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BY Anjana Naskar

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Q] Medimix recently introduced a range of glycerine soaps along with a campaign. Tell us about the new products and the campaign.
In the soap category, a lot of consumers tend to switch to glycerine soap during winter. This has given rise to a glycerine bar category that currently constitutes 5-6% of the soap industry. However, there is no big Ayurvedic glycerine brand in the category. Medimix Natural Glycerine Bar, our hero glycerine variant consists of natural glycerine (extracted from plants) and Lakshadi oil, which is a potent Ayurvedic moisturising ingredient. These two ingredients not just cleanse gently but also keep the skin soft and moisturised. We supported our product with a new 360 degree campaign, where we urged consumers to ditch their ordinary soap and try Medimix Natural Glycerine soap.

Q] What media mix and budget has been allocated towards the overall campaign? What reactions have you received so far?
Over the years, we have focused on multiple media platforms, and TV has remained a core part of the entire strategy. Along with TV, we are now focusing aggressively on Digital and social media to create awareness among our target audience. Glycerine bar is a category skewed towards urban and NCCS A&B consumers. Digital media has strong penetration in this TG set. Hence, our focus has increased on this medium. For the campaign, we collaborated with famous influencers like Kusha Kapila and others to create awareness of the proposition. Apart from general and modern trade, we saw a significant growth in e-commerce and our direct to consumer website. The initial response of the campaign has been really encouraging and we have seen strong double-digit growth in our sales volumes. We are quite optimistic that the new campaign will generate more brand awareness, which will help us gain a market share in the glycerine category.

Q] What kind of merit do you see in partnering with smaller influencers across markets, as compared with using A-lister stars? What kind of impact and ROI have you seen on the back of your influencer-led campaigns?
Partnering with smaller influencers across markets helped us reach out to a hyper-local audience whilst maintaining a sense of familiarity and authenticity of the brand. Our current campaign response has been tremendous, we have received a high engagement in a short time. With our association with influencers, our message effectively reached the target audience. Overall, on Digital, we received a unique reach of more than 2 crore with more than 3.5 lakh clicks/links and around 50 lakh people engaging with the brand.

Cholayil Private Limited, established in the 18th century, is rooted in the tradition of Ayurveda. The company’s most popular product, Medimix dates back to the time when the founders – the Cholayil family used ‘Viprathi oil’ as a cure for skin ailments. Today, Cholayil Private Limited has grown to become a highly respected name in the Ayurvedic personal care space with a portfolio of brands like Medimix, Cuticura, Krishna Thulasi, and many more.


Clear identification of the key business objective is necessary. Once you have your sight on the goal, marketing strategies will follow.
Q] Since herbal products have seen a rise in demand in the past few years, many big brands have also forayed into the category. How do you work to stay relevant in the market as a legacy brand?
Medimix is the world’s largest selling Ayurvedic soap and has a heritage of 50 years. We have a loyal consumer base in more than 30 countries. However, this brings an additional responsibility of making Ayurveda relevant for new age consumers. We rolled out the new positioning of ‘getting skinfit with fast acting Ayurveda’ where we focused on multiple beauty and health benefits of skin. Apart from that we also tried breaking the myth of Ayurveda being slow. We are reinventing ourselves to remain relevant with the youth and have seen a significant influx of millennials with our brand. In fact, we were among the top few brands in 2019-20 in terms of highest household penetration growth last year. This year also despite seeing a bad Q1, we have doubled our penetration growth in subsequent quarters compared to last year. We will continue driving consumer led offerings which will enhance the user experience and strengthen their trust in the brand.

Q] What initiatives and marketing activities have you planned for 2021? Tell us a bit about your roadmap for the future.
For us, soaps remain the biggest business. There is a strong momentum on the brand post repositioning carried out two years back and we are growing at 25% CAGR. We will continue strengthening this business. Apart from this we are also focusing on new categories like face wash and hand wash. We will invest on face wash heavily and on hand wash in key markets to establish both categories for us. For us, TV remains the biggest medium because of its high reach. However, we do realise that Digital has become very strong in terms of focused targeting of right TG. We have already upped our spends significantly on Digital and will further beef it up. We are investing behind performance marketing also to drive more consumers to our website. We will also continue our approach of programmatic buying.

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Tags : interview Anjana Naskar Ashish Ohlyan Cholayil Medimix