INTERVIEWS

Published on July 15th, 2009 | by drkkr

7

Indian Marketing Wizard

FACE 2 FACE

Indians premier marketing guru, a manager par excellence and a peoples person to the core Mr. Shunu Sen,
CEO, Quadra Advisory. He has been universally acclaimed as one of India’s sharpest marketing minds.
I am fortunate by hosting Shunu Sen for a Face 2 Face on Brand management twelve days before he died
of a cardiac arrest. Never in my life i will be able to forget the one and half hours i had spend with
the legend on marketing. Sir, may the light you showered on many fortunatebrighten your path.

The Latest trend in the Indian market has seen commodities such as salt or flour become brands.
But it is quite surprising that chilli powder has been ignored by most marketers. What could be the reason
for this? Also, please shed some light on the size, growth rate and the future potential of this product
category, when one is up against competition in the loose powder market (not the blended spices)?

• Branding involves more than just packing and packaging. Salt is cleaned and then iodized.
Tea is blended and tasted, oil is refined and deodorized. And atta (flour) is, of course,
processed before branding. Chilli powder is not processed in any way, yet. Hence, it will
be difficult to add value. Branding does not just add value. Because value is best added
in one way or another, andhelps become the best of branding.

Incidentally, stop worrying about size and growth and start worrying about your consumers and their needs.
Don’t ask me a question about size and growth rate, but about the number of consumers and the type of consumer
and the loyalty of consumer vis-a-vis a particular brand.

* Cadbury opened up a huge market when it positioned chocolate as a product for adults as well.
However, over the years, we have seen most ads on TV aimed only at the adults.Childrenseemtohavebeen
systematically neglected. Is the company doing this on purpose? Or is this an oversightsince the adult
market istoo

lucrative for it? Will it affect its business?

• Cadbury is one of the best marketingcompaniesinthe country, as far as chocolate is concerned.Likemanyother
companies, it is not very hot in drinks and I am glad they’ve got Rajeev Bakshi, who is one of the five
best marketing people I know. He was once my neighbour in Bombay, before he flew off to London. I am sure
he is doing the right thing, though I am not very sure I know what he is doing.

We were invaded by many countries. Now we are being invaded by brands. How is the Indian Product going to
survive this?

• By giving a better choice. We are not looking at the nationality of what we buy, but at what fulfils
our needs the best at a price we can afford. A very goodexample wouldbeBPL &VIDEOCON when compared to LG
& other International brands.

What is the Marketing concept followed by Global companies?

In Most of the cases, marketing is done by building a strong brand. In order to build strong brand,
technology is important. Since technology cannot be different, brand comes to play. They become critical
fora product.

Why ­was the E-Class of Mercedes a failure, while the S-Class, which was priced much higher a success?

E-Class model was out of date and priced at 28 Lakhs, whereas the S-Class priced at 32 Lakhs was much more
worth while. People who had 32 Lakhs got what they wanted. A.Mercedes learnt a lesson -that they cannot bring
out junk. The sales of both the E-Class & S Class were same, but there was a higher expectation about
the E-Class.

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7 Responses to Indian Marketing Wizard

  1. Promising says:

    All it is difficult …

  2. Very interestingly, but all in the future was to be learned even more about it. Your clause has very much liked!

  3. Печкин says:

    Tremendous ideas … to us to adopt … it is magnificent.

  4. I think to any it is pleasant!

  5. “ I like your posts ” Write more!

  6. rahul says:

    hey Ram …in fact his son rahul sen is a dear friend and we are travelling together to tokyo where i will be speaking on retail real estate and rahul sen too will be a speaker so it will a good jugalbandi …

  7. DrKKR says:

    Oh ..Okay, i never knew this , i will soon invite both of u for another jugalbandhi..!!

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