The pesticides controversy notwithstanding, Pepsi has emerged as the top of the mind recall brand, with the top advertisement recall as well, among `high value consumers' in the metro cities and bigger towns across the country.
According to the Indicus Consumer Tracker on buying and brand preferences of affluent consumers launched as a monthly monitor by demographic research firm Indicus Analytics, automobiles loom large on consumer minds and lifestyle, with car brands emerging as the biggest symbol of status and luxury.
As per the responses, Indian consumers also associate highly with parent brands and companies such as Hindustan Lever, ITC, Cadbury's and Tata have shown high recall despite not being actively marketed as brands. MNC brands too score better in lifestyle associations, while brands of Indian origin are recognised more for their `economy' and `value for money'.
For the advertising fraternity the message is loud and clear — humour emerges as the advertising language of the day and beats celebrity advertising hands down. And consumers consider politicians of the day to have great potential as brand ambassadors, with the Railway Minister, Mr Laloo Prasad Yadav, and Ms Priyanka Vadhra emerging as the wanted top male and female celebrities in advertisements by the respondents.
The survey, carried out on 4,000 respondents from urban and emerging towns, puts Pepsi, Maruti, Tata, Sony and Samsung (in that order) at the top of the 200 `unaided brand recall list'. Interestingly, of the five top brands, only Pepsi figures at the top of the `unaided advertisement recall list' of top 100 brands. The other four brands on the `unaided ad recall' are Close Up, Hutch, Cadbury's and Coke. The most liked ad was the Hutch boy-and-the-dog commercial, with the slogan for the same ad — wherever you go our network follows — emerging as the most liked slogan.
In the `brand associations' category, Mercedes-Benz tops the `status symbol' and `luxury brand' associations.
Interestingly, even though the brands emerging as the top `status symbols' are mostly foreign brands, Raymond comes in second while Maruti is a distant eighth. The brands associated with the `value-for-money' propositions are mostly Indian, with Maruti, ICICI, LIC, Bajaj, Tata, Bata and SBI among the top ten. The only foreign brands in this category are Nokia and LG. In the case of brands associated with the `economy' value, again Maruti is on top, followed by Bajaj, Hero Honda and Reliance.
The brands having top of the mind brand association with the word `hi-tech' is topped by Sony, Samsung and Intel, while Reliance, Tata and Yamaha are brands that has top-of-the-mind brand associations with the word `power'. In the case of `top-of-the-mind product-brand associations', there is a distinct leader in the case of product categories which lords over the other brands. For instance, Raymond is on top in the apparel brand category and is way ahead of the others. Similarly, Bata leads in the footwear brand, leaving others far behind. Titan is on top amongwatch brands and Tanishq heads the jewellery list.