07 Feb 2018 19:53 IST

Second Runner Up

Target transformation of lifestyles

Lever Ayush can promote products through events related to healthy living, genuine ayurveda



Hindustan Unilever has picked up on the right idea in its latest ad campaign Sahi Ayurved by targeting the “genuineness” of ayurvedic products in taking on Patanjali. Currently Patanjali appeals to the baby-boomer generation, which usually recommends products to millennials in the family. The whole idea is to use millennials to convince the baby-boomers to adopt ayurvedic products with their quantifiable benefits over other products that may only claim to be ayurvedic.

Creating a market for Ayush

According to the report Winds of change: The wellness consumer by PwC Brand and Communications India, on the wellness industry, consumers can generally be divided into four categories:

• Believers

• Actives

• Beginners

• Passives


Through our campaigns, we intend to target:

1. Beginners: In this category, we plan to focus more on the younger segment (age group 15-35 years) as they are more willing to experiment and are generally keener to adopt preventive care methods for a healthy lifestyle.

Since this category responds better to quantifiable benefits associated with products that contain familiar ingredients, these consumers are expected to identify with the “Genuine Ayurved Products” campaign for Ayush.

2. Passives: Our intent is to focus on this category because it constitutes a larger proportion among the categories. Convenience and affordability are important factors for this segment which will be catered to by Ayush’s competitively priced and readily available products. This category needs to be educated about the benefits of the products. Product trials via small SKUs are a good way of encouraging them to switch to Ayush.

Currently, Patanjali has not tapped the entire range of beauty and wellness products based on ayurvedic formulations. As per PwC’s report on wellness, there’s a growing market for anti-ageing creams, men’s grooming, and so on. Unilever can tap into these opportunities by greater horizontal diversification in the category than Patanjali is offering.

As per our survey of consumers who have tried Patanjali products and reviewed them on their blogs, not all are satisfied with various attributes such as packaging and effectiveness. Ayush must cash in on this opportunity by appealing on all fronts where Patanjali currently falls short.


Taking on Baba Ramdev and Swadeshi plank

The Baba’s might can only be countered if Ayush is associated with a cause — something that Ayurveda fulfils — and backs it up with endorsement by a celebrity whose lifestyle choices are widely appreciated.

Extensive awareness campaigns related to a catch-phrase such as, say, #AyushforBetterLiving need to be launched with appropriate promotional strategies. More people, especially the Passives, need to be promoted to the Beginners category by educating them about the ill-effects of lifestyle choices currently adopted by them. They need to be made aware that any fillip to one’s health via lifestyle choices is possible only through “genuine ayurveda”.

So far Patanjali, has been embroiled in controversies for marketing products manufactured by third parties. Unilever can use this fact to its advantage by advertising its association with the well-known AVP (Arya Vaidya Pharmacy).

The demand for ayurvedic products has reached international shores. Unilever can tap into this opportunity before Patanjali does.

How to promote Ayush

To reach out to beginners, the key lies in associating Unilever with the cause of transforming people’s lifestyles by organising large-scale events such as marathons, health-check camps, and personal care advisory sessions, perhaps in medium and small-sized beauty parlours, and health clinics of tier-2 and tier-3 cities.

This strategy needs to be corroborated with the “Safe Ayurveda” plank, which will complement the healthy lifestyle campaign of Lever Ayush.

To reach out to the Passives, Unilever could target affordable products at them by launching small SKUs. These can be bundled with other everyday use products to appeal to the relatively price-sensitive Passives.

Hinustan Unilever can rehash its previous Shakti campaign to sell Ayush products in the rural areas. This would further help associate Unilever with the cause of providing employment opportunities to rural people.

(The Second Runners-Up are First-Year PGP students at IIM Indore.)