An intersting feature of the Indian market is the large number of brands that have succesfully crossed un-related customer categories. Some examples
Reliance: Oil and gas, wireless, retail, etc
Godrej: Appliances, personal care, security equipment, etc
Tata: Auto, tea, wireless, etc
Religare: Financial services, healthcare, travel
Kingfisher: Beer, airline
These brands are able to convince customers that they are equally capabable of making tea and cars or refrigerators and deodarant. How did they get customer’s to trust them across such diverse seemingly unrelated categories?
Maybe it reflects the importance that family plays in all aspect of one’s life. So it stands to reason that consumers will trust a brand family across a wide range of activities. Maybe it is a result of the weak retail distribution system that is unduly influenced by a few large companies.
Whatever the reason it creates interesting brand challenges. How do you create meaningful and differentiating brand ideas that cross so many categories without becoming too soft and “airy”, as some have become. It is important for Indian companies to figure this out. They have global ambitions and other socities maynot be as favorable to multi-category brands. And the Indian consumer is changing- the role of the family is weakening and the retail market will get stronger, offering customers more choices in every category.
The evolvement of these brands will be intersting to follow.