We spoke to Titan's general manager, marketing, jewellery division, about the changes the brand foresees in the jewellery market, post lockdown.
Ranjani Krishnaswamy has over 16 years of experience in various marketing leadership roles. Before joining Titan as general manager, marketing, jewellery division, she had worked with Unilever for 10 years, HT Media for close to two years, and Wipro for around four years.
Here are her views on how the jewellery market will change once the lockdown is lifted:
Once the lockdown is lifted, what would be your top three priorities?
This pandemic is quite unprecedented. It is shaping a lot of our lives, lifestyles and priorities now. Its impact will be observed even post lockdown, and it's very important for us, as marketers, to recognise that this is going to be the new reality. Our priorities once the lockdown is lifted will be centred on building consumer confidence. The top priority in that direction will be consumer safety and reassurance (to the consumer) that we’re going to provide the safest shopping experience to them.
Sanitisation measures will be undertaken at the stores. Each of the 68 stores, out of the 320 across India, that are now open, is following the standards of sanitisation and hygiene. Each member of the staff is being trained to serve customers, and also avoid any kind of physical contact.
We are going to create jewellery shopping experience for customers, which is as contactless as possible, with initiatives like video calling, live assistance chat, try at home features, virtual try-ons, etc.
We will also focus on conversations around investment in gold. We will also adhere to the new habits that the consumers are adopting, and also focus on where the demand is emerging.
Will your market behave the way it was before the lockdown, or will there be subtle changes?
I think it’s very difficult to predict how much change there will be, but it's very fair to assume that it (change) is quite inevitable. We are going through a life-changing event. Safety and hygiene will dominate, and this will impact how people shop. Online shopping is sure to get a boost – we see this as a big change.
We also foresee changes in people's budget and that will impact the kind of jewellery they buy – whether it’s going to be more of 'light-weight' shopping space, considering the gold rate, or whether it’s going to be fewer, but in the larger/heavy jewellery space, we’ll have to see. These are the kind of changes we’re prepping ourselves for.
Will your broad view of marketing communication be different from before, in some way?
I don’t think the core, or sole, of the brand will change. What will, obviously, change is the medium. The whole strategy is going to be about intensifying and recognising cohorts, and to be able to talk to them through digital, through our loyalty programs, through our stores, and build a more virtual relationship with them.