Aishwarya Ramesh
Interviews

"Lower the price point, higher the consumption rate": Anupam Bokey, CMO, Too Yumm!

Too Yumm! has recently launched four new flavours with a campaign to drive the message home.

To mark the launch of its four new flavours, Too Yumm! has launched a new ad campaign featuring brand ambassador Virat Kohli. The campaign has been conceptualised and created by the brand with Mullen Lowe Lintas and will be live on TV and digital mediums. We caught up with Anupam Bokey, chief marketing officer, Too Yumm!, on the sidelines of a press conference.

Q: Can you tell us more about the RP Sanjiv Goenka group’s initiatives in FMCG?

A: The RPSG group is looking at FMCG as a major growth driver. When we were discussing which category to enter into, snacking came out on top. RPSG also has background knowledge of running the supermarket chain Spencers – so it has the relevant background on snacking and behaviours.

Most of the snacks in the country are fried, so it was obvious that there was a gap when it came to healthy snacking. Even the way the name is crafted is a reminder to the customer that it’s tasty and healthy. Taste is a primary driver in the snacking category.

Q: How did you zoom in on the new flavours to launch – what research went into creating it?

A: The snacking category is driven by three or four primary flavour buckets. There’s the salted flavour, spicy flavours, tomato flavours, and dairy based flavours such as cheese or sour cream and onion. If we were to stick to these flavours, it wouldn’t bring any newness to the snacking category. Consumers are always looking to experiment with different types of snacks.

When we do flavour research, we develop dozens of flavours. Then we test them with consumers, and then decide which flavours to launch in the markets. We also offer mainstream flavours but all the newly launched flavours are the product of consumer research. However, the creation of the flavours was based more on a gut feeling. Replicating the aspects of flavour into a snacking format was the challenging part of product development. There’s a lot that happens with multiple flavour houses – we give and take inspiration from them.

Q: Since snacking happens at certain times of the day, who would you say your competitors are?

A: We are still focussed on the primary players in the market, we compete with the likes of Pepsico and some regional players as well. Some of them have done well because they have been able to cater to regional flavours and preferences. They see success in one main region but it becomes difficult to get acceptance for the product in other parts of the country. Whether the flavours would be universally accepted throughout the country was one of the criteria of selection. We looked at what the consumer in the snacking category might be missing. He already has a lot of salted flavours and tomato flavours, so we felt the need to do something unique.

Our primary consumption location is still mid-afternoon, in between meals. We're seeing people consume a lot of mini meals as opposed to having three main meals a day. There are multiple snacking opportunities throughout the day and each brand is trying to create a story to give a message about why their brand is the best option.

In India, snacking is a Rs 28,000 crore category and the only reason it is so big is that it is a primary item which is consumed at that point in time.

Q: Who's your target audience for this campaign?

A: The core of this brand in terms of TG is a 25 year old. But typically, consumption is highest between the 15-35 age range. This is the TG which has the maximum number of ‘going-out’ occasions. The reason we have five rupee and 10 rupee price points is that these enable out-of-home on the go consumption. Demographically, India's population is very young - we are a young country.

Q: What do the five rupee and 10 rupee price points mean to you? Which one sees higher sales typically?

A: The lower the price point, higher is the consumption rate in that category. When you get a mid-meal hunger pang, typically you don't eat that much. The 25-30 pieces you get in a five rupee pack are more than enough to satisfy your hunger. Typically, a person can't eat a 10 rupee pack by himself in one go. Perhaps, when you have a group of friends together, is when a larger pack is opened, but typically the consumption is highest at the five rupee price point.

In the snacking category, more than 50 per cent of the consumption is through a five rupee pack. The 10 rupee pack contributes another 30 per cent or so. So the five rupee packs are the bulk of our sales. It's all about how much of a product the consumer needs and how much he gets in a five rupee and 10 rupee park to satisfy this need.

Q: How much sales do you see being generated by Big Basket and Grofers?

A: It's a very fast growing channel but that channel needs a certain price point to be able to service that requirement. When you buy a basket of goods from an e-comm player and then add snacks to it, that's when it becomes a basket - that's why we have combination packs that are available on these platforms. Too Yumm does well on e-commerce and we have more than 10 per cent share in that market. It also helps that an average e-comm user is more health conscious and aware.

Q: Virat Kohli endorses multiple brands… how do you ensure the communication cuts through the clutter?

A: A couple of years ago when we were launching, Virat Kohli had publicly denounced unhealthy food. That was good timing for our launch. Generally with celebrities, there tends to be a divide between who appeals to a North audience and a South audience. But sporting athletes appeal to different audiences across the country. Cricket is a religion in India - when we were on the lookout for a brand ambassador, it became an obvious choice who we wanted to select to represent us.

Q: How did you zoom in on the insight of 'cravings' to base your campaign on?

A: A craving is something universal - it can happen at any time, without any warning. If the craving is during the day time, you can still step out and get it fulfilled. Our snack is an alternative for the late nights and inconvenient times when cravings strike. That was our brief to the agency as well - to communicate that we have different flavours that can fulfill cravings without compromising on the health aspect. On the shelf level as well - to stand out, we use visually bright colours to create an impression, since our category is an impulse led one.

Q: You have many years of experience as a marketer. What would you say is one marketing lesson from your career over the years that you keep going back to?

A: HUL gave me the opportunity to experience different cultures and work in different countries. That being said, one thing I always keep in mind is that the consumers don't change, irrespective of the country or the culture they belong to. When it comes to disruption, I've learnt to always start small. I've learnt to trust the consumer and create value for him by providing value according to his requirements.