‘If marketers fixate on data, they lose focus of the big picture’

At the 5th edition of e4m Screenage – Mobile Marketing conference, a power-packed panel discussed the topic ‘Mobile Marketing Metrics That Matters’. On the panel were Dippak Khurana, CEO & Co-Founder, Vserv; Siddhartha Butalia, Chief Marketing Officer, AirAsia India and Girish Hingorani, Senior GM and Head- Marketing and Ecommerce & Modern Trade, Blue Star Limited and the session was chaired by Shekhar Banerjee, Chief Client Officer & Office Head – West, Wavemaker India. The panelists discussed the insights they need to understand and shape marketing activities that help them reach their business objectives and revenue goals.  

Commencing the session, Banerjee highlighted the scale at which a smartphone can impact the lives of consumers. “There are 650 billion odd smartphones in the country and if you just leave out kids younger than 10 years, almost every Indian has a mobile phone, not more than a meter away for almost 24 hours. So that’s the kind of scale and impact we are talking about. Obviously, marketers will also follow where the consumers are. But the user journey or the consumer journey on this platform has become extremely complex, which is making life quite miserable and that’s why marketers are asking how to actually demystify it and see its impact. And that brings us to our topic – What kind of metrics matter.” 

Hingorani strongly believes that marketers can do everything possible with the power of Digital, but it’s important to see things from a broader perspective.

“As marketers we should prioritize marketing first, not try to become data scientists because the moment we get into too much data, we lose focus of the big picture, which is trying to figure out what our objectives are,” he said.

“As marketers, now you can achieve so much from digital and it’s no wonder that digital AdEx is 36% of the world. It’s either already overtaken or about to overtake television in the country,” Hingorani added.

Extolling the advantages of digital, he also emphasised on the importance of underscoring the objectives when it comes to the medium. “I’ve heard people saying that on YouTube my CPV was 19 paise and did very well. And of course, my first question was on what cohort because that’s what matters, digital often sees your cohort filtration.” 

Butalia opined that chaos is good since it allows marketers to differentiate. “If you’re doing something different, then you have an advantage in a chaotic environment. And that happens at the very micro level, personalization level where you’re bringing a differentiated brand experience onto mobile, causing some stickiness with the customer.”

“Let’s admit we have fallen behind those growth trends or expectations,” he said citing growth projections of Indian ecommerce mobile smartphone penetration. “The projections or the optimism have not panned out yet now that leaves a lot of room for opportunity.”

Speaking on data and metrics, Khurana shared: “When we look at whatever roles we play today, we are curious enough and we’re asking ourselves a lot of questions right from simple things like did my ad which I played on video generate enough free calls? Was there the right kind of awareness for my brand? Did it create any left for consideration? So, these are points which are always an interest point for all of us in the practice in which we pursued.”

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