Saturday, May 29, 2021

Pandemic – A New Way of Life Part 3 – New Covid specific products

Companies began making new claims for their existing products keeping the Covid pandemic in mind, some added new products to their existing portfolio and some went on to create new product categories. The claims usually revolve around developing or boosting immunity and safe-guarding health; in my last post I had already given examples of Dabur Honey and Brooke Bond Tea, I will give some more examples here, please note that the ads discussed in this post were released in year 2020:

The marketers of 24 Mantra, in the organic products category, fine-tuned their claims to include immunity for "Beating Covid-19". The same was done for Emami Healthy & Tasty cooking oil, an existing product, it was repurposed for the Covid-19 pandemic; the claim is that it has 5 immunity boosting nutrients which will strengthens immunity. Kofol, a brand from Charak, is in the cough, cold and throat care category; now the company has added a new product in the Kofol range, it is called Kofol Immunity Tablets; it has been claimed that it helps in building immunity against cold and also seasonal viral infections; does this product work on Covid-19? Well the advertisement does not say so in so many words, it makes no such claims but it is obviously expected that people will take these tablets thanks to the Covid-19 scare, a clever idea!  


ITC recently introduced Nimwash which is to be used for cleaning fruits and vegetables. The ads claim that the product can wash away pesticides and 99.9% germs, nowhere does it claim that it can be used to wash away viruses. But the launch of Nimwash has been timed during the pandemic and there is a good reason for it, I am sure the company hopes that panicked consumers will anyway use the product to ensure that the fruits and vegetable they eat are free of novel coronavirus, however the company does not make any such claim in its ads. 


Kent, a brand which is associated mainly with water-purifiers has been advertising a range of disinfectant products (see press ad below), some of these products may have been in existence before the pandemic started, while some may have been introduced as a result of the pandemic. For instance, the press ad shown below is for Kent’s CamAttendance, a “Touchless Face Attendance System” which seems to be a new product, this ad appeals to employers urging them to keep their employees safe, obviously from Covid-19 but Kent does not make a direct claim. It says "Be Covid-19 ready with...", so there is a bit of beating around the bush. I am sure this technology was not developed overnight when the pandemic struck; it must have been in existence but thanks to the Covid-19 scare the company could fine tune their advertising message to present to their prospective customers a strong reason to buy CamAttendance.

The communication for their other products in the Kent range, as you can see in their ads below, has been fine-tuned to show how they can be used for protection against Covid-19.

I will give few more examples: Titan Eyeplus has introduced fog-free spectacle lenses to address the problem of lens fogging experienced by people who need wear glasses and mask at the same time.


During the pandemic Asian Paints introduced ‘Royale Health Shield’ Anti-Bacterial Multi-Surface Paint which the claim is 99% effective against Covid-19 virus (see press ad below). I have not understood the claim made in the ad; on one hand they say that the product is anti-bacterial, on the other they say that it is effective against Covid-19 virus. How can something that is anti-bacterial be effective against virus? Virus and bacteria are not the same. I find a clever choice of words in the ad copy, they don’t say the product destroys or eliminates Covid-19 virus, they simply say it is ‘effective’, what do they exactly mean by ‘effective’? The important objective of the company was to create a doubt and fear in the minds of the consumers; to my mind the message contained in the ad seems misleading. Many companies seem to be taking advantage of the consumers’ ignorance with regard to the difference between bacteria and virus.

This is the demo video Asian Paints posted on their YouTube channel:


I found an interesting ad from Linc Pen & Plastics Ltd or Linc Pens (see below), it is for Covid-19 Killer, The Finger-Free Touch Device. This seems to be a new category in itself.

This is the demo video Linc Pens posted on their YouTube channel:


The most interesting example, according to me, of a new product that addresses safety concerns during the pandemic is Amul Panchamrit; the product proposition as conveyed in the one minute ad (embedded below) is that of safety and convenience. I do not need to describe the ad because it explains the proposition very well in a straight forward manner and in simple language; the target customer will surely have no problems in understanding it.

There are more covid specific ads to discuss, I will take up those in my next post  Pandemic – A New Way of Life Part 3 – New Covid Specific Products, The Strange And The Bizarre.

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