Rohit Nautiyal

PepsiCo India's 'Asli Indian Way' to market Nimbooz

The beverage giant will explore marketwise sampling alongside local festivals and rituals

In a country where 80 per cent of the population consumes nimbu paani (lemon water), the launch of Nimbooz in the North and West markets in February this year seemed like a calculated move by PepsiCo India.

According to sources from the company, the response was so phenomenal that soon after the launch, the company ran out of stocks. Now, with scaled up supplies and aggressive marketing initiatives, PepsiCo is all set to strengthen the brand's share in the existing markets and capture new ones mainly in the Southern part of the country.

PepsiCo India's 'Asli Indian Way' to market Nimbooz
Last week, celebrating the Independence Day in the 'Ekdum Asli Indian' way reminiscent of Nimbooz' positioning, PepsiCo distributed two lakh kites and maanja (threads) to children belonging to Arya Orphanage and also well-known NGO (non-government organisation) HumSafar in Delhi and NCR. Also, these NGOs joined hands with PepsiCo for distribution of the kites to school children in Municipal Corporation Delhi, government and semi-government schools and in slum areas.

Model and actor Jas Arora was roped in by the company for distribution of kites and threads at the NGOs.

The campaign was amplified on radio and outdoor. As part of the outdoor campaign, billboards had the picture of a Nimbooz bottle and cut outs of kites placed on both sides. These were connected with a thread and the copy read 'Ho Jaaye Independence Day. The Asli Indian Way!'. The campaign was conceptualised by BBDO and executed across 24 locations in Delhi, including Okhla Flyover, Nelson Mandela Marg, Delhi Gate, ITO and Defence Colony by Portland Outdoor.

The radio spot invited listeners to come to the Nimbooz sampling stalls and take away free kites and threads. The focused areas for sampling were west, central old Delhi and some key locations in the NCR.

Alpana Titus, executive vice-president, flavours, PepsiCo India, tells afaqs!, "This initiative is just a small effort from PepsiCo to bring smiles to the faces of children. As a brand, we intend to build Nimbooz into a national drink. This activity starts a trend in which we will market the brand on every platform centred on Indian festivals or rituals. Kites are traditionally linked with the Independence Day and work as a touch point with Indians. We plan to initiate many more activities in the coming months to celebrate 'Indian-ness' in the country."

Titus refused to give away sales figures of the brand. When quizzed about picking Delhi for flagging off the initiative, Titus says, "The drink took off well in Delhi and we did not want to go for a new market while doing something like this. The activity concentrated on a local geography and therefore, we signed up for a short lived campaign wherein outdoor got a quick notice for the brand and radio worked to drive people."

PepsiCo plans to conduct extensive product sampling across existing and prospective markets, with a special focus on South India, which, according to Titus, has immense potential. In Hyderabad, the sampling will kick off with the beginning of Ramadan, a month-long Islamic religious observance starting later this month.

The 'Asli Indian' brand proposition seems to be working for PepsiCo by providing scope for appropriating marketwise sampling with local festivals and rituals.

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