A noodle brand ,call it M is extremely popular in India. The ads of this brand for most of the times, show kids who are nagging their mothers because they are hungry. The mother then prepares and serves them hot noodles thus killing their hunger.
In my opinion, the biggest target market for M are mostly bachelors , who are staying in the college hostels . M’s relative ease of cooking makes it very popular with young bachelors who do not have time for elaborate preparation of Indian food.
I too have been a fan of M right from childhood. In my college days too, it served me faithfully whenever I was hungry.
However these days M does not tastes like it used to do. In an effort of become trendy, M has actually lost the share it commanded with bachelors (most of whom are probably married now) who still swear by the taste. Here are a few things that owner of M have done wrong.
- Reduced quantity per packet:Lesser quantity per packet does not quell hunger the way older one used. The person eating one packet of noodle may still be hungry. This is in contrast with the brand message that you can have a full stomach with its one serving .
New taste of spice powder
The “new” noodles do not taste like old ones. The cooking powder sachet has new content. The taste really does not satisfies the heart that much..
These days, same product is available in multiple variants. I always remembered the product by its taste , thick noodles and packet color. It was consistent and there was no other product like it.
Now I can see healthy noodles, grainy noodles , soups with the same name. But nowhere I can find that attracted me to it the first place.
Not sufficient stock
It is hard to find old M anywhere. I doubt even they make it any more. The new tinkered product with old name is there but then I don’t like it.
This to me is “brand-harakiri”. I am not a brand expert but as a consumer and buyer of the product I have a high stake in what I want the product to be. Sadly, I don’t think anyone is listening.
If your product is successful, do not start tinkering with it
If your product becomes successful , the first tendency is to make it perfect. This desire stems from market research about changing customer tastes. Loyal consumers do not change at all. They will stay the same rest of their lives . They probably want the same coffee taste forever( probably because they sipped the same coffee when they were in love with someone and it reminds them of those days).
Tinker with the taste of coffee and see the displeasure on the face of customer. Sure enough, it is a sign that old things(at least old buildings, coffees, noodles ) should remain as they are.
In other words, M, give me back my old noodles.