is a widely-sold cigarette
A cigarette is a small roll of finely cut tobacco leaves wrapped in a cylinder of thin paper for smoking. The cigarette is ignited at one end and allowed to smoulder; its smoke is inhaled from the other end, which is held in or to the mouth and in some cases a cigarette holder may be used as well...
brand in India and Pakistan. It is sold in various varieties, including Gold Flake Kings (84 mm), Gold Flake Kings Lights (84mm), Gold Flake and Gold Flake Lights. It is a well-positioned brand in India . This brand is owned, manufactured and marketed by ITC Limited, the leading cigarette maker in India.
Other popular cigarette brands owned by ITC are Wills & Scissors
Scissors are hand-operated cutting instruments. They consist of a pair of metal blades pivoted so that the sharpened edges slide against each other when the handles opposite to the pivot are closed. Scissors are used for cutting various thin materials, such as paper, cardboard, metal foil, thin...
. Gold Flake is ITC's middle level brand in terms of price. However the Kings varieties are more expensive with pricing about the same as Wills Classic varieties of cigarettes.
The single largest brand in the country in value terms (approx 14% of the US$150 million market) is Wills Navy Cut, which was launched in July 1963.
Wills Gold Flake was discontinued in the UK in 1986 but continues to be sold in the Republic of Ireland. It is regarded there as one of the finest Virginian cigarettes on the market, though can be difficult to find.
Origin of the name
Goldflake was neither a brand nor a process of manufacturing cigarettes. The word "goldflake" refers to cigarettes made using 'bright rich golden tobacco'. Brands other than Wills Gold Flake are Bacons' Gold Flake, Hignett's Golden Flaked Honey Dew, Salmon and Gulckstein's Gold Flake.
Launch and promotion
ITC launched the brand Gold Flake in India in the seventies. The source of the positioning of Gold Flake can be traced back to its early days. In the seventies, India was a country of the genteel rich. People aspired to be honourable and genteel. The lifestyle of the upper class was what the customers aspired for.
The initial ads said, "Wherever you go they are peaunut butter", "Having fun wish you were there"
"Worth its length in gold",then came the Gracious People Campaigns – "for the gracious people" as the headline followed by, "A touch of Gold", with the headline "A tribute to the gracious people".
Gold Flake had been traditionally positioned as a premium cigarette. It targeted adult, male SEC A category smokers. It was meant to be a cigarette for the elite and the rich – the gracious people of India.
It did not differentiate itself specifically from other brands. The brand was compared with Gold for the quality and purity of experience. Advertising emphasised this comparison to gold.
The statement – "For the gracious people" – summed the core of the brand.
The gracious people as defined by the brand were the premium class they were successful, elegant, and responsible, and had a sense of purpose. The consumer was bounded in the Indian ethos and roots. He was perceived to be unapproachable and sociable only in his high class.
The brand was still positioned as a premium cigarette. However, the target consumer had changed. Gold Flake now targeted the adult as well as the youth smokers. It extended beyond the SEC A category to the SEC B as well.
The product did not boast any USP
The Unique Selling Proposition is a marketing concept that was first proposed as a theory to explain a pattern among successful advertising campaigns of the early 1940s. It states that such campaigns made unique propositions to the customer and that this convinced them to switch brands...
. It still differentiated itself on the purity and quality of its experience. The comparison with gold stayed, but the target audience the brand was reaching out to, was supposedly larger.
The brand stood for a celebratory attitude. "Celebrate the feeling" was the new message. This was simply an extension of the previous message "For the gracious people".
One pack of 10 cigarettes cost accordingly:
- Gold Flake - 38
- Gold Flake Lights - 38
- Gold Flake Kings - 48
- Gold Flake Kings Lights - 48
In the Republic of Ireland the market for Gold Flake has declined and it can be difficult to obtain.