Research Article: 2020 Vol: 24 Issue: 4
Gunjan Malhotra, Institute of Management Technology, Ghaziabad, India
The purpose of this paper is to determine people's perception of the wristwatch brand 'GSHOCK' and the image of the brand as perceived by the consumer. The study incorporated qualitative and quantitative techniques, which consist of interviews and a survey approach. The study used the theory of planned behavior. The study found low brand recall, less awareness, and product knowledge of G-SHOCK wristwatches among the consumers. The consumers often recognized G-shock watches as a performance brand with a rugged brand personality rather than a fashion brand and complements its design more and less for the high-end technology inbuilt in it. There is a significant difference in the perception of wristwatches between young and old consumers. Consumers are unaware of the creatives and promotion campaign carried by the company. This study has attempted to contribute towards wrist watches companies and the industry as a whole.
Wristwatch, Consumer Insight, G-SHOCK.
Until the late nineteenth century, wristwatch became a men's style staple around the world and a piece of jewelry exclusively for women (Laurenson, 2016; Mitchell & Papavassiliou, 1997). It’s not an arbitrary fashion style based on taste or gender, but there is a practical reason for one's preference over others (Cheary, 1997; Thompson & Haytko, 1997; Vyncke, 2002). In the past, watches were extremely susceptible to elements like cold, heat, dust, and moisture, which could easily affect the intricate gears and springs within the "wristwatch," affecting its accuracy (Perrault et al., 2013). Therefore, function superseded fashion. Over the decades, tremendous innovation has not only improved functionality but added many new features to the wristwatch, making it more than a fashionable wearable or a timekeeping device in everyone's life (Sterlacci & Arbuckle, 2017).
Tech savvy consumers purchase new technological products like tablets, smartwatches, smartphones, etc. online and collect information about other products before purchasing in store (Massad & Berardelli). Although every consumer carries either a mobile or a smartphone, the wristwatch is still there because they are functional and convenient. A wristwatch looks good as it is designed to keep the looks in mind; they signify social status and personality; they are timeless and make consumers look good and make them feel good. Hence, consumers are no longer seen smartwatch as a timekeeping device, but something far higher than that (Quan & Shen, 2017; Choi & Kim, 2016). In this modern world, the way the customer thinks and perceives the brand influences their buying behavior and their loyalty towards it (Drasković et al., 2018).
Casio is one such company leading this iconic change, known worldwide for its vast in
house research and development (R & D) excellence, the technological innovation and creativity they incorporate, and the customer centric their products are. Their vision is to 'Envision a world no one has ever seen' by continuously creating for their customers from zero to one. Like any other company, Casio has various strategic business units (SBUs), and the products offered by them under these SBU consist of calculators, synthesizers, watches, projectors, electronic dictionary, digital printers, and many more (Cision, 2018).
Talking about their wristwatches strategic business unit (SBU) (Shanks, 1985; Ito & Rose, 2004), the company presented different brands such as G-SHOCK, Edifice, Sheen, Baby
G, Enticer, and Protrek. All brands represented the need of different age groups by having a product portfolio as diverse as possible. In 1983, the G-SHOCK brand was launched, emphasizing four strong pillars: fashion, music, art, and sports. Continuous technological innovation and in house R&D excellence have built the brand over the years (Frew & Duong, 2009). Therefore, the focus of this research paper is to examine.
RQ1: How demographical factors such as age influence G-SHOCK wristwatches buying behavior?
RQ2: Does the promotion of the product is communicated to the consumers the way the company perceived?
The remaining paper divided into four parts: the next section provides a theoretical framework and hypothesis development, followed by the research methodology section that presents details on how data were collected and analyzed. The findings of the study are shown in the subsequent section. The last section provides conclusion and recommendations.
Consumer's attitude and Behavioral Intention towards G-SHOCK Wristwatches
Luxury consumption in advanced industrialized societies has undergone change where consumer's luxury purchase is shifting from interpersonal to personal, from objective to subjective and from extrinsic motivation to intrinsic motivation (Kassim et al., 2013). Consumers' intention to buy any product has an impact on business sales and profitability, resulting in faster business growth (Singh & Khan, 2012). Consumers' purchase intention may also be impacted by extrinsic and intrinsic factors (quality) (Chaniotakis et al., 2010). Customers' attitude toward a brand plays a vital role in determining the growth of any business (Poole, 2010).
According to Holbrook & Batra (1987), attitudes are governed by emotions such as pleasure. Consumers' approach in Kuwait suggests that advertising adaptation among perfume advertisements often employs sexual appeals that are not considered appropriate in that country (Mostafa et al., 2020). Attitude with respect to a product may be learned as to behave in a favorable or unfavorable manner (Ajzen, 1991). The attitude helps to predict the behaviour of an individual's intention to buy a product (Ajzen, 1991; Amatulli & Guido, 2011; Phau et al., 2015) as concerning the Theory of Planned Behaviour (TPB) (Ajzen, 1991). This theory is an extension of the Theory of Reasoned Action (Ajzen & Fishbein, 1980), which includes measures of control belief and perceived behavioural control (Armitage & Conner, 2001). This TPB theory studies the relationship between ideas, attitudes, and behavioural intentions and other aspects of consumer behaviors in various fields (Nkonko, 2017). It assumes that attitude guides behavior (Ajzen, 2005), that is, human behavior determines a person's intention to buy a product and thus controls the perceived behavior of individuals. A person's intention signifies a person's behavioral motivation or decision to perform the behavior influenced by a person's attitude towards that behavior (Conner & Norman, 2005). Thus, this study assumes that when the attitude towards the G-SHOCK wristwatch is favorable, the consumer is more likely to buy it and vice
Consumers are likely to buy wristwatches based on the consumer price perception theory (Burtton et al., 1998). This theory states three factors constitute the consumer's intention to buy a product based on the product's price. These factors include price consciousness, value consciousness, and price quality association or perception. The consumers already have a predefined price range for any product category, which is acceptable for purchasing a product (Sengupta, 2014). Consumers consider both product value and quality for the product they intended to buy. The manufacturers set a predefined competitive price of the product and influence consumers' intention to but it. This intention of the consumers helps manufacturers to increase their sales. Thus, the pricing strategy affects a person's intention to purchase a product and, thereby, consumers' purchase decisions (Martin & Kuehnl, 2015). This study states that the price of the G-SHOCK wristwatch may withhold the consumers to buy G-SHOCK wristwatches.
Strategic Positioning and Sustainability
Brand managers and advertisers use promotion and positioning strategies to increase their branded content (Lou & Yuan, 2019). Branded content is a commercial advertising strategy that seeks to attract the attention of clients and potential clients to allow them to be entertained, informed, free from routine, and feel satisfied with the established communication process (Pérez Rodríguez, 2020). Strategic positioning (Porter, 1996) deals with locating products, brands, and corporates based on the conceptual customer frameworks. There are three types of positioning strategies followed by a Strategic Business Unit (SBU) (McKinsey, 2013). The positioning strategies are Access based (reaching the customers where they are), Need based (catering to the needs of a specific set of customers), and variety based (playing on one's expertise) (Wind & Robertson, 1983). Access refers to a function of customer's geography or of scale or anything that requires a differentiated set of activities to reach them in the best possible way. Whereas, needs based positioning aims at tailoring the efforts to solve the specific needs of the target segment (Smith, 1956; Ahn, 2015). Lastly, companies seeking variety based positioning try to focus on products and service variants rather than market segments.
Further, for a strategic position to be sustainable, there must be trade offs with other position strategies.
"A trade off means that more of one thing necessitates less of another" (Porter, 1996).
The paper assumes that Casio follows a variety based positioning strategy for their SBU G-SHOCK. The company aims to cover a mass segment with varying needs by providing them with different features, fulfilling a subset of their needs, and not all at a particular point in time. The GE McKinsey Multi Factor Portfolio matrix (McKinsey, 2013), a nine box matrix used as a strategy tool for mapping an SBU's position relative to the industry. It helps multi business corporations compare the product groups concerning market attractiveness and competitive power (Wind et al., 1983; Gluck, 1985). This technique is used in brand marketing and product management and enables the organization to make strategic decisions regarding investing, holding, or harvesting a particular business unit.
Brand Type and Brand Personality
In this research, there are nine types under which brands are characterized based on the archetypes (Yohn, 2016). The nine different types of brands are disruptive brands, conscious brand, service brand, innovative brand, value brand, performance brand, luxury brand, style brand, and experience brand. It has been suggested that all the brands must embrace some characteristics. Generally, brands combine two or three brand types to define their brand personality (Kozinets, 2002; Chan et al., 2010).
The Five Dimensions Brand Personality Model (Aaker, 1997) is a framework used to describe and measure the "personality" or human traits of a brand in five core dimensions, namely, sincerity, excitement, competence, sophistication, and ruggedness. According to Proctor & Kitchen (2019),
"Luxury wristwatches require an understanding of the dynamics of served markets and integrated marketing communications campaign to ensure that maximum impact in the market is achieved."
Thus, to understand the G-SHOCK watches' perception, a Brand Personality Scale (BPS) (Aaker, 1997) was used for the customers to rate the brand on various dimensions on a Likert scale of one to seven depending upon the level of agreement.
Observing Service Gaps and Sales Force Behavior through Mystery Shopping
The first time used during the 1940s, Mystery Shopping is a means by which organizations make individuals visit a retail outlet, bank branch, or restaurant to check the service and product quality and their sales staff behavior by measuring the experience encountered by the customers (Wilson, 1998). Mystery shopping was carried out at various retail outlets such as Lifestyle, Shopper Stop, and Casio official outlets to analyze the competency and skill set of sales personnel. Also, to check if there is any performance gap as we move from one outlet to another (Wilson, 2001; Wiele et al., 2005).
The young population is more comfortable using digital products and services than the older population (Kangas et al., 2009). More usage of the internet and cell phone is used by the young people in the age group 15 to 24 years as they are early adopters of new technology and new communication appliances (Haverila & Haverila, 2018). However, the older population is likely to favor simplicity over innovation in technology (Krasner, 2007). Also, communication devices are used in different ways by various user needs and demographic variables like age may have an impact on their needs such as physiological, safety, security, love and belonging, self
actualization and self esteem (Houghton et al., 2020). Moreover, transactions also depend on social status, sex, household income, age, and other environmental factors that stimulate consumers' buying behavior (Varol & Marquez, 2020). Researchers (Oksman & Rautiainen, 2003) have found that cell phones have become a natural, fixed, and stable part of everyday life management and maintenance of social relationships for the young population. Research by Aoki & Downes (2003) found different cell phone behaviors of the young people, which include cost efficiency, safety, dependency, safety and security, functionality, etc. among others. Thus, young consumers look for a shopping experience that satisfies their target segment and look for the positioning of the product and how the product designs are different (Gupta et al., 2020). Similarly, based on the above reasoning, the objectives of this study are to understand the perception of consumers of different age groups towards the G-SHOCK brand, to identify if the present communication used by G-SHOCK is resonating and proposing strategies for future development. Therefore, the study formulated the following hypothesis for how the people across various age category perceive G-SHOCK brand
H1: The perception of customers for G-SHOCK is not the same for different age categories.
H2: The image perceived by customers for G-SHOCK is not the same for various age categories.
The study used a structured questionnaire survey method disseminated through online forums. Young respondents above the age of 18 years were selected for the study who understand the significance of the luxurious watches like G-SHOCK wristwatches. After developing a preliminary questionnaire, the pretest was conducted. After that, the pilot study was incorporated to validate the results with 14 respondents to evaluate the questionnaire items' clarity and comprehensibility. All questions were measured on a seven point Likert scale ranging from 1= "strongly disagree" to 7 = "strongly agree" to maximize the response variances. After incorporating the changes, the request to participate in the survey was conducted in Delhi and National Capital Region (NCR), commonly known as Delhi NCR, India, with local consumers. This country, as the geographical context of the inquiry, appears to be relevant in terms of fashion production and fashion consumption. The emerging economics have increased the purchase intentions of its consumers who are ready to pay for purchasing luxury goods.
To understand the changes in G-SHOCK's perception from a teenager to young working professionals and finally to an adult working professional, the study collected information for demographical, economic, and psychological factors. The flow of questions in the questionnaire (Malhotra, 2015) includes questions on personal data, wristwatch preferences, questions for competitor analysis, awareness about the G-SHOCK. The respondents were asked to answer based on their first thought that comes to their mind about G-SHOCK. The questions were based on brand personality, brand image, brand type, the personality of the respondent, and questions on brand association focusing on music, fashion, sports, lifestyle, and ambassador. Furthermore, questions on promotion channel used by G-SHOCK as compared to competitors, items on promotion, and creatively used by G-SHOCK during January June 2018, questions on the effectiveness of the communication was analyzed.
The study was started by building knowledge and understanding about the G-SHOCK brand by going through its product portfolio and positioning, the pricing policy they follow for each brand, the promotional strategy, the display guidelines for each brand, and the analysis of the campaigns they have done across various channels in the past. It helped to understand the company's idealogy behind the G-SHOCK brand, the pillars on which it stands, that is, fashion, music, sports, and arts, the categories under which they are sold in India and the way they are positioned and promoted across the nation. For any company, their vision and mission are comprised of certain factors mentioned below, and based on the understanding from the research, for G-SHOCK brand of Casio they are (1) The core values for Casio are 'Cooperation and creativity' and they try to inculcate this across all their business segment unit and organization (2) For Casio, the purpose is To leverage superior technologies and innovation to create products which deliver new value by meeting the latent needs of the customer.
Big hairy audacious goal (BHAG) Are the goals company focus to achieve in the future, and for G-SHOCK, they are to increase brand recall, to penetrate tier2 and tier 3 cities and to create environmentally friendly products. Vivid description This refers to a bold and bright narrative that stimulates an intense feeling or an image in your mind that is so clear. Casio is - Create something from 0 to 1 coupled with the latest technology and innovation. The vision comprises the four factors mentioned above, whereas the mission consists of core purpose and BHAG only. From the secondary data analysis, the company's strategic business units (SBUs) were analyzed using the GE McKinsey multifactor analysis and SWOT analysis for the wristwatches' SBU of the company was done (Ward, 2005).
A total of 500 responses were filled by the people who are aware of G-SHOCK; 261 questionnaires were unfeasible due to a considerable quantity of data that was missing; thus, the study retained 239 responses for data analysis. The response rate of 47.8% was achieved. The questions helped in collecting information about the demographics of the people, brand awareness and product knowledge, product usage, substitute products, and competition, customer's perception and brand personality as per them for G-SHOCK, type of brand, and brand association, point of purchase online or offline what people prefer. If seen categorically, it provided information across these three Customer demographic, G-SHOCK awareness, product knowledge, and usage; Customer perception, Brand type, brand personality and image; and Brand association and point of purchase. Questions also were asked to have a comparison of G-SHOCK's promotion effectiveness with promotion and campaigns of various wristwatch brand - the awareness each brand have, the brand recall of each brand across various communication channels and the effectiveness of the campaign and communication carried out by G-SHOCK in the recent past. The study used an analysis of variance technique (ANOVA) to depict any change in customers' behavior and psychological pattern across age groups.
In addition to this, open ended interviews were conducted with the sales area person (SAP) of various retail outlets, such as Lifestyle, Shopper Stop, Just watches, Casio's official outlets, to look from a different perception, learn from their experience, understand their point of view, how they have been performing, the way they interact with customers and the problems they face. Factors such as the position and layout of the G-SHOCK counter, the SAP's competency and their knowledge about the product, adherence to the promotion guidelines, their SKU strategy and analyze how these factors affect the performance of G-SHOCK watches.
GE Mckinsey Multifactor Portfolio Matrix
The GE McKinsey matrix is a nine box matrix used as a strategy tool (McKinsey, 2013). It helps multi business corporations evaluate business portfolios and prioritize investments among different business units in a systematic manner (Ward, 2005). This technique is used in brand marketing and product management. For Casio, their major multiple business corporation generating a maximum of their revenue are calculators, projectors, watches, and electronic synthesizers. The McKinsey multifactor portfolio matrix for G-SHOCK watches (G-SHOCK, 2018) shows that the matrix of the company seems to have high competitiveness in most segments due to its brand equity and distribution network. The calculator segment appears to be losing attractiveness, even as the company holds a dominant market share due to various factors. There is a need to revitalize this segment through technology. Watches and projectors have a strong competitive position and high growth rates. The musical instrument segment is still in a period of infancy, and a more robust niche must be developed even as the current system pushes for sales.
SWOT Analysis of G-SHOCK Wristwatch SBU
The G-SHOCK company's strategic business units may be analyzed by understanding the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of the company. We observed that the company's advantages include their strong financials as G-SHOCK showed strong growth in Japan and overseas due to their introduction into upmarket distribution, driving growth in overall sales. As per the Casio annual report 2016, the company registered a net sale of 352.258 billion yen. The company has a strong portfolio for sports enthusiasts, which are technologically advanced and have a robust distribution network of retailers and distributors. However, the company has a weakness, including low brand recall, less product knowledge among various age groups, and a premium price range. Irrespective of these weaknesses, G-SHOCK may be seen as the opportunity for SBU as its 3% of total watch sales happen through online channels; thus, it possesses enormous potential to be trapped on this channel. Also, adventure sports are gaining popularity among the youth. It's 50% market is still with unorganized players, and this space should be targeted. Furthermore, the rising disposable income of Indian citizens may generate more customers. Even though the company has individual strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities but it is not free from the threats from counterfeit products, substitutes from Fitbit and other sports brands and government policies increase custom duties, further adding to the increase in cost.
Demographic Profile of the Respondents
The demographic profile of the respondents was captured. About 65.27% of the respondents were male; 54.72% were in the 16 25 years' age group. Furthermore, the majority of the respondents were aware of G-SHOCK watches (81.6%) and were using G-SHOCK watches (43.9%). Gathering the customer insights was followed by sorting and collating the data collected to this point, which is both primary and secondary, perform data analysis on it, and observe and identify key findings from it.
Also, apart from this, mystery shopping and open ended interviews were conducted with the store area person (SAP) of various modern retail outlets. To understand and look from a different perspective of a customer, and learn from their sales person's experience, understand their point of view, how they have been performing, the way they interact with customers, and the problems they face. Influence and impact of other factors such as the position and layout of the G-SHOCK counter, the SAP competency and their knowledge about the product, adherence to the promotion guidelines, and their SKU strategy were also considered to see how they affect the salesperson performance and the overall sales.
To identify the perception of the people regarding G-SHOCK and the type of image they can associate G-SHOCK to, questions on multiple choice and descriptive format were used. However, from the analysis point of view, two age groups were created: '16 25 years of age' and '26 and above years of age'. The result obtained for each category was compared and analyzed using one way ANOVA and frequency count analysis.
For top of the mind analysis, when asked which wristwatch brand comes to your mind? People said Casio the parent brand more often than G-SHOCK and ranked it at second position while FOSSIL took first position and Titan coming third. When compared across the age category defined by the G-SHOCK has more awareness among people 16 25 years of age as compared to 26 years and above age group.
When compared with competitors such as Fossil, Tissot, Tommy Hilfiger, and Titan/Fastrack on parameters such as Fashion, Quality, international appeal, and value for money, we have a winner for each category. In terms of fashion, respondents picked Fossil, in quality people picked G-SHOCK, in international appeal people picked Tissot and in value for money people picked Titan/Fastrack.
In terms of brand awareness, 16 25 years' age category is more aware than 26 years and above, and following this, when asked what the first thought that comes to your mind about G-SHOCK is? The result is that the maximum number of respondents perceived G-SHOCK as a sporty, cool, tough, and trendy watch a watch that is for outdoor activities, cool and sporty. Another key finding was that none of them have a strong level of agreement for G-SHOCK as a fashionable watch.
Out of the total people who are aware of G-SHOCK which is 82% of the total responses, 69% of them use G-SHOCK personally and when asked from them to rate on a 7 rated Likert scale their level of agreement of what kind of brand G-SHOCK is the analysis in which each level of understanding is given a weightage as shown above. A final composite score calculated for each type by multiplying the weightage with the number of responses for each sample. The consumers perceive the G-SHOCK brand as reliable, tough, and believe is a watch for adventure and outdoor activity and is stylish and fashionable. Thus, when compared across the age group, 'Reliable and tough watch' and 'Watch for adventure and outdoor' came out as the top two picks that respondents chose and also it has minimum standard deviation as compared to others.
However, when one looks for the Stylish/Fashionable watch and trendsetter, respondents of the age group 26 and above ranked them at the bottom two positions disagreeing with such perception. In contrast, the age category 16 25 years of age prefer Stylish/Fashionable watch and trendsetter. Similarly, 'Funky/Colorful' watch and 'Watch with any apparel' type of perception, were preferred the least by age group 16 25. A further ANOVA test was carried out for top preferred brands to see how the age factor influences such perception and see if there are any significant changes. The ANOVA results (F = 1,709, p =0.179) prove that hypothesis 1 is supported as the perception of customers for G-SHOCK is not the same for at least one age category among 16 20, 21 25, 26 30 and 31 and above years of age. The p value is higher than the significance level at 95% confidence level. The study doesn't have enough evidence to reject the null hypothesis.
Reason for Purchase Another insight from the questionnaire was when asked why you bought G-SHOCK? 37% said that because of its features, 27% said because of its design, and 16% said they were influenced by someone. Brand personality and brand type When asked about the brand personality and the kind of brand G-SHOCK is 78% recognized, it has a rugged brand personality, and 46% considered it a performance brand that delivers superior performance and deliverability. The building of this the respondents was asked what kind of image G-SHOCK showcase? Macho/Sporty is the image in which people strongly agreed that G-SHOCK helps them to portray, followed by bold and confident. The image of Lady's man and Sophisticated got less agreement than others by the respondents. However, another observation was in the responses of the age group '26 years and above', where the Bold image got a lower rank compared to Confident.
To further analyze how the age factor affects the top three images perceived by the respondents, that is, Macho, Bold, and Confident, ANOVA analysis is done. The result is for the image 'BOLD'- the p value is less than the significance level at 95% confidence interval. Hence, the study rejects the null hypothesis and concludes that not all population means are equal for various age categories. For Brand image 'Confident' The result was as the p value is higher than the significance level at 95% confidence level, we don't have enough evidence to reject the null hypothesis. For Brand image 'Macho/Sporty,' The result was as the p value is higher than the significance level at 95% confidence level, we don't have enough evidence to reject the null hypothesis.
The final segment is an association of the G-SHOCK brand with music, sport, footwear, 2 wheeler, and celebrity. The analysis was Rock/pop/jazz, Heavy metal, Rap/hip hop being the top 3 picks by the respondents. Extreme sports followed by rugby and football together combined 80 percent of the total responses. Sports shoes got picked a maximum number of times as footwear that goes well while wearing G-SHOCK, followed by sneakers and canvas shoes. Most people preferred for sports and a powerful bike in association with G-SHOCK. Virat Kohli, Dwayne Johnson, Varun Dhawan, and Eminem got associated the maximum number of times. When asked about the point of purchase, they would prefer to buy from a retail store rather than e commerce because of the touch and feel the advantage it has.
People recall brand Casio more when asked about a wristwatch brand as compared to G-SHOCK, and in both the case when compared to FOSSIL, it has more brand recall. This comparison happens because of the level of promotion it carries out across all modes of communication. Even at a new retail outlet, which is the Casio point of sale, the level of advertising the FOSSIL does compare to G-SHOCK is much higher in numbers. However, G-SHOCK has an awareness count of 82% as consumers have heard about G-SHOCK. Coming on to the positioning, people recognize G-SHOCK brand more with an Outdoor and toughness brand personality which is sporty, tough, and rugged and as a 'Performance brand that offer products with superior performance and dependability.' Some of the critical comments from the respondent is that they don't consider it as a sophisticated watch and a watch for professional life.
When compared with other brands regarding fashion, quality, international appeal, and value for money, G-SHOCK topped regarding condition and second regarding value for money but not regarding fashion where FOSSIL topped the list. Also, considering the analysis of the reason to buy G-SHOCK watches, the maximum of them bought the watch because of its design followed by features and also got influenced by someone. This shows that users get influenced more through word of mouth and look and aesthetics of the watches as compared to the technology the watch carries. Also, 33% of G-SHOCH user doesn't know which G-SHOCK they watch have.
In addition to this, people of the age group 26 and above ranked G-SHOCK lowest regarding fashion and trendsetter and considered it more as a funky watch. Hence, work should be done to improve the understanding of this age group. Whereas for age group 16 25 years of age they consider it more as a style and fashionable brand and overall, the brand was ranked number one for an adventure and outdoor perception.
Coming to brand association, people associated G-SHOCK with modern day music and dance like heavy metal, EDM, hip hop music, rock, and jazz. They imagined it with footwear like sports shoes and sneakers a maximum number of times and a sports bike. When asked about a maximum of them associated with extreme sports and football. This shows the kind of perception they have for G-SHOCK and how they perceive it as a brand inclined more towards the modern culture, fashion and lifestyle.
It is seen that the scale of communication conducted by G-SHOCK as compared to other wrist watch brands across all mode of communication is less although the quality of the content is good as the message, we are trying to communicate is correctly perceived by the viewer in most of the cases except during promotions. Another key finding is that the viewer although interpreting correctly have not seen the promotion conducted by the company in the past which raises the question of visibility. Even when the team visited around 15 retail stores across the Delhi NCR region, they found the promotion and creative to be very less than required.
Concerning the strategic way forward for the growth of G-SHOCK brand watches by Casio in Indian context, the following steps may be considered by business persons and researchers for creating awareness of the brand.
As people bought G-SHOCK more because of its design and a sense of community belonging rather than the features and technology it has and also when asked, many of them said that they got influenced by someone and hence bought G-SHOCK. G-SHOCK is equipped with high end features and technology but still people are not aware about it, so why not exploit this dimension in which they already are one of the best by employing this idea 'Unboxing G-SHOCK'. The whole idea behind this campaign is to give away new launched G-SHOCK watches to famous YouTubers who run fashion channels (where maximum followers are of the age 16 28) for review and ask them to unbox it and share their experience. As being a fashion blogger, they will recommend which G-SHOCK watch to accompany along with different fashion styles, thus, complementing the personality. This campaign will be more interactive and will help to develop knowledge about the brand and position it in the viewer's minds as a fashionable watch. In addition, special discounts or promotion offer can also be given through this to the viewers who participate in the campaign. This will create word of mouth also and will be a point of influence for viewers.
As per the findings, people of the age group 26 years and above consider G-SHOCK more as a funky and colorful watch and less as a fashionable and stylish watch. So, to improve their perception, Casio can attract them in the following ways Attracting events like Canvas Laugh Club and Music concert like Coke Studio at Pubs and restaurants people of this age are more engaged in events like this, and Casio can focus on these events as an opportunity to improve the perception. For example, let's say at Canvas laugh club famous comedian can crack a clever and witty joke by including G-SHOCK watches in it or at coke studio concert, the musician can be dressed in fashionable and classy clothes and can perform while wearing G-SHOCK watches. Reason behind this is that on the basis of human psychology, any happy and cheerful moment has a greater impact and longer impression on people's mind, as a result audience will remember the act on G-SHOCK and will help to improve the brand recall. Corporate tie up At places like Cyber Hub, Gurugram events can be held to increase awareness and also improve the people's perception. We can also have tie up with corporates at a negotiated deal where they can purchase watches for their employees or new joiners as gifts on special occasion, with an idea to promote G-SHOCK wristwatch as office wear.
Another idea to increase the visibility, brand awareness and create word of mouth is by giving away multi colored silicon based G-SHOCK wristbands through the following By hosting G-SHOCK Nights As the study found out that people associate sports like extreme sports, football, and rugby with G-SHOCK more frequently. G-SHOCK night can be arranged at sports bar and lounge at a screening of special matches such as FIFA world cup, UEFA Champions league, etc. which given considering it as an entry band which they have to show to enter in the club. The wristband can also be used as an entry band by all the pubs and bars at Delhi NCR region as an entry band which will be a great opportunity to promote the brand and communicate a message, not necessary a social one, by embossing it on the wristband. The message or tagline can be related to events like International Women's day, Valentine's Day, Father’s Day or messages like 'Drink safe, Drive safe' or anything particular to the brand.
As each club uses entry fees so the costing of this campaign can be worked out by negotiating a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the club and pubs. Guerrilla marketing
The following idea of marketing can be used for G-SHOCK watches at all the major crowded metro lines especially in Yellow metro line and Blue metro line, through which maximum crowd work professional commute daily to their offices and back home. Hence this can be a great idea to give an on hand look and appearance experience to the travelers of the watches. This design can also be used for the wristband idea explained by using it as an entry band to the clubs and pubs across the Delhi NCR region while hosting G-SHOCK nights on special occasion.
After looking at the ads that G-SHOCK play at the retail outlets and social media. After analyzing them, the study found out that viewer found them too long and boring resulting in a high bounce rate and they don't even watch the full ad. Our suggestion on this is to improve the ad on the creative front making it more interesting and of the short time duration of around 25 30 seconds. The idea
"In the ad video all the core values of G SHOCK, that is fashion, music, sports, and art should be shown through multiple videos running in a single frame with split screens and one by one conveying the message that there is a G SHOCK watch in our product portfolio that serves the purpose."
Standardization of training, peer to peer learning and circulating of best sales person across retail stores While visiting the retail outlets across Delhi NCR region and interacting with SAP, the study found out the difference in the competency of the SAPs ability to sell the product. SAP at the Select city, Saket and MGF metropolitan, MG road are more trained and better in the way they interact with the customers, handle their queries and interact with them. As every month there is the best salesperson selected by Lifestyle and Shopper stop, these best trained SAPs can be circulated and rotated across the NCR region to bring equality and promote peer to peer learning.
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