22 Nov 2018 19:18 IST

Novel strategies for the company’s growth, branding

Original ideas, presented with detailed understanding of the market and context

The case presents an interesting dilemma many products face — growing in mature markets and in established product categories. Hidesign, an Indian brand, established itself in the country thanks to several factors such as economic growth and rising incomes. It succeeded due to its focus on providing customers quality products and trendy designs, in keeping with rising aspirations. Its achievements in a short span of time are commendable.

The contestants of this competition were asked to respond to three questions (1) What are your recommendations to make the brand grow at 25 per cent in India? (2) If Hidesign decides to expand its market share by entering the lower-priced market, what should its positioning strategy be? Should it make synthetic leather bags? (3) Should Hidesign have a flanking brand strategy, with different brands for various markets, or attack different markets with the same Hidesign brand?

Assessing all the entries, the expert panel of faculty members found that the solutions provided were thoughtfully presented by all the teams and the experts had the difficult task of identifying the top five entries. Two broad parameters were used to judge the entries (1) original and creative ideas presented with a detailed understanding of the context, and (2) practicality and execution feasibility of the solutions presented.

Given below are the reasons why the winning entries were chosen:

Winners - IIM Indore: The team (Bajla Shafha and Shivani Barnwal) made a detailed analysis of the market and the competitive scenario. They present two hypothetical examples to illustrate ways for the Hidesign brand to grow and reach the projected growth target of 25 per cent. The contestants were also clear on the positioning strategy for the brand to expand its market share. Their suggestion for expanding the customer base by launching flanker brands was clearly presented.

First Runners-Up - IIM Indore: The team members (Rahul Menon and Aarushi) present a good analysis of customer behaviour in the premium leather accessories market. In particular, the team’s analysis of operationalising a multi-brand outlet strategy made interesting reading. The approach to launching a flanking strategy and pursuing targeted customer segments made their analysis compelling and practical.

Second Runners-Up - IIM Indore: The team (Kabir Jain and Yash Jain) made it to third place by virtue of their response to the growth strategy suggested for Hidesign. The analysis was clear and the team presented a three-pronged approach which was interesting. The presentation on the flanking approach was well thought through.

Third Runners-Up - IIM Bangalore: The solo submission by Hardik Mehta was able to assess Hidesign’s positioning. They present a holistic approach to succeed by clearly explaining what the company must do in terms of competitors, collaborators and consumers. Their suggestion for the success of the proposed flanker brand was practical and executable.

Fourth Runners-Up - IIM Bangalore: The team (Aninda Halder and Shivam Shekhar) was able to present a feasible solution for growth and made a good assessment of the current and future positioning. Their suggestions for entry into new product categories seems to have evolved from a careful analysis of the luxury products market in India.

(The author is Professor & Coordinator, Marketing & Strategy, IBS Hyderabad.)