Even in the midst of the pandemic, as many segments faced the brunt of lockdown and the consequently lowered demand, several FMCG companies have reportedly seen sales growth in June or are at least seeing recovery in sales. And interestingly, even beyond essentials, the snacks and chocolates category too saw a surge in sales. According to reports, in May 2020, a total of 50% of consumers said that they were snacking more, compared to 38% who said this a month earlier and 60% of consumers reportedly said that they had bought more comfort foods like confectionery in the last month.
So how does all this play out on the retail front for brands in this category? Brick and mortar stores have always been a more functional and utility driven space in this product segment, with MT/GT outlets and super markets being the main channels. But going forward it emerges that safety, experiential value-adds, omnichannel convenience and meaningful engagements, all combined with aesthetic brand communication, will play a huge role in establishing brand credibility in the brick and mortar retail space for FMCG brands.
Here’s a look at how design agency FITCH collaborated with KitKat in Brazil to elevate brand perception in the market, as well as find a connection with the local Gen Z market. Mark D’Costa, Managing Director; and Dominic Twyford, Business Director; FITCH India, while sharing the details of the branding and design exercise with Point of Purchase, also share some perspectives on the importance of design and instore brand experience for the FMCG category, and more. Presented in the next pages are excerpts from their inputs.
Can you first take us through the KitKat project in terms of how the right design intervention helped meet the brand objectives?
For retail brands, the store is the physical representation of who they are and how they want to be considered. So, when it comes to design, it’s not only important to get the design right, but the brand right as well. In this case, the idea was to elevate the perception of the chocolate in the country, as well as find a connection with the local Gen Z market. So the brand was looking for a new retail experience to help them achieve that. Inspired by their famous ‘Have a break’ strapline, we developed ‘The KitKat Chocolatory’, an experience designed around #CreateYourBreak, bringing it to life through theatre, innovation and community.
At this store, people can print a picture of their choice on a KitKat bar, win a KitKat on the digital vending machine game, marvel at creative AR hotspots and enjoy a VR tour through the inner workings of the chocolatory - all centred around our signature break experience: the KitKat pick ‘n’ mix.
Since launch in October 2019, The KitKat Chocolatory São Paulo has welcomed 300,000 shoppers and has racked up thousands of followers and tags on Instagram, as well as 40,000 mentions via Google Search.
As a retail design and experience expert focused more on lifestyle categories, how do you find the FMCG space to work with? What kind of opportunities do you see here?
Continue reading your story on the app
Continue reading your story in the magazine
Retail As A Connected Economy
The current pandemic has created strategic opportunities in the true sense, and brands and retailers can make the most of this opportunity by positioning themselves as a connected economy, says Jalpa Patel – Lead Interior Architect and Sr.Visual Merchandiser, ZenGenius Inc, while drawing on interesting examples from the US.
‘TRUST IS BUILT THROUGH THE BRAND COMMUNICATION'
There was one positive fallout of the sudden shift in consumer buying behavior post Covid. And that was the marked rise in demand for immunity building and hygiene products of good quality. As per a Nielsen report, the hand wash segment expanded 60% in March 2020 compared to 7% in the preceding three months. As a result, more innovative products and newer brands are entering the personal hygiene space. FMCG major Emami Limited, after making a successful foray into the hygiene space with BoroPlus Advanced Anti-Germ Hand Sanitizer in April 2020, recently expanded its BoroPlus Hygiene Range. In a special conversation with Point of Purchase, Priti A Sureka, Director, Emami Limited, shares more details about this expansion, the biggest challenge for the FMCG industry today, key tips for retailers to navigate the crisis, and more.
‘THERE IS INCREASED UNDERSTANDING OF BUSINESS BENEFITS FROM DIGITAL SIGNAGE'
Brands today are increasingly taking the technological route to communicate with their end users, making the shopping experience more experiential while also fulfilling the basic consumer needs today for safe, contactless shopping and a reassuring retail environment. This makes it inevitable for a tech-enabled ecosystem, with a network of centrally controlled digital display solutions, coming into play. Brand across segments, including the automotive industry,are hopping on to the digital bandwagon and this has led to the entry of more and more digital signage solutions led by established tech players. For example, Panasonic India’s SignEdge Display Network presents itself as an end-to-end solution leading to seamless communication for the automotive industry at their point of sale. Recently, Panasonic India installed a digital signage solution for MG Motor India to drive communications to its customers across dealerships through multiscreen video walls, standalone displays etc. Vijay Wadhawan, Group Chief, System Solutions Division, Panasonic India, shares with Point Of purchase the whole journey.
‘IMPORTANT TO BE OPERATIONALLY NIMBLE'
Digital is the go-to shopping mode today for an increasing number of people, even in categories like fruits and vegetables. And along with the growing dependence on digital is the growing need for farm fresh products. Established in 2016 as a store offering premium quality of farm-fresh vegetables and fruits in the upmarket neighborhood of Powai, Mumbai, ‘Fraazo’ reinvented itself by adopting a digital-first approach and launched the ‘Fraazo App’ in October 2019. Started by the quartet Atul Kumar, Aashish Krishnatre, Vikas Dosala and Sumit Rai, Fraazo is a retail brand under VnF Ideas Private Limited, Mumbai’s leading B2B player in perishables category providing farm-fresh vegetables and fruits. The brand joined VnF family in 2019 and has since then been servicing over 2 lakh households in Mumbai and Pune and 60 plus societies through its innovative value chain module. Atul Kumar, Co-Founder & CEO, Fraazo shares with Point Of Purchase more on the Fraazo journey.
HOW KITKAT CRAFTED A ‘CHOCOLATORY' STORY
The FMCG category has always been a dynamic one, whether in terms of product range, consumer behaviour or of supply chain and distribution.
A SEAMLESS OMNICHANNEL PLATFORM FOR STARTUPS
As a consumer moves from a print ad to a social media platform, or from a chatbot to a web page or a brickand-mortar store, brands are moving away from onesize-fits-all approach. They are in fact taking every step possible to deliver a consistent message and seamless experience across all touchpoints. With an aim to help businesses develop a perfect strategy in the ever-changing world of retailing, SOCH Group, which also has the food startup brand Munchilicious, has announced the launch of This or That, which they call the ‘World’s first Omni-channel Retail Platform exclusively for start-up brands’. Rohit Mohan Pugalia, Founder Director, This or That (A SOCH Group Initiative), in an exclusive chat with Point of Purchase, highlights how the platform help brands build stronger business presence on multiple platforms, on some upcoming retail trends and more.
Wooing The Post-Covid Shopper: What's The Game Plan?
Let’s face it, the days of retail therapy when shoppers simply browsed around the store space, indulging their senses and adding products to their basket, maybe over or at least may have been put on pause till the specter of the virus is eliminated from our horizon. COVID -19 virus has ensured that shoppers today are more cautious, anxious, hurried - wanting to spend less time at the store, essentials driven, and prudent in their spending. So what does all this mean for brands and retailers? How can they win their shoppers back to a more relaxed, reassured, and happy state and get the economy going with greater spending? What role does shopper marketing, in-store communication, and technology play here? Let’s take a look.
‘SILOED LEGACY SYSTEMS NO LONGER WORK'
If the increased role of technology had already become inevitable in retail in the last few years, Covid-19 has only intensified further the need for technology integration into retail operation and experience. This has seen the entry of many technology players into the retail eco-system. Retail technology company Ace Turtle has a platform that can integrate with multiple retail systems, provide single and uniform data and inventory across channels, and manage the entire retail process, from product discovery to purchase and fulfillment. Berry Singh, COO, Ace Turtle, in interaction with Point of Purchase, talks about how such technology solutions can help retailers ensure seamless backend and front-end functioning, and reiterates the importance of integrating digital with all aspects of retail operations.
‘BRANDS HAVE TO SHOW THEIR HUMAN SIDE & RETAIL SOLUTION FIRMS HAVE TO WORK WITH TECH COS'
Renowned retail expert, Dr. Dwarika Prasad Uniyal, who is also Professor & DEAN - FLAME University, and the bestselling author of ‘Managing Retailing’, shares with Point Of Purchase, his insights on consumer behavior trends post Covid-19 and what brands and retail solution providers can do to address the new challenges and win back consumer confidence. Presented below are excerpts from the interview.
NILKAMAL STEPS UP WITH COVID-19 RELATED PRODUCTS
The COVID-19 crisis has seen many manufacturers in the retail fixtures, materials, display, merchandising, and other retail solutions segments rising to the occasion by getting into the manufacture of medical gears, beds, and face shields, all critical needs today. Established industry player Nilkamal for example has rolled out a wide range of exclusive products like Quick COVID Beds, TravelGUARD & VirusGUARD, taking the battle against COVID-19 to a new level. The company has successfully supplied over 15000 hospital beds to emergency centers which were set up in a record time of 2 weeks. Mihir Parekh, Executive Director at Nilkamal Limited – BubbleGUARD, in an exclusive chat with Point of Purchase, shares more details about these innovative solutions.
Fitch sees petrol, diesel prices aligning with crude in medium term
Fitch's assessment is based on the assumption that crude oil prices will moderate going forward.
Zinc Becomes Dearer
Amidst the commodity price inflation, Ashish Bhatia with Sumesh Soman checks the bearing on zinc in its various forms for the components industry.
KitKat's two fingers to choc lovers
GOING UP Cost of KitKats
Nestlé adds to price rise warnings as costs bite
More to come: Nestlé, which makes Nespresso, as advertised by George Clooney, has already hiked prices by more than 5% this year
City braced for Russia to default on debt payments
Russia on brink: $117 million of government bond repayments are due today but are set to go unpaid for the first time since 1998
Soaring costs add to higher prices for household staples
KitKat and Nescafe maker Nestle has increased prices of its goods and warned of more rises on the way. Another company behind well-known household brands, Reckitt Benckiser, said it too was being forced to hike prices to reflect its soaring costs.
Boss of KitKat in UK flit spat
Level-up guru to move sweets production abroad
Q4 PREDICTION Fitch: India fuel demand recovery to continue
INDIA'S FUEL DEMAND will continue to recover through the current quarter, as the easing of Covid-19 pandemic-related restrictions boosts economic activity, Fitch Ratings said on Monday, adding a caveat that this was subject to the risk of a resurgence in infections and the resultant impact on economy and mobility.
फिच ने चालू वित्त वर्ष में जीडीपी वृद्धि का अनुमान घटाकर 8.7 फीसद किया
फिच ने राजकोषीय घाटा बढ़ने की आशंका जताई है। उसने कहा कि हमने वित्त वर्ष 2021-22 में केंद्र सरकार के लिए जीडीपी (विनिवेश को छोड़कर) में 7.2 फीसद घाटे का अनुमान लगाया है।
Heed past lessons to avoid deeper plunge
An announcement from Fitch Ratings last July 12 has set off alarm signals as the nation continued to grapple with COVID-19: