Germ protection brand Dettol is rolling out a large-scale campaign that will see the brand sell 40 lakh packs of hand wash in the market—replacing the iconic Dettol logo with stories and images of “covid protectors” who stepped up to help during India’s severe Covid-19 wave.
Dettol has curated 100 such stories—including those who helped meet demand for medical oxygen, provide ration kits and medicines to those in need, among others.
The handwash packs will be available on e-commerce channels and across 500,000 stores in India from the 3rd week of June.
“For the first time in its history, Dettol, as a tribute to Covid-19 warriors, replaced its iconic logo with an image of a Covid protector along with the ‘protector’s’ inspiring story,” the company said while announcing the launch of the “Dettol Salutes” campaign.
Dettol will also engage over 4,500 influencers on social media platform Instagram—including long-term brand endorser Madhuri Dixit.
India’s ongoing Covid-19 wave saw thousands of citizens offer help as the country faced an acute shortage of medical oxygen, medicine supplies, hospital beds and other essential health care services. SOS calls flooded social media platforms prompting regular citizens to step in and help one another.
“We started picking up a slight change in mood as hope gave way to panic, fear and a sense of hopelessness. And so that’s where the whole thing started,” said Dilen Gandhi, Regional Marketing Director, South Asia, Health & Nutrition, Reckitt.
Brands in turn are turning to more sombre messaging as consumer sentiments remain dull and conversations around the pandemic overtake day-to-day discussions.
The pandemic has also accelerated usage of health and hygiene products benefitting brands such as Dettol—that grew significant market share in the soaps category last year. Reckitt’s other brands such as Lizol and Harpic have also made significant market penetration gains as the pandemic lifted demand for cleaning products. Last July, Reckitt said its Dettol soap bar became the country’s number one selling soap brand by value share. Gandhi declined to comment on Dettol’s current market ranking. The brand competes with the likes of Hindustan Unilever’s Lifebuoy and ITC Ltd’s Savlon.
The stories on the packs are “inclusive”, the company said—ranging from those who live in metros to smaller cities, from seniors to the youth and covering all regions. A recent report by consulting firm Accenture noted that among the long-lasting consumer behaviour changes brought about by the pandemic—consumers seeking more socially, and environmentally sustainable brands are among them.
Gandhi too said that consumer expectation has shifted. “People do expect you to do what is right in order for you to do well,” said Gandhi.
The campaign is set to further Dettol’s “Banega Swasth India” campaign that was launched in 2014 to address the rising need of hygiene and sanitation in India. The campaign was in line with the National Digital Health Mission (NDHM) initiated by the Prime Minister’s Digital India movement.