Onion crisis makes cheap marketing tool for Chandigarh startup

Onion prices are going crazy all over India, but residents in Chandigarh are able to buy the vegetable at a throwaway price of Rs 20 per kilogram.

Chandigarh-based startup and a hyper local market player Jugnoo is using this as a marketing tool to increase its user base. Just four days into the campaign, Jugnoo is already gaining traction with 1,000 transactions per day (it was launched in Chandigarh, Gurgaon, Ludhiana, Amritsar, Jaipur and Indore on Sunday).

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This is quite a dramatic response given that not only are they getting more orders of the most indispensable kitchen commodity, but consumers are also talking about them. "We have often been asked about our marketing strategy and unanimously it has been "word of mouth". There is a huge inflow of referral orders, which goes to prove that this works best for us", said Samar Singla, CEO of Jugnoo.

Such is the leverage Jugnoo, a hyperlocal market pace, sought in the country's current scenario where the most essential item of the kitchen hit skyrocketing prices. The topic of every dinner table discussion- " The onion prices are going crazy", propelled them to come up with an ingenuine strategy of recognizing this as an opportunity to come to the rescue of the common man.

While onions are sold upto Rs 80 per kilogram in the retail markets in most parts of India, Jugnoo finds it viable at Rs 20 per kilogram. "We are selling at no profit no loss. There is no scarcity of onion stock but the hoarding by speculators has seen prices spiralling," Singla added.

While the government has also acknowledged the issue and is trying what's viable in its capacity to curb this build-up, Jugnoo was quick to identify a move which got them to become a household name essentially for taming this inflation for the consumer. How did they do it? Singla states, "We just thought of a fundamental approach of bringing relief to every kitchen, which was to just reduce the price and increase the supply."

"We delivered close to 10 tonne of onions in a day across the six towns. Delhi has been excluded from this offer due to its expansive geography," he said.

It may become unwieldy with the large number of deliveries in a day so team Jugnoo is mulling to come out with a strategy to handle the plethora of orders in an organized way.

For Jugnoo, this is not just about onions, they have a more holistic agenda. Erratic rainfalls, leading to shortage of supply, leading to price inflation, there has to be some respite for the common man, and in wake of that, they took it upon themselves to make a social impact wrapped in a marketing blueprint.

The word has spread, Jugnoo Fatafat- their hyperlocal marketplace for deliveries which allows the consumer to order anything from anywhere, is being swamped with uninterrupted orders of this crucial ingredient. The team is elated with the response. Consumers are back in the game with the kitchen inventory being replenished with just a click of a button. There is no staggering from one vendor to the other just for a better deal. Serving convenience on the platter is what these guys do best and is the prime reason of how they have become a household name- By recognizing a problem that is causing the masses to suffer and by doing something about it.

For Jugnoo, this means yet another successful experiment bringing more consumers to their fold. A classic case of twisting crisis into a breakthrough.

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