Consumers in India have prioritised health over the last few years, and this focus is fueling growing interest in natural and plant based products. Natural products are more important to them today than a year ago.
“When it comes to evaluating innovations, there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach anymore. It is critical to understand the business objectives and the innovation strategy. A key factor to also consider is the endurance of innovation over time in sync with revenue objectives and other criteria,” said Vidya Sen, BASES Leader, South Asia.
“While naturals as a trend has been around for the past few years, it is really interesting to see how the nuances are changing over time and going beyond the goodness of nature,” said Sen. “New age brands are re-defining it as safe, fresh and focusing on homemade fresh, transparent processes and a clean label,” she added.
Sustainability for consumers is more about the tangible benefits of ‘reduce, reuse, recycle’ (66 percent) and organic and natural ingredients (58 percent). 56 percent of the consumers say they would definitely switch to an eco-friendly brand, given a similar product experience as their current brand. Innovations that made it to the Breakthrough Winners list are very conscious of this shift in consumer behaviour and healthy, natural and sustainable are core to their product offerings.
Consumers ranked products that claimed to ‘protect their family’ over those that claimed to kill germs and bacteria, or boost immunity. This ask of emotional benefit of the innovation for consumers has been amplified by the onset of the pandemic earlier this year, with the lockdown and people at home.
Some brands have innovated in their go-to-market strategies with a ‘digital first’ strategy, moving from ‘mass marketing’ to ‘personalisation at scale’. These trends have led to launch and market in an accelerated and focused manner. Others have mapped online audience behavior to deliver personalised and relevant messages to their target group consumers. Their media strategy also then helped them to deliver the messages in an integrated manner across all the touchpoints of the consumer journey.
“As we look to identify innovation spaces for the future, marketers and brand managers would do well by taking note of shifts in consumer behaviour towards products offering a ‘Healthy for me’ and ‘Healthy for we’ promise,” says Sen. “‘Vocal for local’ is a trend that has picked up steam this year, and now innovations from local brands can be proudly vocal about their origin through their ingredients, packaging, and even brand name,” she added.
These trends were revealed in Nielsen BASES highly anticipated report ‘Top Breakthrough Innovation Winners in India’.