Pakistan’s biscuit market is currently worth an estimated Rs 75.3 billion and it witnesses an average annual growth of approximately 10%. One of its largest sub-categories is crackers and although estimates are not available, they are believed to hold a prominent share, with Tuc accounting for at least 70% of the market.
To maintain this dominant position and increase their consumer base by tapping into a younger demographic, Continental Biscuits Limited (CBL), manufacturers of Tuc, introduced Tuc ‘n’ Dip (snack packs that consist of Tuc and a pre-packed chili mayo dip manufactured by Young’s) in December 2018.
Whetting the consumer’s appetite
According to Sana Tariq, Senior Brand Manager, CBL, crackers and dip packs are a well-understood concept overseas and crackers are often sold with pre-packed dips. However, as introducing the idea in Pakistan could have been a risky move (as no other brand has so far taken such an initiative), the company conducted several phases of testing prior to the product’s launch.
The first phase was conducted at airports, motorways and petrol stations across Pakistan’s metropolitan cities; they were identified as spaces where people often have to wait for several hours and tend to look for snacks to satisfy their hunger pangs. Tuc teams were posted at these venues, selling Tuc accompanied by various dips and toppings; the dips were made by Young’s. “Given their expertise in manufacturing dips and sauces, Young’s was a logical choice for us,” explains Tariq.
Enter the vending machines
Tuc then placed vending machines in malls in Hyderabad, Islamabad, Lahore and Karachi for several months last year. These machines allowed consumers to create what CBL term a ‘Tuc-tizer’ (a play on ‘Tuc’ and the word ‘appetiser’) – Tuc accompanied with various dips and toppings which could be customised. Given the positive response to these machines, CBL were now confident that the market was ready for Tuc ‘n’ Dip, and hence the product came into being. It is currently available in a Rs15 SKU) and Tariq says sales in the first month post-launch were encouraging.
Consumer insights revealed that innovation and variety are highly valued in the snacking segment and this is why Tuc is set on catering to changing consumer tastes; for CBL, this is part of the evolution of Tuc into what they term a “lifestyle brand.”
Changing brand perceptions
After the launch, an activation was conducted at Karachi Eat in January this year, where Tuc was available at stands accompanied by Young’s products. Both brands benefitted from this partnership as the long-term objective was to increase visibility and consumption, as well as change the consumer perception pertaining to both products. “Young’s wanted their mayonnaise to go beyond sandwiches and we wanted to show that Tuc could be served as a base for appetisers and snacks,” elaborates Sami Wahid, General Manager Marketing, CBL.
Staying true to the brand
TUC has long been promoted as a light snack that is ideal between meals; this is evidenced by their tagline Halki Phuli Bhook Mai Halka Phulka Tuc – and the brand has not deviated from this positioning in the communications released for Tuc ‘n’ Dip (primarily TV and social media).
Resonating with the young
While the original target audience of Tuc comprises people over the age of 25, with Tuc ‘n’ Dip, CBL aim to draw in more young people because, says Tariq, “young adults are more open to experimenting with snacking options.” She adds that Tuc ‘n’ Dip is also popular among people who are “on-the-go or at the office.” Consumer insights revealed that innovation and variety are highly valued in the snacking segment and this is why Tuc is set on catering to changing consumer tastes; for CBL, this is part of the evolution of Tuc into what they term a “lifestyle brand.”
As far as future plans are concerned, Tariq confirms that more SKUs will be available shortly, adding that “the chili mayo dip has received a great response given the desi taste profile of our consumers but we will soon bring in other flavours.”