Dabur is on a journey to become ‘Future Ready’, across its product line as well as communications with consumers by embracing technology. Rohit Prakash Gupta, Head of Marketing Services, Dabur India, talks to exchange4media about the company’s digital strategy and the importance of connecting with consumers. Excerpts:
Could you give us an overview of Dabur's digital strategy?
Dabur has embarked on a journey to make itself 'Future Ready', not just with its products but also with its communications, the way it reaches out to consumers and future employees. Under this initiative, Dabur has transformed itself to become a 'young, modern, vibrant and a socially conscious organisation'. Digital is a key pillar of this strategy. Dabur is taking rapid strides in this area and our digital initiatives have won praise from tech industry leaders like Google, which prepared a special case study on Dabur.
Today, consumers are increasingly going online to seek information about various products and also for making purchases. Dabur also uses the Internet and various emerging social media platforms to communicate frequently and directly with customers. We are working with multiple partners across many categories to sell our range of products online. In addition, special e-commerce portals have been created for specific products like gift packs and energisers.
Dabur has embraced technology in a big way to better reach out to the modern day consumer and better service her needs. By creating interfaces on the digital social platform, Dabur as an entity and its various brands are reaching out to consumers, interacting with them and, in the process, enabling them to become our brand ambassadors. Dabur has taken beauty, health and wellness to the digital world with four dedicated portals –daburmediclub.com, liveveda.com, mybeautynaturally.com and daburdentalcare.com.
We, at Dabur, believe that content is key in digital communication. Content, which is engaging and builds dialogue with consumers, drives any digital brand campaign. With this background, Dabur has invested in creating content warehouse for its brands by developing these interactive websites addressing the three core verticals -- oral care, skin and hair care and health care. In order to create a virtual content pool and further taking this content to consumers using digital media like YouTube, Facebook etc.
Could you give us an idea about how digital spends have increased for you?
Digital today accounts for about 5-10 per cent of our total ad spends.
Digital marketing has been the fastest growing segment. Do you foresee this continuing? What are the drivers of this growth?
Yes, digital marketing is bound to grow faster in the future. Digital is the new buzz word today. While the e-retail landscape is still at a nascent stage for the FMCG industry and contribution in terms of business is low, it is ramping up at a rapid pace. This is an important development in the context of evolving shopping behaviour and in terms of consumer engagement for the brands.
According to the CII-BCG report, referred to earlier, the disruption in consumer goods due to digital would increase at an unprecedented pace. Proliferation in internet connectivity, evolution of new business models and increase in digital media consumption would provide companies enormous opportunities to create value.
We have also forged successful partnerships with most e-grocers and are working with multiple partners across categories to sell our products online. Dabur has joined hands with online marketplace Snapdeal to set up an e-store, called LiveVEDA, for its range of Ayurvedic products. E-commerce browsing is becoming a catchment area for brands and there is a substantial growth in the online health care market. This, we feel, is a significant opportunity for the future.
When it comes to the mobile, what are they trends that you are noticing? Also, how is the FMCG sector leveraging the mobile revolution?
In today’s era, mobile phones are seen as an extension of the individual. FMCG is expected to follow ticketing, electronics, and fashion categories on the e-commerce platform. With increase in the demand for smartphones, we are sure that the level of consumption will rise. At Dabur, we keep this as our primary approach for all mobile activation.
Can you give us a glimpse of your strategy when it comes to using digital medium to target audiences across geographies, especially the audience who prefer consuming content in local and regional languages?
As I mentioned earlier, Dabur has embarked on a journey to make itself 'Future Ready'. The first pillar of this strategy was to revamp and re-craft our nearly 50-year-old trusted brands like Chyawanprash, PudinHara, Hajmola etc to make them more relevant and appealing to Gen Z. While the new products sought to appeal to youth, even the campaigns were being tailored and crafted to speak their language. This forms the second pillar of this strategy. Today’s youth are more socially aware and want to participate in bringing about a change in society. So, product campaigns have to be about touching an emotional chord with the audience and helping them find the heroes in themselves. Here, we feel, language is not a barrier.
One of our latest path-breaking campaigns that was launched in the digital space was the Vatika Brave & Beautiful campaign. Besides, Dabur Gulabari rolled out a digital campaign #AmPrettyTough, which has been very well received by the audience. The #AmPrettyTough campaign seeks to empower young teenage girls to pursue their tough passions without worrying about their skin. With this campaign the brand seeks to motivate young girls to break stereotypes based on looks and follow their dreams.
Both these campaigns had a pan-India appeal, and were big hits in the digital space.
We haven’t used regional or local languages on the digital medium. Hindi and English are main language media for us. However, we do customise communication for regional consumers. Also, multilingual content is used more on traditional media.
How do you align digital campaigns with the overall marketing strategy?
Dabur has embraced technology in a big way to better reach out to the modern day consumer and better service her needs. By creating interfaces on the digital social platform, Dabur as an entity and its various brands are reaching out to consumers, interacting with them and, in the process, enabling them to become our brand ambassadors. We follow an integrated marketing communication approach where all the various touch-points like TV, print, radio, digital and even point of sale communicate the same message.
At Dabur, digital is completely aligned with the overall brand strategy for individual products. At times, digital leads a particular campaign, which is then taken offline. A classic example is the Dabur Vatika #BraveAndBeautiful campaign that was launched in the digital space first. When this campaign went viral in the digital media, people, particularly those who have defeated cancer or know someone in their family who has go through the same ordeal, started sharing their experiences on the digital space. Some of these stories were put together in the form of a Coffee Table Book to inspire millions of others who are fighting this dreaded disease today. A special event was also organised where these cancer survivors were invited and felicitated. Dabur Vatika also created a special product -- Dabur Vatika B&B Shampoo -- which is completely chemical free and is clinically proven to be mild on sensitive scalp. This product was distributed free to the cancer survivors.