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The challenge in the chocolate category is how to make people consume something which is not an inherent part of their diet: Prashant Peres

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The challenge in the chocolate category is how to make people consume something which is not an inherent part of their diet: Prashant Peres

On the occasion of Valentine’s Day, Mondelez India has announced the launch of their new TVC titled ‘Puppets’ as an extension of their ‘Say it with Silk’ campaign. The TVC conceptualised by Ogilvy & Mather will go on air post February 10 and will run for the next four months. The TVC captures the quintessential rich taste of Cadbury Silk and plays on the emotion of guilt free indulgence that is difficult to resist.

Click here to view the ads:

We caught up with Prashant Peres, Director – Marketing (Chocolates), Mondelez India, who spoke about the new Cadbury Silk campaign, their marketing strategies, the challenges and opportunities in the premium chocolate category segment and more….


What is the market share of Mondelez India in the overall chocolate category?

According to Nielsen data, in the overall chocolate category, Mondelez India has a market share of 66.2 per cent.  Also, Cadbury Dairy Milk (CDM) master brand which includes CDM Silk & other CDM brands have  a market share of 41.5%.

CDM is quite a premium product and this year you have plans to target the tier 2 markets as part of your marketing strategy. What is the response of the brand from these markets?

Last year we didn’t, but this year we do intent to increase the number of cities in which we are running. The main campaign ‘Puppets’ TVC goes well with all the tier 2 cities to be honest because it is a mainstream campaign. Also, our distribution is such that we cover even tier 2 cities quite well with our visi coolers. We have been constantly increasing our footprints of visi coolers because we don’t sell Silk to all outlets, but only to those who have visi coolers or air conditioners to keep the product intact. So product is available and distribution is in place, so it will touch all cities.

The response of CDM Silk from the tier 2 markets has been very good. A lot of new players came into the Indian chocolate market at the same time, but Silk is the one which has clearly galloped and is the number 2 brand in the country.

What was the brief given to the creative agency?

The brief given to the agency was quite simple- how can you get more people to try Silk, knowing that it has such a great taste, no matter what the situation is, once you taste it, you won’t be able to resist it!

What is the marketing strategy of your new campaign?

It is a 360 degree campaign which plans to cover 35 metros and tier 2 markets across the country through effective print, digital as well as outdoor activation. Our outdoor campaign is already out in quite a few cities; we have a tie-up with, and a lot of activities on digital are lined up. We have many more ideas, which we will be taking to the consumers, there will be contests, some Dubsmash videos which people can upload and win prizes. Among all our brands, Silk is definitely the one which leads the digital space.

What is the target audience of Cadbury Silk?

What we target more is age, of course there is a certain level of affluence that one needs to have, but what we really say is we are targeting (18-35 years)- the youth and the young adults. But it definitely appeals to teenagers as well. Our intention every year is to have more and more people to indulge in Silk.

For Silk, do you focus more on occasions, like you have been doing for Valentine’s Day?

An occasion like Valentine’s Day comes once a year and that is not the core of Silk. It is really about great indulgence which you can’t resist and that we do throughout the year. What we have actually stumbled upon is- Consumers were anyway using chocolates on occasion like this and that is how the tagline of ‘Say it with Silk’ came through. We realised that it is a sweet spot between something special, but not inaccessible.

What is usually the tonality of Silk campaigns?

The tonality of our Silk campaigns is always very young; it is slightly reverent, not at all brash. It always has a little bit of innocent cuteness which the protagonist shows in the ad because in some way, they just let go off their inhibitions and go for the chocolate.

Give us an idea about the prevalent competition in this market?

We don’t mention competitors, but if you look out, there are quite a few MNCs in the Indian chocolate market. I can only say we do have a very strong presence in the premium segment as well, especially due to our brands, Silk and Bournville.

As dark chocolate is quite an acquired taste, how is Bournville as a brand doing?

Dark chocolate is never a biggest segment even in the most developed countries, it will always be niche. I think Bournville is doing quite well because we have modified Bournville to suit the Indian palette, so it is not an out an out bitter chocolate. 

What are the kind of opportunities and challenges in the overall chocolate category?

We see a huge opportunity to grow in this market because in terms of the per capita consumption, it is very small as compared to developed as well as many developing nations. So there is room to increase consumption in this category, and that offers a great challenge, since you make people consume something which is not an inherent part of their diet. What we have done over the years is to bring out the great joy which the product and the brand has given to people and use that to tell them the different ways and the reasons to consume.

What is your broad marketing plan for 2016? Which medium will you be focusing more on?

We will be doing a bit of all since we have too big a portfolio to say, we will be doing only this and only that. So it is naturally a portfolio play of brands and a portfolio play of media that we will work on. Digital has been very good for Silk, but not for all our brands. So we choose our brands which will over index let’s say on digital, while some will over index on TV.

You have such a huge portfolio of brands, which is your most popular product in metros and non-metros?

Our biggest brand is Cadbury Dairy Milk and that is by default the most popular because it spans all age groups. Silk has definitely grown significantly. There are channels within metros where Silk is really the biggest we have.


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