CEO of Kas­saa Paints Group, speaks to about Re­spisafe, the lat­est in­no­va­tion by paint com­pany Colortek, which has ex­tended its line of safe and sus­tain­able paints with a prod­uct that not only min­imises the im­pact of paints on in­door air qual­ity but ef­fect

ArabAd - - BUSINESS -

When it comes to paint, peo­ple gen­er­ally only think about colour, so how are you in­tro­duc­ing the con­cept of safety based on the home’s air qual­ity?

As a paints man­u­fac­turer, we are very aware how much our un­reg­u­lated in­dus­try al­lows for the use of dan­ger­ous chem­i­cals in the man­u­fac­tur­ing process, a fact that many take ad­van­tage of to the detri­ment of the con­sumer’s health with­out men­tion­ing the en­vi­ron­ment!

The chal­lenge for us was how to con­vey this message to our cus­tomers and ex­plain these dan­gers when they can­not smell or see them. The an­swer is con­stant and con­tin­u­ous ed­u­ca­tion at the con­sumer level.

As paints brand, we have earned the trust of our cus­tomers as the ex­pert when it comes to help­ing them choose the per­fect colour that com­ple­ments their life­style. Lever­ag­ing that trust is key to hav­ing them pay at­ten­tion to the im­por­tance of choos­ing the right and safest paint along with their colour. Al­though it is a chal­lenge, we be­lieve that the ef­fort is worth it be­cause con­sumers are very much aware of the dan­gers that pol­lu­tion rep­re­sents and be­cause we are facing a health and en­vi­ron­men­tal cri­sis, ex­plain­ing to them that this pol­lu­tion is not only out­side our homes but also within be­comes a lit­tle bit more at­tain­able.

The ad­van­tage of Re­spisafe is that it an­swers both the aes­thet­ics and safety con­cerns in one pack­age be­cause, in ad­di­tion to its air pu­ri­fy­ing prop­er­ties, it also in­cludes spe­cific per­for­mance fea­tures such as anti-bur­nish and anti-bac­te­rial prop­er­ties that en­sure

July/au­gust 2016 the dura­bil­ity of the paint and colour over time. And re­mem­ber, these claims are cer­ti­fied by Amer­i­can and Ger­man in­sti­tutes so that our cus­tomers can be as con­fi­dent about the safety and per­for­mance of our paints as they are about our colours.

Do you feel there is a need to­day to have a spe­cialised agency to han­dle your mar­ket­ing?

When it comes to telling the story of Colortek, we be­lieve there is a need for both a ded­i­cated and pas­sion­ate in­ter­nal team that un­der­stands the spirit and his­tory of the brand as well as for an ex­ter­nal agency that will help fo­cus and frame the com­mu­ni­ca­tion in a co­her­ent and con­sis­tent man­ner. These two com­po­nents are es­sen­tial for an ef­fec­tive com­mu­ni­ca­tion strat­egy pro­vided they work in tan­dem and ab­so­lute sym­bio­sis. There­fore, the im­por­tance of an agency, which un­der­stands and lives the brand while keep­ing the brand's ob­jec­tive per­spec­tive, is what makes it so valu­able.

Does the in­tro­duc­tion of such a revo­lu­tion­ary prod­uct that tar­gets a niche au­di­ence call for a dif­fer­ent ap­proach in terms of com­mu­ni­ca­tion?

This first thing I want to ad­dress is the idea that Re­spisafe is niche. On the con­trary! We have worked ex­tremely hard to pro­vide all of Re­spisafe’s ben­e­fits at mar­ket price! Af­ter all, what is the point of do­ing good and act­ing re­spon­si­bly if it is only to the ben­e­fit of a few. This has been the phi­los­o­phy be­hind Re­spisafe but also at the core of our of­fer­ing from the mo­ment we started our com­pany over 55 years ago: Colortek is a brand that pro­vides af­ford­able in­no­va­tion and added-value.

The chal­lenge is not be­cause the prod­uct is niche but in ed­u­cat­ing con­sumers about the im­por­tance of in­door air qual­ity and how much it im­pacts their health and the health of our chil­dren. In a coun­try like Lebanon, that ef­fort be­comes much more dif­fi­cult be­cause of its plu­ral­ity. The rich­ness of our cul­ture makes it much more chal­leng­ing to reach all of our au­di­ence and that is why we spread our ef­forts across sev­eral chan­nels such as so­cial me­dia, PR, ad­ver­tis­ing; but also lob­by­ing with ma­jor ar­chi­tec­tural and engi­neer­ing firms be­cause for max­i­mum im­pact, we need to work both at the con­sumer level as well as at the govern­men­tal and reg­u­la­tory level to drive change across the board. How­ever, we be­lieve that at the end of the day, the gen­eral pop­u­la­tion has the fi­nal say. They have to be in­formed and aware that their com­bined choice does make a dif­fer­ence and that choice is ex­pressed at its max­i­mum power when they de­cide where, how and on what they will spend their money.

Arabad

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