How young brands grow: The GIVA story
Today, the very mention of “fine jewellery”, creates a divide between the consumers of the Indian jewellery industry. On the one hand are the traditional classic consumers who turn toward the coveted yellow metal — gold. On the other hand, are the young urban consumers wagering in favour of the up-and-coming moon metal — silver.
This distinct divide has made evident the fact that the consumer behaviour is making a shift from the classic gold designs to more urban and on-the-go silver options for jewellery. GIVA, a young jewellery brand has found its niche in this space. Sterling silver emerged as a category GIVA decided to foray into. Today, GIVA brand has become a household name for sterling silver jewellery options in India.
The trio behind the brand: Forging the team right
The first step was the coming together of 3 very strong underpins of this brand. Ishendra Agarwal, CEO, GIVA, is an IIT Kanpur alumnus with experience in consulting, co-founding another startup and hails from a family in the gold and diamond jewellery business. At GIVA, he sources quality raw materials and appoints the right craftsmen whom he sources through his family business’ network. Nikita Prasad, the cofounder, a NIFT alumnus, aces product design. At GIVA, she is responsible for forecasting trends of the fashion industry and designing products specific to the consumer needs. Sachin Shetty, the cofounder, is an investment associate. He makes the funds flow and grow. He has successfully raised funding of over $6,75,000 for GIVA in the past 3 years.
The stepping stone to GIVA’s growth story: Incisive market research
Well before GIVA’s conception, the founders decided to perform a thorough market research to understand the consumer needs and behaviour. Their entire marketing strategy and digital marketing approach has been based on this start point. The research revealed to them that consumers in the Unites State spend just Rs.9,000 — Rs.10,000 on an average per jewellery purchase. In India, the average spend in India is thrice that number.
The Indian tradition urges the consumers to buy gold jewellery as a commemoration of milestones. Besides, purchasing gold and silver jewellery is traditionally viewed as an investment for the future. The GIVA team discovered that the Indian consumer was willing to look at other jewellery options, which they also considered as an investment.
Another interesting insight was the consumers’ reluctance to buy gold online, even if it meant having a wide range of choices to choose from. In the spectrum of artificial jewellery, the choices are many but they don’t mind the need for investment. The consumers, therefore, had to make a choice between variety and investment. They couldn’t seem to have both. This has also led them to distinct marketing strategies.
In this gap lay the opportunity for GIVA. They, thus, entered the sterling silver market in 2019. The brand was launched with a seed capital of Rs.10,00,000; a small range of products in their first collection and a website to its name.
Go-to-Market Strategy: Shifting the spotlight from products to the purpose
“Purpose” has recently been added as the 5th P of Marketing and GIVA’s marketing strategy had got that in essence. It is a well-thought out mix of influencer marketing, social media and performance marketing. All channels cohesively and consistently communicated its purpose: that it stands for transparency, purity and authenticity.
Website: Injecting the initial stimulus and tracing the trajectory of growth
Go scroll through GIVA’s website, you will notice simplicity and high functionality. While most D2C SME brands decide to spend a significant portion of their seed money and resources on developing the website, GIVA chose a simple Shopify template and got the website up and running in less than a week. Digital marketing has been the backbone of their fast growth, and that strategy has executed quickly and efficiently.
In the very first quarter of their launch, GIVA was able to break even. The brand’s consistency and high response rate of the website helped generated a revenue of Rs. 1 Crore in the first financial year. Encouraged by the response from its customers, GIVA then went live on eCommerce marketplaces like Flipkart, Amazon and Nykaa.
Influencer Marketing and Social Media Maintenance: The catalyst to GIVA’s growth
The next step was to give the brand a face that the consumers could identify with. Anushka Sharma, known for her simplicity, honesty and versatility was viewed as a mirror of GIVA’s values. She resonated with the audience as one who chose GIVA’s fine jewellery to enhance her presence and yet reflect who she was. This made a statement in terms of the aesthetics of the jewellery, and the quintessential modern, urban woman found herself steadily attracted to GIVA’s offerings. GIVA has used digital marketing and online social media extremely judiciously in its expansion.
Re-instating the brand’s purpose through all communication resulted in a noticeable rise in their website traffic and enhanced the user engagement on all social media platforms.
GIVA has now strengthened its social media presence with a well-thought-out monthly strategy and campaigns focussed on retargeting the engaged consumers.
In its 3rd year now, GIVA recorded a revenue of over Rs.100 Crores.
Having raised funds worth $6,75,000 since its inception, the next step of GIVA’s marketing strategy is moving into media partnerships. Recently, the brand became the official jewellery partner for the movie Shabash Mithu starring Tapsee Panu.
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