Well the history of this brand traces back to the 19th century when industrial revolution in Switzerland created factory jobs for women, who were therefore left with very little time to prepare meals. Due to this growing problem Swiss Public Welfare Society asked a miller named Julius Maggi to create a vegetable food product that would be quick to prepare and easy to digest. Julius, the son of an Italian immigrant came up with a formula to bring added taste to meals in 1863. Soon after he was commissioned by the Swiss Public Welfare Society, he came up with two instant pea soups & a bean soup- the first launch of Maggi brand of instant foods in 1882-83.Towards the end of the century, Maggi company was producing not just powdered soups, but bouillon cubes, sauces and other flavorings.
However in India(the largest consumer of Maggi noodles in the world!) it was launched in 1980’s by Nestle group of companies. Maggie had merged with Nestle(This company too has a very interesting history which I will discuss in some other review!) family in 1947.
When launched it had to face a stiff competition from the ready to eat snack segments like biscuits, wafers etc. Also it had other competitor the so called ’home made’ snacks which are till today considered healthy and hygienic. Hence to capture the market it was positioned as a hygienic home made snack, a smart move. But still this didn’t work, as it was targeted towards the wrong target group, the working women. Although the product was developed for this particular purpose.
After conducting an extensive research, the firm found that the children were the biggest consumers of Maggi noodles. Quickly a strategy was developed to capture the kids segment with various tools of sales promotion like pencils, fun books, maggi clubs which worked wonders for it. No doubt the ads of maggi have shown a hungry kid saying ’’Mummy bhookh lagi hai’’ to which his mom replies ’’Bas do minute!’’ and soon he is happily eating Maggie noodles. The company could have easily positioned the product as a meal, but did not, as a study had shown that Indian mentality did not accept anything other than rice or roti as meal. They made it a easy to cook snack that could be prepared in just two minutes.
The formula clicked well & maggi became a brand name.That’s precisely what is required in making a product a brand The brand has grown to an estimated 200 crore & contributes to around 10% of Nestle India’s top line.
So next time when you are eating this noodles just remember these facts that have gone on to make Maggi a brand.
In the early 1980s India was opening up to the world after three and a half decades of self-existence. Till then, the concept of “fast food” was practically non-existent. Nestle had already been pipped to the post by Cadbury in the milk chocolate segment and it desperately wanted to create a niche for itself in the high potential Indian market. It was then that it realized that it could be a first-mover in the untapped “instant food” segment. Several years went by and a lot of money was spent and Maggi Noodles was born. The problems had only just begun. The biggest of them was the Indian psyche of the 80s. The conservatism which India showed in their culture boiled down to their palate also. They would rather stick to their Tandoori Chicken or Idli Sambhar than be a little more adventurous in trying a new taste. Maggi Noodles was a new taste from a new culture. It was then that Maggi Noodles became Maggi Instant Two-Minute Noodles. The whole point was to position Maggi as platform of convenience and soul food for the a fast growing section of the Indian population – the working women. Heavy promotion was done on the same lines. But even this did not work. Sales were good but not as good as they wanted it to be. A research was carried out which revealed that the largest consumers of the brand were not the working women but young...