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Marketing 2020: Higher focus on TV but plans to increase spends on digital and event, says Vincent Noronha of Havmor

After attaining the third spot in India, the brand aims to be present across India with a leadership position in more geographies. Noronha, VP Marketing, also tells that this year, the brand will renew its proposition

Vincent Noronha

For ice-cream brand Havmor, television has always attracted the lion’s share of its spends. But there has also been a significant increase in digital and event marketing as well, together with print and outdoor spends, said Vincent Noronha, Vice-President Marketing, Havmor Ice-Cream.

In an interaction with, Noronha said that after a subdued 2019, the brand is all geared up to have a renewed proposition in 2020.

Last year, the brand climbed to the third spot in India and continued its undisputed leadership in Gujarat and Rajasthan. Going in the same direction, the brand will continue to focus on making it more accessible this year, Noronha said.

Noronha said there is expansion on the cards in 2020 both from a demand generation and supply point of view and by 2022 the brand wants to be present across India and attain leadership position in more geographies.


What were your unmet expectations in the market in 2019 that you wish to achieve in 2020? What factors would help you meet your goals?

There hasn’t been any unmet expectation in particular but we have definitely initiated a lot of campaigns, which are still on. Our goal is to keep up with our consumers’ expectations, which have been our major area of focus. We plan to do so by continuously introducing new products and especially ice-cream formats, which will help strengthen our leadership position for being an innovative brand. 2020 would also see a renewed proposition for the brand, which will further strengthen our commitment of keeping consumers at the centre of everything we do. Havmor’s parent company Lotte is the category leader in evolved markets, giving us the edge and making us the only MNC brand in India having a single-minded focus on developing and marketing ice-creams in India.

One thing in marketing that you couldn't implement in the year 2019 but like to do it this year and the factors?

2019 was a great year for the brand. Havmor climbed up to the third spot in India and continued its undisputed leadership in Gujarat and Rajasthan. Our aim is to keep the momentum northwards and hence we will continue to focus on making the brand more accessible and continue with good work from 2019 in terms of launching new products and consumer-focussed campaigns, ensuring we move towards our leadership ambition.

How do you see advertising and marketing trends evolving in 2020?

We are now living in an era where everything is fast moving. Consumers are seeking experience at every juncture they get to interact with the brand. And the way things are moving, we can see advertising and marketing trends evolving with every passing day. It is certain that more and more brands will be using digital marketing techniques. Mobile video content is in high demand. Especially, with the rise of OTT platforms, we can see a massive shift in the attention of consumers. Social media in all probability will continue to give exposure in the same way. Television and other mediums will also play an important role as usual.

Do you plan to increase your marketing budget for this year? If so, any rough estimate on the percentage increase? Would your category behave in similar fashion?

As a brand, we do have an estimated budget for our marketing spends. We received a good response for our campaigns in 2019 and the same will be carried forward in 2020. TV, print and outdoor campaign still have a fixed budget but with digital campaigns, there are many last-minute variations and some campaigns just come up suddenly. Most of the spends by the category happen during March-June and in 2020, I expect an increased share of expenses from all brands, especially after a subdued 2019 where many brands did have a cut on their marketing expenses.

How would your budget allocation for various mediums change in 2020? Would it be different than your category?

TV as always gets a major share of the pie. However our spends on digital and events have increased significantly. Ice-creams being a visually indulgent category, visual medium attracts a larger share in the spending pie. Our print and outdoor spends have also seen an increase compared to last year. However, we have been very selective in the geographies where we will activate these mediums.

How do you expect your agency/communication/content partners to change in the next year?

2020 will see a renewed brand proposition and hence all our partner agencies are geared up for its rollout. Our partners have the capability and the expertise to adapt and change at will as the situation demands. Hence, it becomes easier working together and setting up new goals and achieving them. The objective is to be able to come up with stronger campaigns with strong content, communication and messaging which the consumer would like and appreciate.

What's your brand's outlook in the next three years?

Havmor has been the pioneer in ice-cream innovations and we wish to sustain that tag. We have been gaining shares in the Top 30 Indian cities and in our strong markets like Gujarat and Rajasthan, we are the undisputed market leaders. There is expansion on the cards in 2020 both from a demand generation and supply point of view. By 2022, we would be present across India with leadership position in more geographies, ensuring the pole position in the country.

Social media and consumer behaviour are changing the dynamics of marketing faster than brands could even get the grip on the current trend. What would help you and other brands keep abreast with these quick changes?

To keep up with this ever-changing trend, it’s essential to understand consumer behaviour and what makes them engage with brands. The brand team continuously engages with consumers to understand media consumption habits, which is the most important and accurate source of gaining insights. In addition, we also mount researches twice each year, which also gives us directions to validate some of our hypothesis with regard to media. Going forward, no amount of data would suffice to make choices and hence brands will have to rely on both, lot many hours with consumers bundled with data points from media houses and digital partners.

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