Coming from a family of entrepreneurs, Aayushi and Arnav Kishore have leveraged their flair and inclination towards business for something bigger and more impactful than business as usual.
The sibling duo co-founded Fire-Boltt back in 2015. Today, this homegrown, boot-strapped start-up has become a top smartwatch player in the country. They have quite literally revolutionized the smartwatch game in the country.
With a sweet ₹500 Crore revenue portfolio in FY22, there are clearly a lot of things going right for the brand.
Today, we’re unpacking their marketing strategy.
The brand’s story is equal parts inspiring, captivating, and empowering. Let’s get into it.
How the brand started out
With a passion to fulfill their entrepreneurial ambitions, the sibling duo teamed up to study the market.
Their research highlighted a potent insight: the youth of the country aspired to own high-quality watches, but it was their budget that held them back.
And that’s where Fire-Boltt, the wearable and audio brand, set out to make a difference. They aimed to cater to the aspirations of customers at pocket-friendly prices.
After all, why shouldn’t aspirational also be achievable?
They started off by tying up with Chinese manufacturers to sell smart bands at attractive prices. Despite competition from seasoned brands, the team kept their resolve and held faith in their strategy.
Some time down the road, the brand got backing from Savex Technologies, India’s third-largest IT and telecom products distributor, which secured them a massive retail network advantage,
When the world went into a state of frenzy during the pandemic, Arnav and Aayushi took a leap of faith that paid off immensely: smartwatches.
It was a risk, especially given the unpredictability of the times, but the move was smart and calculated, and came at a time when the founders felt a genuine gap in the market.
Within 15 months, the brand scaled, and how. It became the biggest name in the smartwatch category allegedly with a market share of 27%+
From the start, Fire-Boltt has been on a mission to keep pushing and getting better.
The edge over competitors
Two words: Influencer marketing.
The brand executed extensive influencer campaigns by collaborating with over 150 of the biggest names in the country, including actors and athletes. 150!
Arjun Kapoor, Parineeti Chopra, Karan Johar, Malaika Arora, Shilpa Shetty, Karisma Kapoor, Jim Sarbh, Nargis Fakhri, Kusha Kapila and athletes like Robin Uttappa, Sania Mirza, Sunil Chhetri, MC Mary Kom, Venkatesh Iyer have all endorsed the brand and raised awareness about the #FindYourFire campaign.
Fire-Boltt has made a series of astute moves to rope in the right celebrities at the right time. These individuals bring a sense of individuality, style and a certain eccentricity that has augmented the brand’s positioning in the eyes of the consumer.
Here’s a quick snapshot at select highlights:
First up, Vicky Kaushal: Stylish & suave
In 2021, he was gaining extraordinary social media clout following the release of two superhit movies – Uri and Raazi. The perfect time to rope him in.
Next, Virat Kohli, an icon and an inspiration
The brand then welcomed Virat Kohli to become the face of the brand. His media presence immediately established intrigue and got people talking about Fire-Boltt.
It’s Virat Kohli. Literally, every human being is curious about what Virat likes and endorses!
Next up, Shubhman Singh Gill, a striker on and off the pitch
This was a great move specifically from the point of view of attracting the younger segment.
The three young icons, each with a massive following, brought great visibility to the brand. Given that it was just the initial days, these calculated moves paid off immensely.
Also, Vijay Deverkonda, a quintessential hero
He was onboarded this year, and he’s creating hype for the brand in the southern market. In fact, with his recent debut in Bollywood, he’s become a pan-India superstar.
Kiara Advani, the current moment & the next big thing
She was a clever choice given her back-to-back hits. Touted to be the next big female superstar in the country, it was the perfect time for Fire-boltt to collaborate with Kiara and ride the massive wave of popularity that she’s on.
There are many other celebrity associations, of course. What’s impressive about this, beyond the sheer scale, is the choice of folks. Everyone represents the underlying brand philosophy of fueling passion.
How they are standing out in the market
The brand has consistently invested in unique products and marketing strategies. And it’s worked. Case in point being The Ninja series of smartwatches, which became a huge success.
Their product range overall offers wide variety in terms of pricing, designs, and features. With 60+ smartwatch models, you end up with a large array to attract various customer segments.
Fire-Boltt has always aimed to be a trendsetter in the industry. They introduced features like Bluetooth-calling and AMOLED display, which heavily influenced the budget segment of the market.
The brand’s social presence reflects their overall buzz-creating persona. Recently, a giveaway contest for 1000 lucky winners created a massive buzz online. Fun fact: this campaign became one of the top 10 most commented posts on Instagram ever!
The evolution to today: the big announcement
Fire-Boltt has now roped in MS Dhoni as their latest brand ambassador. When it comes to popularity and pure credibility, few faces speak as well across India & the international market. This has been the asset that the brand hopes to leverage and associate with.
What started out as a shared dream between two siblings, has snowballed into a successful start-up that is giving stiff competition to some of the biggest tech names in the world.
Besides its smart marketing moves, the brand also owes its success to two more elements: the pricing strategy employed and the strong offline presence that was established deliberately.
Here’s watching you closely, and rooting for a helicopter six!