A Slippery Problem

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Let us return to the premium toilet soap market in India. Suppose research has discovered an emerging cluster of consumers-young, modern, well-to-do-who believe that a bath soap should have good-for-skin qualities, who even think well of traditional herbs like Neem, but would accept it only with much more pronounced cosmetic benefits in terms of perfume, lather, colour, shape and packaging. Recall our discussion on Margo in the previous chapter.

Is it possible for a 'dressed-up' Margo to aim for the new position? Can Margo make the jump from where it is (that is, the way it is perceived now) so as to occupy the preferred position of this new cluster? Would the present physical characteristics of Margo - dark-green colour, strong Neem perfume, squat shape- permit the brand to match the ideal point of this new cluster merely on the basis of some superficial feature-changes like new packaging and brilliant advertising?

QUESTION- If the brand manager were to make the gamble of trying to position Margo-with some physical changes-both for his present target segment and the new one, how successful would he be? On the other hand, suppose he decided to make radical changes to Margo, so as to greatly enhancing its cosmetic values, how would that affect his present loyal segment of users? Should he pause and recall that old saying---"Beware of greed and grow fat"? Would it be better to consider a new product altogether? A product whose physical features are specifically designed to fit the new position, and whose concept can be stated as:

A highly emollient soap. Floral perfume with topnote of Neem: 'The creamy Neem'. The benefit of pure, age-old neem goodness without the drab looks of average neem soaps.
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