Anil Thakraney: Brand Modi versus Brand Rahul

24 Dec,2012

By Anil Thakraney


Human beings are brands too. The same principles of product quality, marketing effort, positioning and consumer image apply. Which is why we must evaluate them in terms of pure marketing logic. Today, let’s take up the case of Brand Gandhi Junior and Brand Narendra Modi.


Brand Modi is a powerful brand, and we already know that. Consumers are crystal clear on the positioning, and the brand consistently delivers what it promises. Brand Modi primarily appeals to the emotion, and backs that up with rational logic. The ‘Hindu Fighter’ image appeals to the majority in the state of Gujarat. And for the fence-sitters, it’s the ‘development’ platform that works. In that sense, Brand Modi is perceived to be a complete brand. Therefore even if the rest of India does not favour the primary image of this brand, the saleability increases on account of the secondary promise. This dual positioning will be of immense value for Brand Modi in 2014. What makes this brand even stronger is its charismatic personality, which is supported by aggressive marketing and promotion. Consumers like to be associated with the brand, and this further strengthens saliency.


In short, a clear market positioning, consistent delivery, powerful brand values and a huge consumer connect. Clear winner.


The case of Brand Rahul is the exact opposite. There is no perceptible brand positioning, therefore the consumer is unclear on what it stands for. What makes things worse is that the house from which this brand emanates, its USP, has lost saliency over the years. In addition, Brand Rahul seldom gets promoted in the market place, therefore consumers are kept in the dark on its efficacy. And no one puts money on an ‘enigmatic’ brand, unless it’s a top-end perfume. In addition, on the few occasions Brand Rahul has been made visible in the market, its performance has been a disaster. Therefore, the brand connotes negative values.


In short, vague brand imagery, lack of product performance and poor marketing effort. Clear loser.


So if the battle of 2014 is going to be fought between these two brands, simple marketing logic tells us who’s the favourite one to win. Unless, of course, Brand Rahul does a complete turnaround in the coming period, and I doubt that’s going to happen. It’s a hopeless brand.




PS: Incredible stuff. It’s impossible to believe these are illustrations, not photographs. Now this is art I truly adore. Hope to find such talent in India… imagine the millions of rupees advertisers can save by avoiding over-paid photographers.




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