Marketing:

Book Review: Patanjalize Your Brand

Ushnota Paul, August 7, 2017

Marketer and author Paritosh Sharma’s new book Patanjalize Your Brand gives a solid insight into the rise and rise of this swadesi brand, notes Ushnota Paul.

Started by Acharya Balkrishna and Swami Ramdev, Patanjali is now the fastest growing FMCG brand in India. From generating 163 crore revenue in the 2009 – 2010 fiscal year, the company is aiming for a whopping 10,000 crore business in the next financial year. What is the secret behind building this empire that disrupted the Indian FMCG industry? Paritosh Sharma’s new book Patanjalize Your Brand explores the inception of Patanjali in 2007 to how it surprised everyone with their success story with no push marketing and only word-of-mouth.

Patanjali products cost lesser than any other competing FMCG brand, which makes them sources of better living without overspending. The source of everything is either free or costs a lot lesser. Hence as a brand, it has understood the value of being a true source in its complete essence. At the source, you create and deliver value and not the market. Many big players in the FMCG market feel that they can package the source and position it as luxury. But, not Patanjali. Their products are consumed by people across Tier I, II, III towns and cities of India — thereby proving that as a brand Patanjali has understood the impact, purity at an affordable price can have on people. And slowly but surely, word of mouth spreads a lot faster than any push marketing. In fact, Patanjali has forced big FMCGs such as Dabur and Hindustan Unilever to shore up their Ayurveda brands, change strategies or make acquisitions.

Currently, Patanjali sells through 15,000 owned outlets and over 1 lakh stores pan India that stock its product — and are even available in few parts of Middle East and Africa. Plus, Patanjali products are available online for both its Indian and international customers — e-commerce has spread across India and Patanjali leveraged it well because the timing was perfect. Tie ups with retail chains like Big Bazaar, Reliance Retail and Hyper City has helped Patanjali in establishing trust with the urban consumers who generally opt for a brand they visibly know. Something that started out as a small pharmacy, termed Patanjali Ayurveda Kendra Pvt Ltd, on September 27th, 2007, has now expanded to sell the full range of consumer categories, from edible oils, biscuits, noodles, toothpaste to hair and skin care products, groceries and wait for it… denim jeans!

A team that claims to not understand marketing at all is on their way to rake in 10,000 crore business by next year. If you’re interested to find out the details behind the meteoric rise of the brand, this book is for you. The language is simple, crisp and breezy. There aren’t flowery terms or management jargons, so it’ll be an enjoyable read for anyone, even if you aren’t from the marketing space.

The book takes us through Baba Ramdev’s background, the face of Patanjali — how a child from a humble background grew up to be the man who disrupted a billion dollar FMCG industry without knocking on the doors of investors. He was even invited by none other than the United Nations for a program to eradicate poverty.

Sharma touches upon all the details about the rise of Patanjali right from their history, their evolution and how, Patanjali as a brand, did not bow down to the media narrative. It also provides the information that corporates pay up to INR 11 lakhs to become a member of Patanjali Yogpeeth, which is Baba Ramdev’s yoga institute! The book takes us through Baba Ramdev’s background, the face of Patanjali — how a child from a humble background grew up to be the man who disrupted a billion dollar FMCG industry without knocking on the doors of investors. He was even invited by none other than the United Nations for a program to eradicate poverty. There are interesting titbits like how in  2009 Baba Ramdev’s Patanjali Yog Peeth acquired a Scottish Island for 2 million pounds to set up a wellness retreat.

The book even has an insightful section where real customers share stories of how Patanjali has eventually become a close part of their daily lives. The book is an eye opener for the big players in the marketing industry – sometimes all it takes is word-of-mouth and a quality product; something that push marketing and fancy b-school degrees can’t achieve.

Book Review is a series from the printed edition of Melt Magazine, a monthly publication that takes a deeper, more analytical look at the industry of marketing and media in India, including features contributed by experts in the field. To subscribe to Melt Magazine or to buy any of our older issues, email queries@kyoorius.com.To subscribe to Melt Magazine or to buy any of our older issues, email queries@kyoorius.com.