Our customer satisfaction rate stands at 99%: Nipun Marya, vivo India

vivo, a premium global smartphone brand, entered India in the late 2014, vivo has established itself as one of the top smartphone brands in India. Through their smartphones, vivo offers users a professional-grade photography solution, taking mobile photography to the level of an art form, witnessing and recording all of life’s beautiful moments.

The year 2020 has indeed been a really tough year for families, professionals, businesses and individuals alike. But with every difficulty and crisis comes an opportunity to delight – and these moments of delight keep you going in the journey of life. With an aim to bring forth the spirit of Diwali, which is full of cheers and smiles, vivo India, the global smartphone brand, has launched a heart-warming campaign #SmileWalaDiya to celebrate the upcoming festival of Diwali.

The campaign is based on vivo India’s brand proposition of ‘Delight Every Moment’ and captures the nuances of the prevailing situation; the difficulty and stress that our dear ones have been facing in one of the toughest years of history. Through #SmileWalaDiya campaign, vivo reminds us that the only thing we can continue through these times of adversities is spreading smile and delight.

Adgully spoke to Nipun Marya, Director – Brand Strategy, vivo India, on the creative ideation and the campaign strategy behind creating the #SmileWalaDiya campaign, as well as how vivo is gearing up for the festive season.

Please elaborate on the vivo #SmileWalaDiya film and what is this concept behind the campaign. What was the objective in your mind when the film was conceptualised and who is your target audience?

The idea was to craft a heartwarming visual story this Diwali that is based on insights relevant to 2020, culminating with a message of hope and positivity. #SmilewalaDiya is a thought-provoking film that narrates the excitement of Diwali, and is based on vivo India’s brand proposition of ‘Delight Every Moment’. It captures the nuances of the prevailing situation; the difficulty and stress that our dear ones have been facing in one of the toughest years in history. Through this campaign our objective is to remind everyone that the only thing we can continue through these times of adversities is spreading smile and delight.

We have realised digital as a medium has a vast reach, especially after the recent lockdowns. Our audience, hence, is everyone out there who is affected by the pandemic, to light a #SmileWalaDiya for them.

The film is based on your core positioning of the brand – Delight Every Moment. How did you come up with this film idea and what was the thought process in creating the long duration film supplemented by a contest?

The thought was very clear. While Diwali comes every year, this time it is coming at the backdrop of situations which are unprecedented and have affected a lot of people, and more so people who had jobs and businesses. This is suitably hinted at in the film, right in the beginning of the film you see that the boss is giving stiff targets and the father is having a difficult conversation with the boss – from there on you see very real and relatable emotions. We wanted to capture those emotions and show the difficulties everyone is facing in the prevailing situation and the stress that our dear ones have been going through in one of the toughest years in history.

You’ve had a strong association with IPL. This year IPL has peaked well in terms of viewership and audience engagement in spite of being played with restrictions and with no crowd in a new venue. What was your marketing strategy to garner visibility and engagement for the brand?

We are proud of our association with a huge property like IPL. Looking at the situation, we think it was best to pause our sponsorship for the year. However, vivo will be back next year as the sponsor of IPL.

As far as the marketing strategy is concerned, we were focused on building brand awareness for the last five years. And today, people are aware about brand vivo.  Going ahead, our goal is to build a long-term successful brand in the country. And whatever investments are required to meet that goal, we will make those investments.

Customer centricity is very important for electronic goods and mobile phones. How did you manage this area and address the grievances of customers?

vivo has been deeply invested in the Indian market and has established its footprint as an internationally Indian brand in the country. vivo entered the Indian market with a clear strategy to keep the consumers at the core of its business and build a successful brand. Delivering a strong experience to our consumers is our priority. That is why our focus has been to create end-to-end experience for our customers through our experiential retail stores and service centers. We believe that customer experience does not end with the purchase, but the after sales service plays an equally critical role and is an integral part of customer experience. Therefore, we have established a robust network of more than 600 ‘Company Owned and Company Operated’ service centers to ensure hassle-free after sales service experience to our customers. Also, we are proud to tell you that our customer satisfaction rate stands at 99 per cent.

The new Diwali film is a little longer than the usual. What’s going to be your media strategy and how do you plan to leverage this film? Will digital be your lead medium and what about the usage of traditional medium for smaller towns?

This is purely a digital campaign and digital is a predominant platform since it’s a long format film. Almost all of our TG is online. So, we are promoting our film on all the social media platforms like YouTube, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. It is not just a video in isolation, we are looking at it as a consumer engagement platform. We are inviting entries and inviting people to share their stories, how they brought smile to someone’s face and then we are giving away more than 100 exciting prices. So, it’s a pure play digital, engagement and messaging led campaign.

Festival time is the best time for introducing new models. Have you planned for any mega product launches or is there anything in the pipeline to delight the customer?

It has been an encouraging festive quarter, especially after the lockdowns that we saw in the first half of the year. Also, while the festive season has kickstarted in most parts of the country, the next few days are very crucial. These days are the biggest when record breaking sales are recorded. So, while the festive season has begun, there is still a big part of it which is yet to come.

To meet consumer demands and realise the significance of a smartphone, especially during the work from home situation, we, at vivo India, have launched many exciting smartphones this year. The recent one has been vivo V20 that registered record-breaking pre-orders when online retailers were running their Diwali sales – more than 100,000 pre-bookings pan India from both mainline and online channels. This is the highest pre-booking for any V series smartphone. We launched another variant last week – vivo V20 SE that allows users to click amazing selfies, especially when they get together during the festival season.

This year, we also forayed into the premium segment with the launch of X50 series. Our recently introduced X50 Pro features a gimbal camera system which is an industry first. We are targeting tech enthusiasts with our new high-end devices.

We have come up with some innovative offers for our consumers such as getting a phone for only Rs 101 and the rest in easy EMIs with Bajaj Finserv and one-time screen replacement offer on V20 SE within six months of purchase date. We are thankful to our fans, who have been reposing trust in us, and we shall continue to delight them with meaningful innovations in the future.

How have you managed your supply chain and tightened your distribution to reach the last mile as most customers have opted to shop on online platforms? What’s your strategy for smaller towns to reach them as their rural markets are expected to do well this festival?

Although some share of the smartphone business has moved online due to the pandemic, a larger share of it remains offline. Before COVID-19, 35% of smartphone sales came from online; this has now increased to 40%. We continue our focus on the offline channel, which contributes 60% share. We have assured our retail partners that our pricing and product strategy are going to remain the same across  channels and whichever product we launch shall be available both online and mainline retail at the exact prices and offers.

Offline is the major contributor for us since consumers like to experience the product before making a purchase decision. It is our strength as well as our priority. Hence, we have built an extensive offline network of 70,000 general trade stores, 4,000 modern trade outlets and more than 450 exclusive stores. Our strategy is to be present at mass retail formats while adopting concept selling at high-end retail points.

We launched initiatives like vivo Smart Retail a few months ago when people could not step out, through which they can reach out to us through social media, text messages, or our website, and we connect them with vivo retailers in their locality. We generated as many as 50,000 leads through this in the first two-three weeks of reopening.


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