Advertising budget for next 3 yrs stands at Rs 250-275 cr: Hemant Jalan, Indigo Paints

Jalan, Founder & Managing Director, Indigo Paints, talks about the brand’s journey, signing M S Dhoni as ambassador and the marketing strategies

e4m by Neethu Mohan
Updated: Sep 10, 2019 8:50 AM



Association with M S Dhoni has helped Indigo Paints elevate the brand’s value, increase the company’s visibility across India and create brand recall among stakeholders, says Hemant Jalan, Founder and Managing Director, Indigo Paints.

The earmarked budget for the advertising of Indigo Paints has been pegged at Rs 250 crore to Rs 275 crore in the coming three years, Jalan said.

In a conversation with exchange4media, Jalan spoke about the brand’s journey, signing Dhoni as brand ambassador and the marketing strategies.

How has signing M S Dhoni as brand ambassador enhanced Indigo Paint’s brand value?

Once we started to think about getting an ambassador for our brand, we tried to look at various influencers who match our brand values and ethos. We did not look at any specific region or any market - getting an influencer who was connected pan India and had the maximum pull across the country was our priority. Getting someone on board who resonates with our brand identity and journey was our call.

Associating with a cricketer, in a country where cricket is a religion, and someone who has a large fan following, narrowed our choice to Dhoni. As we all know, Mahi had a very humble beginning, he has an inspiring story and has an element of surprise in the way he plays the game of cricket. The qualities of the sportsperson resonated very well with our brand, which made our selection easy. The association has definitely helped us elevate our brand to a different level. The synergy between our brand and the ambassador has helped our company get visibility across India and has led to an increase in brand recall among stakeholders.

The brand has been growing at a CAGR of 40 per cent for the last 10 years. What are the factors you think can be attributed to this?

Starting a company where established players are dominating the market was not an easy task. But we never entered the segment with the motive to compete, we wanted to make a mark for ourselves. This is where innovation helped Indigo stand out in the market. Our product innovations and the ability to reach pan India has helped us create a niche space for ourselves in a market dominated by epic names and brands.

We introduced metallic finish paints in the market. Since then Indigo has introduced a special paint for ceilings, for tiles and for driveways, all products that have allowed us to expand our dealer network, which now spans across India, except Jammu & Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh.

Our agenda is not just selling the product but actually selling an experience by binding our story with our product. We want to make the end consumer feel the benefit of choosing us over any other brand. Syncing our journey and the rationale behind presenting a product in the market, we want to do more than just selling. Our tagline says ‘Be Surprised’, the rationale for which is that we want our customers to be surprised with our innovative product offerings with customised and differentiated strategies.

What are the steps taken by Indigo Paints to improve brand recognition?

When we established our brand 19 years ago, we wanted to make a mark by believing in adding value to our customers’ lives. We wanted to reach every home and understand their requirements and work to fulfill those. We believe staying true to our brand identity and working effortlessly to sustain it has helped us improve our brand recognition.

Customising our product for specific markets by on-ground research and study has helped us sustain and grow to these levels. We are confident of attaining and maintaining this growth rate in the near future, with the right strategy and distribution mix.

We have been witnessing a CAGR of 40-45 per cent for the last 10 years as against the industry growth of 10-14 per cent. This has been led by continuous innovation and understanding of the requirement of today’s consumers. Having a sense of the evolving market and adapting to the changes has helped us sustain in this competitive market.

According to reports, the Indian paint market which was around Rs 40,300 crore in 2014-15 is expected to reach Rs 70,875 crore by 2019-2020. Your thoughts?

The Indian paint industry is on a growth trajectory. The industry has been growing at a rapid pace over the years. In addition, India being a developing market, the spending in the discretionary products and services is set to increase.

Increasing levels of income, education and rapid urbanisation have helped the paint market grow considerably. The country’s young population represents a huge opportunity as when more young Indians join the workforce they will have disposable income available. The trend towards nuclear family augurs well for the paint industry. The crucial growth parameter for the paint industry is the change in lifestyle, urbanization and increase in level of education.
Other growth drivers of the paint market are changing customer needs, increasing rural demand, entry of various Indian and international brands and easy availability of financing options.

Being a part of this healthy growing industry, we hope to override our goals and redefine it with the evolving market, making most of the opportunities.

Throw some light on your marketing and advertising strategies and budgets?

Our agenda is not just selling the product but actually selling an experience by binding our story with our product. We want to make the end consumer feel the benefit of choosing us over any other brand as the market today is very volatile and complex. There are a lot of players with stiff competition. However, we like to keep it simple, by getting straight to our audience by connecting with them directly.

We intend to spend about Rs 250-275 crore on advertising in the coming 3 years to build our brand further. The goal is to achieve more awareness and brand recall for our audiences. Syncing our journey and the rationale behind presenting a product in the market to narrate an interesting story, we aim to do more than just selling.

What are your key focus areas for 2019?

At Indigo Paints, we have always tried to be unique and different. The turnover target that we are trying to achieve in FY 2020 is around Rs 850 crore. Our focus areas would be to continue being innovative and keep surprising our consumers with new technology and products.

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