginning next month.

The product has pan-SEC appeal; the primary target audience for the brand is children and the secondary audience is mothers. So, the brand communicates with both the TGs across SECs.

According to IMRB, in Uttar Pradesh, the market size for Chyawanprash is 480 tonnes, of which Dabur has a share of 75 per cent. In Bihar, the market size for the category is 624 tonnes, of which Dabur has 71 per cent share.

Competitors to Dabur Chyawanprash include Ranbaxy Chyawan Active, Himalaya, Himani Sona Chandi, Zandu Kesari Jivan, Zandu Baidnath and other local brands.

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