BRAND APRIL - ‘April Marketing’ Can Give You a Great Start
BY JAGDEEP KAPOOR
Come April, and the market has a w sense of purpose and excitement in India. In April 2007, there is an even greater enthusiasm because the consumer confidence is high, markets are expanding and brand marketeers are ready to give a new thrust to their brand and sales plan.
I always compare the month of April to the first few overs in a one day cricket match. If the start is good and the scoring is high with a good run rate, normally it would be a good year which would lead to winning results. Therefore in my opinion April Marketing is of great significance in India because it is the beginning of the financial year.
Both Coco Cola and Pepsi along with their entire portfolio of brands are making a cool splash during this hot month.
Whether it be Thomas Cook or it be Jet Airways, whether it be RCI or Singapore Airlines or British Airways or the Taj Group of Hotels, everyone seems to be wooing the Indian consumers to enjoy a well deserved summer vacation.
The manufacturers of Air Conditioners whether it be a Carrier or Voltas and of refrigerators whether it be LG, Samsung or Godrej, are all wanting the consumer to “chill out”.
Interestingly the first part of April has a number stationery and educational brands giving a huge push to study and in the latter part of April many leisure brands give a push to consumers to enjoy.
‘April Marketing’ to my mind, is one of the most challenging times of the year because not only a sense of balance has to be achieved but there is also to be a true thrust to get a good start.
What should brand marketeers do in these 30 days of April and what should they not do? Well, I strongly feel that while brand marketeers may want to make consumers relax, they themselves should be alert to the new opportunities that the year brings and not let their own brand plans relax. In fact brand marketeers should monitor on a daily basis the month of April so that the foundation for the year is put on a solid footing.
One of the mistakes done by brand marketeers is to continue planning right into the month of April. This to my mind could be slightly wrong. The brand marketeers should focus on execution from April onwards and should have frozen their plans latest by middle of March of the previous year. This would help to meet objectives in a focused manner rather than try to make rules when the game has already started. You cannot continue planning when it is time for execution. You may of course fine-tune the plan as you go along the process of execution.
Another important aspect that brand marketeers should take into account for ‘April Marketing’ is the reactions from trade keeping in mind the new financial year’s budget proposal. They should pre-empt and pre-plan so that they are not in for a sudden surprise or shock. This could be planning for movement of stocks or availability or even education to the trade of the new budget proposals so that any doubts can be cleared leading to free flow of products and services so that sales target of April can be met. On an intangible level it is highly, motivating if ‘April Marketing’ is done with great fanfare and enthusiasm so that just like Formula 1 racing, if the beginning is very good and the brand is off the block to a good start.
Brand Marketeers must get inspired from brands like Coke, Pepsi, Nokia, Samsung, LG and many other aggressive brands, which have started April with a bang. It is important for companies to also expand categories. The coconut board for example, is promoting the consumption of coconuts, which is a very positive sign to expand a category. Fair & Lovely of course is going from strength to strength continuing its forward march into April. It is important for brands to move forward from day one in April itself because every new beginning brings along with it tremendous opportunities which must not be lost.
Car makers are giving a new thrust to their new modules. The educational institutes are announcing their plans for admissions. The ice-cream manufacturers are all out to cool the Indian consumers.
The cricket scene may have been a let down, but do not allow that to bring down your spirits.
Whether it be services or entertainment, Whether it be FMCG or durable, Whether it be garments or retailing, bring forth your positive attitude, to start a brand new year from April 2007.
‘April Marketing’, is like the rising sun. It brings in hope along with a sense of eagerness and a positive outlook. After all, well begun is half done.
The author is Brand Guru Jagdeep Kapoor, Managing Director of the successful Samsika Marketing Consultancy
Pvt. Ltd. Tel: 022 28597700/7701
Copyright © 2007 All rights reserved with Jagdeep Kapoor, Managing Director, Samsika Marketing Consultants Pvt. Ltd.
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