Kingfisher invests big on events

Kingfisher Premium has held a dominant position in India’s beer market. However, in recent times, its parent company United Breweries has been reeling from a market slump in the beer category.

According to a report by the Business Standard, the brand is losing part of its market share as the landscape becomes more competitive with international players like Carlsberg and Anheuser-Busch InBev. As a result, the brand is ramping up its marketing activities, pushing out a series of innovative brand events.

It recently held an event targeting pub goers across Bangalore, India, where it coined the term “Kinglish,”, a specially designed font created by the brand, which was contributed by pub goers across Bangalore, India.

The event took place at several popular pubs across the city where the brand challenged pub goers to “spill some beer” and spell a “whole new language.”

The font was created out of beer mugs and bottle and can impressions by people who uploaded their photos on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook where the brand eventually found the ideal letters to form the word “beer.”

Watch the video:

This was done as a part of the recently concluded The Great Indian Octoberfest 2013, a Kingfisher-hosted event that ended in late October, a parallel to Germany’s Oktoberfest.

According to Samar Singh Sheikhawat, senior vice president, marketing, United Breweries, the business objective was to drive engagement and interactivity with consumers and fans of Kingfisher Beer through involving them in the process of creation of a new beer lexicon or language that would be owned by Kingfisher.

“This refreshes the brand in the minds of the consumer, and builds brand loyalty as well. For a brand that has near 100% awareness and dominant market share and sales, this is another initiative towards reinforcing that. The Queen’s English is an interesting device to deliver on creative execution,” Sheikhawat told Marketing Events.

Following the event, the brand has seen increased traction on social media, with engagement building across platforms. However, the brand said it was too early to reveal business results arising from this event.

The brand is expected to sell about 15% more beer compared to last year and Kingfisher has reportedly increased its marketing spend by about 10% on upscaling The Great Indian Octoberfest 2013,  said the Business Standard.

The event was marketed on ground, through outdoors, and on digital.

Kingfisher’s heavy events strategy

The brand also has a strategy focusing on four platforms: sports, music, fashion and food, with the brand’s motto being “The King of Good Times.” The brand’s target audience is the “aspirational youth in India who lives life to the fullest.”

Some of the events that Kingfisher has backed as part of its events strategy included the Indian Premier League (IPL). According to a report by The Hindu Business Line, United Breweries increased its marketing spend by at least 10% for the sixth edition of the IPL which kicked off this April.

Also, besides setting up a football club called the Kingfisher East Bengal Football Club, the brand is an active advocate of sporting events such as the Bombay Marathon, the Delhi Half-Marathon, and the Bangalore and Hyderabad 10 and 15KM runs respectively.

Other events that Kingfisher is closely associated with includes tennis tournaments, hockey tournaments, rugby tours, Formula One, horse racing derby and a host of other events.

For this year, the brand has sold 139 million cases for FY 2013, according to the United Breweries website.