Chi Brand: Deepening market share through innovation, consumer insight

With  today’s consumers, all over the globe, becoming increasingly sophisticated and their needs almost insatiable, no time is the common marketing axiom  ‘innovate or die’ is most apt than these economic times.

Interestingly, with the competition getting keener and fiercer in the nation’s dairy market segment,  a major player that seems to  have imbibed this axiom and putting it to good use remains the Chi brand, whose exploits in the juice and dairy market segments, despite the presence of giants, such as Coca Cola and Dangote, in the juice market and FrieslandCampina WAMCO and Promasidor, in the dairy market, have continued to earn the company  both local and global recognitions in recent times.

For instance, besides the company’s juice brand, Chivita, winning an award at the recently-held Marketing Edge Summit and Awards, its Hollandia Evaporated Milk, has also continued to challenge the dominant brands in that segment, as evidenced in its increasing popularity among consumers in the country.

In its retail audit data, covering the last 12 quarters,  AC Nielsen, a leading global information and measurement company,  described the Hollandia Evap as a brand that ‘has consistently gained market share across the country’.

The brand, the measurement company argued, had increased its market share by 7.4 points, while its closest rival dropped market share by a whopping 7.9 points in the period under review.

Interestingly, not a few market watchers will give these very pleasant market runs to the ability of the company to study the market environment in which its brands operate  before coming out with innovative offerings that will meet the need of such market.

For instance, one thing that is obvious is the fact that the company’s huge investment in consumer research and commitment to natural ingredients had helped grow its brands in the market.

Interestingly, its decision to democratise milk drink, through appropriate pricing and the tetra pak innovation of its Hollandia Milk brand, many believe remains one of those factors that made the milk brand effectively challenge the super –players in that market segment that never gave it any chance of survival.

Prior to Hollandia’s entrance into that market, milk had remained  the exclusive preserve of the affluent; since it was obvious that the  existing players in that market then were only interested in enhancing their bottom-lines, even at a huge cost to their consumers.

As at the time this planning was going on, competitions in the market were still living in fool’s paradise, thinking they could still continue to extort Nigerians. Before they woke up from their slumbers, Chivita and Hollandia Milk had gained the substantial size of the market share.

Perhaps Chi’s staying power remains its brand promise of catering to the needs of discerning Nigerian customers, a promise it has not derailed from since made in 1982, as evidenced in the quality, healthy and refreshing values of its fruit juices and a range of dairy products.