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What is keeping AC and cooler brands upbeat this summer

With more focus on e-commerce, brands in the consumer electronics category are hopeful of reaching and even surpassing the pre-pandemic levels of sale figures

With the summer season peaking right at the onset and an increase in heatwaves around the country, consumer electronic brands are amping up their advertising game to maximise sales of summer electronics. Brands are banking on new-age technologies and the promise of reduced electricity bills for boosting the sale of their fridges, ACs and coolers.

As per reports, around 35-40% of the annual sales in the category come during the peak summer season. Experts have also said that growth during the 2022 summer season will be around 25-30% over the 2021 figures.

Interestingly, the brands are expecting high returns despite a price hike on consumer electronics by 5-7% this year, according to the Consumer Electronics and Appliances Manufacturers Association (CEAMA).

Another major factor that draws attention is that the customer sentiment about consumer electronics has not yet reached the pre-pandemic levels.

This year, it will be interesting to watch how the category performs in terms of sales and revenue and will it be able to surpass the pre-pandemic levels? Other things to look out for are how the brands are planning to spend on different mediums for advertising.

Traditional vs Digital medium

The tussle between traditional and digital comes in both the volume of spends on advertising and the ensuing sales. In advertising, brands have been spending heavily on Television until now. But this year, a major shift in ad spends from TV to digital can be seen.

Panasonic’s AC for Healthier Homes ad:

Shirish Agarwal

Shirish Agarwal, Head of Marketing Communication and Brand, Panasonic India, while speaking with BestMediaInfo.com, said, “Digital is something that Panasonic is currently focusing on, as the consumers tend to spend most of their time online. But it also depends on the market, for example, for our recent campaign – ‘AC for Healthier Homes’, the campaign’s media mix was designed keeping in mind the major AC markets.”  

“While television (45-50% spends) takes care of the pan-India reach, digital (30 to 35% spends) was used to target audiences in the top 8-12 markets,” he added.

 Symphony Jumbo Air Cooler TVC:

The air cooler brand Symphony has introduced this ad campaign in eight languages (Bengali, Kannada, Malayalam, Marathi, Oriya, Tamil and Telugu, along with Hindi) to target specific consumer groups.

Physical retail vs E-commerce

There has been a notable shift in the sale of electronic products from retail to e-commerce. While several brands have made their products available on leading e-commerce platforms, many have gone a step ahead to roll out their own e-commerce websites this year.

Deba Ghoshal

Deba Ghoshal, VP and Head of Marketing at Voltas, said, “We have launched our brand-new Voltas web store, www.voltaslounge.com, which is a one-stop destination for purchasing all Voltas and Voltas Beko products with an aim to reach out to our customers 24X7, and be available to them at all times, from the comfort of their homes.”

Further to connect with more consumers, Symphony, the air-cooling brand has also launched its own D2C website.

Achal Bakeri

Achal Bakeri, Founder, Chairman and Managing Director, Symphony, said, “In today's fast-paced world, going digital is crucial to meet the growing consumers’ demand. As per data by Technopak, the D2C channel has grown around 20% in the past two years, led by the pandemic-infused demand, and it is expected to grow 15-20% in the next five years.”  

Focus on health and hygiene

A major trend this time is that along with comfort, health and hygiene have become a highly preferred features for consumers before buying air conditioners. In order to amp up their summer game, many brands have also introduced a range of ACs with inbuilt air purifiers.

Agarwal, elaborating on Panasonic’s health and hygiene-specific products, said, “The key deciding factor now is whether a particular appliance can take care of their health and hygiene concerns. Therefore, our appliances offer a connected living experience to our consumers via our in-house Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Internet of Things (IoT) platform – Miraie. Further, taking cognisance of the health and hygiene concerns of consumers, our Air Conditioners (ACs) are equipped with our proprietary nanoe-X and nanoe-G technologies that inhibit bacteria and viruses, enhancing indoor air quality and promoting healthier lifestyles.”

Ghoshal echoed the same chord and spoke about the increasing demand for ACs with air purification technology. He said, “This is validated by a recent consumer survey done by Voltas where 77% of Indians said they would like to upgrade their ACs with air purification technology that will quickly purify and disinfect the indoor air by killing germs. Taking a cue from this, we have focused on developing innovative products such as our PureAir Adjustable Inverter AC which helps in effectively purifying the air, and tackling the spread of germs.” 


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