Mankind Pharma has recently expanded its OTC (Over the Counter) range of products by incorporating Health OK, a multivitamin tablet and food supplement, by signing two Bollywood superstars Anil Kapoor and Ranveer Singh. Mankind Pharma is in discussion with the Indian and Russian government for supplies and the pricing to distribute Russia’s Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine.
In conversation with Medianews4u, Joy Chatterjee, General Manager, Sales & Marketing at Mankind Pharma, spoke about the Health OK, performance in the regional markets, marketing strategies, and more.
Speaking on Health OK and its relevance, Chatterjee said, “In our research, we came across that people want three things from multivitamins that build immunity, energy level, and overall health. Since 2013, Health Ok has been a part of the drug category and has recently been incorporated in the OTC category as a food supplement. The decision came at a time when the country is grappling with the COVID-19 pandemic, and there is an increased focus on preventive healthcare.”
He continued, “Today’s generation works around the clock with a hectic schedule combined with stress, skipping meals, and deteriorating overall health. Hence, Health Ok is a perfect solution made up of unique formulations of Natural Ginseng and Taurine for maintaining energy, 20 multivitamin, and minerals for improving overall health, and Vitamin C, D, and Zinc, for building Immunity. The brand is fully committed to satisfy the aspiring needs and help consumers to get the best quality products.”
Speaking on signing Bollywood actors Anil Kapoor and Ranveer Singh to promote the product, Chatterjee said, “To intensify and aware people of the product the brand associated Anil Kapoor and Ranveer Singh, to spread the message of a healthy and energetic lifestyle.
Ranveer Singh is a synonym for Energy, whereas Anil Kapoor is a synonym for overall health and Immunity. Both the actors perfectly match the product proposition and give the necessary attention which any new product demands.”
Commenting on the marketing strategies incorporated for the product, he said, “The multivitamins market has enormous scope. If we look at the figures, the multivitamin is Rs 1210 crores market, while the mineral market stands at Rs 2082 crore market. Only 37% of Indians take vitamins and mineral supplements, and that also not regularly. So the scope of growth is huge. We want to highlight the product benefits with the help of our brand ambassadors.”
Speaking on the brand’s influencer marketing activities, Chatterjee said, “Our objective is to diversify influencers activity by collaborating with different sets of regional influencers because we have noticed that it helps us in getting leverage from influencers which gives us more engagement and traction. In recent times, we have collaborated with different influencers depending on the matter we are catering upon. Apart from regional influencers, we are also focusing on regional actors to amplify the message and resonate better with the target audience.”
“In recent times, we have collaborated with influencers like Shrenu Parikh, Ketaki Mategaonkar, Koushani, and others for Acne Star; Marathi theatre & film actor Bhau Kadam, Anand Mohan for Gas-O-Fast, along with our brand ambassador Sunny Leone,” he added.
Last year, the brand roped in Anushka Sharma as the brand ambassador for Prega News, but this year it has gone one step ahead and has partnered with Bengali film actress, Srabanti Chatterjee as the regional brand ambassador with the aim to intensify its reach and regional connection in West Bengal.
Manforce Condom’s witnessed a steady growth in sales during the pandemic period.
“While consumers prefer to buy essentials during the lockdown period, we have seen a trend where people looked for storing all durable essential use in one month cycle. A shift from smaller Stock Keeping Units (SKUs) to bigger SKU in Condoms is still an ongoing trend. There was a demand in the market, and Manforce witnessed a steady growth in sales. The sales of condoms did see a boom with everyone stocking up in advance,” Chatterjee said.
Elaborating on the marketing and advertising strategies and budgets for the brand, Chatterjee, said, “Since the beginning of the year, we have introduced new products in new categories like ‘Safekind’ (personal hygiene), a toilet seat disinfectant spray. ‘Health OK’ shifted into the OTC category. Our plan this year is focused on increasing our distribution in all dimensions and strengthening the e-commerce and digital presence. Like last year, we are increasing our digital spends this year as well. We are focusing more on digital and on TV where people are spending more time such as prime time.”
He continued, “Though, we have started focusing on the print medium also. This has come after a year gap, this month only we have released full-page ads in leading newspapers to promote our product, ‘Health OK’. As far as marketing budgets are concerned. They are well defined and divided among all our major Brands such as – Manforce, AcneStar, Gas-O-Fast, and Prega News as per the internal benchmarks.
According to Chatterjee, they define the brand targets based on internal and external reports and strive to achieve them in the best organic way possible. ROI in traditional terms are calculated based on numbers, but in Mankind, we calculate our Brand equity strength through various brand track exercises.”
“Currently, we are spending 20-25 percent of our overall sales on digital marketing, and we are planning to take it up to 30-35 percent in 2021. However, the numbers will be re-evaluated after a year,” Chatterjee added.
Talking about the strategies in the regional markets, he said, “We track numbers with both external and internal sources to track our growth. India is not only a big country but distinctively different from one state to another. This year the plan is to decentralize the strategy on a state-to-state basis. As our brand has an enormous reach, it becomes highly effective for a brand like us to focus on each state- depending on the size and reach. 60 percent of our television spends are directed towards various regional markets, in which markets like West Bengal, Maharashtra, and Punjab have a good reach. 40 percent is catered for HSM (Hindi-speaking markets).”
The brand’s focus for this year is to increase its reach in the regional markets across India and make its presence dominant in different product categories.
“Right now, Manforce holds 30-32 percent of the market share and aiming to touch 40 percent by this year. Similarly, we are focusing on Gas-O-Fast and AcneStar to strengthen their position in the market. Though for AcneStar, the market is very unorganized, and we are working on it to make it a known brand in the coming years,” added Chatterjee.
For Prega News, it holds 82 per cent market share currently, and aiming to grow the market share in the coming years.
During the last year, D2C adoption in India has been on the rise as more and more companies are tapping the potential to grow their business.
The brand has also launched its Direct to Consumer ( D2C) website recently.
“As Covid-19 has transformed consumer behavior buying patterns, people have become more inclined towards e-commerce to buy daily essentials. This trend indicates a massive opportunity for D2C brands to succeed. In the last few months, our D2C website has shown promoting results. As per our understanding, the platform can help companies to achieve at least a 15 per cent- 25% profit after operating costs,” concluded Chatterjee.