Yash Bhatia

Rasna’s move to become an all-round family drink finds a spot on JioCinema for IPL 2024

With 60% of consumers being adults, its new spot stars a celeb with a pan-India presence.

The nostalgic memories of childhood often revolve around simple pleasures, and for many, sipping a glass of Rasna after a long day at school was a cherished ritual. This iconic drink held a special place in the hearts of children, being the quintessential go-to beverage known for its refreshing and delightful taste.

But according to the Ahmedabad-based company, over the past four to five years, children have accounted for only 40% of Rasna’s consumption. While 30% is attributed to parents and the remaining 30% is enjoyed by guests. 

Piruz Khambatta, group chairman, Rasna says, “While it may seem Rasna’s appeal primarily lies with children, now we’re emphasising its role as a beverage for the entire family to enjoy.”

Recently, the brand launched a new campaign. The We love you Rasna campaign is designed to appeal to SEC A and B households, focusing on taste aspects to reposition Rasna as a tastier, thicker, and healthier drink option.

The campaign prominently features actress Tamannaah Bhatia, who has been appointed as the brand's new ambassador. This marks a departure from the previous ambassador, the iconic Indian cartoon character Chhota Bheem. Tamannaah Bhatia was selected for her popularity across India, especially in South India, despite being a North Indian actress.

In addition to taste, the campaign also highlights the nutritious value of Rasna. The brand highlights that concentrated powder drinks are rich in vitamins and minerals, positioning Rasna as a functional powder beverage. This strategic move aligns with evolving consumer preferences, as more people are shifting towards healthier beverage options over traditional soft drinks.

He emphasises that the brand is driven by emotional quotient, and the ad depicts the emotive appeal of Rasna. 

“We can’t make it into medicine, and if we will make it, it won’t be family drink. There is a thin line, and that’s why in the campaign we haven’t overdone the nutritional benefits,” Khambatta mentions. 

“The brand is portraying that it has nutritional benefits, but it’s not a nutritious drink. We magnify the point, without losing sight of the fact that we're a family product," he adds.

Talking about the association, Khambatta says that initially, the agency brief did not include the need for a celebrity endorsement. “Based on the creative story, we identified an opportunity for celebrity. The celebrity should align with the story, then it would make an impact,” he adds. 

Media Mix

The brand is allocating its media budget to digital and television platforms, and also advertising during the IPL 2024 on JioCinema. “Earlier, digital allocation was around 5-10%, but it has surged to 30%,” he says. 

The brand has also sponsored a dance show on Colors, undergone partnerships with shows from southern states, and collaborated with KidsTV and Cartoon Network.

Khambatta mentions that Rasna is focusing on regional markets. It is advertising on regional channels of areas like Odissa, Punjab and North-east areas. 

Additionally, the brand plans to roll out an influencer campaign within the next 15 days. 

Influencer marketing constitutes a substantial portion of the brand, around 30-40%, of our digital budget overall.

Category-wise marketing 

Rasna has categorised its products into four distinct groups, each tailored for different market segments.

Each segment has different advertising communication and distribution strategies. 

1. Sachet level: The sachets are priced at Rs 2,5 and 10, and have a distribution focus specifically in small towns or metropolitan areas like Delhi, it will be East Delhi or Dharavi in Mumbai. The advertising of these products on free-to-air (FTA) channels. 

Different sachet packs by Rasna starting from Rs 1 to Rs 10
Different sachet packs by Rasna starting from Rs 1 to Rs 10
Rasna's variants from Rs 2 to Rs 45
Rasna's variants from Rs 2 to Rs 45

2. Middle-class segment: The product ranges from Rs 10 to Rs 80, and is distributed in modern trade outlets like D-mart and Reliance stores. 

The ad efforts are directed towards prominent channels like Star and Colors

Packs of Rasna for middle-class segment
Packs by Rasna
Rasna 100% Tenner packs

3. Premium range: It targets higher-end consumers and is available in larger quantities ranging from 750 gm to 2.5 kg, with a price range from Rs 500 to Rs 1000. 

The products are available on Nature Basket, Star Bazaar (modern supermarkets), online marketplaces, and quick commerce platforms. In this case, the marketing focus is heavily towards digital platforms. 

Premium range of Rasna
Premium range of Rasna

4. Export segment: According to Business Standard, 30-35% of the sales comes from exports. 

“We view Rasna as comprising four distinct buckets. Our major growth from online business and exports”, he emphasises. 

Other portfolio 

In 2018, Rasna launched a new range of products under its sub-brand ‘Rasna Native Haat’, and Sania Nehwal was appointed as the brand ambassador for the venture. The products portfolio under the new brand includes Honey Vita, Badam Vita Powder, and Honey. 

Retails packs of Honey by Rasna Native Haat
Retails packs of peanut butter by Rasna Native Haat

After five years, the sub-brand is only contributing 2-5% of the overall revenue. “We recognise the importance of expanding into more categories to stay ahead of evolving competition. Rasna is actively leading the charge in launching new products across various categories,” he says. 

In 2021, the brand also launched ‘Indie Cola’, positioning itself as a ‘Made in India fruit cola'. It was competing with big players like Coca-Cola, Thums Up and Pepsi.

The brand withdrew the idea, as just after the launch government imposed a 40% tax, from the previous 12% on carbonated fruit drinks. “We are actively engaging with industries bodies to lobby for a more favourable tax regime,” he adds. 

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