Indian health & hygiene brands rise to COVID-19 challenge

Brands bring their A-game during trying times, reaching out to consumers through digital campaigns

e4m by Sanstuti Nath
Updated: Mar 25, 2020 9:34 AM
hand wash

With the Coronavirus pandemic spreading rapidly, health and hygiene have become the highest priorities for Indians. In a time like this, it has become exceedingly important for wellness brands to start the right communication with their consumers.

Dissemination of the right information has become the point of communication in the recent campaigns of most health and hygiene brands and digital has become their preferred medium to do so. One of the most successful campaigns is Dettol’s 4 step #HandWashChallenge.

The campaign, which aimed to raise awareness on four simple steps of hand washing, broke the record on TikTok after getting 18 billion views and generating over 123K user participation videos within one week. Speaking about the campaign, Pankaj Duhan, Chief Marketing Officer, RB Health South Asia said, “Over the past couple of weeks we have witnessed a lot of misinformation floating around hygiene practices, especially over the internet. Realizing the gravity of the issue and being the responsible brand, we felt it was our prerogative to initiate this awareness campaign.”

Savlon's #SurakshaAapkeHaathMein, Dove's #WashToCare and Lifebuoy's #Lifebouy10SecondRule are also digital campaigns, educating consumers on the correct way to wash hands.

Lifebuoy was also one of the first brands to start a campaign around Coronavirus. In January 2020, the brand published a public service message in most dailies with a strong directive. The ad read: “This is not an ad. This is a public service message.” It then went on to explain the various ways through which the Coronavirus could be defeated, and ended with advertising the brand’s hand sanitizer.

Another hygiene brand, PeeSafe also launched a sub-brand called RahoSafe. Under it, PeeSafe brought out personal hygiene products like hand sanitizers and multi-surface protectants among other things.

Talking about the new product line, Vikas Bagaria, Co-founder, Pee Safe, said, “With the number of cases in India on a rise, we must double our efforts to ensure that we stay protected and safe. We have been working on this line of products for over a few months now and decided to accelerate the launch timelines given the dearth of supply. Apart from offering 99.9% protection against germs, they are also priced reasonably making them accessible to everyone.”

Speaking about the brand’s communication strategy with the consumers, he said, “Ever since the first case of COVID-19 broke out in India, we have been covering information on stories that are shared by WHO. We ensure we don't communicate the wrong facts to anyone. We even took part in the #safehands challenge by WHO.”

He added, “As always, Pee Safe has kept its communication light-hearted and fun. We now have started a series of posts about quarantine. We will soon start a campaign that will help people become aware and use our Toilet Seat Sanitizer Spray as a multipurpose disinfectant spray due to the supply shortage of sanitizers and disinfectants.”

Fitness and wellness brands like Cure.fit and Sarva are using technology in times of restricted movements to make their consumers' life easy. Both the brands have been providing live classes, through the internet, to their members.

Talking about his brands' intuitive to make people’s lives easier, Sarvesh Shashi, Founder, Sarva and Co-Founder, Diva Yoga, said, “The Coronavirus outbreak has left many of us worried and restricted to our homes. However, there is a lot that can be done even while one is at home, to maintain good physical, mental and emotional health. Although our physical studios are currently non-operational, we have launched special online classes and a gratitude feature for those who wish to stay at home and practice. The classes are not only meant for our members but anyone and everyone who wants to continue their fitness regimen despite being unable to venture out. These are aimed at three things – physical fitness, immunity building and anxiety management. Both SARVA and DIVA yoga are utilizing technology in the best possible way to help people achieve this and tide over the crisis.” 

While the current scenario in the country looks grim with the COVID-19 cases burgeoning, it's also an opportune moment for health and hygiene brands to shine. They have to ensure that they deliver their brand messages clearly, responsibly and sensitively. In the process, they can further more than just their business and lend a helping hand to the ongoing coronavirus fight in the country.  

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