How Fastrack marketing boss Ajay Maurya is leading the brand’s foray into ‘fash-tech’
Tata-owned youth accessories brand Fastrack is repositioning itself as a ‘fash-tech’ brand. The Drum asks marketing head Ajay Maurya about his plans for standing out in this emerging sector.
Fastrack is known for its edgy and brave depiction of the world of the modern Indian consumer
Indian fashion accessory brand Fastrack has set its sights on the world of fashion tech (‘fash-tech’) as it looks to engage gen Z consumers with its new smart audio and wearables portfolio.
Launched in 2005 and known for its quirky, edgy and often brave creative campaigns over the years, Fastrack quickly established itself as an urban youth brand through its affordable watches and accessories. In 2017 it extended its footprint into the smart category, launching its Fastrack Reflex activity tracker, and now has big plans for the wearables and hearables category.
Sharing the backdrop of the emerging needs of the category, Ajay Maurya, marketing head of Fastrack, says: “The heightened need to keep oneself fit and maintain a healthy lifestyle in the post-pandemic world to a certain extent will be addressed by the smartwatch category.”
He is confident that smartwatch technology will keep bringing new sensors and innovations that control health to one’s wrist. The newly-launched product has features including a SpO2 monitor, a 24/7 heart rate monitor and a stress and sleep monitor.
Evolution of the smartwatch category
After a slow start some years back, the category continues to grow despite many players, which gives a clear indication that there is enough headroom for brands to grow and create their niches. Maurya says: “The ever-evolving need of the country’s youth population to enhance their social imagery with early adoption of technology is one of the biggest drivers behind the success of the smartwatch category.”
By its nature, the category is super dynamic and has been witnessing disruption regularly. For instance, with the pandemic, newer features were introduced within the wearables segment, and new technological features such as the SpO2 monitor became a buzzword with consumers.
Maurya adds: “In such a category where the use cases and consumer needs evolve frequently, there is enough space for growth, and with the Fastrack Reflex launch we plan to capture our audience’s need for advanced features.”
Keeping the storytelling relevant to the emerging gen Z set
Fastrack has been known for its edgy and brave depiction of the world of the modern Indian consumer before many brands got on that journey. Many of its campaigns won it laurels and controversy in equal measure, but they did manage to create a unique positioning for the brand reflective of the emerging youth.
Maurya shares: “The brand started by building a resonance with its audiences by reflecting and addressing the tensions and issues relevant to them, which have kept evolving.”
Back then the issues of the 18-25-year-old were different from the generation Z of today. He adds: “While the core ethos remains the same, the brand keeps reinventing itself to stay relevant.”
To launch the smartwatch, the brand has onboarded upcoming star Rohit Saraf as the new face of Fastrack for its fash-tech portfolio. The actor will be featured in key digital campaigns to promote the fash-tech category under Fastrack.
The new brand positioning
The brand recently repositioned itself to focus in on its communication around the spirited gen Z with the tagline ‘you do you.’ Maurya shares: “With the new brand positioning we are speaking to gen Z with their fluid identity, freedom of expression and unbridled spirit.” The target consumer is dynamic and has changing trends, tensions and concerns that the new positioning hopes to address, he adds.
The brand has also kept its content strategy unique. Maurya says: “We have been creating content with our team of in-house influencers, and also collaborating with some of the coolest content creators out there to create content that is unlike any other brand in the category.”