Brand extensions can become game changers for the parent brand, provided they are well thought out and strategic. While it is about entering a new market, competing with the existing players, the successful examples have one common characteristic, integrating the existing brand experience with the extended product portfolio. Mc CafÃ© was launched in India in 2013 as an addition to the Coffee market. Mc Donaldâ€™s have pioneered the quick service format and the launch of a cafÃ© next door could not have gone wrong. With an average footfall of 3500 people a day, Mc CafÃ© is more like a baby born with a silver spoon.
Speaking about the successful brand extensions of 2013, Ajit Joshi, CEO & MD, Infinity Retail Pvt Ltd said, â€œBrand extensions often become necessary to remind the customer that you exist. Brands usually gather the requisites of customers, expectations from their brand and device an extension plan accordingly.â€ He also mentioned that brand extensions often work and are a tried and tested plan but can misfire too at times. He said, â€œWith a new product in the market, the parent brand gets directly associated with it. While the success of the newbie might not have much of an impact on the sales of the parent brand, it can have an adverse effect in case the new brand fails to deliver.â€
Titan Skinn Perfumes has suitably positioned itself in the Titan House of Jewelry, watches, leather products and eye wear. Dove which is known to have changed the definition of soap, has hit the right chord by launching Elixir which will cater to the hair oil market. Woodlandâ€™s plan for 2014 is to emerge as Indiaâ€™s first adventure gear brand, one stop shop for all the adventure lovers as they have planned 50,000 square feet store format and launching skincare and adventure equipments was indeed their first step towards redefining the brandâ€™s image.
Pitch presents Top Ten Brand Extensions of 2013 based on the opinions of Bhaskar Bhat – Managing Director, Titan Company Limited, Nadia Chauhan – Joint Managing Director and Chief Marketing Officer, Parle Agro, Pitch Editorial Team and rated by Ajit Joshi.
1. Titan SKINN Perfumes: Titan Company Limited widened its footprint in the personal lifestyle segment with the launch of the SKINN Titan range of fine fragrances. The selection of six scintillating perfumes bears the hallmark of Titan, with the assurance of the TATA group. Bhaskar Bhat, Managing Director, Titan Company Limited said, â€œBeing a leader in watches, jewelry and eyewear, Titan Company Limited is constantly evolving to suit the needs of its customers and provide them with world-class products at great prices. It was time for us to widen our footprint in the personal lifestyle categories that are currently unorganized, underserved and under penetrated.â€
2. Parle CafÃ© Cuba: Parle Agro has re-entered the carbonated fizz drinks market with the launch of CafÃ© Cuba, a fizzy drink with a coffee flavor. The launch of new categories has become a trend and helps invigorate a jaded brand. â€œWith cafÃ© Cuba, this new category will not only strengthen our market share but also increase the carbonated beverage market pie, leading to more flavor options for consumers,â€ says Chauhan.
3. McCafe: At the time Starbucks was busy extending its presence in the Indian market, Mc CafÃ© declared war! Just as India was settling into the idea of drinking coffee as a preferred beverage, McDonaldâ€™s Mc CafÃ© brought a little sigh of relief to the pockets of coffee lovers. Mc Donaldâ€™s hopes to leverage the growing coffee-cafe market, estimated to be about R2,000 crore, â€œIt also aims at establishing Mc Donaldâ€™s as a coffee destination,â€ says Vice-Chairman, WestLife Developement, Amit Jatia.
4. Park Avenue Beer Shampoo: According to a research, men feel that 50 per cent of the impression they make is because of the way their hair is groomed and it can make or break one’s overall appearance. Thus, the beer shampoo was launched to keep pace with the fast evolving man. Park Avenue Beer Shampoo has created a path-breaking category in the hair care segment by launching the first-ever shampoo for men in India. This is primarily because of the main ingredient – Beer – which is associated with fun, and offers a shiny, smooth and bouncy feel to the hair.
5. MTV Helmets: Auto accessory firm Steelbird along with MTV introduced an incredible line up of helmets. The main reason is to promote the important of safe riding. For those who are keen on Steelbird products it is offered in many Pan India retail outlets. The quality of bike designs have improved and have become more colorful, sporty and vibrant, hence people now desire matching helmets to match their bike colors.
6. Dove Elixir: Dove entered the hair-oil category with its Elixir – the precious hair oil with real ingredients that provides the power of overnight oiling in just 30 minutes. Dove broke the clutter in the hair shampoo category and to maintain the leading position, it did not lose the chance to become the ultimate companion of a womanâ€™s tresses. The launch of Elixir has raised the bars of the hair-oil category as a whole and has made Dove one of the most dependable brands as far as hair-care is concerned.
7. Woodland Skincare and Equipments: After tapping the market for outdoor adventure activities almost completely, Wooland is now planning to invest in the product category of outdoor equipments. This will complete the catalogue for Woodland and its customers. Gradually, it might get into specific equipment specializations like fishing or skiing equipments. Woodland also aims to deliver skin protection in its soon- to- be launched high graded sunscreen and lotions, basically protecting the skin when you are out in extreme temperatures.
8. Dabur Real Milk Shakes: Dabur India Ltd forayed into the packaged milk shake market with the launch of RÃ‰AL Fruit Shakes under the brand RÃ©al. This also marks brand RÃ©al extending its fruit expertise into milk-based drinks. â€œDabur has always been at the forefront of innovation. With the growing level of health awareness in India, there has been a spurt in demand for healthy functional foods. With the launch of RÃ©al Fruit Shakes, we aim to not only extend brand RÃ©al to give our consumers more choices but also make the experience of having milk more enjoyable and nutritious for kids,â€ said Dabur India Ltd General Manager-Marketing (Foods) Mr. Praveen Jaipuriar.
9. Gili apparel: Gili, a brand of Gitanjali Group, recently extended into the apparel category and aims at becoming a lifestyle brand without a shift in the brand attribute or its target audience. But even as the brand took the route of extending into womenâ€™s apparel, the attribute of being exquisite and uniquely ethnic was maintained by Gili. â€œWe want Gili to be a lifestyle brand like Gucci, and thus will be further extending into bags. Gili aims at maintaining the functional benefit of the brand. The start was a little slow, but because the brand name has been there in the minds of customers for 18 years, we have received a warm response,â€ said an official from Gili.
10. Google Eye Glass: It came as a surprise when Google released the video of Eye Glass which showed how the glasses can actually give us the weather forecast just by looking up at the sky. It is yet to be launched and whether it is a success or a disappointment will become clear only after its launch in India but the buzz created globally is a good sign for Google.