Today with sales of over Rs 2,000 crore Wheel is ‘Brand No 1’ in the HUL portfolio not to mention the world’s largest selling detergent in volume terms. If Wheel were to be a standalone company it would rank 228 on the ET 500. Nitin Paranjpe , CEO, HUL, puts it rather succinctly when he says that every second Indian is a Wheel consumer. optimum supply chain and wide distribution reach together have delivered a winning proposition.
What started as a test pilot for building a low cost mobile activation model for media-dark geographies has turned out to be one of the biggest mobile activations ever done for HUL. Pilot Phase
In December 2011, our detergent brand Active Wheel advertised the number 1800-3000-1599 on All India Radio in U.P. & Bihar asking listeners to give a missed call. After giving a missed call consumers got an auto generated call from a series of numbers and got to hear snippets of humourous conversations between a husband and wife. This pilot got positive feedback from consumers and was a huge success! A total of eight Instant Voice Responses lines were used in the pilot phase of the campaign; so every time the customer gave a missed call – he heard a new IVR till he called the 9th time. The result was extremely positive. The brand got a total of 3.2 Lakh Missed Calls from 28,000 unique numbers in just four weeks Phase One of the Campaign
With the success of the pilot, Active Wheel increased the number of IVR’s to 30 and launched the first phase of this campaign in UP and Bihar from January 2012 to March 2012. To support this mobile activation, Wheel also leveraged other media to spread the word including: direct IVR call in, SMS, print, radio, POS saliency in rural and our Khushiyon Ki Doli initiative. Content was also customised for each state. For example: Bhojpuri language was used for Bihar and Hindi for UP The Results
The results out of this campaign have been very encouraging. After three months of the launching the full campaign in UP and Bihar, more than 5 million missed calls were received from 7.7 Lakh unique numbers.
In 1987, HUL launched its very famous product Wheel detergent. The Strategies
followed by HUL to reach a point of success with the brand were: A. Innovative Segmenting StrategiesBrand:
Rural markets present a great opportunity to a company as well as impose major challenges, yet i) HUL experimented with innovative methods to reach the rural market. ii) Utilized a single distribution channel to penetrate the remote and rural areas. iii) Utilized their already built brand identity to influence the market. B. Dynamic Positioning Strategies :
i) Depending on the local tax rates, HUL fixed different values of price in different states of India. This was a major step towards the success story of Wheel, since dynamic pricing exhibited HUL’s understanding of the consumers’ mind and comfort zone. ii) Took a clever step by directly pointing out in its advertisement the fact that Nirma detergent was not good for the hands of the customer, it caused burning.(Product level comparison) iii) HUL analyzed the consumers’ behavior and interests, thus confidently added a classic Bollywood jingle to its product advertisement – “Dekho Dekho Dekho”, which was a colorful and wild attempt. It easily proved to be a great hit since the Indian consumer section loves to relate to Bollywood. C. New Targeting Strategies:
i) HUL discovered they require producing a ‘low-price’ product, without compromising the ‘quality’ that would act as an identity of its king-size brand name. ii) The demand of the moment was a ‘low-price’ detergent, thus HUL quickly formulated strategies to follow the ‘Bottom of the Pyramid Approach’.