Water purification brand Livpure, which spends almost 15% of its total revenues on marketing and advertising, is likely to increase the budget further in the next fiscal. The company, which is spending almost 30% of its spend each on digital and TV, believes digital would provide better ROI in the future compared to other mediums. The company has cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar as its brand ambassador.
In a conversation with BestMediaInfo.com, Sushil Matey, Director - Marketing, Livpure and CEO, Livpure Smart Homes, talks about the expansion plans of the company and marketing strategy.
Matey said the company was looking at growing its revenue by at least 15% a year and its focus was on tier II and III cities. Livpure is also looking at entering new categories such as air purifier and smart home solutions.
Talking about why the company believed digital as a medium would offer better results, Matey said, “Consumers have shown huge interest in having a meaningful relationship with the brands through the digital space and we wish to fully leverage this.”
What are the company’s further expansion plans in terms of demographics and innovations?
Of late, we have been focusing on tier II and tier III cities and aligning with the core demographics there. We were the first company to launch India’s first intelligent RO water purifier in India and we are also the first to launch a pay-per-use water service called Livpure Smart. Going forward, we will launch something very unique and innovative to cater to our new-age consumers.
Livpure has Sachin Tendulkar as its brand ambassador. I read somewhere he is also one of the shareholders of the company. Would you say that celebrity ambassadors bring huge recall to the brand? But isn’t it also important for the brand to have some commonalities with the ambassador here? What was your idea of bringing Sachin Tendulkar on board?
I strongly believe that a right celebrity ambassador adds to the brand recall apart from bringing authenticity to the product. The values espoused by the celebrity must resonate with the values of the brand. In our case, both Sachin Tendulkar and Livpure stand for trust worthiness, longevity, quality, transparency and honesty of purpose.
What are your views on advertising in this category? Do you think celebrity endorsements and ads displaying product features is the key in the category or good storytelling can work here?
Some or the other celebrity represents every important brand in the RO category. This coupled with ATL presence does improve brand recall and brings the brand into the consideration set of the prospective consumers.
Good story telling definitely aids the above objective.
At Livpure, we have consistently worked towards creating good stories around water conservation. Whether it was #CuttingPaani1.0; #CuttingPaani2.0 or Dahi Handi around Janmashtami. And, all our campaigns resulted in millions of views and impressions since the content in them was found to be useful and beneficial by the consumers at large. This helped us position ourselves as a socially responsible brand.
How do you see the consumer behaviour evolving? Has it become easier or difficult to market to them?
The consumer behaviour is evolving and will continue to change with time. Today, consumers are influenced by advanced technological features and what it does to aid convenience of usage. Internet penetration, social media usage and the huge splurge in the content/information available have empowered consumers with choices.
All of the above has made the task of the marketer more complex.
Kent RO and Aqua guard are in this space for a long time and are aggressive in marketing and R&D as well. What is your strategy here to maintain your market share?
At Livpure, we have always strived to be innovative, affordable, smart and creative. We shall continue to drive these four values. Our continuous endeavour to focus on RTBs coupled with interesting and engaging communication on TV and digital space shall keep us ahead of the curve at all times.
Other than the mainline water purifying product offering, what else does the brand have to offer? Which product segments add value to the revenue bucket after the RO water purifier?
Livpure had launched a pay-per-use water service called Livpure Smart, a first-of-its-kind in India. Here, the consumer only pays for the water he/she uses and everything else is paid by the company. It’s gaining traction. It is currently available in Delhi/NCR and Bangalore. The same will be extended to more cities in the next financial year. Apart from this, we will come up with home air purifiers and other smart products.
How much does the company spend on marketing and how much on advertising? Any plans to increase the marketing spend?
The company spends around 15% (of revenue) on advertising. Out of this, 30% each goes to digital and TV and the rest on BTL. We shall continue to up our spend and maintain our share of voice based on competitive requirement
I know Livpure spends hugely on media buying with an immense presence on TV, outdoor and print. How focused are you on digital now? How much does digital resonate with your TG? What is your belief in digital?
We use digital medium extensively and the company believes in the power of digital as a means of effectively targeting our TG. Lately, consumers have shown huge interest in having a meaningful relationship with the brands through the digital space and we wish to fully leverage this. Our TG, which is primarily below the age bracket of 45, resonates extremely well with the digital medium.
Livpure is doing a lot of short films on its YouTube channel with slight brand placement towards the end. Can we call it content marketing or branded content by the brand? Why did the brand opt this route? How much benefit did you find here?
We believe in creating meaningful and useful content for our TG and also people at large. We feel that in today’s times, every organisation must go beyond its call of duty to educate masses on larger issues facing India as a country. Apart from raising awareness on societal issues, it also positions the brand as a socially responsible entity and helps it to be seen as a holistic player than just a seller of a product.
Are there other ways of content marketing that Livpure has adopted? What is the scope of content marketing in the category?
We explore every digital medium to amplify content. Apart from FB, Google, Insta, Twitter, etc. we also associate with the content marketers like Scoopwhoop and Firstpost to name a few. Good content delivered creatively shall always have huge following.
Have you set a timeline for yourself to be in the top 3 water purifier brands?
We are already a strong No.3 player in the RO segment. We shall continue our endeavour to make every Indian healthy and ensure purity in their lives through water and air by bringing to them the best quality products suited for their needs.
What is the water purifying market size and how much of it does RO form? What is Livpure’s market share? What part of it is the unbranded segment?
The market size for water purifiers in India is Rs 4,500 crore approx. Out of this, the RO category is Rs 4,000 crore. The overall market is growing at a CAGR of 10-15%. Livpure has a market share of 10% in the branded RO segment and is the fastest growing RO company. The unbranded segment is approx 50%.