Exclusive | Priyanka Sethi: Haier India’s marketing driver – Sport-O-Tainment

In an exclusive interaction with MediaBrief, Priyanka Sethi, Head of Marketing at Haier India, discusses the company’s goals and overarching strategy for the 2023 festive season. Sethi speaks about how Haier, one of the leading advertisers of the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023, is strengthening its marketing mix both on and off the field and highlights how it’s leveraging high-impact properties such as Big Boss Telugu, IPL 2023, and DPIFF to reach a premium audience. Read on.

What is Haier India’s overarching strategy for the 2023 festive season?
As customers are constantly looking to upgrade their home appliances, this year mid and premium segments have already seen a rise in sales across India owing to customer demands.
Aligning with the demands, at Haier India, customer centricity lies at the core of our growth trajectory and hence we brought together an impactful marketing strategy bridging the synergies of festivals and sports to tap the premium audience.
Pushing the edge, as a challenger brand at Haier India, we rechristened the marketing strategy to bring a power-packed amalgamation of sports and festivals to customers across India.
Integrating a host of traditional and new-age marketing strategies, this festive season we focused on a high-impact sports marketing game plan to strengthen customer connections, build brand awareness, enhance brand loyalty, and drive business growth in the Indian market.
We recognize that festivals serve as a holistic platform to connect with customers and create memorable experiences. To achieve this, Haier India has taken an inherently digital-first approach, acknowledging the importance of online platforms in today’s market.
How is Haier India preparing for the festival season, both on and off the field?
In line with the cricket fever, as India is hosting the World Cup after 12 years, the demand for a complete viewing experience backed by efficient technology has gone further upwards.
Recognizing the significant impact of festivals and sports, specifically in India, we announced our strategic association as the ‘Digital Streaming Associate Sponsor’ on Disney+ Hotstar for the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023.
This year we are all set to showcase the range of our customer-inspired product innovations highlighting the brand’s commitment to leverage technology and innovation at the World Cup 2023.
Customer centricity lies at the core of our growth trajectory and hence we decided to bring together an impactful marketing strategy bridging the synergies of festivals and sports to tap the premium audience. 

Before the World Cup, Haier collaborated with JioCinema for the IPL. How has it panned out?
With the partnership with JioCinema as the Digital Streaming Sponsor for the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 we landed a strategic move that aims to offer cricket fans an immersive viewing experience of IPL 2023.
IPL is one of the most popular cricket tournaments in the world, and this year’s edition promised to be an exciting one. The league has a huge fan base not just in India, but across the world, and this partnership helped us captivate a larger audience mind share.
Through a multi-channel marketing campaign, we reached out to cricket fans across the country, showcasing the features and benefits of its innovative products.
How is Haier India leveraging high-impact properties to reach a premium audience across India?
Focused on bringing the best of customer-inspired innovations to India, we strategically collaborated with Big Boss Telugu and Tamil. These collaborations underscore our commitment to entertaining and engaging Indian audiences while reinforcing Haier’s position as a trusted household name.
South as a market is important to us and the ongoing seasons of Bigg Boss Telugu and Tamil present a great opportunity for us to connect with the customers and over the last few years we have seen tremendously positive results.
We see a higher affinity towards premium and luxury in the South and thus, it is essential for us to build local connections through smart partnerships which increase the penetration for high-end products. With the Big Boss we are truly proud of this synergistic collaboration and we are sure this will help engage with our audience through one of India’s most beloved television shows.
Taking our strategy a notch higher and celebrating the evolution of cinema, we recently partnered with star-studded Dadasaheb Phalke International Film Festival Awards 2024. Bollywood and entertainment drive India with the spirit of passion, zeal, celebration, and enthusiasm.
We are excited that our collaboration with the prestigious Dadasaheb Phalke International Film Festival Awards is a seamless integration of technology and India’s cinematic heritage. We are hopeful that this association will further solidify our presence across premium audiences in India.
What specific goals are you setting for your festive season campaigns?
We want to give our customers the latest technology and home solutions to make this festive season even more memorable for them. Taking our digital-first approach, we hand-crafted a perfect mix of offline and online strategies to create a rising trajectory in brand awareness.
We aim to not only provide cutting-edge products but also create meaningful and joyous experiences that resonate with the spirit of the festivals, thus solidifying our presence and engagement with our customers.
At Haier India, we are driven to change and elevate the shopping for customers across India, backed by customer-inspired products, efficient product displays, interactive POPs, and high-end shop floor experience. The marketing efforts are focused on both ATL and BTL initiatives to create a comprehensive customer experience.
In terms of the online vs. offline contribution, we have created a balanced mix, as our omnichannel approach ensures that customers have the flexibility to choose their preferred shopping method. Overall, we are committed to delivering quality products and services to our customers, and we’re confident that this festive season we will achieve robust growth.
At Haier, we are dedicated to ensuring that our campaigns stay fresh and engaging for consumers by embracing innovative and creative approaches.

Elaborate on the strategies Haier India is implementing this year to maintain the vibrancy and appeal of its marketing efforts.
Power-packed Sport-O-Tainment Marketing: Bringing a plethora of sports and festivals to customers across India, we tapped a host of high-impact properties like World Cup 2023, IPL 2023, Big Boss Telugu, Big Boss Tamil, Dadasaheb Phalke International Film Festival Awards 2024. This integration of sports and festivals has delivered great results for us so far and we aim to strengthen customer connections, build brand awareness, enhance brand loyalty, and drive business growth during this festive season 
Regional festivals-based campaigns: Campaigns by Haier India have been designed to appeal to a wide range of demographics and age groups while also considering the country’s diverse cultural heritage. Customers all around the nation responded enthusiastically to campaigns for Ganesh Chaturthi, Onam, Durga Puja and Diwali, going ahead we are sure that our upcoming campaigns will only take the enthusiasm higher 
Best-in-segment customer-inspired product innovations: Haier India is highlighting its commitment to technology and innovation by showcasing its range of products during the festive season. We have strategically launched a wide range of products across segments like OLED TVs powered by Google TV, 306 Washing Machines Series, Vogue and Metalustre refrigerators and we have a whole host of launches across categories coming up soon 
Consumer offers to add to the festive cheer: To allow people to express their festive fervor, starting Onam, Haier India announced an array of exciting offers such as 20% instant cashback, EMIs starting as low as Rs 994/-, long EMI tenures, extended warranty on chosen appliances and more to provide attractive options. These offers aim to create a stronger bond with consumers and drive festive season sales
Are there any particular KPIs you are focusing on to measure the success of your campaigns?
The most important KPIs for any festive season campaign is sales and engagement. As a brand, at Haier India we’re anticipating an overall sales growth of 30% as compared to last year, riding on a host of marketing campaigns to tap the premium audience.
How does this year’s budget compare to previous years? Can you share insights into the budget allocated for festive season campaigns?
This year’s budget for our festive season campaigns reflects our expectations for substantial growth. As a challenger brand, we have rechristened our marketing approach and made strategic investments to tap the premium audience.
We started this year with a double whammy goal, wherein we focused on targeting the right investments and exploring synergies to amplify the communication reaching out to our target audience.
Our well-aligned handpicked allocation allows us to invest more in our premium segment, considering the evolving consumer preferences, as we expect it to outperform last year.
We are grateful and proud of the results and the nationwide customer appreciation that we have received so far and we are positive for the journey ahead especially with the festive season kicking in.

What is your media mix for the festive season?
As we approach the festive season, at Haier, we are excited to witness the enthusiasm and joy it brings to households across India. We are ready to celebrate with our customers, by offering a range of new products across categories, a wide range of lucrative offers, and innovative marketing campaigns.
We’ve observed that premiumization has been a consistent trend in the consumer electronics industry, and we anticipate premium segments will continue to lead the festive sales, contributing significantly to our success. 
At Haier, with our digital-first approach, the right strategies, and investments in innovation and marketing, we have been capitalizing on the growing demand for home appliances. Our media mix strategy for the festive season is a dynamic blend of 40% traditional and 60% new-age digital marketing approaches.
The marketing efforts will focus on both ATL and BTL initiatives to create a comprehensive customer experience. Digital and TV will be our prime focus as they’ve become our preferred channels for engaging with our audience.
This digital-first approach ensures that we can reach a wide and diverse consumer base effectively and efficiently. Apart from this, we continue to bring in innovative shop floor mechanisms and activations to ensure that each communication touchpoint is backed by product innovation, customer insights, and strategic marketing. 
How are you leveraging digital and social media platforms for festive season campaigns?
Perfectly integrating our product narrative with efficient marketing, we are heavily leveraging digital and social media platforms for our festive season campaigns. We have an always-on communication module for our social media platforms wherein we ensure we create engaging content around topical days, product features, and customer pain points and give our audience a real-life scenario usage depiction creatively.
Our target audience is between the 25-40 years of age bracket, is constantly on the go, evolving, and looking for tech-savvy home appliances, Hence, at Haier India, we understand the power of user-generated content (UGC) and influencer campaigns in creating a comprehensive and impactful marketing strategy.
By utilizing these elements, we aim to create a surround sound effect and effectively reach the premium audience segment that is constantly evolving. This combination of digital interventions enables us to establish a strong connection with our customers, enhance brand awareness, and drive business growth during the festive season.


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