In his last address to the nation, PM Narendra Modi had made a clarion call to support local brands. “During this time of crisis it has made us realise the importance of local traders who have helped the country sustain during this long period of Lockdown due to the Coronavirus“ he said.
Stressing that people need to buy local products and spread the word, PM Modi said, “I am proud to recollect that I had asked citizens to buy Khadi and to support handloom workers. In a short time, demand and sales touched record levels. Khadi became a big brand because of you and we got good and effective results.”
This has of course started a debate on what is actually local, are big MNCs established in India, hiring locals and manufacturing here be termed local? Or we are talking about solely Indian brands?
As per many Experts despite the PM’s call, India will remain an open market and home-grown brands are not going to get any preferential treatment from the government. They have to win the consumer on the back of quality, innovation, pricing, and the right marketing mix.
We at MediaNews4u have spoken to people from various sectors, startups and brand consultants to understand as to what how they have interpreted the term ‘Be Vocal for Local’.
Today we speak to Mohit Malhotra, Dabur India Ltd Chief Executive Officer, Raghuvar Seth, Head of Marketing Taneira, Titan Company Limited and Anushka Iyer, Founder and CEO, Wiggles.
Mohit Malhotra, Dabur India Ltd Chief Executive Officer
As the world prepares for life after COVID-19, Economies across the globe are more likely to look inwards. The same will be true for India with ‘Made in India’ being a key factor that is likely to influence purchase decision of consumers. The ‘Be Vocal for Local’ campaign has the potential of harnessing India’s traditional knowledge like Ayurveda, our diversity and even our indigenous products that are an integral part of our identity.
As a brand, Dabur evokes feelings of Trust, Health and Well-Being in the minds of our consumers. With our ‘Vocal for Local’ campaign, we are highlighting the Indian roots of Dabur and our 135-year-old heritage of caring for every Indian household’s health and well-being. Our brand communications around #Vocal4Local reflect our Ayurvedic and Indian heritage, and our strong sense of pride about ‘Made in India, by Indians, for Indians’. We have started promoting these ads on digital media and also on television, particularly on the News channels.
Raghuvar Seth, Head of Marketing Taneira, Titan Company Limited
Being ‘woke’ or sensitive to the social implications of one’s buying behavior is vital. In India, the ‘be vocal for local’ call is a post-CoVID-19 recognition of the fact that we will have to be cognizant of the support local industries need in order to emerge stronger.
At their core they invoke the same concept with local referring to something in a closer proximity of the product provenance and using locally available materials and supporting local industries eg. using local materials to build your home or fresh produce for your Food and Swadeshi extending to the boundaries of the nation.
Anushka Iyer, Founder and CEO, Wiggles
Our interpretation for the term ‘Be Vocal for Local’ is very much in sync with the Indian sentiment. Being a home-grown and local pet care brand, out products and services are attuned to Indian Standards and requirements. We are very much for creating awareness to use Indian Brands that are sustainable & cater to all the requirements of the Indian Diaspora. From hiring local recruits to sourcing local grown produce, we do feel that being local gives us a leverage overall. We are focused on quality, ethics and customer support. Our consumers are well aware of this and continue to support and trust us although homegrown.
Wiggles being a pet care brand, which is classified under essential services has also faced a lot of challenges during the lockdown. However, we have managed to overcome them by being reachable to our pet parents and anticipating their needs for their pets. It’s safe to say that we have been resilient throughout the storm. As far as our observations can be stated, most pet parents who were unable to get global pet food brands during the lockdown sourced it from the local brands and were completely satisfied with the customer experience. So to conclude, I would say that yes there could be a possible spurt of buying ‘Swadeshi’ brands in the near future.