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IndiGo Airline and Maruti; My Value Brands in Bangalore

April 2015

By Reshma Bachwani , Bangalore

It is said that good brands do not need catchy advertising. They survive and in fact thrive on the merit of an irresistible product and service bundle.

When we talk about automobiles in India – Maruti is one such brand that has become a household name.  Maruti is a brand that pioneered the affordable, value-for-money small car in India, the Maruti 800. It has struck a strong emotional and cultural connect with Indians including myself for it's value for money offer, dependable technology, a wide network of service stations, inexpensive spares, a wide range of small cars to suit everyone’s fancy and a great buy back system in place.

Mileage is one of the key decision making variables when making a car purchase. Maruti has aptly caught the pulse of the consumer on this front. Not only do their cars offer relatively high mileage as compared to other comparable brands, the brand released a tongue-in-cheek television commercial capturing this sentiment.

The one I own is the Swift. To the young first time buyer, the Swift combines power performance with stable handling and a design language that is sporty modern. It is no surprise that the Swift is the highest selling model in the hatchback segment. The company sells between 15000-20000 cars every month and has consistently been doing so for more than five years.

The current generation of Indian consumers is hard to please – me included. We seem to have inherited the value consciousness from our parents and yet demand the ‘best-in-class’ features that are so typical of the consumerist era. And brands like Maruti have managed to retain their connection with the current generation because of successfully straddling these two worlds.

Another brand that does the same though in a different category is Indigo Airlines. I grew up at a time when air travel meant luxury. Then came a time when the value system was changing and being plain luxurious wasn’t a virtue. Visibility and reach were the modern mantras for the new consumer. Suddenly one saw a glut of low frill airlines brands, which stripped the halo around air travel and made it as plebeian as catching a bus. Everyone was traveling though that did not result in many happy travellers. With low prices came poor service, overbooked flights, musty cabins, cramped seats and what irked most travellers and struck at the very core of the emotional Indians was being charged for water. There is a native belief that even if a strange comes knocking at one’s door – one wouldn’t send him back with offering some water.   

One brand that stood out amidst the clutter was and still is IndiGo Airlines. What I like about the brand is though it is a no frill carrier - their quality of service is as good as the best full service airline in India. They set the benchmark for professionalism. Known for their on-time arrivals and departure, clean and well-maintained cabins, courteous and helpful staff, a good selection of food to purchase and most of all - they don't compromise leg space to earn a few extra bucks - they are sensible about it.  Oh and they don’t make their customers pay for water.

Maruti, Swift Interior, Bangalore
Indigo Airline, Bangalore
Maruti, Swift, Exterior, Bangalore

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