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Consumers are aware of the relevance of good ingredients and good quality: Chaitanya Rele, VP, Brand and Marketing, Havmor Ice Cream

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Consumers are aware of the relevance of good ingredients and good quality: Chaitanya Rele, VP, Brand and Marketing, Havmor Ice Cream

Havmor, the ice cream brand, has launched a new advertising campaign aimed at informing people that Havmor ice cream is made from real milk. The more than 70 year old brand is fighting the same war that Amul tried to fight back in March 2017, but Havmor is playing it safe and smart. The brand does not antagonise competitors in its endeavour to reposition itself. “We don’t want to tell people that another brand is using something else. We are not interested in that,” said Chaitanya Rele, VP, Brand and Marketing, Havmor Ice Cream Limited.

He added, “The difference between Amul’s approach and our approach is we don’t want to talk about other brands. I don’t have anything negative to say about any other brand. As a business it is good for us if other brands flourish. We want consumers to know who we are.”

It was an ad that kindled the ice cream war of the summer between Hindustan Unilever Limited and Amul. The latter’s television commercial which seemed to warn viewers about ‘frozen desserts’ made from vegetable fat or vanaspati was challenged by Kwality Wall’s. HUL (which owns the Kwality Wall’s brand) filed a petition against Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation (which owns the Amul brand) in March, saying that its advertisement disparages so-called frozen desserts and should be removed.

Speaking about the importance of informing people about real milk ice cream, Rele said, “Consumers are aware of the relevance of good ingredients and good quality. Consumers are more analytical about processed foods. Industry bodies like FSSAI are now strict with regulation to ensure that customers know what they are eating.” He added that this ad was not just for consumers of Havmor but for consumers of all brands. Consumers are now wary about consuming vanaspati, “It is detrimental to health; no one wants to consume vanaspati anymore and consumers are becoming aware of this.”

Havmor’s repositioning campaign looked to address a few key aspects of the brand. “There are so many messages that we have put out with this one ad. We want to talk about the fact that we are a differentiated and fun brand, our products are cool and quirky. We wanted to combine the fact that we are young, and that ours is an authentic product,” said Rele.

The ad which depicts two cows mooing about Havmor ice creams will be on air for the festive season, until Diwali. Speaking about how the fun TV spot came about, Rele said, “This ad is not driven by sales data; this is driven by value and intuition.” The agency was given a brief to create a campaign that will generate impact for the brand. “The way we work with our sales partners, we don’t monitor them, we don't overwhelm them with data and sales figures; we want them to do what they are best at,” he added. The other aspect that the campaign addresses is the question of how to pronounce ‘Havmor’.

When asked about the timing of the ad, Rele said that the timing is in keeping with his policy of being disruptive. He said that it is important for saliency and recall that a brand communicates with its consumers even outside the typical season for the product. He said that the ad spend during the off-season now gives the brand to connect with consumers when other brands do not typically execute campaigns. “A lot of people said that our ad spend during the summer was much lower than other brands. We had achieved our objectives back then and at no point do I want to shout louder than somebody else,” he said.

The campaign will be largely on TV and digital with very little focus on print keeping in mind the target audience and the aim of the brand to reach a large audience, Rele said.

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