Palash branding workshop in Ranchi

After two years of online workshops we could finally travel to India to give a branding workshop to the team of the Jharkhand State Livelihood Promotion Society. So we travelled to Ranchi, capital of the Indian state of Jharkhand.

Some background
The Rural Development Department of Government of Jharkhand has established a separate and autonomous society named “Jharkhand State Livelihood Promotion Society” (JSLPS) which works as an agency for effective implementation of livelihood promotion in the state. Its goal is to alleviate the poverty in the state, especially among the disadvantaged groups and rural women.
JSLPS has launched a brand called Palash. Palash provides access to market for products manufactured by rural women mobilized by JSLPS. It represents the rural and tribal essence of Jharkhand; exclusive, naturally grown and handmade products produced by women who are united in so called Self Help Groups (SHGs). This generates livelihoods and supports the rural economy.

We started our preparations online in the Netherlands. We read all about JSLSP, Palash and we studied the reports of workshops given earlier by the Women on Wings program team. We asked Cornelie Guise, another expert at Women on Wings, for some advice on how to approach the re-branding process and we had two online meetings with the teams of Women on Wings and JSLPS In preparation of our on-site workshop.

After landing in Delhi, we had one day to get used to the extreme high temperatures, before we would continue our trip to Ranchi. Unfortunately, the next morning our plane had five hours delay due to heavy rain and thunderstorms in Delhi and in Ranchi. Finally, we arrived in Ranchi late in the afternoon and immediately went to work. The JSLPS team and us introduced ourselves, and after a short introduction of the aim of the workshop we started working on the branding of Palash which continued for the next three days.

We started with some theory about branding, and combined it with practical examples of Palash. We looked for answers to many questions, like ‘What does the brand stand for?’ What is your target group? What products are you selling under this brand name? Does the current logo fit the brand? What would be the best brand colors? With a large team of twenty people we had many constructive discussions and after three days we jointly had created a great plan for the rebranding, defined next steps, and set a timeline to the actions that need to be taken.

In the evenings at our hotel in Ranchi, we met lovely people. We visited a wedding (or 2), joined a couple in celebrating their 65th wedding anniversary, and of course we enjoyed delicious Indian food. Before our flight to the Netherlands, we even had some time to visit the famous Dassam Waterfalls and the Jagannath Temple, together with Zeenita Patra, program coordinator at Women on Wings.

Next steps
Back in the Netherlands we are working on the next steps with other Women on Wings’ experts. Like with Henk Seelt on developing a new logo and a brand book for Palash. Joke Hartlief is working with JSLPS on its Human Resources and organizational structure, and Anita Joosten on its financial structure and cost pricing. We hope that we can soon start with the re-branding of their packaging, shops and start the marketing communication. We will continue to support the JSLPS team both off-line and online. There is still a lot of work to be done, but we cannot wait to take the Palash brand to the next level together with the JSLPS team. The ultimate aim is of course to enable JSLPS to sell more Palash products so that many more jobs are being generated for rural women in the state of Jharkhand.

Danielle Pels, marketing & communications expert
Remke Vet, marketing & product development expert