Case Study: Epigamia’s strategic brand management process
Strategic Brand Management Process
A brand is not created overnight; it takes a great deal of forethought, planning, and above all patience to build one. So, what have new brands like Byju’s, and Epigamia been doing right?
From a customer standpoint, the brand management process may be viewed as a six-step cycle -
Perception => Evaluation => Purchase => Learning => Re-Evaluation => Repurchase
The challenge before every brand manager is to get the customer to reach the re-purchase stage every single time. Take for example:
Epigamia’s strategic brand management process- The first baby steps
The first step in the strategic brand management process is, understanding your market. When the two young founders of Epigamia realized that ice cream – though profitable – was seasonal and sales dropped during the monsoon and winter – the better part of the year, they decided to go with FMCG and began looking for options.
- Lessons Learnt - Learning from the burger giant McDonald’s, Epigamia founders had realized early on that the Indian palate was specific and consumers were only willing to experiment up to a point. Another lesson learnt from a closer study of the market was that Indians were willing to pay a premium for products they could not make themselves.
- The Hunt - With these insights, they began looking for a product that met two criteria – it pleased the Indian palate, and could not be prepared at home. They discovered that more than 65% Indians are lactose intolerant and therefore, could not consume dairy products. They also uncovered the fact that in homemade curd, the whey floats to the top and appears as a top layer of water. Indians also could not make flavoured curd at home.
- The USP - Having made the discovery, Drums Foods International decided to market Epigamia as whey free, lactose free, flavoured curd. Unlike their competitors – who also sold flavoured curd or yoghurt, Epigamia curd had no layer of whey. This became their USP (Unique Selling Point) – the quality that distinguished Epigamia yoghurt from other brands. Drums Foods began marketing yoghurt as a healthy snack rather than curd.
- The Brand Ambassador - Well-known Bollywood actress Deepika Padukone came on board not only as an investor but also as an endorser of Greek Yoghurt. This grabbed the attention of the Indian public. The investment from the Bollywood star was supplemented by the erstwhile dairy food giant Danone’s investment of 182 crores which marked its re-entry into dairy products. This gave Epigamia a head start.
- Visibility -Another challenge before Epigamia was to make their product discoverable in a market where yoghurt was a common everyday food in almost every home. Epigamia met this challenge by making the product available in local neighbourhood stores and allowing initial customers to sample the product. This generated product awareness and word-of-mouth publicity. They also distributed the product at marathons and other events.
- Promotion - A significant portion of the marketing budget – says Siddarth Menon, Drums Food CMO– went towards corporate promoters. Drums Food tied up with large super markets and had customers sample their products.
Keep it Simple
The Epigamia visibility strategy was not limited to launching the brand. They enforce it every time they launch a new variant or flavour. The new product stays on the shelves of supermarkets and local stores for a period of two weeks after which it is withdrawn if it does not catch on.
Epigamia targeted millennial customers who live a fast-paced life. They used influencer marketing and content marketing to make their brand visible to the Indian youth – centring around the age group of 28 to 35. Close attention is paid to the packaging and presentation of the product with an intention of making it attractive to the target group.
Epigamia yoghurt is marketed not as a curd – which Indians eat everyday – but as a healthy alternative to junk food. The product contains significantly more protein than other brands as well as the homemade variety. It is inherently protein rich and healthy says the CMO, but they have been careful about not covertly positioning it as a nutritional supplement.
The Take Away
Of all the examples demonstrating the process for strategic brand management, Epigamia demonstrates that branding is not merely about having a good product or publicizing it. Branding is about believing in your own product and giving it an identity of its own through a carefully chalked out sequence of strategic actions. To understand more about branding, and how you could do it right for your brand, visit Grocurv.