Name & Roll No Course Semester Paper Code Faculty Name Date of Submission

: Anirban Bhowmick, MBA/09/48 : MBA : IV : CONSUMER BEHAVIOR, MB 406 : Prof. Sourav Banerjee : April 30, 2011

CASE STUDY – LUX…THE BEAUTY SOAP
Questions for discussion: 1. Lux has traditionally positioned the brand by influencing consumer beliefs and attitudes by highlighting on the theme of “beauty soaps of film stars”. In your opinion, why has HUL adopted this approach instead of highlighting certain specific brand features or benefits?
HUL has always recognized the value of using spokespeople who are admired by the class as well as the mass; and so has always associated the advertisements for LUX with celebrities belonging to the entertainment industry. It is a rough estimate that 20% of all TV commercials feature celebrities, and advertisers pay hundreds of crores of rupees for their services. Normally there lies immense considerations for the company before it finally decides to endorse its products by celebrities – these are dangers of overshadowing the product and being overexposed, the target audience’s receptivity, and other potential risks to the advertiser due to sudden image crisis of the celebrity endorser. HUL has successfully managed over the years to avert these risks by careful selection of celebrities, who mostly belonged to the top performing class in the entertainment industry. For example, Leela Chitnis, Hema Malini, Sridevi, Juhi, Kareena, Aishwarya and even Sharukh Khan has endorsed the brand and has always bought a star power and presence to the advertising that attracted attention and made it memorable, yet has never overshadowed the brand they were promoting. The advertisements created a strong feeling among consumers that using the soap they could probably look different from the mass. These celebrities had a huge fan following and that proved highly beneficial for the company to break through the clutter easily. One of the most important considerations in choosing a celebrity endorser is how well the individual matches with and is received by the advertiser’s target audience. LUX had always chosen celebrities who can be well associated with the product and thereby boost its sales. Highlighting on the theme “Beauty soap of film stars”, LUX wanted to develop a strong connection with the consumers by influencing on their belief and attitude that the soap has certain features and benefits which has influenced the industry leaders to endorse their brand. The soap must have a better quality or else celebrities would not have been interested in endorsing the brand – they would obviously not like to hamper their own image by associating with a wrong brand only for monetary benefits. The message was clear and transparent – highlighting only on features or benefits would make the advertisement look dull and consumers would easily switch over to other brands. A celebrity’s behavior may pose a risk to the company. HUL could manage to avert these risks easily by their careful selection of celebrities – the ones with more power in their performance rather than seeking attention on scandals. Also the personality of the celebrity matched the product and company’s image. The advertising was

focused on emotional appeal more than the rational appeal. Thus LUX could position itself successfully in the heart of the consumers rather than on their minds.

2. If you are to expand the base of the market by suitably changing the consumer’s existing beliefs and attitudes what kind of strategies will you adopt, eg changing beliefs about the brand? Add some new attributes; choose a new theme of brand positioning, etc. 3. As a brand manager of Lux, given its long-established brand equity, you want to enter into new product categories. What kind of personal use product categories will you venture into? 4. What will be the nature of your communication to differentiate the brand from other “me-too” or similar quality brands of toilet soaps?

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