OTC Market in India- We are selling convenience
OTC market in India approximately valued at $ 2 billion is on healthy growth track and is getting explored by top Indian Pharma companies.
Over the Counter medicines and the terminology is becoming very popular in Indian Pharmaceutical industry.
OTC medicines are selling the following important things to the consumers:
- Value for money
Why online shopping is becoming so popular because they are involved in the business of selling convenience and hence saving time.
The OTC market in India is driven by various factors which are driving the overall sales of the IPM.
Some funnier and the insightful side of the game:
Indians have a habit to make everything Over the counter (OTC)
Once Indians are ill- They know the treatment. That’s it. They will remember the brand name and the treatment regimen. Even if they do not remember the brand they will identify the color of the strip /packaging to buy the product at the chemist counter.(just recall the advertisement of Diclowin- Hare patte waali goli).
Every other person will see himself as a mini doctor. So if a doctor has prescribed brand X and it works – It becomes a choice of medication for the similar symptoms. If the brand X doesn’t work – doctor doesn’t know anything. We even do not mind saying no to a doctor who has studied medicine for 10 years.
Indians do not mind buying antibiotics buying without doctor’s prescription.
Not only this they will pop an antibiotic which has provided them relief last time. So no wonder why Antibiotic resistance is increasing.
- We live in a country where despite less awareness amongst people about medications, the antibiotics have become OTC (UTC in general).
- This indicates that antibiotic have sold themselves without any help. Sold its convenience which a normal consumer bought at that particular time of need.
Recommendation is in our blood:
We recommend real estate projects, career options to neighbours child ,fashion cues to the friends, phones to friends and even the mobile accessories , so why not medicines. After all a mini doctor is inside us.
Recommendation is in the blood of Indian. We are so good at preaching. One member is ill and see the recommendation you get from friends and relatives. Probably more than given in the medical books.
So why can’t we expect the recommendation from a Pharmacist- That is what is driving a higher percentage of OTC sales and hence they become a very important part of the OTC ecosystem.
We do not have time: what is the value of time is most understood in the financial capital of India-Mumbai. Depite a population of 1.25 billion we do not want to be queued up even if we do not have any lined up work. This time paucity leads to the habit of delaying and hence popping up of medicines which saves our time and hence money.
How can we wait in a doctor’s waiting area after paying him 500 rupees for the consultation. Let’s directly go to the chemist and see if some medicines work. After all doctor will again write the similar medicines like he did last time. And why did he prescribed Crocin- Did I pay 500 rupees to get Crocin. ?
Since we do not have time , we delay our treatment: We sneeze once and feel relaxed , we suffer from headache and take the best possible OTC medicines, even people have suffered from cardiac problems thinking that it is an acidity attack.( because a mini doctor is inside us) . That is how we postpone our treatment.
We also need On the GO treatment- Hence every brand is trying to provide the best possible OTG format of the medication for providing the convenience to the consumers. No wonder why Gelusil extended itself in sachet format .Who will carry a 100 ml bottle in his bag? Let’s tap a consumer at the point when he has acidity and it can be anywhere.
You name a common ailment at home and see the response you will get from the parents- they will have an answer or a medication for the treatment. This all leads to popping of the OTC medicines/Home Remedies which provide us the quick relief – and hence quick and fast have become another major words in the promotion of any medication ( be it Rx or OTC).
A convenience which can be branded well, packed distinctly, charged at premium and at the end provide relief to the consumers on the go will definitely going to churn out good revenues for the companies , build brand equity and the company name. OTC is nothing but convenience.
By; Kumud Kandpal