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Too much of Ramdev on TV? Patanjali in an ad drive

business Updated: Oct 24, 2016 11:19 IST
Baba Ramdev

Baba Ramdev with Patanjali products.(HT Archive)

Do you get the feeling that you are seeing more and more of yoga guru Baba Ramdev these days while surfing TV channels and even social media? Little wonder -- Ramdev’s brand Patanjali has increased its on-air advertisement manifold and become the third biggest advertiser in India behind Hindustan Unilever and Dettol-maker Reckitt Benckiser.

According to the latest data provided by AdEx India, a division of Television Audience Measurement (TAM) Media Research, Patanjali pushed Cadburys India to the fourth spot this year. Interestingly, Patanjali was not even in the top 10 advertisers till last year. HUL had topped last year as well.

During January-September 2016, Patanjali’s television advertisements totalled 4,524 hours, against a massive 29,998 hours for HUL and 8,956 hours for Reckitt Benckiser.

Cadburys India, Ponds and ITC were the top losers. “For any mature brand, traditionally ad spends are about 5% of total revenue. But a new brand overspends. Hence, Patanjali could be spending around 10-15% of its total revenue on advertisement,” said Anirban Blah, managing director of Kwan, an entertainment and marketing firm.

Marketers say Patanjali is spending over ₹500 crore or 10% of its turnover to promote its brand across media. But the company refused to give details. “We are buying the ad-slots at much cheaper rates with hardest possible negotiations. Our ad spending is less than 2-3% of our total turnover,” Acharya Balkrishna, co-founder of Patanjali Ayurved, told HT in a telephone interaction.

The advertising expenditure of biggies such as HUL, ITC and P&G stands at ₹4,595 crore, ₹895 crore and ₹228 crore respectively. HUL’s advertising spend was 13% of its total revenues in 2015-16. ITC and P&G had spent around 9% and 6% respectively of their total revenue on advertising last fiscal.