Mobile Marketing with OBD - A new ray of light for the media dark regions
Authored by RajdipKumar Gupta – MD and Group CEO a Route Mobile Limited.
Channels of Communication used by people and organisations has changed drastically over a period of time. It is difficult to imagine a world without social media, the Internet and smartphones at the same time.
It is a well-established problem that the world’s underprivileged people do not have access to technology. A large number of villages in India are ‘media dark’. In these regions, the literacy levels are very low, where even the reach of print media is ruled out, the electricity source is also not very reliable and hence very little penetration of television as well. But lately, mobile phone penetration has significantly improved in these regions. Although, majorly the users are having feature phones in these areas and don’t have internet connectivity. In such regions, the penetration and reach for brands become very challenging. India’s “media dark” rural market is the recipient of a new found empathy from urban marketers. Although rural marketing is growing, there are only a few marketing success stories heard.
Marketers are experimenting with innovative ways to reach the desired target audience – in rural and urban areas. One such simple yet innovative solution is Outbound Dialer (OBD). It enables automatic personalised voice calls to a large set of segmented mobile/telephone users at one go and plays pre-recorded messages. It is an intelligent and sophisticated solution.
It can dial the required set of phone numbers automatically and play the recorded prompts (messages) and gather touch-tone inputs to measure the response of the bulk voice OBD campaign. Additionally, it comes with an extensive reporting facility where one can explore and analyze the performance of the campaign.
Many mobile marketers have opted for voice broadcasting as a promotional medium to reach out to a large Indian audience including media-dark regions in their preferred regional language to create a personal touch and to ensure the message is conveyed and understood easily. Over 90% of the Indian population is non-English speaking and marketers/enterprises relate to outbound dialer as a solution to extend their reach. As OBD is handset or SIM-independent, it can universally be used by all mobile users.
OBD Solutions gives voice to marketing/promotions and engages with customers in a non-intrusive manner. It is effective in areas where the literacy rate is low. Voice communications can be the most efficient mode for a higher reach thereby increasing the chance of message delivery. It comes with multilingual support, which can help to convey the message effectively in the language of choice thereby reducing any ambiguity and any chances of misinterpretations. This helps to ensure a strong brand presence – along with personalisation.
The message reachability and delivery is ensured with Voice Broadcast. The Voice Broadcast uses a smart logic that enables enterprises to redial the numbers of unanswered calls. Each call is re-dialled on daily, weekly and monthly basis. It is simple to deploy, one can avail its benefits by activating it and simply uploading an a.WAV file. It can easily be configured and integrated with one’s existing system with other modes of enterprise communication, such as SMS.
Marketers can use this effectively wherein the systems deploys automated outbound calling to make product announcements, promotional offers, follow-ups, reminders and status updates for customers and more. This enables and ensures that they can reach to a database of live numbers, receive instant customer feedback, increase productivity and get analytics.
Enterprises can get an instant response by using interactive features (Asking users to press a key for their response). The Enterprises are charged only for the calls successfully connected. Complete real-time reporting, such as total calls, successful calls, failed calls, no-response calls to measure the response of the campaign, call duration, date and time, and DTMF input which refers to the input given by the customer during the call gives actionable insights in decision making
OBD is used in media dark regions by the following:
- Direct Sales Agents
- Telemarketing Agents
- Insurance Agencies
- Real Estate companies
- Credit card sales
- Loan / Collection Departments
According to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), with a subscriber base of more than 1,179.32 million (as of July 2018) the mobile telecommunications system in India is the second largest in the world. (TRAI Jan. 2018 Highlights).
It can be used by BFSI, Media, FMCG, Education, E-commerce, Government & NGOs. This makes it inevitable that marketing and advertising will look at innovative ways to reach out to its customers, and can be segmented according to the products. With exponential growth in mobile subscribers in India, the mobile marketing strategy has become an important component of the marketing promotional mix. With the universal reach of voice broadcast (independent of handset & SIM), outbound dialers have the ability to reach out to a large set of the Indian target audience in their local language, name, number, user ID, birth date and much more.