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Autor: antoni 08 March 2011
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Amul – Brand Building Exercise
Contents: Demerits of Marketing a Commodity Market …………………………………………………………….. 3 The value of branding concept …………………………………………………………………………………… 3 Difference between product & service branding ……………………………………………………….. 4 Amul – Brand Origin …………………………………………………………………………………………………... 5 Factors that shaped the brand & Role of Advertising Amul Mascot…………………………………………………………………………………………………… 6 History of Amul Butter Girl………………………………………………………………………………. 6 Brand Identity, Personality & Symbolism ……………………………………………………………………. 7 Consumer Perceptions & Branding Values ………………………………………………………………….. 9 Positioning of Amul & its competitors ………………………………………………………………………… 10 Future steps to consolidate brand ……………………………………………………………………………… 11
Demerits of Marketing a Commodity Market A commodity is a good for which there is demand, but which is supplied without qualitative differentiation across a market. Thus a product becomes a commodity when it has no identity of its own or it is not able to differentiate itself in the market. In such a case, consumers do not have any preference for any particular item or brand. Consumers only take into account the value to price ratio. Higher is the ratio better is the deal. Thus price becomes the important aspect in consumer decision making process. First, the commodities do not have any identity of their own and secondly all products have the same utility, this makes the decision making either very easy or very difficult for the consumers. If the consumer do not have any preference for brands, then it becomes very easy for her to select any product which satisfies her needs at the minimum possible price. For Example, potato wafers or other snack items like namkeens were treated as commodities long ago. But now the marketers have given them an identity and have positioned them accordingly in the market. Uncle chips was the first one to launch the branded potato chips. Haldirams also did the same for different snacks. If someone put lays and bingo chips in two different jars without labels, then it would be very difficult to identify which jar contains which brand. Thus potato chips is a commodity, but the brand names Lays & Bingo gives them their identity. Another example could be the milk products. Milk products would be one of the most uniform products in the world. But Amul has converted this very same commodity into a very recognizable brand by its efforts in India. Let's have a look how Amul created its brand.
The value of Branding Concept
The customer's experience with a product goes through a systematic approach. In the simplistic form, it consists of stages known as Awareness, Consideration, Preference and Purchase. With the emergence of new media (like internet and digital media) and abundant availability of information, product experience and repeat purchase also became very important. With the addition of these, now stages consists of Eyeballs, Awareness, Consideration, Preference, Purchase, Experience and Repurchase/Loyalty known as EACPPER model. While creating a brand, marketers try to create an image of what they want consumers to perceive about their products and offerings. Perceptions are more important than the actual features as it along with the product utility decides the loyalty of consumers.
Another important aspect is to understand the consumer decision making process and its evaluative criteria for differentiating brands in their minds. At times the basic utility from all options are more or less similar in nature. So, the decision of the consumer depends solely on other evaluative criteria beyond its utility. To achieve these objectives and generate these perceptions in a consumer's mind, while successfully differentiating a product and branding becomes very important. The various factors that influence consumer involvement include price, frequency of purchase, symbolic meaning, social visibility, time commitment, potential for harm, technical complexity, etc. Brands, in this sense, help the consumer make the selection process easier. When consumers do not want to process a lot of information before making a purchase, the brand becomes a heuristic for making choices. Preference for a particular brand is usually by the way of associating a special emotion to specific brand. A continued exposure to advertising campaigns and other promotional efforts, which associate a brand with that particular emotion, will tend to evoke the emotion while any product of the brand is next seen or used.
Difference between Product and Service Branding
The branding process for products and services differ. A consumer choosing a product has the advantage of knowing about the product quality and other information through the prevalent market knowledge or some prior experience. This is not so in the case of services, since here every experience is somewhat unique or different when a customer is consuming a service. A brand is therefore used as a risk mitigating mechanism in case of a service than for a product. Generally here past good experiences with the particular brand and redressal mechanisms are publicized and made known to the consumers to attract new customers. Branding, therefore, is a necessity for marketing any product or service. This is more so in current market scenario where there are a plethora or a wide variety of options to choose from, each claiming to offer a unique experience to the consumers.
Case Study: Amul Amul, acronym for Anand Milk Producers Union India Limited, is a Corporate Brand in India. It is based in Anand town of Gujarat and has been a sterling example of a co-operative organization's success in the long run. The 'Amul Pattern' has established itself as a uniquely appropriate model for rural development. Amul has spurred the &quot;White Revolution of India&quot;, which has made India one of the largest milk producers in the world. Amul – Brand Origin: (source: www.amul.com) Amul was formally registered on December 14, 1946. Dr Verghese Kurien is recognised as the man behind the success of Amul. The 'Amul revolution' started as awareness among the farmers, grew and matured into a protest movement that was channelled towards economic prosperity. Over five decades ago, the life of a farmer in Kheda District was very much like that of his/her counterpart anywhere else in India. His/her income was derived almost entirely from seasonal crops. The income from milk buffaloes was undependable. Private traders and middlemen controlled the marketing and distribution system for the milk. As milk is perishable, farmers were compelled to sell it for whatever they were offered. Often, they had to sell cream and ghee at throw-away prices. In this situation, the private trader used to make maximum profit. Gradually, the realization dawned on the farmers that the exploitation by the trader could be checked only if marketed their milk themselves. Amul was the result of that realization. The Kaira Union began pasteurizing milk for the Bombay Milk Scheme in June 1948. By the end of 1948, more than 400 farmers joined in more Village Society, and the quantity of milk handled by one Union increased from 250 to 5,000 liters a day. The success of Amul was instrumental in launching the White Revolution that resulted in increased milk production in India. It is termed as &quot;Operation Flood&quot; by Amul. During the year 2009-2010, sales of Amul registered a quantum growth of 19.3% to reach Rs. 8005.36 crores (Rs. 80 billion). The year previous to this turnover was Rs. 6711.31 crores (Rs. 67.11 billion). This is an extremely impressive growth when viewed from the perspective of draught effect and resultant drop in milk procurement as well as 27.7% growth that they achieved in the year 2008-09.
Factors that shaped the brand & Role of Advertising Amul – Mascot: Its advertising uses a tongue-in-cheek endearing &quot;Amul baby&quot; (a chubby butter girl), commenting jovially on the latest news or current events. The pun in her words has been popular and the Amul ads are one of the longest running ads based on a theme, now viewing for the Guinness records. The first outdoor ad using the Amul baby started in 1976. Sylvester daCunha, then the managing director of the advertising agency, ASP, created the campaign whose charm has endured fickle public opinion, gimmickry and all else. 'History of the Amul Butter Girl:' The moppet who put Amul on India's breakfast table 50 years after it was first launched, Amul's sale figures have jumped from 1000 tonnes a year in 1966 to over 25,000 tonnes a year in 1997. No other brand comes even close to it. All because a thumb-sized girl climbed on to the hoardings and put a spell on the masses. Bombay: Summer of 1967 was the time when the first Amul hoarding that was put up in Mumbai. People loved it & it became their favourite topic of discussion over tea. Everywhere they went somehow or the other the campaign always seemed to crop up in their conversation.. For 50 odd years the Utterly Butterly girl has managed to keep her fan following intact. So much so that the ads are now ready to enter the Guinness Book of World Records for being the longest running campaign ever. The ultimate compliment to the butter came when a British company launched a butter and called it Utterly Butterly. It all began in 1966 when Sylvester daCunha, then the managing director of the advertising agency, ASP, clinched the account for Amul butter. The butter, which had been launched in 1945, had a staid, boring image, primarily because the earlier advertising agency which was in charge of the account preferred to stick to routine, corporate ads. One of the first Amul hoardings In India, food was something one couldn't afford to fool around with. It had been taken too seriously, for too long. Sylvester daCunha decided it was time for a change of image. The year Sylvester daCunha took over the account, the country saw the birth of a campaign whose charm has endured fickle public opinion, gimmickry and all else.
In 1969, when the city first saw the beginning of the Hare Rama Hare Krishna movement, Sylvester daCunha, Mohammad Khan and Usha Bandarkar, then the creative team working on the Amul account came up with a clincher -- 'Hurry Amul, Hurry Hurry'. Bombay reacted to the ad with a fervour that was almost as devout as the Iskon fever.
That was the first of the many topical ads that were in the offing. From then on Amul began playing the role of a social observer. Over the years the campaign acquired that all important Amul touch. India looked forward to Amul's evocative humour. If the Naxalite movement was the happening thing in Calcutta, Amul would be up there on the hoardings saying, &quot;Bread without Amul Butter, cholbe na cholbe na (won't do, won't do). If there was an Indian Airlines strike Amul would be there again saying, Indian Airlines Won't Fly Without Amul. There are stories about the butter that people like to relate over cups of tea. Brand Identity, Personality & Symbolism: Amul is one of the brands which have coupled itself with the image of India. To understand the Amul brand we have used Aaker's Model here:
The benefit offered by Amul through its wide variety of milk based products is milk to its consumers. Thus the brand essence of Amul in the minds of consumers is that the Amul's products are healthy and good for children, due to the quality of the milk used. The core
product of Amul includes the quality of milk products along with great taste and also being of economical price. The feeling of being an Indian product is also associated with it. A user who consumes its products gets the value for the price which he/she pays. Apart from the core product benefits what reside in the minds of the consumers is the values and attributes associated with the brand. Amul provides its consumers a sense of pride while having its products by realizing them that they are contributing towards the development of their own nation and society by consuming those products. It makes them proud that they are associated with the world known community. Amul provides its consumers with food which is available conveniently and of large variety. Amul: Kapferer Brand Identity Prism:
From the above brand Identity prism we can find out that the identity of Amul can be clearly defined in following terms:
It is considered as tasty & of high quality
It is simple & Indian
PITCURE OF RECIPIENT
PITCURE OF SENDER
Taste & Quality
Proud Indian, Fun Loving
It promotes its consumers to be society oriented and co-operate with its members to share the benefits of the earnings and prosper equally
Consumers gets the value for the product
Proud Indian & Fun Loving self image
The brand personality of Amul is simple and Indian in nature. Its personality is of a common Indian individual who loves to have fun, co-operate with society and share the benefits with brotherhood.
Consumer Perceptions & Brand Value:
Amul range of products includes a fast range of everyday perishable goods, such as butter, cheese, ghee, chocolates etc. Among these, Amul Butter is the leader in terms of brand equity.
Amul's business model revolves around milk and milk products, which occupy a central role in any Indian diet. Thus, trust is an important issue to take into account when thinking of the consumer, as no housewife would want an adulterated dairy poduct in her larder. Amul delivered on that front by dint of quality. Moreover, it has stood the test of time well, and has a strong emotional connect with the consumer, cemented by generation after generation of Indians being brought up on Amul. Today, Amul is among the most trusted of Indian brands, and housewives don't think twice before buying Amul. Even recently, it was voted by
Another strong point on which Amul relates to the consumer is taste. Anyone who buys butter would want it to be tasty. Amul reinforces this in the minds of the consumer through their tagline – &quot;Utterly Butterly Delicious&quot; – so that the consumers know that they are in for a treat. This is a simple tag line, which at the same time communicates that the brand is not a stickler for conventions. Sylvester de Cunha, who was behind the successful creative which established Amul in the minds of the consumer, wanted the brand to move away from the staid and dour approach which other brands in the food industry had adopted. This helped Amul relate directly to the consumer. In fact, this tagline was so successful that another dairy spread brand was launched in UK with the name Utterly Butterly.
Positioning of Amul & Competitive brands
Given its wide product portfolio, Amul has a number of competitors in each field. Butter: Amul has dominated this field, being one of the early entrants in terms of branding, and pretty much owns the category. The positioning taken by it is strongly topical, as the hoardings of the Amul Moppet keep changing to reflect the changes taking place in the nation. The below hoarding was meant to capitalise on the mind share which tennis star Sania Mirza was getting at the time of the hoarding's release, thus instantly allowing a connect to the consumer. All these activities help in keeping the messaging relevant, while at the same time not cutting down on the fun quotient of the brand. Moreover, it reflects the Indian heritage which the brand carries with it, typified by the tag line &quot;Taste of India&quot;. Ice Creams: Vadilal is one of the established brands in this category, and has been proactive in making sure that it reaches out to the consumers in different ways. Thus, they set up ice cream parlours under the name of Happpinez, in order to reinforce to the customer that ice cream is a happy thing. Kwality is one of the iconic Indian brands in the market, and held sway over the market for a long time. In 1995, it was taken over by HLL and was marketed as Kwality Walls, combining the original brand name with Levers' iconic international ice cream brand Walls. However, Amul's entry into the market proved to be a big hindrance for Kwality Walls, who could not compete with Amul on price, and were reduced to a premium player. However, it still has some outstanding products such as Cornetto, Feast, Vienneta in its repertoire.
One of the controversies in this industry, though, is concerning the definition of the word &quot;Ice Cream&quot; itself. Amul adopted a positioning of &quot;The Real Ice-Cream&quot;. This was because Amul was based on the more costly milk fat, whereas Kwality Walls Ice Creams are made
from vegetable fat. However, in 1999, the health ministry issued a draft amending the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act to allow the labelling of &quot;frozen desserts&quot; as &quot;vegetable fat based icecream&quot; or &quot;non-dairy icecream&quot;. Chocolate: The chocolate industry is one which Amul, in spite of its excellent distribution network, has not been able to penetrate with any great success. The chocolate field is dominated by Cadbury's, who have several brands like Dairy Milk, 5 Star and Bourneville under them. Cadbury has been a pioneer in this field, as they have taken on the problem of introducing chocolate into the Indian psyche. Traditionally, Indians tend to consume a lot of sweets, but there is not much place for chocolates in the diet. Moreover, sweets are mostly consumed during times of celebrations. Cadbury tried to combine both these insights to try and make Chocolates replace sweets from the diet. Thus, they came up with tag lines like &quot;Kuch Meetha Ho Jaye&quot;, to signify that chocolates can be taken in place of traditional sweets when something sweet is wanted. They also tried to build a strong connect to festivals through their advertisements, such as the ad where a brother gifts his sister a hamper of Cadbury chocolates on the occasion of Raksha Bandhan. Future Steps to Consolidate Brand Amul can take the following steps to consolidate the brand:
The core benefit being offered by Amul is quality milk, which is shown by the trust which the Indian public puts in Amul; hence Amul can choose to diversify into more milk products, thus leading the way for the industry
Amul should strengthen its umbrella brand across its products, since that is one of its strengths
Amul should try to take a stronger stance in the chocolate category, which is currently dominated by Cadbury and Nestle; there is a possibility for Amul in here, given that it has a strong distribution network and also a strong correlation to milk; thus could well come to own the milk based chocolates category
It can enter into co-branding events with a brand like Bournvita, which has strong synergies with Amul; both these have a very close relation, given what their products are, and it would not be strange to see them close to each other
It can start sponsoring sports events, in order to draw a correlation with health, since sports stars are perceived to be healthy and energetic; this will add on to Amul's current brand perception
It should consolidate on its image of being the world's largest liquid milk brand, by stressing more on that category in their promotions