Brands need to innovate on a perpetual basis, Harsh Mariwala, founder and chairman, Marico said at the 16th Marketing Conclave by IAMAI
With the world facing an unprecedented crisis, the role of innovation and purpose in brand building has drastically increased as organisations look to create a meaningful connect with their consumers. “Consumers don’t just buy brands. They partner with brands which is why organisations need to look beyond transactional relationships with them,” Harsh Mariwala, founder and chairman, Marico said. He was speaking at the 16th Marketing Conclave held by industry body Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI), virtually.
According to him, every brand needs to innovate constantly. “Innovation creates a stronger brand and improves market share,” he added. He also cited the example of Marico’s innovation — how its oil brand Parachute made a shift from traditional tin bottles to plastic bottles to Saffola oil’s initiatives to educate consumers about ways to improve their heart health through free booklet, heart care camps, free cholesterol check ups among others — as per him, such steps improved market share significantly. Meanwhile, Marico post acquiring shampoo brand Mediker from P&G expanded its presence through the launch of hair oil targetted at rural markets. This enabled the company to double its sales. Research by the company revealed that 80% of consumers don’t shift from brands which are driven by purpose and innovation.
Infact, innovation is not restricted to merely products but can also cut across media planning, advertising, packaging besides activities which add value to organisations. For Mariwala, innovation needs to be encouraged by building relevant organisational culture. For instance, it is important to bring about diversity in the workplace which is further supported by openness and trust. “Create a culture which is open where people can discuss openly cross-functionally. Organisations must encourage their workforce to experiment, take risks and remove the fear of failure,” he said.