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Consumer durables shifting gears from 'massy' to ‘premiumisation’ this festive season

Eyeing 30–40% growth from this year’s festive period, various professionals from the consumer durables segment emphasised that they are witnessing consumer preferences upgrading from massy products to premium experiences. As a result, brands are also coming up with lucrative festive offers and cashback that enable easy upgrades

In the vibrant heart of India, where traditions blend seamlessly with modernity and consumers go on shopping sprees during the festive period for electronics and home appliances, consumer durable brands are strategically reimagining their approach to advertising and marketing as they double down on the growth of premium segments rather than massy ones.

Deepali Agarwal

Deepali Agarwal, Business Head, Personal Health, Philips Indian Subcontinent, opined that owing to the confluence of events, especially in India, the period commencing in July holds significant importance in the realm of personal care and grooming.

It, in her view, presents a lucrative opportunity for brands to enhance affinity amongst consumers and experience multiple avenues of growth, such as new consumers entering the category, upgrading to more sophisticated or convenient products, or gifting purposes.

“We, at Philips, do have parts in our portfolio that have indexed higher during the second half of the year, like the hair styling business as more consumers do their desired looks for social events, etc. We have observed a big shift towards DIY styling in the past few years, which has accelerated growth in the business,” she said.

Swati Rathi

As per Swati Rathi, Marketing Head, Godrej Appliances, key trends being witnessed in the consumer durables segment are premiumisation, evolving shopper journeys and digital influence, a shrinking festive window in stores, and lower seasonality of premium products.

“Accordingly, all the key product launches scheduled are in the premium segments across categories, and these will also be the focus of our communication. The key communication mode will be digital media, with a higher thrust on e-commerce coupled with attention towards store presence. Given the premium focus and conversion thrust, digital lends itself well to the sharp targeting of these audiences and, in particular, the intending audience,” she said.

Moreover, she also added that in order to drive conversions in the short spike periods through the right store presence and offers, this will also be a focus area for the brand in the festive season, making lucrative festive offers and cashback that enable easier upgrades quite important.

Priyanka Sethi

As per Priyanka Sethi, Head of Marketing, Haier India, the brand is both excited and fully prepared to be a part of the festive celebrations by offering a wide range of innovative and reliable consumer appliances.

“As we approach the festive season, we are excited to witness the enthusiasm and joy it brings to households across India. We understand that this season is not only about lighting up our homes but also about upgrading lifestyles,” she said.

With the expected rise in demand for consumer appliances, Haier India, in her opinion, is committed to providing products that enhance convenience, efficiency, and overall quality of life. In fact, this year, the brand expects the premium segment to perform even better than last year, with more and more consumers looking to upgrade their appliances.

Deba Ghoshal

Similarly, Deba Ghoshal, Vice President and Head of Marketing, Voltas, also shared that the cooling products and home appliances brand aims to meaningfully improve and enhance the lives of its customers by providing innovative products that simplify their daily chores.

“For us, the festive season gives us the chance to serve our consumers more ably. As people gather to celebrate and renovate their homes, the need for a comfortable environment becomes essential. Our comfort, cooling, and convenience products meet our customers' needs for home upgrades, as people are inclined to invest in appliances that contribute to a healthier living space,” he said.

Throwing light on to the brand’s ad plan for the festive period, Godrej Appliances’ Rathi shared the viewpoint that the festive window is not a continuous three-month window but one with intermittent spikes varying by geography.

“Onam saw a thrust in Kerala—again with a digital and store strategy—and yielded good results. This will be followed by a larger e-commerce thrust for online events in India. Ganesh Utsav, Navratri, and Durga Puja in the West and East will see localised plans followed by a Diwali burst. Having said that, the spending plans will be dynamic and follow our premium product placement strategy, and the percentage of annual spending is likely to be the same as earlier,” she said.

Philips’ Agarwal also emphasised that while Philips maintains a consistent brand engagement strategy throughout the year, the efforts do intensify during the festive season, focusing on creating connected consumer experiences.

“This elevated engagement strategy encompasses several key components, including a robust awareness and preference-building campaign. Additionally, we also run a substantial content creator programme, collaborating with both prominent stylists and micro-influencers. These initiatives are seamlessly integrated into our online and offline store presence through direct-to-consumer (D2C) channels and partnerships with other retail outlets,” she said.

Haier India’s Sethi also pointed out the brand’s plans to launch a 360-degree integrated pan-India campaign that will feature a series of products across categories to drive awareness and build recall for consumers.

Commenting on the overall growth expectations from the festive period, Godrej Appliance’s Rathi stated that with overall festivities spreading across multiple months and a lineup of new premium ranges in refrigerators, air conditioners, and washing machines, the brand is targeting a 30%–40% growth this festive season.

To this, Philips’ Agarwal also added, “While we have seen significant online growth, particularly in Tier 2 and 3 towns, consumers in larger cities are returning to organised modern trade stores and key channels such as cosmetics, gadgets, and baby stores."

Therefore, in her view, these areas will be a primary focus for consumer activations, as the brand aims to enhance the connected brand experience for its customers.

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