Hamdard has shown its cooler side this year with its latest offering Rooh Afza Fusion. With a heavy marketing spend of around Rs 20 crore in hand, the brand expects to at least get a minimum market share of two per cent by the end of this year. Rooh Afza Fusion is available in five exciting flavours of lemon, orange, mango, pineapple and orange and litchi with hints of original Rooh Afza in it. Interestingly, the drinks have retained the red colour of Rooh Afza in all its flavours, irrespective of the drink base.
The test market of Rooh Afza Fusion was carried out in September last year in the Delhi/UP region. This launch was a great success, showcasing brilliant results with feedback obtained from 50,000 people (including consumers and trade partners). The product achieved primary sales of approximately nine lakh units in the launch month. Consumer off-takes recorded live from shelves were more than 70 per cent.
On the basis of feedback received from the test launch, the product’s packaging has been revamped to connect better with the target audience by showcasing Rooh Afza in a brand new, cool avatar. The packaging change conveys the concept of Rooh Afza Fusion aptly and has a better shelf throw. Subsequently, on the basis of the in-depth sensory panel study, the recipes of the product were also tweaked for an even better product experience.
Mansoor Ali, Chief Sales and Marketing Officer, Hamdard, said, “In the last few years, there has been a perceivable growth in the popularity of ready-to-drink fruit juice-based beverages, especially among the youth. This segment is actually the pivotal force that is driving growth in the overall consumption for this category. There is a perceptible shift of consumers towards natural and herbal products, and this is evident with Rooh Afza growing in share in modern and general trade. Keeping the intrinsic qualities of Rooh Afza intact with the presence of 10 natural herbs fused with fruit juice, Rooh Afza Fusion sits naturally on this positioning. We are confident that Rooh Afza Fusion will create the positive disruption required, and prove to be a category shaker. Consumers are going to love this new avatar of their favourite drink.”
Reason for bringing Fusion
Ali said, “If you look at the lifestyle trends, a lot of consumers prefer out-of-home consumption. A lot of women have entered the workforce. Disposable income is going up and hence there is more on-the-go generation. Convenience also comes into play. You can just pick it up from the fridge and drink. It has got a new and modern imagery. Therefore, it relates to the youth and they find it very cool and the product is very aspirational to the youth.”
In India, the soft drink category is about Rs 28,000 crore growing at 19 per cent. Carbonated drink in the category is Rs 10,000 crore, which is growing at 10 per cent. Non-carbonated drink is growing at 25 per cent. So, that’s the big chunk of the market. Even in non-carbonated drinks, juices are growing at 26 per cent.
Ali added, “The juices category is growing at a very fast rate. Consumer preferences are also moving from carbonated to non-carbonated. So, the focus for us is the juices segment where the growth is high. Juices will continue to grow at a rate of 19 per cent. We have scanned the market and it is clearly the juices category from where the demand is coming.”
Youth is the primary TG
Hamdard endeavours to target the youth who aspire for convenience, ‘cool’ and on-the-go formats. The brand primarily intends to target the youth as they want to get newer consumers on board. Ali said, “Fusion is going to induce out-of-home consumption. Fusion is a premium product and has a modern appeal, economic and is an innovative product.”
The product has been launched in two markets. Now it is being launched in eight markets, including Delhi, UP, Punjab, Maharashtra, Gujarat, West Bengal. Hamdard wants to reach about 60,000-70,000 outlets and has a 360 degree media campaign for the same.
Generally when people enter into this category, they mostly target children as their target audience. When asked the reason for not targeting children, Ali said, “To me children are an important part of the TG. If you look at it, I am targeting right from eight to 10 years and above. Kids in school canteens and cafeteria will buy it. I also see it as a very good product for mothers to buy it because it’s a healthy product. Therefore, it includes everybody. But our primary audience will remain youth and rest secondary.”
Target for the brand
The brand intends to reach about 60,000-70,000 outlets and to get on board a lot of new consumers. It also wants to enter this big market of Rs 18,000 crore. Ali commented, “First year, we will make sure that the distribution happens. Even if we get a two per cent market share as of now, that is also good for us.”
“Once that happens, I will see the size of the market and where I want to be later on. Today, my objective is purely number of consumers that I get,” added Ali.
Does competition and such a target create pressure? Ali said, “There is a pressure. But the point is that our product is unique with Rooh Afza in it. This no one else can do. The task will be to differentiate ourselves on the communication front. We will launch a TV commercial. The commercial will be very youth oriented. Our packaging is also very different.”
Fusion will have a full-fledged marketing plan and will come out with a campaign in the first week of May 2017.
Ali further said, “First we will get into distribution because getting into the shops is the most important. Doing media without the stock in the market is not a great thing. In April, we will be in distribution and get into more and more outlets and will advertise mostly on GEC market. This time, we are also going to get into youth channels and other youth- based channels.”
Rooh Afza Fusion is available in modern Tetrapak aseptic packaging which is known to preserve both the taste and flavour of the product and is offered at a convenient price point of Rs 20 for the 200ml pack. The product will be available across all modern retail and grocery stores in the planned launch markets.