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With the launch of its latest wrist watch brand Zoop, Titan has entered the kids segment, the only untouched segment in the category. Somprabh Singh, Senior Manager, Marketing, Titan Industries Ltd, intends to use all-inclusive marketing plans to increase Titan’s dominance in the clock and watch segments in India.




Titan Industries is a joint venture between Tamil Nadu Industrial Development Corporation Limited (TIDCO) and the TATA Group; the former has a 27.88% holding in the entity and the latter 25.17%. The rest of the shareholding is with the public, including some blocks held by FIIs and large individual investors. The Board of the Company has six independent directors and six promoter directors, with the Chairman being nominated by TIDCO. In addition to periodic reviews by the Board, there is an annual business review with the TATA Group, one of India’s oldest, largest and most respected business conglomerates. The Group’s businesses are spread over seven business sectors. It comprises 98 companies and operates in six continents. It has a turnover of nearly $28.8 billion. Titan enjoys over 70% market share in the organized watch market in India.



Somprabh Singh is Senior Manager, Marketing at Titan Industries Ltd. In 2000, he joined Titan as a management trainee and has been associated with the company for more than 11 years now. During his stint with Titan, he has worked in several roles such as Regional Retail Manager for North from 2001 to 2004, Sales Manager for Delhi from 2004 to 2005, and Regional Sales Manager Sonata for East from 2005 to 2007. In his current role, he has launched some key collections for brand Titan including HTSE, Automatic, Octane, Orion and Purple that have helped Titan become a prominent player in the midpremium range of watches. He is an alumnus of TAPMI Institute, Manipal.


Q] Titan recently entered the kids segment with Zoop. What is the strategy behind entering this segment?

The kids’ accessories market amongst Sec A & B consumers is estimated to be worth around Rs 1,400 crore and mainly occupied by unbranded players. With Zoop, we have not only given ourselves the opportunity to gain a share of the accessories market, but also offered our consumers a brand that is cool, trustworthy and helps them ‘Be a Star’.

Q] What are the growth opportunities that you foresee in this category? How do you position Zoop against other brands in this segment?

The growth opportunities are enormous, especially as we are a very young brand and we see ourselves gaining a considerable share of the market in the next 2-3 years. Before launching the brand, we had done a full-fledged positioning exercise to arrive at the key consumer insight. It was from this exercise that we arrived at the insight that all kids want to be a star and Zoop is the brand that helps them ‘Be a Star’.

Q] Your campaigns reflect that women constitute an important part of Titan’s TG. What is your long term plan to reach out to women consumers?

Incepted in 1992, Titan Raga, the brand dedicated solely to women, has won the hearts of millions. Designed exclusively for women, these exquisite and elegant timepieces perfectly capture the essence of beauty, femininity and sensuality. The brand has grown over a period of time in sync with the evolving tastes of contemporary Indian woman. Titan Raga stands for beauty, femininity and sensuous self-expression. While embodying these core values, Katrina Kaif, who is the current brand ambassador, symbolizes the changing face of the successful, graceful and contemporary Indian woman.

Q] It is often said that watches and clocks are beyond just time and denote larger value propositions. According to you, how strong is the value proposition of Titan in the India market? What is your USP?

Watches are no longer time-keeping devices. They are rather an extension of one’s personality and that’s what Titan’s positioning ‘Be More’, stands for. Our biggest strength today is our ability to cater to the lifestyle needs of many consumer groups by offering them designs and styles that can reflect their personality and help them express themselves in a manner best suited to them.

Q] What does the new campaign’s tagline ‘Life is Now’ stand for? What is the concept behind it?

The TVC highlights Katrina’s spontaneity of embracing every moment even when things don’t work out as planned. The TVC begins with her friend postponing their holiday plans. Instead of cancelling her plan, she wears her Titan Raga watch and impulsively drives out. Very unexpectedly, she visits her mother to take her on an unplanned road trip. The mother and daughter share wonderful moments together and have a fantastic time. The music rightly captures the tone and the mood of the new generation for whom ‘Life is Now’. Titan celebrates the spontaneity, vibrancy and free spiritedness of today’s youth. ‘Life is Now’ captures the mood of today’s men and women who want to live every moment and share it with their loved ones.

Q] Do you agree that the government’s nod to 100% FDI in single brand retail can lead to more competition in the category? How do you plan to tackle it?

Titan’s CAGR over the past 10 years has been much higher than that of the entire watch market in India, which is a clear indication that we have been growing the market. With this change, the burden of expanding the watch market in India will be shared with other brands as well and will help the watch market expand. Moreover, I feel the luxury end of the watch market will surely gain more prominence with the government’s move. So I see this as a positive change for the watch market.

Q] What are the marketing activities that you undertake to build your brand? What is your media mix?

Building a brand involves marketing activities not only across media but also across every consumer touchpoint. While our ATL campaigns help create desire for the brand, our BTL and on ground activities reinforce the image through better consumer experience. Where approximately 40% of our annual spends go towards ATL activities, another 30% go towards on ground and other BTL activities.

Q] Which medium of communication has been the most effective for Titan?

Every campaign targets a specific consumer group and has a set of objectives, which then helps us arrive at the right media mix. TV is usually the lead medium for most of our brand campaigns whereas print and outdoor have been the key to the success of our consumer activations. But then digital and mobile media were highly instrumental in creating excitement around our High Tech Self-Energised (HTSE) campaign. So the effectiveness of any medium is determined by the objectives we set ourselves to achieve.

Q] How do you utilize the digital medium in your media mix? What share of advertising goes to the digital medium?

Digital is a key part of any of our campaigns. Being an interactive medium, it poses many exciting challenges, specially as it is very difficult to engage consumers. Our digital efforts for the HTSE campaign did just that as our innovative mobile and Facebook applications engaged consumers and showcased our collection in the most unique manner. At the moment, 6-7% of our media spends go into the digital medium and we see that going up considerably in the coming years.

Q] How has the growth of modern retail helped you build your brand?

Modern retail has given us an opportunity to showcase our Fashion Collection ‘Purple’ and our Sports Collection ‘Octane’ in an environment most suited to them. With these two collections gaining prominence, we have been able to acquire new consumers and gain considerable share in the fashion and sport segments.

Q] What are your plans to expand your consumer base? How do you plan to achieve it through your marketing initiatives?

The key segments that we know will help us expand our base are Fashion, Sport, Technology, Women’s Workwear and Kids. Our attractive designs and marketing campaigns targeted at these consumer groups will surely help in building image and awareness. One of our most successful campaigns this year has been the Titan HTSE campaign, which along with a great product and an extensive 360-degree marketing campaign, connected with a new base of consumers. Similar campaigns in future will keep us in tune with a newer base of consumers and expand our base. Moreover, more investments in Middle India will also help us expand base considerably.

Q] What are your plans in 2012 to increase your market share, in both watch and clock segments?

Today, Titan Industries is India’s leading producer and retailer of watches and jewellery, and is credited with changing the face of the Indian watch as well as the jewellery industry. The watch division has a domestic market share of over 70% of the organized market. Titan Industries reported a turnover of Rs 6520.89 crore for the year 2010 - 11. As a full range producer-marketer, Titan Industries offers the Indian and international customer a very large range of products to suit various consumer preferences. Its products are recognized for innovation in design, quality and reliability.

Q] How important are smaller Indian towns to your business in the short and long run?

Middle India is definitely one of Titan’s key focus areas for the coming financial year. Our growth in these towns has been much higher than that in the top 20 towns and hence we know this is an opportunity worth pursuing. We intend to make disproportionate investments in the form of products, advertising and retail expansion.

Q] What challenges do you see going ahead, from an industry perspective?

The biggest challenge would be that of managing rising input costs, particularly high gold prices and the weakening rupee.

Feedback: rahul.dubey@exchange4media.com

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