The world has completely changed post-COVID, disrupting set business decorum and the pattern of everyday living. Globally, governments have become very vigilant on what they import, and consumers have become very wary of products they purchase and consume. The pandemic and the lockdown has made people rethink their consumption patterns. Even as global trade is slowly limping back to normalcy, a lot of global brands are looking at cutting imports from China or shifting their manufacturing base out of China, seeking other geographies for business.
Under these conditions, Indian brands, both large and small, are waking up to the immense potential for international trade, as global markets are now increasingly eager to accept brands from countries other than China. While setting up manufacturing hubs in India holds immense potential, and the government is supportive of this shift, leveraging the immediate potential of international trade can help Indian manufacturers to accelerate growth and tide over the current slowdown.
When exploring global markets, it becomes increasingly important for brands to build a strong positioning and narrative, especially when it comes to SME/ MSMSE companies, who previously might not have felt the need for a strong branding and communication strategy. Here, it is also important to note that consumers today, both in India and internationally, have changed preferences, post-COVID. They now prefer products that are organic or at least devoid of harmful chemicals, and something which comes from an ethical entrepreneurial venture. So these are values which are now much more important than individual product attributes, thus making a strong narrative extremely important for a brand.
Listed herewith are 3 important factors where PR can help brands build an internationally relevant narrative that can help them explore newer geographies:
- Creating a brand positioning: Effective PR and communication strategy helps brands create a unique positioning that showcases the brand attributes, in addition to highlighting the core products and services. These may range from features like being eco-friendly, providing employment to the local community, engaging in CSR activities or just an empathetic stand to the current global scenario. Creating a narrative which is relevant and impactful is much more crucial in building a strong positioning for brands than to talk only about its core offerings. And PR can help create just the right kind of stories and build conversations around the brand philosophy.
- Business Collaboration: Creating a unique brand positioning helps build awareness about the brand and this in return, leads to positive exposure and conversations. When exploring potential for international trade, it is vital to have the right sort of partnerships and collaborations, which can help make the venture profitable and successful. Leveraging PR to build conversations that can attract the right kind of international buyers, collaborators, stakeholders and partners, is thus very crucial to success.
- Loyal consumer base and ease of business: From easy documentation to supportive international policies for business, a well-positioned brand can reap the benefits of excellent brand narratives. Be it customer loyalty, stakeholder support and ease of business or just simple aspects as recognition and validation, excellent PR can help build a long term, consistent and supportive market environment for a brand to grow and thrive across countries.
Authored by Anindita Gupta, Co-Founder, Scenic Communication.