What is the history of your premium brands, how do they promise to deliver better value over and above normal cement and how they have transformed over the years? How do you think your premium brands effected your top- and bottom-lines?
Dalmia Cement, country's fourth largest producer of cement, launched its first premium brand, Dalmia DSP Cement in the year 2016. Dalmia DSP is a specialised, one-of-its-kind offering by Dalmia Cement specifically engineered for concreting or "Dhalai". The product offers several advantages which we have been able to call out as clear benefits for the customer.
Some of these are:
How you have taken advantage of introduction of PPC and PSC in building your premium brands?
We have used blended cements like PPC and PSC to our advantage on the platform of sustainability. With the lowest carbon footprint in the cement world, we have been able to reinforce our commitment to sustainability.
What factors have played a strong role in your branding exercises - what worked and what not? How do you link packaging strategies to premium brands?
At Dalmia Cement, we have always remained at the forefront of innovation on product and packaging. We found through a market research exercise that packaging is an important parameter while purchasing premium cement. Therefore, we were amongst the first players to use BOPP packaging for our premium product offering and LPP bags for our mainline brand. This has worked well in growing the business over the years.
On the Brand building front we continue to streamline efforts in building memorability in the minds of consumers for our product offering and provide them a sense of assurance with our service offerings too.
Some of the levers which have played a strong role in building our brand are:
"Within cement category, we have been able to grab a significant pie of the premium market within three years of our premium brand launch.."
What are the time and costs involved in creating a premium brand for an all-India player or for a regional player? Give examples of how brand transition/ continuity is handled?
Establishing a brand is a matter of building, communicating and delivering on a promise to consumers. This can take many years whether it is in cement or any other product category.
Within cement category, we have been able to grab a significant pie of the premium market within three years of our premium brand launch. The costs of creating premium brand is typically high in the initial years mainly because of launch expenses and sustained marketing communication.
We had a strong brand in Tamil Nadu and Kerala by the name of "Vajram". We have successfully transitioned this brand to Dalmia Cement in the recent past, without disrupting the market at all. This has been possible due to proper communication to channel partners, influencers and end consumers.
How relevant will cement brands be in India after, say, 20 years, particularly when bulk cement use is rapidly growing in urban centres?
It is true that bulk cement usage is growing in urban centres in India but still a significant proportion of the demand is from non-urban areas and is likely to continue in the same manner for many years to come.
Also, bulk cement which is typically supplied through bulkers or is in the form of ready mix concrete (RMC) has its own opportunity of creating brands and delivering on a set of value propositions to its customers. It is currently being done by some players in the cement industry and is likely to grow over time.