Water – Branding for a precious commodity


Branded water market in India is estimated at INR 3000Cr. Water transformed into bottled water generates value and moves up in the value chain. Although most brands sell at the same price there are some brands that have gained significant popularity and acceptance among the consumers for standards and quality. It is thereby reassuring the consumer that by consuming bottled water they can feel safe. Bisleri in this segment has almost become a generic and is therefore leading the market. Over and above Bisleri, there are over 100 brands in India both known and unknown. Distribution, sole selling options, institutional sales, large capacity players etc can be the key areas of focus for various brands within the segment. Besides these there are high-end mineral water brands that are available in the modern retail

Why Brand Positioning Strategy and Packaging Design becomes very important in this segment –

In the bottled water segment there exists no product differentiation. However Oxyrich from manikchand has tried to differentiate by claiming oxygen percentage being higher and hence better. Despite that the brand is not on top of mind and this is also true of its market position both in value and volume. Therefore, some of the factors working in this segment for the successful brands can be packaging design attractiveness, brand name, positioning, distribution and exclusivity. Within the retail segment not more than two brands exists in the shelf as the volume space consumed is very high and retailers will resist to stock beyond two major brands. The challenges for a new player are multifold and hence a need for a strong strategy to position and create acceptance among both the trade and consumers alike.

Brand Strategy is the key –

In a market where the product is a commodity, branding has to create the differentiation and build perception of being better, superior etc. Besides, creating a disruptive strategy to seek a back door entry into the retailer shelf will be the key to initial acceptance and subsequently success. Differentiate at the product, packaging design, name, graphics and every other attribute that is helping build the category. In order to achieve this we will need to look at innovation and design our brand in a manner that is unique, fresh and above all very relevant. Can this be achieved? Therefore our ability in understanding the consumer, retailer, product design, brand design and every other component becomes very important. A new insight, a new dimension and a fresh approach can emerge when you combine a shared perspective and work towards a holistic solution.