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Why is selling soaps over-hyped?

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Its a common trend in almost all b-schools in the country during the second year. People talk about this more than anything including marriage, junior babes and CPs. Suddenly we can see a change in the orientation of us. Its placements. Well, even I have a story to tell.

For the last God-only-know-how-many-times I was thinking about ‘where to go?’, ‘what to do’ with my semi-grown mind and over-grown body. The options are more or less static over the years. What is indeed exciting about the whole process is emerging of roles in services marketing and complicated products. But there is very low importance given to these types of roles since most of the times soap makers, sugar water preparator and biscuit bakers steal the show. I was looking for the arguments to find what makes these motley lot so important. The only thing (which anyways is loosing its relevance fast) I can come up with is that, “FMCG is one place where you see the marketing in action.”.

So I am trying to prove why FMCG may not be the choice for me after I passout from here.

– Most of the soap/paste/choclate marketing is highly unsuccessful. My view is this. India is still an immature and unsaturated market. Unless the whole of the population is consuming the goods the competition will always be focussed towards who has more reach, which may not be what marketing is. How many rural people know their soap by its name? Its still red soap and green shampoo for many of them.

– There is a huge market potential and unique challenges in services marketing while FMCG is fast loosing its excitement and charm as a marketers dream job. Consumptions levels will plateau one day or other. People are not going to brush more times than they are doing now. Advertisement clutter essentially means whatever you say in media is lost sooner or later. What could be more exciting is building brands around insurance, teaching, web-services, mobile-services and travels. There is a huge scope for innovation and experimentation in these areas which translates in to kick-ass passion to work during initial years to make a difference.

– FMCG companies have a rigorous selection process with many stages and hazaar filters. I am damned if I get through all this. 😀

Who knows, I might end-up starting a tour agency and becoming a guide myself or starting a b-school.


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My name is Chandoo. Thanks for dropping by. My mission is to make you awesome in Excel & your work. I live in Wellington, New Zealand. When I am not F9ing my formulas, I cycle, cook or play lego with my kids. Know more about me.

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