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FMCG sectors to show an upward growth if planned effectively during the Indian festive season

Tips that can help FMCG companies to create an enhanced growth trajectory this season

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FMCG sectors to show an upward growth if planned effectively during the Indian festive season

The festive season is around the corner and the country or rather the world is still grappling with the new normal, as the pandemic has modified multiple consumer trends. The last few weeks of India’s unlock phase have resulted in an improvement in consumer sentiment and prompted stronger demand for certain product categories. According to me, this festive season could be a watershed moment especially for the FMCG industry wherein industry participants could see growth & considerable restoration to the pre-pandemic business ecosystem, if carefully planned.

Undoubtedly, the onset of the worldwide crisis and its unfortunate repercussions in form of lockdowns to restricted unlock, a decline in consumer demand, cost-cutting & layoff etc. came as a challenging phase for some of India’s largest FMCG players. This also reflected in their overall first-quarter performance. Normalcy in terms of consumer demand seems to be returning albeit with some interesting trends and to capitalize on this slow yet visible recovery, companies must be agile, active & adept.

On that note, here are some observations and thoughts that can help FMCG companies to create an enhanced growth trajectory.

Acute focus on the product portfolio

Focusing on the product portfolio is not only a critical aspect but an indispensable one. As several research reports and articles have indicated, the consumption patterns have seen a tectonic shift during this pandemic and these behavioral trends are here to stay. It is crucial that companies focus on building, marketing & distributing a streamlined product portfolio and which focuses on addressing needs like health & hygiene, immunity, snacking, etc. It is critical to have a ‘value-for-money’ product portfolio that appeals to the customer.

E-commerce in strong form

Recently, I read that e-commerce sales for a large FMCG player doubled in the first quarter of FY 20-21 as demand for innovative & affordable products got a shot in the arm. It is no surprise that robust digital presence & online sales are going to be unmissable drivers of growth for all FMCG companies across the country & the globe. However, a point to note is that creating an online sales channel just as an alternative to conventional distribution channels may not be sufficient. It is essential that companies focus on enhancing their digital presence, building a suitable product portfolio for customers online, firming up the supply chain to ensure efficiency, and analyze collected consumer data to design better products & experience.

Be transparent & communicate often

If there were an interesting silver lining to this pandemic, it is better awareness and propensity to consume holistic information about products, trends, scenarios, etc. Taking a cue from this interesting aspect, the way FMCG players market their products to consumers is evolving and to win favorable consumer sentiment, companies should ensure that they are honest & regular in communicating with their patrons. In my opinion, companies should invest in initiatives that encourage consumer awareness, support sustainability, foster improvement in living conditions of less privileged, etc.

Similarly, the ideal way to place your brand in the business market would be understanding what the consumers need the most right now and opt for a holistic approach while designing products, campaigns & outreach. Businesses can stay on top of their game amidst the festive season-cum pandemic era, despite the situation if they can leverage consumers’ demands and current market trends.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house. Unless otherwise noted, the author is writing in his/her personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be thought to represent official ideas, attitudes, or policies of any agency or institution.

Mihir Mehta

Mihir Mehta is SVP, Ashika Capital Limited

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