It was in the morning of 2nd September 2016 that IMI-K got an opportunity to interact with the Associate Director of Pepsi Co. Mr Debnarayan Sarkar.
The session was a vibrant one extending its frontiers beyond the academic niche. Many interesting insights were impeccably put forward. A session which began with a probe into the Stanford Speech of Steve Jobs made the students realize the importance of sales and branding and the various aspects related to it. Bygone are the days when people with degrees from ICAI were pushed to the CEO level. In the present era the brownie is offered to those who bring the bread to the table, the people associated with the sales of the product. Donald.M.Kendall, the founder of Pepsi Co. introduced the Pepsi Ring of Honour, a sales award. He aptly said that “an organization comprises two people, one who sells, earns revenue and the others those support him”. Every organization is a selling unit and has sales as its fundamental job. The people who did number computation few decades back have been replaced with software and there is no reason why history shall not repeat. Hence, this competitive environment needs dynamic and enthusiastic people now who bring something new to the table.
The session was bundled with a lot of brain teasing activities which tested the gray matters of the students. An interesting marketing phenomena was observed when an advertisement in the newspaper for a shoe polish product reduced the sale of it. People were using Cherry Blossom Shoe Polish as a substitute for hair dye in Nagaland and the sale of the product was remarkably reduced when they were shown the mirror.
The aha moment was a prelude to the concept of brand, an association that people form with the product.
Pepsi Co. being a market giant had its own strategy for brand identity. The reason for scrapping Shahrukh Khan and bringing Ranbir Kapoor instead was to do away with the old image and come up with the concept of Youngistan.
Every company has its own Brand Charter with an analysis of the environment in which they operate and the consumer insight of the target group. Sprite caters to the need of teenagers and comes up with a tagline of “clear hai” as the teenagers these days are the confused lot and appreciate people with clarity of thoughts and ambitions.
From being the largest milk seller under the name of Wimbledon Corp., to catering to the requirements of different types of beverages and snacks, Pepsi Co. has something to offer for all. From the fitness freaks to the taste bud geeks Pepsi CO. caters to the needs of all. The way they have handled disruptive innovation is phenomenal. The session was enriching and vibrant and gave us a probe into the deeper realities of how things are.