Why do we hide?

What comes to your mind when you read the title? No, it’s not about ‘black money’ which people anyway will keep hiding whether you ban currency or change the currency. Few things about Indians you can’t change at all. Today, I am going to talk specifically about two products one of which is related to both male & female and other one is related to only female. These two products are purchased secretly and kept hidden from outer world.

Before I mention those products, I will mention few things about branding. I have been taught that brand equity is the value you add in consumer’s life, brand positioning is the acquisition of consumer’s mind’s space, brand recall is when consumer is able to recognize brand without all the hints or minimum hints. All these mentioned concepts relate with consumer at different touch points of consumer’s buying process. Take an example, consumer needs something, he sees an advertisement of a product which can satiate the need i.e. ‘brand positioning’. Now that consumer decides to buy it and add values to his daily life which comes with that specific product i.e. ‘brand equity’. Now consumer decides to repurchase it or recommend it to other people he needs to be in touch with that product with satisfactory reviews which happens after enough visibility of the product or brand name i.e. ‘brand recall’.


We have 5 chemist shops in family so I have experienced this process for all the over the counter products but there are two such products which don’t actually follow the above mentioned process. By now you would have understood which product I am talking about, yes, you’re right. They are ‘Condom’ and ‘Sanitary pads’. What do you think how an Indian buys condom from chemist shop? If you start observing, you will understand how funny it is. I have seen people writing it in the form of prescription, few come covering their face, few send small children to purchase, few don’t speak anything- they just point to it and show the count by fingers whereas I have seen dew people murmuring something and asking for paper bag to cover it. Same thing happens with sanitary pads. The use of sanitary pads is lowest but that’s not our point of discussion today. While purchasing all the females behaves in the same manner the males behave while purchasing condoms. Important factor about the sanitary pads pack is always wrapped in black plastic bag or a newspaper.


So the whole point of discussion is to ‘why we hide?’ My point is not to discuss why do we behave in certain manner when it comes to these products but from company’s point of view, Aren’t we doing something wrong in terms of placement of product? Why aren’t we targeting the fact that such products need more visibility for its served purpose? Take all other products, you will find that its visibility plays important role in the repurchase of that product. If we remove this taboo and start showing it to the world that I have purchased condom or sanitary pad because I need it. I think when this starts happening the category will increase as well as brands will grow to serve its sole purpose.

Happy Observations!


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