India, with its massive population of over a billion people, is a vibrant and enticing market for brands looking to expand their reach. Teeming with millions of potential customers, it's no wonder businesses are eager to tap into this market. Of course, expanding into India has its ups and downs, considering the sheer variety of products and services already embraced by the local audience. So, if you're thinking of launching your brand in India, it's crucial to familiarize yourself with the marketing strategies that resonate with the locals.
Start by diving into India's digital landscape, where the future of marketing lies. Digital marketing has taken the world by storm, transcending borders and connecting people globally. Out of India's 1.4 billion-strong population, an impressive 1.1 billion are already connected via mobile devices. Additionally, 692 million Indians are internet users, with 467 million actively participating on social media platforms. This means there's a huge audience waiting to be reached through platforms like YouTube, Instagram, WhatsApp, and Facebook. So, why not join the conversation and make your mark in this thriving market?
Identifying which platform the population mostly uses is helpful in determining where to launch your campaign. Don’t get us wrong though–there’s still a plethora of things you need to know before you can successfully launch your brand.
Look no further because we already have a list of the best marketing tips in India! Read on and learn how to enter India with a bang.
7 Tips for Marketing in India ⬇️
1. Know Who To Talk To in India
Choose the appropriate audience segment
With over a billion people calling India home, it's a tall order to think you could captivate them all with a single marketing campaign, right? That's where audience segmentation comes into play.
Audience segmentation is a savvy marketing technique where brands identify and focus on a particular subgroup within their target audience. This helps them deliver tailored messages that resonate more powerfully, fostering stronger connections and making a greater impact.
In India, companies are turning to street-level segmentation for an up-close and personal understanding of their customers. This approach provides valuable insights on a street-by-street basis, revealing what people like to buy, need, and want to see. Such a focused strategy not only helps brands zero in on their goals but also prevents newcomers from being overwhelmed by India's astonishing diversity. Other popular segmentation methods include demographic, behavioral, psychographic, and geographic.
To put things into perspective, let’s take a look at Reebok’s Girls Don’t Fight campaign. This video content honed in on Indian women who have been raised to believe they shouldn't argue, react, or fight back. Empowering those who've been silenced, the campaign also spoke to women who already embrace this progressive mindset. With just a 90-second video, Reebok effectively connected with their target audience, demonstrating the power of audience segmentation.
2. Do Your Research
Get to know the market
Launching a successful marketing campaign is all about getting to know your audience, and in India, that means diving headfirst into research. To truly understand the Indian market, you'll need to let go of preconceived notions about consumers and be open to discovering the unique facets of this fascinating culture.
India's rich history stretches back over 4,500 years, and its culture is steeped in long-standing practices and beliefs. To make your mark in this market, you'll need to acquaint yourself with the norms and steer clear of potential taboos.
For instance, it's essential to know that Devanagari and Hindi are the most widely used writing systems in India. Also, be mindful that Hinduism and Buddhism are the country's predominant religions, which influence everything from food preferences (many Hindus are vegetarians) to the reverence of certain animals, such as cows.
Expanding into India requires a deep understanding of not just religion and customs, but also laws, geography, and more. To make this journey a little smoother, consider teaming up with a local partner who's already well-versed in the country's ins and outs. With the right knowledge, you'll be better prepared to navigate this vibrant market and make a lasting impact.
3. Personalized Branding in India
Localize your products and adapt to market taste
As you delve into your research, you'll quickly discover that adapting your branding to different cultural backgrounds is crucial. The image you've built in Western countries might not have the same impact in India.
Many global businesses have stumbled in India because they failed to adapt, leading more Indians to favor local brands over international ones. When it comes to food, cosmetics, and apparel, Indian consumers often prefer homegrown products that cater to their unique needs, diets, and lifestyles.
Take Dunkin' Donuts as a cautionary tale. Known for its grab-and-go breakfast meals in America, the brand faltered in India because it didn't account for the local morning routines. Indians typically prefer a sit-down breakfast with their families, enjoying local cuisine rather than sugary baked goods. Dunkin' Donuts' inability to cater to these preferences ultimately led to its decline in the Indian market.
Remember, the definition of brand success can vary significantly from country to country. To truly flourish in India, it's essential to adapt and embrace the local culture.
4. Don’t Sleep On Social Media
Utilize the most-used social media platforms
Did you know that over 467 million people in India use social media, spending almost 3 hours a day glued to their screens? Tapping into this digital realm with your marketing campaign could help you reach a broader audience quickly and cost-effectively.
In fact, a large percentage of Indian social media users regularly browse these platforms to discover new products and engage with their favorite brands. Some of the most popular platforms in India include WhatsApp, Instagram, Facebook, Telegram, Twitter, and YouTube. Additionally, social media ads rank as the third most influential source of online brand discovery in the country.
So, if you're feeling a bit overwhelmed by all these stats, just remember this: social media is where the Indian market comes to life every single day. If you want to make a splash with your marketing campaign in India, be sure to have a solid social media strategy in place through the help of a trusted social media agency, or you might just miss out on a world of opportunities!
5. Don’t Make Their Pockets Hurt
Be aware of the market’s price sensitivity
Before you make your grand debut in India, it's crucial to nail down your pricing strategy.
Despite India's booming economy, a significant portion of the population falls within the low and middle-income brackets. This means price sensitivity plays a big role in their purchasing decisions, and businesses with sky-high prices might struggle to find their footing.
Tackling the price issue can be challenging for global companies, but with some clever marketing strategies tailored to local consumer habits, it's possible to overcome this hurdle.
Some brands have found success with sales and discount promotions that appeal to budget-conscious shoppers. Others have offered products in smaller quantities, effectively bringing down the price without compromising quality. And then there's the Price Sensitive Meter technique, which helps brands gauge consumer price preferences and adjust their offerings accordingly.
By understanding the unique financial landscape of the Indian market, you can craft a pricing strategy that resonates with consumers and sets you up for success.
6. Influence Is Power
Utilize influencer marketing strategies
Did you know that over one-fifth of social media users in India follow influencers and experts across various platforms? These opinion leaders captivate their audiences with entertainment, inspiration, and trustworthy insights, influencing their followers' purchasing decisions.
So, what does this mean for brands looking to expand in India? Well, partnering with influencers can be a game-changer. These social media stars have already done the heavy lifting by building loyal followings, maintaining consistent engagement, and earning credibility within the Indian social media community. Having your brand endorsed by someone trusted can skyrocket your brand image, exposure, and awareness.
Take Kinder India, for example. This Italian chocolate brand successfully made its way into the Indian market by leveraging influencer marketing. Kinder teamed up with mom influencers to promote their products on Instagram using the hashtag #KhaoKheloKhushRaho. By collaborating with these family-oriented influencers, Kinder conveyed the message that their products encourage children to cherish family ties and traditions during Diwali, adding a touch of joy to the celebrations.
So, why not explore the power of influencer marketing to boost your brand's presence in India? It might just be the winning strategy you're looking for!
7. 3 T’s of Content
Telling, Trendy, and Time-Saving
When crafting your marketing content for India, keep these three T's in mind: Telling, Trendy, and Time-Saving.
Telling. Make sure your content isn't just filler. Indian consumers appreciate engaging storytelling and easy-to-digest content that captures their attention.
Trendy. Over 60% of Indian consumers say they're driven by the desire to "stay on trend." So, either tap into the trends your audience is already buzzing about or create your own irresistible trend they'll want to join in on.
Time-Saving. A whopping 57% of urban Indians prefer products and content that save them time. Position your brand as an all-in-one solution, offering efficient services that require minimal effort from your customers.
By incorporating these three T's into your marketing strategy, you'll be well on your way to connecting with the Indian market in a meaningful and impactful way.
Marketing in India is far from easy, given that there are thousands of competitors that may look like you. To avoid mistakes and to see success, you must be well-prepared before launching your campaign. The tips above have been proven and tested by several brands that have come before you. Learn from their best practices, avoid their mistakes, and you’re sure to do well in the India market.
AJ Marketing | Unlock the Power of Influence