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Peru: Brands under scrutiny, but sharing hope

By:

Catalina Bonnet

Country Manager Peru

Insights Division

Kantar Millward Brown y Kantar TNS

The year 2017 was memorable for harsh events such as mudslides and floods (Huaicos), but also for an avalanche of consumer criticism directed at some of the country’s most emblematic brands.

The thing is, consumers are becoming increasingly critical of the products they consume, and want to be better informed about what goes into them and the public policies surrounding the products that affect their lives.

 

However, even in light of this period of scrutiny, some of Peru’s most iconic brands have being able to recover their consumers’ trust, thanks to the strong relationship they have built up over many years.

Brands such as D’onofrio, Gloria and Sublime, newcomers to Peru’s ranking this year, are precisely the kind of brands that have remained present in people’s homes thanks to a strong emotional connection. They have been able to develop consumer habits that have remained anchored to Peruvian culture to this day, such as Panettone, drinking evaporated milk, or sharing chocolate.

When we analyze the value of these brands, we can see the extent to which this shared history counts heavily for Peruvians.

It does not mean they are willing to forgive everything, but it does mean that these brands are part of their families and, like all family problems, it is dealt with internally, by talking about it and making it transparent.

In the ranking, however, we still see the unarguable leadership of beer brands. Cristal and Pilsen remain the two most valuable brands in the country, and this dominance reflects the role these two brands have played in the hearts of Peruvians and their celebration traditions.

Now, among the Top 10 there are two brands that are remarkable for their significant growth this past year.

Inca Kola, which retakes fifth position, has done so by retaining pride in its Peruvian roots, and for finding new ways of approaching consumers, including the young. Inca Kola’s digital strategy aimed not just to make it the country’s most followed brand, but the brand that a majority of Peruvians followed. Likewise, its packaging strategy, involving a redesign featuring the most frequently used Peruvian words, reconnected the brand with one of the most important parts of Peruvian life: food.

Cemento Sol, in turn, is still on the road toward building a valuable brand in an unexpected category. Last year, it kept building connections with its users by speaking of highly emotional subjects far beyond the product’s characteristics. This gave Peruvians peace of mind from living in a home built with this concrete.

It is clear that 2017 was a year of sorrow for Peru, but it was also a year that brought back hope. It marked the beginning of a special year for Peru because of the country’s long-awaited return to the World Cup finals. The hearts of Peruvians will surely be open to receive the brands that consistently, year after year, have maintained a connection with their roots and believing that the impossible dream is possible.

To the brands that have worked to build significantly different positioning, this is the year to amplify their message and raise their voice to mark an historic year.