One thing that quickly became apparent on our trip to India is how warm and welcoming everyone is. When we visited SC Johnson in Delhi, this was no different. We were greeted with tikka, which is a mixture of red (or yellow) powder, yogurt and grains of rice and is applied in a stroke on the forehead. Tikka is a Hindu ritual that serves to welcome and honor guests. This was our first time being greeted this way in India, and it immediately lightened the mood.
To start our day, we got an overview of the major economic and cultural trends in India, and how brands are leveraging them. One such trend is swag desi, which blends the contemporary with Indian traditions. Festivals are another part of Indian culture that brands leverage, as Maruti Suzuki did in its “Festival of Life” campaign. While there are many traditional festivals such as Holi and Diwali, Western holidays such as Mother’s Day and Valentine’s Day are starting to catch on in India. Another current trend in Indian culture is the “New Age Mom.” This mom is breaking stereotypes – she is aware, empowered and independent – and brands are making her the hero.
The “New Age Mom” is SC Johnson’s main target consumer. We got insight into the pest category, and the Tough Mom, in India through SC Johnson’s brand All Out. In India, the liquid electric segment is contributing most of the growth in the category. To combat declining share in key markets, SC Johnson launched its most innovative product yet: All Out Ultra Power+ Fan. This product combines liquid electric technology with “the power of wind” (the fan) to cover an entire room so a family can sleep through the night without worrying about mosquitoes. The launch itself utilized a TV campaign to reach a wide audience and a print campaign to deliver further impact. The All Out team also delivered a high tech unveiling and engaged consumers with the captain of the Indian Football team. After learning how SC Johnson made the launch successful, we put our skills to the test with a case study on an All Out product that combines the benefits from two segments – liquid electric and aerosol. Working in teams, we defined our target consumer, our message, and our media plan.
Before we departed (and received gifts!), we were left with some thoughts on how to be successful in our careers. One piece of advice was to consider the values of our corporations. It was clear SC Johnson values its people. As Herbert F. Johnson Sr said, “The goodwill of people is the only enduring thing in any business. It is the sole substance. The rest is shadow.”