Role Of Maharashtra In Biscuits Category: How Parle Marie went hyperlocal with its Marathi campaign

Aishwarrya Chakraverty
Aug 30, 2021 06:18 IST
New Update
Parle Marie Maharashtra campaign

Parle Marie rolled out a hyperlocal Marathi campaign for the Maharashtra Market as a part of its Jithe Story Tithe Parle Marie regional marketing strategy. How the brand's hyperlocal strategy came about? We find out...

Parle Marie recently launched a Maharashtra-focused campaign, as part of its regional marketing strategy. Conceptualized by Thought Blurb Media, the brand's latest ad films aim to capture the timeless tea time conversations through a regional route.

Maharashtra has been on the roaster for various brands (Tata Tea being one of them), as regional campaigns for the state come in periodically. For a brand like Parle Marie, the Maharashtra market makes strategic sense - according to reports the state was the largest consumer of low price biscuits in 2017. The overall biscuit category has also been on a growth streak - a report by Kantar suggests that the category grew by 10% in March-December 2020 as opposed to 8.6% same time in 2019.

We speak with the brand-agency duo to deep-dive into Parle Marie's regional marketing strategy and understand the way forward for the brand.

Parle Marie Maharashtra-Focused Campaigns: BTS

Parle Marie launched three TVCs in Marathi. They revolve around casual conversations during tea time in different settings. The focus is on emotional connect between people in such settings, facilitated by coming together while sipping a cup of tea complemented with Parle Marie biscuits.

Mayank Shah, Sr. Category Head, Parle Products, shares, “The ultimate goal of such regional campaigns is to drive engagement and build relationships in imagery which resonates most with the local population.”

Conceptualized by Thoughtblurb Media, the latest regional ads aim to transcend generations keeping the relatability and emotional quotients high.

Vinod Kunj, CCO, Thought blurb, explains how the agency had derived the positioning of Adda Baazi from the East India market, which is also the biggest market for the brand. While continuing to establish Parle Marie as an enabler of getting together with people or Adda Baazi, he puts forth, “We have realized the same can be extended in other important markets, so now we have developed a regional campaign for Maharashtra keeping the Maharashtrian nuances intact.”

The first film, Hashtag showcases a conversation between a mother and a daughter to bridge the gap between two generations, using Marathi proverbs like ‘Gharogharimatichya chuli’, the second video is an Anniversary film evoking the fun of Adda Baazi between Maharashtrian women talking about sarees, and the third Matheran film highlights warm moments with a modern-day proposal through poetry.

Decoding The Regional Focus

According to the brand, understanding the cultural nuances within a state or even a socio-cultural region is the key to reaching and making an impact on the target audienceParle Marie leveraged this insight for its region-based marketing strategy with the rising prominence of regional languages.

As part of Parle Marie marketing campaign, the brand intended to communicate with the Maharashtra audience in idioms and phrases which are exclusive to the language and folk song style typical to the region with its essence and flavor.

For the urban culture, the insight was about youngsters who are moving away from their parents while being immersed in social media in their day-to-day lives. On the contrary, parents seem to harbor a deep interest and desire to connect with their digital native children while being a part of their conversation. Leveraging this insight, Parle Marie showcased a mother-daughter video where the former is seen jamming with her kid utilizing a Marathi in all its quirks.

Further, Shah explains, “The penetration of our products into rural India and Tier 1 and 2 towns, makes it better to connect with the people in this region in their regional language rather than in Hindi or English. Drawing on a regional marketing strategy we can have a closer look at what works for a specific region, while also ensuring a better reach to smaller/remote areas," he adds.

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'Jithe Story Tithe Parle Marie': The Making & BTS

The storytelling for all three ad films emerged from the fact that people often exchange interesting conversations during chai-time. This gave birth to ‘Jithe story. Tithe Parle Marie’, which means where there’s Parle Marie, there are stories.

Bringing any great idea to life involves deep-rooted qualitative research and even social listening as per the brand. The relevant insights knitted into the execution of the campaign goes a long way to making its mark in the cluttered market. It was no different for the regional campaign for Parle Marie, share the brand-agency duo

Kunj highlights how they wanted the films to be deeply rooted in Maharashtrian culture and hence talking to the families and deep-diving into the localized idioms and proverbs helped. These were later used in the films’ making.

“We found authentic phrases that captured the natural interactions of modern-day Maharashtrian families as well as the evolving lingo of Maharashtrian youth. We chose proverbs that were universal and woven into the very fabric of these sweet conversations that unfold over tea and Marie”, he shares

“We also keep a tab on what’s happening around and leverage our research qualitative by seeking inputs from mothers, children, doing focus group discussions, etc. That is how we try to understand cultural codes. The popular practice of Adda Baaji as practiced in West Bengal was a good build point”, adds Shah.

Highlighting some invigorating behind-the-scenes anecdotes, Kunj also shares how the on-screen chemistry of the actors can work wonders and increase the relatability factor. For the Anniversary film, the featured women engaging in fun conversations turned out to be real-life friends. “Hence, the video became more spontaneous with a story true to life”, he mentions.

Key Target Audience & Media Mix

Catering specifically to the local populace of Maharashtra, Parle Marie attempted to reach out to the Marathi-speaking people from the region.

Further, Shah mentions that the key target audience for the brand ranges from the coastal regions of Konkan to Vidarbha and metropolitan areas like Mumbai and Pune to innermost rural areas of the state.

He points, “While the rural population would reflect more with the ‘Anniversary film’, ‘Matheran’ film speaks more to the youth whereas the ‘Hashtag’ film is centered around and attempts to capture the relationship of teenagers with their parents.”

Adopting a 360-degree approach with a localized touch, Parle Marie regional marketing strategy leveraged key media channels such as YouTube, OTT platforms such as ZEE5, and Marathi-specific channels on Television.

Keeping a mix of traditional and digital, Shah shares that the marketing budget comprised percentage breakup of the mediums with 65% (or two-thirds) reserved for Television, 25% for Digital, and the remaining for the other media channels

Social Media Play

For the latest ad films, Parle Marie leveraged YouTube as the major platform for the content launch. “A lot of people have gotten in touch with me after seeing the advertisements on YouTube”, says Shah. It is the best social media platform that worked for the brand. “The other platform that works well is OTT”, he highlights.

Further, the Parle Marie campaign was shared by the actors of the ad films across Instagram, amongst others, to enhance the reach of the campaign.

For mass coverage, the brand opted for both, Television and Mobile screens to amplify reach and visibility amongst the people.

Going Beyond

Parle Marie is the third brand that has adopted the regional marketing route from the house of Parle Products. The brand shares that since they have a quality rural footprint, Parle will continue with the strategy and leverage the unity spectrum across the nation.

With the democratization of media, television is not the only medium, mobile media is now equally available in every nook and corner of the country, explains the brand. The consumption of mobile media in non-urban areas is much higher in terms of both – the data and the time spent on mobile. “For this reason, I believe that doing regional outreach will also give better dividends than long term returns as opposed to doing a national outreach in different languages”, concludes Shah.

Agency Credits:

  • Agency: thought blurb
  • Chief Creative Officer: Vinod Kunj
  • Executive Creative Director: Renu Somani
  • Executive Director: Nidha Luthra
  • Brand Solutions Director: Israa Khan

Production House:

  • Production house: Thunder Films
  • Director: Vasudeo Rane
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