Unilever is one of the most trusted consumer goods companies around the world. Unilever is known for the production and selling of more than 400 consumer goods products in the local and international market. The company continually evolves with the changes in consumer needs. The company has long-served its customers with products that could satisfy them beyond their expectation. To continually grow and gain customer’s trusts, the company keeps developing new products that are first tested and then provided to the consumers for daily consumption. Unilever has the strongest brand recognition in the local and international market. This strength of the organization comes from two core factors (Unilever, a):
- Strong and prominent roots in the local market and high first-hand knowledge of international markets and cultures,
- High level of expertise applied to provide the customers in the international market at the right time and right place at the most convenient price.
Unilever‘s Major Brands
Unilever is known for the production and selling of more than 400 brands that are highly appreciated by the consumers in both local and international market. Some of the most prominent brands include (Unilever, b);
- Becel, Flora
- Ben and Jerry’s
- Blue Band, Rama
The major brand that would be taken into consideration for this particular study would be ‘POND’S’. This study would aim to identify the major brand elements that shape the consumer’s perception in the industry. In addition, the elements of brand strategy would also be evaluated to identify the brand strategy taken into consideration by Unilever to attract and motivate the consumers to shift towards their particular product rather than any other products in the market. Moreover, communication plays an influential role for the organization to effectively communicate with the target audience in the market. The identification and evaluation of marketing communication strategy would assess the level of communication implemented by the organization to create awareness and to inform the consumers regarding the existence and variety of products offered by the company. Lastly, this study would focus on evaluating the future outlook for Pond’s in the local and international market. This would be done to identifying the trends and approaches used by the competitors to grow their brands in the market.
Pond’s is Unilever’s heritage and legacy that has been caring for the consumer’s skin for more than a millennium. Pond’s is exceptionally careful when providing the consumers with products as the brand aims to protect the skin like no other in the market. The brand has the very same affection in the 21st century as it had in its earlier introduction days. The unchanged affection that the brand stands for has made Pond’s passed from generations to the final consumers in the 21st century (Unilever, c).
Pond’s promises to enhance the quality of women’s lives by providing them with products that could make them feel different in terms of fresh and beautiful skin. With the help of state-of-the-art research facility at Pond’s, the brand keeps itself aware of the changes in consumer needs. This has helped the brand to continually evolve with the passage of time to meet the needs of the consumers. In addition, to further enhance the brand’s knowledge regarding the needs and wants of the consumers i.e. women in the market, the brand has undertaken several research projects aimed towards gaining better understanding of consumer’s perception and behavior towards Pond’s.
The products that are offered to consumer under Pond’s include (Pond’s Institute, n.d.);
- Pond’s Cold Cream Cleanser
- Pond’s Triple Action Moisturizer
- Pond’s Hydro Nourishing Cream
- Pond’s Nourishing Anti-Wrinkle
- Pond’s Eye Contour Cream
In order to build the required brand image it is important to come up with effective and efficient strategies for brand elements and associations (Keller, 1998; Kapferer, 2012). The management of Unilever and Ponds has been considerate about building long lasting brand associations and elements.
Pond’s has witnessed quite an interesting journey in the beauty products segment. Pond’s became the part of Unilever’s family in the year 1987. Pond’s is currently a beauty icon in the international market having high level of presence in 58 countries across the globe.
Pond’s being an international beauty icon highly believes in providing the consumers i.e. women with products that can enhance the skin’s beauty easily at affordable price. Due to such beliefs, the brand aims to provide simple yet effective skin care products that could enhance the beauty of the skin.
Some of the prominent brand elements of Pond’s include:
The brand Pond’s has always been associated with skincare products. This is the particular reason Pond’s has been engaged in developing face care products since 1846. Pond’s is among the most trusted brands all over the world due to certain qualities like consistent quality, continuous improvement and ability to constantly change with the consumer’s needs and desires. Pond’s has attracted the consumers (i.e. women above 30 years) by tagline/baseline “As beautiful as one want to be”. Such a baseline has been able to convey the message accurately to the consumers in both local and international market.
Pond’s being the beauty icon in the international world has high brand name recognition in both local and international market. Pond’s is a skincare product that has been marketed for “well grounded, self assured and confident women” all over the world.
Pond’s has been providing skincare products that have helped women to enhance their beauty in their daily lives. To convey the message, the brand uses quite simple logo that has delivered the concept to the consumers. With the passage of time, Pond’s have gradually changed its logo to help set a benchmark in the skincare industry by providing the customers with products that could meet the demands and needs of the consumers.
- Packaging and Design
Pond’s is associated with high quality products. To meet the industry standards, Pond’s has introduced variety of packaging for the products offered by Pond’s. The packaging includes bottles, tube and carton design for the variety of products offered by Pond’s. Pond’s acknowledges the importance of technology and innovation in packaging and designing of the product. With such innovation and technology, Pond’s was able to save 640 tonnes of polymer which resulted in immediate benefits to the business.
Moreover, Pond’s was awarded with Silver Award at 24th DuPont Global Packaging Award. The remarkable packaging of Pond’s products is aimed to reduce the environmental impact to great extent. Similarly, the brand has focused on packaging that is appealing yet simple to significantly attract the customers towards the skincare products offered by Pond’s (HUL, 2013).
The target audience of Pond’s includes women due to which the brand is positioned in the international market to help the women enhance their skin beauty through variety of products. The uniqueness of Pond’s comes from its ability to meet the constantly changing needs of the consumers in both local and international market. The brand has been quite active in understanding and listening to the needs of the target audience for 150 years. To meet the needs, Pond’s have relied upon its ability to customize its products according to the needs and desires of the consumers. In addition, the brand is continually developing new products that could help women enhance their skin beauty to great extent.
In order to improve the overall customer based brand equity it is highly important for the brand to come up with well thought and planned brand strategy (Chen, 2001). The brand strategy should be according to the changing internal and external environment of the brand (Aaker, 2009).
Meeting the constantly changing needs of the consumers in the market is the aim of Pond’s. In order to do so, the brand has established research and development centre that provides the brand with relevant information regarding the needs of the consumers in local and international market. In addition, Pond’s has also conducted extensive research to gain insight regarding the behavior of consumers. This has provided the brand with information regarding what the consumer needs from the skincare products. By understanding and listening to the consumer’s needs, Pond’s continually develops new products that could meet the unending wants of the consumers (Unilever, d).
In addition, the use of technology has provided the brand with utmost faith and trust of the consumers in the industry. Pond’s is known for high quality products and high level of packaging and design to attract the consumers to purchase the products offered by the brand. In order to effectively do so, the brand has added anti-ageing technology that rapidly increases the skin’s renewal process. This is also another brand strategy that is used by Pond’s to enhance its brand equity in the market.
Moreover, the company has corporate website that provides the consumers with relevant information regarding the variations in the product line. This significantly enhances the consumer’s knowledge regarding the variation available in the product line. Moreover, the information regarding the ingredients is also available on the corporate website. By providing all the knowledge and information regarding the products offered by Pond’s, the consumers do not have to waste their time searching over the internet. This is a strategy that adds value to the brand.
Packaging is also included in the brand strategy of Pond’s. To differentiate between the products offered by the company in the local and international market, the company has introduced variation in packaging. Bottles and tubes are the primary packaging of the products offered by Pond’s. In addition, the products are also offered in boxes to enhance the value of the product.
Marketing Communication Integration
Effective communication with the consumers is one of the priorities of Pond’s. The brand relies highly on promotional tools and strategies to convey the idea of skincare products to the right consumers at the right time. The most prominent tools and strategies used by Pond’s to effectively communicate and interact with the consumers in the constantly changing business environment includes;
- Advertisement on TV
Advertisement on TV is the most prominent used tool to convey the message of Pond’s to variety of audience in the market. The products offered by the brand are not just for women over the age of 30 years but also aims to attract teenagers and young adults. As television is the fastest medium to communicate with the target audience, Pond’s uses this medium at high level.
- Magazine Covers
As the target audience of Pond’s is women in the local and international market, the brand focuses highly on magazines that are mostly the centre of attraction for females. In addition, the brand focuses advertisement highly on magazines cover to gain more popularity among females.
- Sponsorship of Events and Concerts
Pond’s has enhanced its sponsorship of events and TV series to great extent. This has allowed the brand to capture new consumers in the market while retaining the old consumers. Moreover, the brand constantly promotes TV series such as Passport to Love to attract female consumers in the market. Similarly, Pond’s takes high interests in the sponsoring music concerts.
The emerging social media websites such as Twitter and Facebook are now the target of the brand. In the digital world of marketing, Pond’s has been able to communicate with the target audience through social media websites that allows the brand to effective interact with the consumers. In addition, with the help of such sites, the brand has been provided with significant opportunities to provide the consumers with information regarding the products that would be launched in the forthcoming years.
The varieties of products offered by Pond’s are available at convenience stores in both local and international market. Convenience stores along with cosmetic merchandise stores have played crucial role in providing the consumer with Pond’s products. In addition, all the products of Pond’s are available at supermarkets.
Outlook for the Brand
Pond’s has been associated with high quality skincare products that have met the needs and desires of the consumers in both local and international market. The research and development facilities in several countries is consistently providing Pond’s with consumer’s insight that is been taken into consideration by the brand to effectively meet the consumer’s requirements.
Pond’s high level of packaging provides the brand with competitive edge within the industry. This also provides the brand with superiority over others in the market. By focusing highly on quality as well as packaging, Pond’s has consistently been providing the consumers with the best package in the industry due to which, females prefer Pond’s over other cosmetic products within the market.
Pond’s high level of quality has provided the brand with variety of opportunities in the local and international market. In addition, the packaging of the brand is one the brand elements that have attracted variety of consumers within the industry. Pond’s is associated with quality due to which the consumers have high level of trust.
The most prominent brand elements of Pond’s include uniqueness, packaging and design, logo and the strong brand name. With such strong brand name, Pond’s has high level of brand recognition in both local and foreign skincare market. Despite being millennium old brand, Pond’s has been able to attract variety of consumers towards the products offered by Pond’s. The innovative use of technology has provided the brand with superiority in the market due to which, the brand enjoys high level of performance in the skincare market.
Promotional tools and techniques are the core focus of the organization. With such tools and techniques, the brand conveys its message to the consumers of the brand in both local and international market. The most prominent tools include; advertisement, sponsorship of events and concerts and e-marketing.
List of References
Aaker, D. A. (2009). Brand portfolio strategy: Creating relevance, differentiation, energy, leverage, and clarity. New York: Free Press.
Chen, A. C. H. (2001). Using free association to examine the relationship between the characteristics of brand associations and brand equity. Journal of Product & Brand Management, vol. 10, no. 7, pp. 439-451.
HUL. (2013). Pond’s recognized at the 24th DuPont global packaging award. Available from http://www.hul.co.in/brands-in-action/detail/Pond-s-recognised-at-the-24th-DuPont-Global-Packaging-Award/301969/ [Accessed 8 June 2013]
Kapferer, J. N. (2012). The new strategic brand management: Advanced insights and strategic thinking. London: Kogan Page.
Keller, K.L., (1998). Strategic brand management: building, measuring, and managing brand equity. New Jersey: Prentice Hall.
Pond’s Institute. (n.d.). Our products. Available from http://www.pondsinstitute.co.uk/products_hydro-nourishing-cream.php [Accessed 8 June 2013]
Unilever. (a). Introduction to Unilever. Available from http://www.unilever.com/aboutus/introductiontounilever/ [Accessed 8 June 2013]
Unilever. (b). View our brands. Available from http://www.unilever.com/brands-in-action/view-brands.aspx?view=AtoZ [Accessed 8 June 2013]
Unilever. (c). Pond’s. Available from http://www.unilever.com/brands-in-action/detail/Pond-s/292095/?WT.contenttype=view%20brands [Accessed 8 June 2013]
Unilever. (d). Ponds. Available from http://www.unileverme.com/brands/personalcarebrands/ponds.aspx [Accessed 8 June 2013]