Close Up Is A Popular Brand Of Toothpaste Marketing Essay

3205 words (13 pages) Essay

1st Jan 1970 Marketing Reference this

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Close-up is a popular brand of toothpaste in India and is marketed by Unilever. Unilever is a well FMCG company in Indian markets. It has an experience of around 50 years and has the faith of millions of people in India. Close-up is an important product through which Unilever launched themselves as a leading company in India. Close-up, launched in 1967, is said to be the first gel toothpaste in the world. From the day of launch, it has been compared to ‘Freshness’ and has been targeted to the youth crowd. In 2003, Unilever sold the licensing rights to Church & Dwight in United States and Canada. But, in India the Unilever continues its sales and it has not failed to appeal the youth crowd even today. The advertising campaigns of this toothpaste are also very stylish and many famous stars have been roped in to endorse this brand. It has been market leader in the Indian markets for over 3 decades.

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Unlike the typical opaque, mint-flavored toothpaste of the time, Close Up debuted in 1967 as a clear red gel with a spicy cinnamon taste and mouthwash right in the toothpaste. A unique brand identity was developed, with Close-Up positioned as the toothpaste that gives people confidence in those very “up close and personal” situations. It was the first gel toothpaste that gives consumers the option to brush with transparent, shiny, bright colored gel toothpaste. The idea of a toothpaste that could give them fresh breath, white teeth and, subsequently, a little extra self-confidence and sex appeal provided instant appeal to consumers. Over the years, Close-Up briefly flirted with a few variations, from a green mint-flavored version to a trendy clear gel. In 2006, Close-up Limited Edition launch in Arabia redefined the toothpaste market with its unique new flavors: Choco-loko, Tangerine Burst, and Lychee.  It brought excitement and life into the rather boring toothpaste category and helped the brand achieve record sales and shares. One thing remains constant: Close-up is still symbolized by attractive white smiles in very close situations.

Key facts

First toothpaste in US to combine mouthwash and toothpaste in one formula

First gel toothpaste in the world

The Fluoride in Close Up called monofluorophospate makes the entire tooth structure more resistant to delay. It also strengthens teeth, which aids in repairing early delay before the damage can even be seen.

Close-Up is the number 2 brand in the GCC

Products Offered:

As said earlier, the specialty of close-up toothpaste is that, it has come out of the typical opaque, mint-flavored toothpaste to a cleared gel with a spicy cinnamon taste. Its products straight away appealed to the youths and from the day of launch, Close-up has introduces a lot of products into the market. The main motive of Close-up was to target youth and hence to move along with the trendy market, they launched a lot of products. They have introduced tooth with crystals in it, the crystal frost were used to whiten teeth and to give icy-cool freshness. Then they introduced toothpaste with two colored gels known as the Fire Freeze. It had red and blue gel which is used for providing intensive cooling sensation and to give long lasting freshness.

The toothpaste is available in different flavors like lemon, menthol, orange, snowman, etc. Some of the products are shown below:

Close Up Crystal Frost – Winter BlastClose Up Crystal Frost – Menthol Burst Close Up Fire FreezeClose Up Crystal Crystal Frost Eros Red Green Core Green ExplorerClose Up Jares Lemon Mint Menthol Chill Orange Explorer Red HotSnowman Green Yellow Core Logo and slogan:

The closer, the better

-Close Up

The left side logo is the one which is used in the Indian markets and the right side logo is used in the US markets. The slogan is very apt for the product which is focusing on youth. The slogan emphasizes on improved confidence when you go close to someone. It symbolizes freshness and targeted for the people young at heart.

Marketing Strategies:

Close-Up toothpaste targeted youth people and hence their marketing strategies are youthful and trendy. Their advertisements had lot of music and dance. Popular stars who appeal to the youth crowd have been roped in the advertisements. The strategies emphasized on white teeth, fresher breadth, no tooth decay, more confidence to come close to their preferred sex, etc, and this was exactly the characteristics of the toothpaste that teens demand. The covers of the toothpaste had couples with bright smiles with white teeth. This gave a fresh look to the brand. When we consider niche market of people between 13 to 24 year old, Close-up continues to be a leader in the market.


Revenues and marketing share:

When we consider the fast growing gel toothpaste segment, Close-Up has upper hand than its competitors. The segment comprises of 900 crore people and Close-up leads this segment with a 60 percent share. This huge success of Close up is often attributed to its youth centric advertisements and its innovative market strategies. When we take the youth segment, Close up is the market leader clearly. But when we take the overall market share Close-up stands at second place next to Colgate. As the gel toothpaste market is increasing, the market share of Close up is in the raise and Close up has a record of being the market leader for over three decades.


Close Up is synonymous with ‘Freshness’ that gives a confidence to get close to someone you love.

Gel Toothpaste – Alternative to White Toothpaste

First mover of the gel paste segment. First gel toothpaste in India – launched in 1980

The dual benefits (shiny white teeth & fresh breath) and a modern ingredient (Mouthwash) makes it very appealing

Market leader in the gel-segment for almost 3 decades

Excellent advertising and branding

India’s 1st singing contest ‘Close-UpSangeetMuqabala’ on Radio and ‘Close-Up Antakshari’ on TV.

Strong positioning in the segment of 2 in 1 toothpaste



Colgate is a sub-brand of Colgate-Palmolive Company. It is an oral hygiene product line of toothpastes, toothbrushes, mouthwashes and dental floss. From a modest start in 1937, when hand-carts were used to distribute Colgate Dental Cream Toothpaste, Colgate-Palmolive (India) today has one of the widest distribution networks in India – a logistical marvel that makes Colgate available in almost 4.5 million retail outlets across the country. The Company has grown to a Rs. 2200 crore plus organization with an outstanding record of enhancing value for its strong shareholder base. The company dominates the Rs. 4100 crore Indian toothpaste markets by commanding more than 50% of the market share.

Since 1976, Colgate has worked in close partnership with the Indian Dental Association (IDA) to spread the message of oral hygiene to children across the country under its ‘Bright Smiles, Bright Futures’ Schools Dental Education Program. This program has successfully reached more than 95 million school children covering around 1,94,000 schools in 250 towns across the country since its launch. The program focuses on children so that the message of good oral hygiene is carried home to families and the community at large. In 2004, as an additional effort to create awareness for good oral hygiene ‘Oral Health Month’ (OHM), was introduced. Since its launch, OHM is conducted each year during September / October, where free dental check ups are conducted by Colgate in partnership with IDA across the country. Conducted in designated towns and cities to establish and promote the importance of good oral hygiene, OHM is Colgate’s mass consumer contact program.

The strong relationship and the trust of generations of consumers, trade and the dental profession built over decades of operations in India has made Colgate a trusted household name. In 2009, Colgate-Palmolive (India) was adjudged as the Best Value Creator (Mid Cap Category) in the 2009 Outlook Money NDTV Profits Awards. In 2003, Colgate was ranked India’s #1 Most Trusted Brand across all categories by Brand Equity’s Most Trusted Brand Survey conducted in conjunction with Nielsen – a position it held in succession for four consecutive years from 2003 to 2007 and has been the only brand in the top three coveted position in all the 8 surveys conducted since 2001. Prior to this, Colgate was also rated as the #1 brand by the A&M – MODE Annual Survey for India’s Top Brands for eight out of nine years during the period 1992 to 2001


Colgate was the first toothpaste in a collapsible tube, introduced in 1896, when it had previously been sold in glass jars since 1873. Present in India since the 1930s, Colgate is almost synonymous with toothpaste in the Indian market. It is accepted well both in the rural and urban areas. It has been ranked as the 17th most trusted brand in India by The Brand Trust Report.

In 1806, when the company was founded by 23-year-old William Colgate, it concentrated exclusively on selling starch, soap, and candles from its New York City-based factory and shop. Upon entering his second year of business, Colgate became partners with Francis Smith, and the company became Smith and Colgate, a name it kept until 1812 when Colgate purchased Smith’s share of the company and offered a partnership to his brother, Bowles Colgate. Now called William Colgate and Company, the firm expanded its manufacturing operations to a Jersey City, New Jersey, factory in 1820; this factory produced Colgate’s two major products, Windsor toilet soaps and Pearl starch. Colgate-Palmolive Company’s growth from a small candle and soap manufacturer to one of the most powerful consumer products giants in the world is the result of aggressive acquisition of other companies, persistent attempts to overtake its major U.S. competition, and an early emphasis on building a global presence overseas where little competition existed. The company is organized around four core segments–oral care, personal care, home care, and pet nutrition–that market such well-known brands as Colgate toothpaste, Irish Spring soap, Softsoap liquid soap, Mennen deodorant, Palmolive and Ajax dishwashing liquid, Ajax cleanser, Murphy’s oil soap, Fab laundry detergent, Soupline and Suavitel fabric softeners, and Hill’s Science Diet and Hill’s Prescription Diet pet foods. Colgate-Palmolive has operations in more than 200 countries and generates about 70 percent of its revenue outside the United States.


Colgate has a wide range of products in the market. Each product has its own significance. Some of the products and their significances are:

Colgate Total Advanced – contain silica for ensuring extra clean teeth.

Colgate® Optic White – uses hydrogen peroxide to achieve visible whitening everyday

Colgate Total – help preventing many common oral health conditions.

Colgate Sensitive Pro-Relief – Used for curing lasting pain relief with regular usage

Colgate Max Fresh – Contains mint and helps for giving a fresh breadth.

Colgate Luminous – It protects against yellowing and stains.

Colgate ProClinical White – Provides professionally inspired, clinically proven results.

Colgate 2in1 – liquid gel varieties launched to target the gel toothpaste segment.


Number 1 recommended by dentists.


Colgate have been in the market for many decades. It’s advertisement has changed from time to time. The first advertisement is launched in 1960. In this advertisement colgate focused on youngsters. This ad shows a college campus where a girl pays attention to a boy who brushes his teeth with COLGATE. It was shown that colgate gives bright teeth and fresh breath. Then there came another on tv in 1996, with Aishwarya Rai. A boy is there in the ad who dates with Aishwarya, it shows that colgate refreshes the breath. Its punch line was ‘Saanso mein zindadil taazgi’. Then on 18, may 2006 the next ad was broadcasted. In this ad it was shown that some people feels pain in their teeth when they eat something. A girl comes and suggests to use colgate as it contains salt which helps in getting rid of tooth problems. Next ad came on tv on 31, august 2007 and was of 30 seconds duration. In this ad stress is given on fresh breath. A lady police is there in the ad who stops a guy’s car for alcohol test and she gets impressed by his tempting fresh breath. Next ad was on air on 9,april 2008 and was of 30 seconds duration. In this father & son are shown painting wood and son leaves some portion of it than father explains son the importance of total protection whether its wood or teeth. More revealing a dentist is shown doing comparison. In next ad, there is a comparison between Colgate and other ordinary toothpaste, to make ad more revealing a dentist is shown doing this comparison that colgate makes teeth and gums stronger and fights germs for a long time. In a recent ad two small kids are shown who are acting as a dentist at their father’s dental clinic where one kid is diagnosing other’s teeth and they say that there is no problem in the teeth and then father comes and says the same thing, so its shown that even a father as well as dentist is recommending Colgate to his kids.

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An advertising campaign for Colgate toothpaste from the 1940s used the slogan “It cleans your breath while it cleans your teeth”. From the 1960s onwards, the slogan was “The Colgate ring of confidence”.Colgate has a toothpaste and toothbrush mascot for children’s entertainment

The main punch line of Colgate is ‘Dentist ka sujhaya number one brand’. This toothpaste also approved by ‘Indian Medical Association’.


Colgate has been the leader in Indian market for many decades. The market share of Colgate in India is about 60 per cent. In the normal toothpaste segment there is no nearest competitor for Colgate. In gel segment Close-Up posts a very tough competition to Colgate. To mark in that segment Colgate has started products like 2 in 1 gel toothpaste. In Indian market Colgate is generally synonymous to the word toothpaste. It has been in the market from tooth powder and they were the first one to introduce toothpaste in tubes. Hence, there is lot of faith in the market and Colgate can hold the markets for long.


Colgate has a global market and it is known for producing quality products. It has strong channels of distribution globally. It is the number one selling toothpaste in the world. It has a wide range of products. It is synonymous to toothpaste in Indian market. It is accepted by ADA for the prevention of tooth decay.



Pepsodent is a brand of toothpaste with a minty flavour derived from Sassafras. The brand is owned by Unilever, but in 2003 the rights to the brand in the United States and Canada were bought by Church and Dwight. Pepsodent was a very popular brand before the mid-1950s, but its makers were slow to add fluoride to its formula to counter the rise of other highly promoted brands such as Crest and Gleem toothpaste by Procter & Gamble, and Colgate’s eponymous product; sales of Pepsodent plummeted. Today Pepsodent is a “value brand” marketed primarily in discount stores and retails for roughly half the price of similarly-sized tubes of Crest or of Colgate.

Pepsodent has a range of toothpastes and toothbrushes that could take care of specific oral care needs. Pepsodent toothpaste fights germs to protect teeth against cavities and gives strong teeth, fresh breath and healthy gums.

Pepsodent as an oral care expert offers solution to specific problems like bleeding gums and sensitive teeth.


The history of Pepsodent goes back at least to the 1920s.

It was advertised for its purported properties fighting tooth decay, attributed in advertisements to the supposed ingredient Irium. Irium is another word for sodium lauryl sulfate, an inexpensive ionic surfactant. However, in a 1994 speech, then-FCC chairman Reed Hundt claimed that the “Irium” mentioned in Pepsodent advertisements “didn’t exist”.

Another ingredient, “I.M.P.” was purported to whiten teeth. Its best-known slogan was “You’ll wonder where the yellow went / when you brush your teeth with Pepsodent!” British comedian Jasper Carrott referred to the slogan in one of his stand-up routines, saying “On your tongue – that’s where the yellow went!”

In the 1930s a massive animated neon advertising sign, featuring a young girl on a swing, hung on a building in Times Square in New York City. This ad was re-created for the climax of the 2005 film King Kong.

The product was discontinued in South Africa in 1974 but was revived in 1976 with a new ad slogan “Gets Your Teeth Their Whitest” featuring celebrity endorsers Rita Moreno, Steve Lawrence, and others. The popular slogan was also changed in South Africa to “You’ll wonder where the dullness went / when you polish your teeth with Pepsodent”.

Pepsodent is still sold as a Unilever property in all markets except the United States and Canada. In Vietnam Pepsodent is called P/S

Pepsodent was launched in 1993 in India and since then the brand has raised the benchmark on Oral Care solutions in India.


Pepsodent Germicheck+Pepsodent WhiteningPepsodent 2in1Pepsodent Center FreshPepsodent Gum CarePepsodent SensitivePepsodent Kids

Pepsodent has been used to cure tooth decay and to cure oral problems. So, it has products like germi-check, whitening, etc. To target youth crowds and to compete in the growing gel market they introduced a 2 in 1 gel toothpaste which is also very popular in the market. It also has a special product for taking care of gums.

Logo and slogan

Slogan: Complete Care

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