Business News of 2014-08-02

'Use brands to ensure behavioural change'

The Branding Director of Unilever Ghana, Mr Clarence Nartey, has urged members of the Chartered Institute of Marketing Ghana (CIMG) to use their brand as a force for change in society to ensure sustainable growth.

“Each brand must have a relevant social purpose and mobilise people around it,” he said.

Mr Nartey was speaking at the fourth series of the CIMG’s talk programme on July 30.

The presentation was on the theme, “Driving change through sustainable growth.”

Using the Unilever example, Mr Nartey said sustainability had always been what he described as “the company’s DNA” and it was also at the heart of its growth strategy.

He said diarrhoea-related deaths had been a problem in the society. Statistics indicate that 10,000 children under five years die every year from diarrhoea-related diseases in Ghana.

Mr Nartey said washing hands with soap and water could however, reduce the risk, adding that it was against this background that Unilever, therefore, used its Lifebuoy soap to leverage a global handwashing day to drive behavioural change.

He said the company also organised an educational campaign for schoolchildren with a pledge to help children reach the age of five.

Mr Nartey said Unilever had so far reached 11 million people with its Lifebuoy programme which had also registered growth over the years.

He said gum diseases and tooth decays also remained a major problem in Ghana as statistics showed that 73 per cent of 12 year olds had gum diseases while 47 per cent of children between 15-19 years had tooth decay.

He said Unilever, therefore, launched its “brush twice campaign,” using its Pepsodent brand to drive behavioural change in the society.

“We have been able to reach over one million people through this campaign and we have grown our oral business as well as the oral market as a whole,” he stated.

He said Pepsodent grew double digit in 2013 and remained one of the biggest brands of Unilever Ghana.

He, therefore, advised the members of CIMG to follow the Unilever example by finding out problems in the society and developing brands that would provide solutions.

“Behavioural change programme is a marathon and not a sprint, so patience is required,” he added.

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