Horlicks, a GlaxoSmithkilne Consumer Healthcare India Limited, owned drink, which caters to the nutritional needs of the Indian diet has been a popular brand in the Indian market since 1930s leading with a market share of over 50% in the Food Drink segment. Horlicks marketing strategy has been health oriented. This leading health food drink in India underwent a revamp in the year 2003 offers a ‘pleasurable nourishment’ with delicious variety in flavors like Vanilla, Tofee, Elaichi and Chocolate.Marketing Strategy of Horlicks
Horlicks has been around for almost 125 years in market. Horlicks marketing strategy initially was as “The Great Family Nourisher”. After that the brand has launched new communication campaigns to match with their new products and changing times.
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- 1992 – The Company launched a new segment – Horlicks Biscuit.
- 1995- The Company launched Junior Horlicks for Pre-School kids.
- 2003 – Harlicks marketing strategy as well as the brand went through a massive transformation from the taste to its flavor as well as its packaging. It positioned itself as ‘nourishing, yet so tasty’. The company even re-launched Junior Horlicks, with better packaging and more nutrients to develop internal resistance of 1-2-3 years old.
- 2005 – The brand tried to communicate with the kids and not just their mothers. It came up with the famous tagline – “Taller, Stronger and Sharper”. It tried to convey through its advertisements that children who consumed Horlicks were taller, stronger and sharper. It even launched another new variant ‘Horlicks Lite’ (Healthy drink and Biscuits), which holds the distinction for being the only drink to be endorsed by the Diabetes India and suitable for the diabetics. It was promoted heavily through all media with – “Zero Cholestrol, Zero Added Sugar’ campaign.
- 2009 – The Horlicks marketing strategy took a new direction when Women Horlicks was launched by the Company. Konkana Sen Sharma was chosen to endorse the brand as the face of the urban Indian woman balancing career and home combined with its tagline- “Because your body needs you too” captured the essence of the brand image with simplicity.
- 2010 – With Horlicks Foodle, the brand entered in a new segment- Instant Noodles (the grain noodle with nine power nutrients). The tagline used to promote this is- “The More Nourishing Noodles” with a slogan(as shown in the TV advertisement) – “Ek baar khaoge toh sir se nahin nikaal paoge”.
- 2012- Horlicks healthy biscuits- Nutribic was launched. But, the company got in trouble as Britannia filed a case against GlaxoSmithCline with allegations that the new product is a copy of their product –Britannia NutriChoice. Horlicks even launched a new communication strategy for its brand by presenting itself as – ‘The New and Improved Horlicks with a mix of 15 vital nutrients’.
The ‘Scientifically Proven’ health drink which makes children – ‘Taller, stronger, sharper’, highlights 5 signs of growth in children – More Bone Area, More Muscles, Better Concentration, More Active Nutrients and Healthier Blood. This New Horlicks with improved formulation and packaging has been advertised throughout to communicate the value proposition of the brand.
Effective segmentation and positioning - Horlicks
Growing up is a pain. You romance about growing up only after you are totally grown up. One of the exciting things about growing up was falling ill. But falling ill is a double edged weapon. You could skip school but you could get loaded up with medicines by your parents. The worst part was they could take you to a doctor for an injection. But it was worth it.
Mothers in India totally were convinced that giving Horlicks to the children was the best thing especially if the child was ill. So the children had to take this white liquid that does not taste very good to become better. The children very quickly realized that Horlicks is better to eat than to drink. This began their signature tune that is still running. The boy in the commercial says “I don’t drink Horlicks, I eat it”.
Pan India it was a health drink that had no parallel. Like all the products that were available in India in the 70s and the eighties the packaging was very utilitarian and minimal. Horlicks used to come in a glass bottle and the packaging was as exciting as yesterday’s coffee served cold!
Horlicks meant everything to everybody. It was a health drink that every one consumed. Right from small children to very elderly people. Keeping the nutritional issues aside it was very strange positioning tack.
Horlicks realized this and came out with its own versions of different Horlicks for different customers. Horlicks differentiated products now include
Junior Horlicks – for preschool children. Keeping the targeted customers in mind the packaging is cute and the package has the picture of a small elephant which is very exciting for the small children.
Horlicks regular - For general use. Regular Horlicks is the health drink for people of all ages. The packaging is contemporary and has great visuals to attract the children and the young adults.
Horlicks mothers – is special nutritional drink with 26 vital nutrients designed keeping the specific needs of the pregnant and breast feeding women. The packaging is very interesting – it is shaped like an hours glass. Hour glass is the shape that all women crave for and this craving is subtly cashed by Horlicks by making its "Horlicks mothers” shaped as a house glass.
Horlicks Lite and Lite bite - A nutritional drink and snack specially designed for all health conscious adults and is also suitable for use by people with diabetes. The packaging again is very interesting. The Horlicks Lite is thin and tall. The Horlicks Lite drinkers are health conscious and having a thin frame is a desire among these customers.
This Horlicks proves that segmentation could be a very efficient way of holding on and even increasing one's market share. What is needed is a clear focus and clever innovations in adapting the product to the changing needs of the customers. It also would mean tinkering with the product design and packaging to make it more appealing to the target customers.
Horlicks launches a new communication strategy, presents the 5 signs of Growth
Today when children have to excel in studies and are also aspiring to develop an all round personality, one needs to recognize their nutritional needs to supplement their overall growth and development. Horlicks- the country’s leading Health Food Drink (HFD) has challenged itself to become even better to keep up with this changing scenario for children.
The new and improved Horlicks is fortified with a mix of 26 vital nutrients. Supplementing its previous “Taller, Stronger, Sharper” (TSS) proposition, Horlicks now is the only Health food drink which is clinically proven to provide comprehensive nutrition measured through the ‘5 important signs of growth’. Horlicks provides nutrients to aid comprehensive growth for children by improving the following key aspects:
• More Bone area
• More Muscles
• Better Concentration
• More Active Nutrients
• Healthier Blood
The ‘5 signs of Growth’ have been derived through an independent, scientific study conducted by the prestigious National Institute of Nutrition, Hyderabad to assess the impact of a multiple micronutrient fortified beverage on physical growth and aspects of mental function, in healthy school age children. The study revealed that the sampled children had a high prevalence of key micronutrient deficiencies at baseline and, intervention led to a significant increase in nutritional status of key nutrients known to be important in optimal growth and development of children.
Speaking on the launch of the new communication, Mr. Jayant Singh, Marketing Director, GSKCH India said, “Horlicks has always aimed at providing comprehensive growth for children. The new and improved Horlicks is the only Health Food Drink which is scientifically proven to make children ‘Taller, Stronger, Sharper’, highlighting the 5 Signs of Growth that we believe are the key areas for a child’s development. With this launch, we plan to create awareness amongst consumers about this extremely important aspect of a child’s nutrition.”
Horlicks now comes with an improved formulation and packaging and will be available across retails outlets and other channels. As part of this initiative to build awareness about the ‘5 Signs of Growth’, the company has launched a new advertising campaign across print and television platforms to communicate the value proposition of the improved Horlicks.
Marketing Mix of Horlicks
In 1960, a factory was built in the state of Punjab, India following pressure from local Government, heavy tariffs and diminishing import permits for Horlicks. This involved using Buffalo milk rather than cows milk, and the modified technology of using vacuum ovens, rather than the traditional vacuum pans. During 1969, a second factory was started in Andhra Pradesh, India subsequently increased in size until finished in 1978. The two factories now produce twice the quantity of product now produced at Slough (a factory at England).
The Merger 1989
On July 26, 1989, SmithKline Beckman and the Beecham Group merged to form SmithKline Beecham. SmithKline Beecham was formed with a compelling goal to become an integrated human healthcare company, covering prevention, diagnosis, treatment, cure and disease management — all built around creating customer healthcare solutions for today and tomorrow’s evolving healthcare needs.
Horlicks is a widely regarded and highly respected 130-year-old brand. GSK has four brands in the health food drinks segment. Apart from Horlicks, which contributes Rs 600 crores in revenue to the consumer healthcare division, it has Boost, Maltova and Viva – the last three are much smaller brands than Horlicks. Faced with stagnating sales in the health food drinks segment, the company has chalked out an aggressive brand push strategy and a revamp for its flagship brand, Horlicks. The relaunch aims to focus on children as Horlicks was previously considered as a nourishment drink for old people.
The company expects Horlicks contribution to the total turnover to be around Rs 800 crore which amounts to a major chunk of the company’s turnover. Horlicks is a nourishing malted food drink which combines the wholesome goodness of malted barley, wheat and dairy ingredients.Â For more nourishment, Glaxo SmithKlineÂ Consumer Healthcare India Ltd (GSKCH) has relaunched its flagship brand Horlicks. Â To enable consumers choose different flavours, Horlicks is now available in Regular, Chocolate, Creamy Vanilla and Honey Buzz varieties in a new package. Â Horlicks drinks provide the following essential nutrients:Â Proteins, Carbohydrate, Fat, Vitamin A, Niacin, Vitamin B1, VitaminB12, Vitamin E, Vitamin B6, and Iron & Calcium
| Flavors (Rs) |
| Elaichi | Chocolate | Honey Buzz | Vanilla |
Weight(gm) | Jar | Refill Pack | Jar | Refill Pack | Jar | Jar |
200 | 57 | - | 57 | - | - | - |
500 | 108 | 103 | 108 | 103 | 108 | 108 |
1000 | 199 | 189 | - | - | - | - |
HORLICKS JUNIOR |
Weight(gm) | Jar | Refill Pack |
200 | 58 | - |
500 | 114 | 105 |
Earlier Horlicks believed, white drinks are for the entire family in contrast to the browns, whose prime target audience is children. This is probably because whites–whose growth rate is faster than the browns–have the added advantage of being perceived as food which enhances the healthy image of those who are recovering. But gradually they realized that they have to focus on one segment of market that is children.
Horlicks is now positioned as a pleasurable nourishment drink aimed at children between the age group of 8 -14. Nowadays children have tremendous influence on the things purchased for the family and therefore we want children to prefer Horlicks as a pleasurable nourishment drink. While all the action will be in the general Horlicks segment, the focus of Junior Horlicks (target segment: kids between one and three) will continue to remain the same.
The company has earmarked around Rs 10 crores for brand promotion throughout 2003, and 70% of this will be spent in next six months. Sixty-five per cent of the ad-spend (around Rs 10 crores) will be for the visual medium and the balance for the print and others. Apart from the high-decibel media campaign, the company also plans to conduct an inter-school competition called â€œActivity 2003â€ in which around 1.5 million students are expected to take part.
Unlike its other drink (the Rs 170-crore Boost, promoted by Sachin Tendulkar); the new Horlicks does not have a brand ambassador. While all the action will be in the general Horlicks segment, the focus of Junior Horlicks (target segment: kids between one and three) will continue to remain the same. The brand will continue to talk to the mother since the purchase decision rests with her.
It has a strong marketing network in India comprising over 1800 wholesalers and direct coverage of over 4,00,000 retail outlets.Â Horlicks sales have been strong in the south and eastern markets which contributes about 46 per cent and 47 per cent of the total sales. Milk-deficient South and East preferred white liquid powders (Horlicks, Viva, and Complan) as the drink could be prepared with hot water.
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