July 2015 | Sangeeta Menon

The connection is tasty

Tata Global Beverages uses the power of insights to create versatile beverages that appeal to consumers

Customers enjoy a hot cup of Tetley tea in the chill of winter during a promotional event in Canada
Serving 250 million units of tea, coffee and water every day is not an easy task. The world’s second-largest tea company, Tata Global Beverages (TGB) has managed to do it with the calmness of a Zen master. The company’s consumer-centric approach, blended with in-depth insights, has helped it develop a range of products loved and desired across 40 markets.

“Consumer focus is part of our corporate DNA,” says Garth Viegas, global insights director, TGB. “One of our directional themes is ‘the consumer is our heartbeat’, and consumer insights our lifeblood.”

It’s imperative for TGB to constantly feel the pulse of the consumer as preferences, geographic distribution, buying habits and the way they interact with products have changed dramatically over the last 10 years, and continue to evolve. “We are constantly striving to have a meaningful impact on all stakeholders, from farmer to consumer,” says Mr Viegas.

In addition to sustainable sourcing, TGB’s innovative social media initiatives such as Farmers First Hand enable consumers to talk directly to the people who grow, harvest and produce their favourite beverage. Consumers have reacted favourably to this initiative and the company now has half a million highly engaged fans.

Learn about the customer centricity practices that have made TGB the world’s second largest tea company
Consumers today are spoilt for choice and, consequently, over 80 percent of all new products in the industry are discontinued within 12 months of launch as they lose consumer interest. In such a fickle world, sharp customer insights have enabled TGB to improve the chances of success for its products.

This is a big challenge since TGB operates in different markets and with diverse consumers. “Consumers across the globe are subjected to an overload of information. Our role as marketers is to break through this clutter of mediums and messages and find different and innovative routes to the consumer,” says Mr Viegas.

Customer view
I’m a big Tetley fan; it’s the only tea I drink. In Newfoundland, Canada, Tetley outsells all other teas.

— A Tetley fan in Newfoundland, Canada

This is a shortened version of the main article, which is part of the cover story about the customer-centricity culture of the Tata group featured in the July 2015 issue of Tata Review. Read the complete article here >>
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