We believe in the power of sports marketing: Mark Titus, Nippon Paint India

Shrugging off the disruptions of the year gone by, businesses and agencies are looking for a strong revival in 2021. Adgully – as part of our annual TRENDING NOW endeavour – has been presenting the strategies and views of a cross-section of industry leaders as they go about reclaiming lost time and market opportunities and build for a stronger future, armed with the lessons of 2020. 

Mark Titus, Director - Marketing, Nippon Paint India (Decorative Division), is optimistic about the growth of the Indian paint industry in 2021. In conversation with Adgully, Titus speaks about the various strategies adopted by Nippon Paint during the pandemic period and post the lockdown to stay connected with their consumers and other stakeholders, supporting the painter community, and much more. 

Outlook for the paint industry in 2021 

The Indian paint industry is currently valued at Rs 50,000 crore. Globally, the paints and coating market size is expected to reach $236.11 billion, exhibiting a CAGR of 6.2%.The Decorative segment accounts for the majority of the paint industry’s value, which is around 75%.

In 2020, sales were definitely affected due to the lockdown caused by the pandemic. Shops were closed for several months and when things seemed normal, people were very unsure about safety and didn’t think it was wise to get painting done to their homes.

With the vaccine rollout, this year definitely seems promising for the paint industry as there is a lot of pent-up demand from consumers. From Q3 2020, the overall demand has seen a surge and we are now already at pre-COVID-19 levels. One of the reasons for this surge could be the current work from home culture. Many people have moved back to their hometowns, which in turn is creating a huge demand in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities as well. As more people spend time at home, they want to invest in home décor, renovation and decorative painting for their homes. Keeping this in mind, we are creating and curating several initiatives catering to the smaller cities. 

Great expectations 

We have a completely packed calendar for 2021! Right now, IPL 2021 is going to begin and we are all geared up for it. We are happy to say that we have partnered with IPL’s two most beloved franchisees – Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) and Chennai Super Kings (CSK). This is the first time that we have been associated with RCB, whereas we have been the associate sponsor of CSK for the fourth time in succession. We believe in the power of sports marketing as we can take advantage of the consumer passion for the sport and leverage captive audiences.

Our recent announcement with Royal Challengers Bangalore adds to Nippon Paint’s growing portfolio of sports sponsorships in India, which includes three-time IPL champion Chennai Super Kings (CSK), Chennaiyin FC, Indian Olympic Association (IOA), Tamil Nadu Premier League (TNPL), Pro-Kabbadi – Bengaluru Bulls, Karnataka Premier League amongst others. More such associations are in store for this year.

We also have a line-up of innovative new products set to be launched later this year and would be executing multi-platform 360 degree campaigns around the same.

The upcoming festival season in the second half of the year is also expected to be a buoyant one and we have several marketing initiatives planned around that time. 

Key learnings from 2020 

2020 was been a testing year for all businesses and we have learnt how to thrive during such challenging times. The COVID-19 pandemic had a huge impact on paint sales as we faced a lot of challenges like supply chain, logistics, restricted shop timings, restriction for painters, labour migration, etc. But amidst all this, we have found new ways to stay connected with our consumers and other stakeholders even during such tough times. We saw opportunities that lie hidden within the challenges.

Through our Amudha Surabhi and associated programs, we provided support to the painter community during the tough initial months of the lockdown. We focused on safety and ensured that all painters get their online safety training and certification when they started their activity again. We also sponsored COVID-19 insurance for our loyal painting partners.

All products in our depots were sanitised before being despatched and we even got the shop premises of our top dealer partners sanitised.

Our R&D and product development team worked tirelessly during this period and we launched two innovative products – ATOM Fibra and Breeze Star – despite restricted operations. Both the products are doing exceedingly well in their respective segments.

Nippon Paint has a strong range of wellness products and our ‘Sanitize your walls’ campaign was a huge success in the interior emulsion category. Work from home is the new norm and with increased time spent indoors, the wellness and safety of our indoor environment becomes a priority for family members. To cater to this new safety requirement, Nippon Paint has curated Health and Wellness range of wall paints. These include breakthrough odour-less technology, low VOC paints, and paints with anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties, easy wash-ability, durability and scrubbability, among other properties. The range consists of Nippon Paint Odourless Aircare, Nippon Paint KIDZ, Nippon Paint Satin Glo+ and Nippon Paint Satin Glo Prime.


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