How to assess an opportunity for a new FMCG Brand : Pranav Jha

Leader; Pranav Jha,  Ex – Reckitt Benckiser

Hello and welcome. My name is Pranav Jha. It is a pleasure to get this opportunity to share with you the approach we used to identify an opportunity for launching an FMCG brand. I hope that you find the approach practical and beneficial.

Before I start, I would like to take a moment to acknowledge the team at MBA Shots. I think it is a unique platform that they have set out to create; one that will facilitate the sharing of ideas and experiences, I wish them the very best in this endeavor. With that let us dive in!

We need two things for a successful brand to launch a good idea and excellent execution of the idea. In this presentation today, I shall focus only on identifying a good idea. Before I get started, a couple of things that I wanted to share with you.


First is the difference between launching a brand and a product. When we’re talking about launching a product, there is an implicit assumption that it is being launched under an existing brand. Whenever you’re launching something to an existing brand, that places limitations on what you can or cannot do, as far as the new product launch is concerned, which is stemming from the brand’s equity and positioning.


For example, in an earlier role, I was part of the team that was responsible for launching an extension of the Harpic brand. Now Harpic, as we all know, in India is synonymous with toilet cleaning. Now that is a fantastic asset to have, as far as growing the existing business is concerned but an incredible challenge when it comes to diversifying the brand. So when we spoke with consumers, and we talked to them, we asked them how and how we could expand the brand and what extensions of the brand they would be willing and able to use.


The overwhelming response that we got was, if you were to launch something like a kitchen cleaner under the brand, that would be a product that they would not be very comfortable using this thing of think of it from the consumer’s point of view, they’re currently using Harpic to clean the yuckiest place in the house, which is the toilet. To go from that to using Harpic also to clean the kitchen, which is the cleanest part of the house was too much of a jump for the consumer.

So what we had to do was to take baby steps and finally ended up expanding the brand from just cleaning the toilet, to cleaning the entire bathroom, all the surfaces in the bathroom. And that was the genesis of the Harpic bathroom cleaner.


And I say it with a little bit of pride, that this was an idea that was extremely well accepted by the consumers. And it was one of the best launches of new products that we had under the Harpic brand in many, many years.


The reason I shared this example was to make the point that we are going to be talking about launching a new brand with full freedom and no limitations and constraints as to how we position it. Also, the approach is very entrepreneurial, and therefore suited for a startup rather than for a corporate setup, where anyway you would imagine that they would have a formal and standardized approach for coming with new product and brand launches, moving along.


Before I get into the details of the approach, just one other point that I wanted to share with regards to the application of the approach. So the approach can obviously be used to come up with a new brand idea but in addition to that, it can also be used to evaluate if an idea is feasible or viable, and also compare ideas. So if you have more than one idea, and you want to compare the two and see which one makes more sense, you can use this application there as well. Let’s dive in.


The process that we’re going to be talking about uses the Funnel Approach, the intent is to cast your net wide, and look at as many different opportunities and ideas as you possibly can. And then follow a process to shortlist and eliminate those ideas and finally arrive at the best idea possible. So we’re going to follow the five-step process:


  1. The first step is the Category Selection. In this one, the intent is to select one or two categories from the gazillion categories in the FMCG space.
  2. The next one, which is going to after this is the Category Deep Dive, where we build a comprehensive understanding of the shortlisted categories.
  3. Thereafter we are going to Understand the Consumer. I will be expanding on this in the following slides.
  4. Once we have completed the first three steps, we shall be in a position to Lock Down on the Idea.
  5. And the last and final step of the process is to Test the Idea to make sure that we are onto something meaningful, relevant, and have a chance to succeed. It is critical to test the idea because you want to do this before you commercialize the idea and invest a lot more time, effort, and resources to bring this idea to the market.







Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *