The pandemic forced businesses to think fast and make quick shifts to address the shifting consumer landscape. In the face of disruption, businesses could choose between waiting to fully comprehend the effects of the pandemic or aligning with the changing needs and accelerating their growth.
While some industries relied on existing trends that were already reshaping the market, digital innovation took the front foot in shaping the pandemic success story for a lot of businesses. This also gave a platform to mushrooming homegrown businesses and further uplifted the already booming gig economy. Increase in digitization allowed for several success stories across industries by scale and empowered ‘Make in India’ as India’s start-up mission. Here are 2 Indian brands that fast forwarded their growth while meeting the challenges of the pandemic:
It is no secret that restaurants witnessed an overnight shutdown and delivery services came to a complete halt during the peak lockdown period. Closure of restaurants and people’s reluctance in eating out in addition to a lack of trust in delivery partners left the food delivery business shaken. The food delivery giant Swiggy too was affected by this change and had to evolve their business model to meet the new challenges. In March 2020, food orders dropped by 60%. They had to lay off 1,100 employees. According to reports, the food tech giant’s revenues fell by 27% in FY21 due to the Covid-induced lockout.
To meet the challenge, Swiggy immediately called for repositioning its brand. They brought in the attention on building trust and reassurance contextually for their category. The company decided on being there for anything the consumers needed right from sanitizers to pizzas. Swiggy instilled new features on their app where consumers could know more about their delivery partner and included temperature checks as a way to provide a fully transparent food ordering experience. In addition, Swiggy launched several new convenience solutions on the app such as Swiggy Genie and Instamart that allowed for deliveries beyond restaurants only and diversified the shopping experience.
Fast forward to today, here’s what Swiggy’s growth story looks like – the brand recently raised 700 million dollars in funding from Japan’s Softbank and are in talks to acquire one of India’s top restaurant dining apps for a whopping 200 million dollars. The brand has also been in the news lately for their IPO launch expected early 2023.
- Pizza Hut
As the restaurants suffered worldwide due to the pandemic, Pizza Hut quickly reinvented themselves to be a delivery-first platform. The brand devoted all of its marketing efforts to retain “trust in every bite.” They started a campaign known as “Quality time not Quarantine” to show how Pizza Hut is bringing together families in lockdown. With an effective communication strategy in play, the brand showcased their Pizzas being made in heat temperature above 270 degrees, making it completely Virus and bacteria free. They also showed their food being packed in disinfected boxes and a contactless end-to-end process. These campaigns resulted in a 60% rise in their online delivery business.
By adopting a consumer centric approach and aligning with changing needs, these brands not only stayed relevant but also witnessed dramatic growth through the pandemic. Alignment is key to fast forwarding your success despite the challenges.