Mankind Pharma, one of the leading Pharmaceutical companies in India shares its marketing strategy for its OTC brands- AcneStar, Manforce, Gas-O-Fast, Prega News, and Health OK. In an exclusive interaction with Joy Chatterjee, General Manager, Sales & Marketing, Mankind Pharma speaks to MI about the process of shortlisting an influencer for any influencer engagement program.
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Q) Tell us about your marketing strategy for your OTC brands.
Joy: My journey with Mankind Pharma started in the year 2006 to set up their OTC brands, it was quite exciting and challenging for me. Starting on the right foot, we laid its foundation stone in the year 2007 and since then there has been no looking back. Over the years, we have come up with interesting and engaging marketing strategies to keep ourselves ahead of our competitors.
Manforce is the No. 1 condom brand in India with a unit-wise market share of 36%, a long way ahead of its competitors at the 2nd place. This is because of the consistent marketing efforts and strong distribution network, resulting in a tremendous push and pull for the brand. Having the right strategy to create a presence in the market, the brand reaches out to all corners of PAN India. In near future, we are planning to launch more products under the sexual wellness category and we are also planning to introduce some interesting flavors for the youth which will be announced very soon. We have recently launched EPIC – A premium range of condoms from the house of Manforce.
Prega News is the No. 1 Pregnancy Detection Test Kit in India and has a share of 82% in the market. It’s a brand that defines and is synonymous with the category itself. Our focus has always been to educate women and their families around pregnancy. There are a lot of myths that prevail in society and we as a brand want to break the stereotypical mindsets. We keep coming up with campaigns, be it on digital or on TVC to spread awareness and take a firm stand on what we believe in as a brand. We recently came with a first-ever TVC with Kajal Agarwal, and this month we launched an influencer activity campaign where we roped in more than 21 regional mommy bloggers to spread the word. Also, we will soon be launching a premium pack– Prega News Advanced which is a one-step, mid-stream pregnancy detection kit to provide accurate, hassle-free results.
The Gas-O-Fast brand has been coming up with new campaigns in regional language to communicate with their target audience in a more personalized way. Last year, the brand was associated with multiple regional influencers for creating visibility in digital platforms. These regional influencer activities nurture better brand connect with consumers.
We have plans to expand our multivitamin portfolio under the Health OK umbrella. In addition to the already existing Health OK Multivitamin Tablets, we are launching Health OK Gummies to tap the market for children, ensuring both health and taste in a very easy consumable manner.
For 2022, AcneStar is resolved to come up with more engaging campaigns and marketing strategies to reach out to its target audience. We are taking a regional approach by roping in popular faces from the regional film and television industry that will help the brand in establishing a direct connection with its audience.
Our plan to expand our OTC category has been devised strategically as we constantly strive to provide solutions to our target consumers to better their lifestyle issues. In the near future, we have rigorous plans to strengthen the overall category along with existing brands, and additionally expand the products portfolio. Also, we have some more interesting launches lined up and will reveal them soon.
Q) In the last few months, we have seen a couple of influencer engagements by your OTC brands. Tell us what’s the process of shortlisting the influencers?
Joy: Product Category & Brand Fit – The most important thing while shortlisting the influencers is the product category & the brand fit. The influencer profiles are assessed on the basis of previous content on the profile, genre – informational, comedy, food, mom, etc.
Profile Metrics – We also dive deep into their profile and calculate the Profile Metrics such as Followers, Engagement Rate, Average Impression, Reach, Video & Reel Views.
Type of following and responses – We check the quality of the followers, the way comments are received on influencer content, whether it is engaging or vanilla likes
Geography/Regional fit – As per our focus markets and language, we target HSM, East, South as applicable.
Q) Mankind Pharma is actively investing in influencer engagement. How is it helping growth in your business?
Joy: Although it is not possible to attribute influencer content with direct sales, we believe it increases the brand awareness amongst the right TG further. As we tend to showcase situations that are common in everybody’s life and do a seamless product/brand integration, it is bound to create an impact in the viewer’s mind as they are seeing their following profile do the same. The overall activation surely does create a positive impact.
Q) Last year, AcneStar face wash came up with the Thank you Haters and Skin ka Reset campaign, which was well-received. What research was done before launching this campaign and what were the results?
Joy: There are people on the internet who often hide behind the screen and offer unfiltered opinions and negative criticism and we thought of taking this issue head-on and hence came up with the #ThankYouHaters campaign to literally thank these haters. We have conducted IG polls for social posts on all our social media platforms and we combated hate with music. We trolled the trolls musically and our video reached 65 Million impressions with 16.5 M video views and 470k clicks.
Our second campaign ‘Skin ka Reset’ was to highlight how every girl wishes for a ‘Reset Button so that she can start over from the baby skin days’, the video campaign is designed on the same concept. The campaign featuring Pranitha Subhash has 2.9 Million views on Youtube and 1.5 Million views on Instagram.
Q) Gas-O-fast has done multilingual campaigns. What is the marketing strategy behind the same?
Joy: We have come up with multilingual TVC in eight regional languages – Hindi, Telugu, Tamil, Malayalam, Punjabi, Bengali, Marathi, Kannada. Our strategy was to showcase the love for food and the eating habits of people from every part of India and our TVC highlights the typical Indian habit of loosening belts before an individual begins to eat. Our marketing strategy of the brand is to drive penetration in the urban as well as in the rural markets and that will help us reach out to every segment of our multilingual audiences.
Q) The brand has roped in celebrities such as Rakesh Bedi and Guddi Maruti. What value do character actors add to the brand, and how do they help the brand stand out?
Joy: We are adopting the regional route to connect with every segment in the society and speak to people in their preferred language. Roping in celebrities like Rakesh Bedi and Guddi Maruti has helped our brand to establish a direct connection with the audience through personalized content and to reach out to every segment of our multilingual audiences.
Q) Prega News has rolled out an influencer campaign with 20 content creators. Why does the brand think of associating with so many influencers altogether?
Joy: As 3rd wave kicked in, it was again an unfortunate scenario resulting in a certain kind of lockdown. Being the No. 1 brand in the category, the responsibility lay with us to educate the audience further during these times. With limited movement possible outside your house, we planned to roll out a communication to highlight the important RTBs of Prega News – Easy to Use kit at the comfort of your home, rapid and accurate results, and then visit/consult the doctor for further advice. The idea was to create further awareness that the first step of pregnancy check can be done at home itself and exposure to the external environment can be avoided/reduced.
To communicate the same, we leveraged macro-influencers – 21 of them across our focus markets – HSR, West and South region with vernacular content with the attempt to generate a larger impact, especially during the 3rd wave. The selection and number of influencers was strategic – from a market perspective and to further reach out to the followers of mom-influencers/bloggers.