FMCG firms still keen on TV advertising in India

29 January 2010

NEW DELHI: The number of TV ads in the personal care, food and beverage categories increased in India last year, a trend fuelled by major players like Hindustan Unilever and Coca-Cola.

According AdEx India, the research firm, the volume of television commercials promoting personal care brands climbed by 64% in the fast-growing economy over the course of 2009.

Hindustan Unilever, the FMCG giant, was responsible for almost a third of these spots, having boosted its adspend by two-thirds during the last quarter.

Reckitt Benckiser and Colgate Palmolive both generated totals of 9%, followed by Pond's India, a sub-unit of Hindustan Unilever, on 8%.

This compared with figures of just 4% recorded by other multinational operators such as Procter & Gamble, L'Oréal and Johnson & Johnson.

In terms of specific products, "toilet soaps", examples of which include HUL's Lux and Wipro's Santoor, were the most widely-advertised goods in this sector, with a 38% share, ahead of toothpaste, on 15%.

As previously reported, "fairness creams" are attracting heightened interest from both consumers and manufacturers like Nivea and Emami in India at present.

These offerings contributed 13% of all personal care ads in the last 12 months, with Vaseline Healthy White Body and Fair & Lovely among the brands vying for shoppers' attention.

AdEx also reported that the amount of TV advertising for companies in the food and beverage industry expanded by 45% on an annual basis last year.

Within this, products in Coca-Cola's portfolio enjoyed the most on-screen exposure, with Cadbury's confectionary goods in second, and PepsiCo, which owns brands like Desi Beats and Aliva, in third.

"Aerated soft drinks" was the largest single category in the food and beverage segment overall, with a 19% share, with milk drinks on 10%, chocolate on 9%, and biscuits on 8%.

Services, a wide-ranging group which included pay-TV and internet service providers, as well as fast-food chains, registered a 20% increase in its television output in 2009.

Tata Sky was the most prominent player in this diverse area, according to AdEx India, with Dish TV, Bharti Airtel, McDonald's and Yum Restaurants also all making the top ten.

Data sourced from Indian Television; additional content by Warc staff