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And now a Washing Machine that talks!

07-August-2002
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And now a Washing Machine that talks!

Product innovations attempt to continuously fill the need gap. But does the Indian housewife need to be taught to wash? Electrolux Kelvinator believes so. And betting the research and marketing money where the consumer need is, it has launched ‘Washy Talky’, the World’s first talking washing machine.

The management is bullish on the new product. Says Ram S Ramasundar, MD & CEO, Electrolux Kelvinator, “Designing and creating products like Washy Talky is a reflection of Electrolux Kelvinator’s belief in providing services and products to consumers which are simple, intelligent, innovative and state of the art.” But what need gap does it try to address?

“Indicators form a recently conducted research revealed that there existed a need gap in the washing machine segment where consumers wanted a product that could guide them through the wash procedure in a simple, straight forward manner. The Washy Talky takes care of the needs of the consumer in a simple, user friendly manner making the entire process a child’s play” says Pradeep Thukral, Asst. GM-Marketing, Electrolux Kelvinator.

Electrolux Kelvinator plans to put substantial media monies behind this campaign. Says Anand Bhardwaj, Exec. VP- Marketing, “ We are backing this launch with a multimedia campaign with an approximate budget of Rs 8-10 crores.”

Washy Talky is targeted at the mature consumer segment, and is being introduced in a phased manner across the country. Electrolux Kelvinator plans to introduce the product first in the major metros and gradually to smaller markets.

Initially, Electrolux Kelvinator is using print heavily for promoting the Washy Talky. The first print advertisement broke in the first week of July in Delhi followed by advertisements in Mumbai in the third week of July. The ad appeared in all the major dailies.

These print ads are supplemented by radio. Says Bhardwaj, “We broke the radio spot just a couple of days back. At present it is running in the morning prime time, between 8 to 9 AM.”

The radio ad has an interesting story line. It is about a father talking to his wife who has just delivered a baby. The father holds the newly born baby, perhaps a little tightly, only to have the baby yell, ‘please hold me gently, I am a baby not a dumb-bell!’ The father excited at hearing the newly born baby speak, exclaims, ‘Hey Doctor, my baby can talk, my baby can talk.’ To which the lady doctor retorts, ‘So what, Mr Kapoor? Even my washing machine can talk!’

In Delhi, it is running on AIR FM as the regular spots while in other markets like, Mumbai, Bangalore, Lucknow, Ahemdabad, and Pune it is backed by interesting promotions. Says, Bhardwaj, “We have tied up with FM stations –Radio Mirchi and Radio City. We are doing promotions like ‘who is Washy Talky’ and ‘If the washy talky can sing, how would it sing?’ These promotions on the radio are direct promotions and are running throughout the day.”

The washing machine not only talks but can take decisions is indeed a speck where innovation meets technology. But the Indian housewife may have the final say.

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