In 1978, Harendra Shah and Pravin Bhansali cooperated to establish Girnar. At that time, Girnar had only six employees and limited resources. But the company’s goal is very ambitious. It wants to bring tea to all parts of the world, and is eager to provide consumers with world-class good tea. At first, Girnar only exported bulk tea to several countries in Eastern Europe and the Middle East. By 1993, Girnar had opened its first store in Mumbai, selling only 2 kilograms of tea per day on average. Then, with the help of a team of professional tea judges, tea shops began to continuously introduce new and popular tea products. In the early 1990s, Girnar began to provide tea in the form of tea bags and entered the tea bag market.
With the improvement of enterprise strength, Girnar opened more stores in Mumbai and gradually grew into a local heavyweight enterprise in India. Its distribution network has also gradually expanded. In addition to the 45 stores in Mumbai, from grocery stores to shopping malls, Girnar’s tea will be sold in most cities. After restructuring in 2005, Girnar merged many of its departments into Girnar Diet Co., Ltd. The international department manages the export of products, and the domestic department is responsible for the consumption of a series of products for its own people.
Now, after continuous accumulation, Girnar has developed from a company that mainly deals in bulk tea to a brand that can provide a series of products such as tea, coffee, bread, biscuits, instant drinks, etc. The franchisees are distributed in Dubai, Warsaw, St. Petersburg, Sydney, Jeddah, Muscat, Mombasa, New York and other places, and the products are exported to more than 50 countries such as the United Kingdom, the United States and China. However, Girnar’s main market is still in India.
In the ranking of global luxury tea brands, Girnar ranks eighth. As one of the Indian tea brands, why can it become the choice of tea lovers in India and even the world? This article will make a brief analysis from two perspectives: the professionalism of products and the friendliness of channels.
1. Product professionalism: high quality and diversity+”chai” flavor
(1) Professional tea bag provider
The popular tea bag series mainly includes 5 types of black tea, 9 types of fragrant black tea, 2 types of green tea, 11 types of fragrant green tea, 3 types of instant tea and 1 type of organic tea. These 31 kinds of tea are prepared in different ways. They have different flavors in terms of intensity, sweet and spicy style, and purity. Girnar has entered the list of global luxury tea brands with its professionalism in tea bags. This professionalism is mainly reflected in three aspects, namely, high quality of material selection, consistency of quality and humanization of design.
Like many famous tea brands in the world, Girnar has a professional tea evaluation team composed of senior tea science and agricultural and commercial experts, who have rich knowledge of tea and are skilled in blending technology. Many tea brands will use their own ways to ensure the high quality of tea products. Whitstar and Twinings are based on the allocation and selection experience passed down from generation to generation, Goodart is based on the production concept of sustainable development, and Girnar is based on the optimization of material sources and the standardization of production processes. As a local tea brand in India, Girnar has inherent advantages in selecting materials. Its raw materials for tea production are selected from Assam, Darjeeling and Nilgiri in India. The tea in these three production areas has its own characteristics. Assam’s black tea is famous for its thick, strong, malty aroma and fresh taste; The tea produced in Darjeeling is known as “champagne in tea”. The tea soup is light gold and has the aroma of musk grape; The tea of Nilgiri is thick and smooth, and the tea soup is transparent. The black tea collected in winter is called “winter frost black tea”. High quality raw materials and safe production environment ensure the quality of its products. At the same time, the tea selected from the three famous tea producing areas has their own merits, which also lays the foundation for Girnar to produce tea with different tastes.
Girnar’s products have also obtained ISO certification, organic certification, halal certification and GMP certification. Nowadays, many famous tea brands will use its loose tea as raw material. On its official website, there is a special corporate social responsibility (CSR) guarantee, which promises that enterprises will always produce in a way that protects the ecological environment.
Girnar’s tea bags are consistent in quality, taste and packaging. Pickers need to select materials according to standards; Each time, the team of tea evaluators will evaluate the raw materials picked, the tea after production and processing, and the tea after packaging to ensure that the taste is consistent. This consistency, especially the consistency of quality, is very important for the brand. It relates to whether the brand can form a stable and lasting image in the minds of consumers.
Another feature of Girnar’s tea bag is “Just dip and sip”. Put the tea bag in hot water, lift it up and down a few times, and you can get a good tea. There is no need to wait too long, nor need to worry about the bad taste of the tea. The pure raw materials and careful mixing can make people drink a cup of pure tea at any time. This is a very humanized design for people who can’t make tea or want to drink a good cup of tea in a short time.
(2) Pure Indian style of various products
Girnar is a comprehensive brand with a wide variety of products. In addition to tea bags, it also provides loose tea, instant ready-mixed powder, Masala milk tea, coffee and snacks. These can be purchased in its offline store and online store ChaiChaiChai.cn.
Girnar’s loose tea is also very popular, and Girnar Kesari Tea – No.3 has always been popular with consumers. For decades, this tea has always been one of the best-selling products in the loose tea series. It can be regarded as Girnar’s flagship tea. Its main raw material is Assam’s CTC tea, which tastes strong and fresh, and the soup color is orange and amber.
Girnar’s coffee has a strong taste and a stimulating taste. It is suitable for drinking with condiments such as milk or sugar. Many consumers like to use its coffee as milk coffee; Snacks are divided into bread, biscuits and khakhakhara (a traditional Indian snack, also known as khara Crispy Roti or Fenugerek khara, which is made of flour and oil and is usually served at breakfast). Because coffee and snacks are products in its by-product line, there are relatively few varieties, so portability and convenience will be more considered when developing. The price of Girnar products is in line with the consumption level of the public. The average price of a box of tea (10 tea bags) is between 80 rupees (about 9 yuan) and 130 rupees (about 12 yuan), and the average price of a 50g cup of coffee is only 120 rupees (about 11 yuan). The average price of snacks is only about 80 rupees (about 7 yuan). Popular pricing also makes it a choice for many consumers.
The style of each brand will be influenced by its country, and Girnar is no exception. Whether it is tea bag or other products, it has pure Indian style and taste. The packaging of Girnar is relatively simple compared with several brands previously introduced. It does not belong to the fashionable and modern style, does not belong to the fresh and natural style, but belongs to the simple and practical style and unique Indian style. On its packaging, there will be some local buildings in India, or people wearing Indian clothing as decorations. The buyers will know that this is tea belonging to Indian brands.
The taste of Girnar’s tea is also very Indian. Except for the tea with single raw material, all other tea products will be blended with spices, and different from some brands, using blueberries, roses, orchids or chocolate for blending. Girnar is good at using mint, cinnamon, ginger and other spices for flavoring, which are often used by Indians. The tea made from these ingredients is in line with the characteristics of Indian tea, which is relatively strong and fresh, and is very recognizable.
2. Channel proximity: close to consumer life
(1) Social: Become a “sharer” of consumers
The development of brands cannot be separated from the communication with consumers. In the new media era, social media provides the most effective communication platform for brands. Girnar knows this well, so it has its own account on Twitter, YouTube, Facebook and other foreign social platforms. It will introduce its new products on Twitter, share the feeling of drinking with consumers, and celebrate and send blessings to consumers on festivals; It will upload brand introduction film, advertising film and promotional film on YouTube; It will establish a topic on Facebook and interact with fans. During the epidemic, Girnar also showed a strong sense of social responsibility. Not only on Mother’s Day, she paid tribute to the mothers at the front line of the epidemic, but also made a special anti-epidemic video to encourage people to remain optimistic and persist in fighting the epidemic.
Girnar’s series of actions during the epidemic not only enabled it to have positive communication with consumers, but also improved its brand popularity. In the whole process of communication, Girnar uses the traffic provided by the platform to increase the exposure, communicate with consumers in the way of sharing, create more communication opportunities, and establish a closer relationship with consumers.
At the same time, Girnar also has its own official website and the online shopping mall ChaiChaiChai.cn mentioned above. There is a special “FAQ” column on the official website to help consumers understand the tea culture. Consumers can also get the latest information of enterprises by subscribing to the newsletter. These together constitute Girnar’s communication network, and it is the construction of these interactive channels that make the communication and exchange of information more convenient and smooth. Consumers can “hear” Girnar’s voice on different platforms.
However, it should be noted that although Girnar has multiple platforms, individual platforms have not been properly managed. The Twitter account still released information on May 20, and the Facebook account also interacted in the near future, but the YouTube account has stopped more. The last video release was two years ago. The management of channels needs to achieve the effect of long-term delay, and different channels need to form cooperation to bring the best communication effect, which may be where Girnar needs to improve.
(2) Services: “MY SIGNATURE CUP” and “CHAI N GUPSHUP”
Girnar has a special product customization service, called “My Signature Cup”. Consumers can choose the materials they like and match the taste, match the packaging they like, and combine it into a product, customized to themselves or loved ones. Girnar calls this “the first beverage customization and gift customization service in India”. This service can make consumers feel the pleasure and satisfaction of private customization, and shorten the distance between brands and consumers. At the same time, we can also improve the product line and develop more new products to meet the needs of more consumers by observing their customization preferences.
Girnar also set up a tea restaurant “Chai N Gupshop” which integrates tea, food and service offline. It is famous in India, and many people will punch in. “Chai N Gupshop” tea restaurant not only provides food, but also sells Girnar tea. There will be a space in the restaurant with a special tea counter. People who come to enjoy the delicious food often buy a favorite tea and take it home for drinking. The tea restaurant also provides delivery service, and people can also eat Girnar’s special food at home.
(3) Publicity: integrate the concept of “My Chai My Time” into life
Girnar’s brand logo has a sentence “My Chai My Time”, which is its brand slogan. Its love for Indian tea makes it aim to promote Indian tea culture and make more people feel the charm of drinking tea. In order to do this, it pays special attention to the portrait characteristics of the core consumer groups and the social scene in which they live. Take a recent group of posters as an example. The posters show the images of employees, doctors, elderly people, mountaineers, travelers and so on. These images are common in tea drinking groups and also common in life.
The people in the poster all made the same gesture. You can see from the following two advertisements that this gesture represents: whatever the outside world, “chai time” brings me peace. In the first half of this series of commercials, respectively, there are disturbing scenes of being lectured by the boss, disturbed by the loud voice of the phone, and nagged by the parents, creating a sense of being troubled. But after the hero in the film sipped Girnar’s tea, everything was solved. The boss stopped preaching, the caller left, and the parents stopped educating. In a flash, the hero’s mood became relaxed and calmed down. This group of posters and advertising films firmly grasp the life characteristics of the consumer group, and hit the current people’s psychology of wanting to get rid of external trivia, which is easy to arouse consumer resonance. In this situation, people are also more likely to accept the idea of “My Chai My Time” conveyed by Girnar, and accept the rationality of the existence of “Chai Time” imperceptibly. Every time they drink tea, they will think of Girnar and the good mood it brings.
In addition, Girnar caters to the era trend of brand communication and actively cooperates with film and television dramas. In 2018, Girnar cooperated with the film “Raid”, which set that the hero’s favorite tea is Girnar. The implantation was successful. Girnar has a principled and tenacious brand style, which is very close to the character of the hero. The two echo each other, and the character image and brand image are well integrated. Mr. Vinod Bhanushali, president of T-Series, said: “Girnar and our film have a perfect cooperation, tenacious and principled brand spirit, which is consistent with the character of the hero in the film. Therefore, we see the compatibility between the brand and the film, and we are very happy to have a well-known brand like Girnar as our partner.”
3. Indian market: regional “small” brands seize the opportunity
As a “regional” brand, Girnar does not have the brand system as large as TATA Tea Group, and does not have the huge market share as HUL, but it has also achieved good sales results, which reflects a phenomenon in the Indian tea market: regional “small” brands seize the opportunity to participate in the division of the Indian tea market.
India, like China, is a big country in tea. There are many tea brands, and the competition among competing brands is also very fierce. TATA Tea Group also has five tea brands with different positioning, which are exported to more than 60 countries; HUL is also one of the brands that Indians often contact with. It also has many brands for consumers to choose from. In recent years, it has gained a group of fans by providing low-cost civilian tea and health tea, which account for nearly half of the Indian market. However, some regional brands, such as Wagh Bakri in Gujarat, Girnar, Society and Sapat in Maharashtra, and Mohani in Uttar Pradesh, seized the opportunity and gradually gained a certain share of the Indian market.
In some regions of India, regional tea brands have more market share than some international tea brands. For example, in Mumbai, Amar Tea accounts for nearly 40% of the market share, leading HUL and TATA Tea Group; In Gujarat, Wagh Bakri holds nearly 45% of the market share and has been the market leader for more than ten years. These regional brands can gain market advantages because they are more familiar with the taste and consumption characteristics of tea in their regions than those of international tea brands or some foreign brands, so they can also better adapt to the local market environment.
Different tea brands have different strategies. Girnar introduced in this article has gained market share with professionalism and affinity to the people, and can sell more products even at a 20% premium; Some brands, such as Sapat, sell their products by providing “regional tea”. They grasp the characteristics of different water quality and different tastes in different regions, and provide different prepared tea for different regions to meet multiple needs; For example, Wagh Bakri attracts consumers and occupies market share by opening tea houses, launching green tea, iced tea, organic tea and other new series. Of course, these regional brands can stand out, and some can even become famous around the world. They cannot do without the high quality of tea products and good communication with consumers. This is the direction that every tea brand that wants to achieve good development needs to pay attention to.
With only 42 years of history, Girnar stands out from many Indian tea brands with its focus on products and sincerity for consumers. Although it has not been able to occupy such a large market share as TATA Tea Group, it has found its own development path through continuous exploration and has occupied a unique position in the hearts of the Indian people, and now almost covers the high-end consumer groups in India. Girnar’s goal is to face the world, and it is also making continuous efforts, as its brand ideal states: “When our journey begins, we aspire to become the best tea company in the world. With the development of the times, our current goal is to become the best food and beverage company in the world.”