In Conversation with Kapil Grover

CMO, Burger King India
Thursday, 11 May 2017
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Kapil Grover is the CMO at Burger King, India, since July 2016. He started his career with Luxor Writing Instruments In April 2000. He worked there for three years, becoming the product manager of the company. In 2004, he joined Radico Khaitan Ltd as the company\'s marketing service manager (south). After spending almost 5 years in the company, he rose to become the AGM (marketing) of the company. In his previous role, before embarking on his journey in Burger King, Kapil was Director (Activation) at Yum! Restaurants International till 2016. For the record, Kapil had joined Yum! Restaurants International in 2008 as the Senior Brand Manager (Innovation).
About
Kapil Grover is the CMO at Burger King, India, since July 2016. He started his career with Luxor Writing Instruments In April 2000. He worked there for three years, becoming the product manager of the company. In 2004, he joined Radico Khaitan Ltd as the company's marketing service manager (south). After spending almost 5 years in the company, he rose to become the AGM (marketing) of the company. In his previous role, before embarking on his journey in Burger King, Kapil was Director (Activation) at Yum! Restaurants International till 2016. For the record, Kapil had joined Yum! Restaurants International in 2008 as the Senior Brand Manager (Innovation).

Burger King was a fairly late entrant into the business in its sector. However, it is growing steadily and surely. What are some of the strategies for the success of this brand?

We may be the youngest player in the market but we have focused on 2 key areas - retail expansion and product innovations. Making sure we have the right cluster strategy and product line up, has been critical to our success so far.

What's the growth opportunity that the brand sees in an emerging market like India?

Every day, more than 11 million guests visit our restaurants across the world. For a young and emerging market like India, the potential lies in us being able to reach the right target audience with the right proposition and our opportunity lies in that.

Competitive pricing, attractive deals, "coloured buns"... could you tell us how and why product innovation strategy is important for Burger King to reach out to customers? How else are you communicating with the customer?

Product innovation is at the heart of what we do and is an important element of our growth plan. Youth in India are looking for new and exciting options and seek innovation in every sphere of their lives. From our inception in India in 2014, we have rapidly grown our menu and it is fully customised for the Indian market. We continue to drive burger innovation through Limited Time Offers like the Angriest Whopper, Bigg Boss Whopper and the recently launched Salsa Whopper. We have increasingly started using digital media to effectively connect with our guests.

Would you agree that the burger in itself is emerging as an important product category -- KFC, for instance, has a Zinger burger now, a deviation from its other core products. What is Burger King doing in terms of bringing newer products to tackle competition?

Burgers are relevant for about 50% of QSR eating out occasions. As I mentioned, there is always something new and different that our patrons can expect from us. We have launched a significant number of LTOs in the market, which not only offer taste excitement but also offer great value for money. While the competitive play is important, our aim is to stay focused on our strategy to offer new & exciting menu and great value to our guests.  

Given the changing times, how crucial is digital media platform apart from traditional print and television advertising for Burger King?

For a young and ever evolving market like India, digital media is extremely crucial. Not only does it offer immense opportunity to connect with the target audience, digital medium also helps us get closer to the pulse of the people. It is like sharing a new story every day. While I am not undermining the power of print or television, digital is now a key medium for building engagement and conversations with our guests.

What should be the relationship between brands and their respective agencies for better communication to reach out to the target customer?

It should be a relationship that fosters creativity. You need partners that share the same vision and passion.
 

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