The first day of Ganesh Chaturthi signals the start of the festival season in Maharashtra, which continues till the end of Diwali.
The season also means that companies will come invariably be a slew of new offerings aimed at various categories of consumers, as festivals, traditionally, are just the right occasions for spending.
Companies such as Haier, LG Electronics, Worldspace Radio and Samsung have already introduced special offerings ranging from scratch cards to discounts on specific products on the occasion of Ganesh Chaturthi. For some companies like Cadbury's though the festival season begins much earlier with Raksha Bandhan, for which it had a special gift pack.
It has also launched three variants of its popular chocolates over the past one month so that they reached all the markets in time for the peak season.
Another breed of companies prefer to focus on the more pan-India festivals like Dassera and Diwali, and accordingly, design or launch their product offerings. Hindustan Lever, for one, says it does have some plans for the festival time, but it is too early to divulge things in exact terms now.
Keeping in mind people's special care for beauty or good looks and self-pampering Marico Industries' Kaya Skin Clinic has come up with city-specific offerings like a backshine package for the people of Ahmedabad for the festival of Navratri and another for Kolkata inhabitants for the occasion of Durga Puja.
Explaining the rationale behind the launches, Mrinmoy Mukherjee, head – marketing, Kaya Skin Clinic, says,
“Very often people who wish to try out something different, but they wait for an opportune moment like any major festival. And these special offerings are good for them to try out during festival time. Also, products like these are not for one-time use, they usually have sustainable or long-term relationship with consumers."
Traditionally, Indian companies spend between Rs 35-50 crore during the festive time.
"We are expecting our sales in the festival period to be around 40 per cent higher than the corresponding period last year. The festival time spending on A&P (advertisement and promotion) is around 35 per cent higher than non-festival time spending," said a Samsung spokesperson.
In fact, such a percentage increase in A&P spending is likely to hold true for a large number of companies. "For Onam, Videocon has increased its ad spend by over 45 per cent.
Onam is an indicator for the coming festival season, which includes Ganesh Chaturthi, Dussera, Diwali and Christmas.
Traditionally, if a company witnesses bullish sales during Onam, he can be assured of good sales for the festival season ahead,” says Sunil Tandon, vice-president (marketing), Videocon.
Advertising expenditure for most companies is 35% higher during festival season
Companies eye key markets by tailoring sales campaigns for Ganesh Chaturti, Onam, Navratri and Durga Puja
Some companies are focussing on pan-India festivals such as Diwali and Dassera