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#GROWTHAsia 2020 At A Glance

  • Updated: 09 November 2020
  • 23 min read

We recently concluded #GROWTHAsia 2020, a two-day digital summit aimed at helping the community of product leaders, founders, entrepreneurs, and marketers understand and learn how to drive customer delight in a mobile-first world. We assembled an illustrious panel of marketing leaders from top customer-obsessed brands in Asia, the likes of Airtel, Tokopedia, Bukalapak, Zilingo, ONE Championship, MX Player, OLX, Zee5, Mapemall, OVO, Myntra, Marks & Spencer, Verticurl, Koinworks, Cashalo, OYO, GTech, and The Lumery.

The two-day event organized on 5th and 6th August 2020 was supported by our partners at Mixpanel, Branch, and Segment. The virtual event comprised of tracks covering key mobile marketing topics viz. omnichannel experience, loyalty, personalization, engagement and retention analytics/metrics, and marketing-product alignment. If you happened to miss out on the interactive and insightful sessions, worry not, this article will aim to summarise all of the topics discussed during the event.

Here's an overview of all the panels and sessions covered during #GROWTHAsia 2020:

Panel 1: Actionable Strategies That Boost App Engagement

strategies for app engagement

The session moderated by Ashwin SL (VP Marketing, MoEngage) with Sapna Arora (CMO, OLX), Abhishek Joshi (Head of Marketing, MX Player), Harish Narayanan (CMO, Myntra), and Anugrah Honesty (Senior Digital Marketing Manager, Bukalapak) attending as panelists. 

Here are the overall highlights from the panel:

  • The pandemic has changed customer behavior in the last four to five months in various diverse segments like digital media, e-commerce. It has led to customers changing their preferences, which was not an easy task otherwise as they are resistant to change and often impervious to marketing communication. But these changes brought by the pandemic came faster than brands would have imagined, requiring an immediate change of strategies to increase engagement.
  • During this time, when the customer behavior changes around app engagement and customer communication, it is important to engage them positively. Think about how you can be helpful across the board to brand partners, consumers, suppliers, etc, and have a positive voice. To do that, you can take a content-focused engagement approach. For example, you can give your customers tips on fitness, how to get ready for work from home, design ideas on how to set up your home, exercise tips, decluttering, etc. This will improve customer engagement.
  • The definition of customer engagement has changed during the pandemic. You have to be very quick on your feet. Do not waste time deliberating on your strategy, creatives, etc. But you should be cognizant of the fact that you can't hurt your viewer or your end consumer by pushing something on them, which might misfire. So understand what they want, and offer it to them.
  • From a product perspective, first, try to boost the engagement and get people hooked to your platform. Once that happens, it will be easier to align other strategies to bring them to the transaction stage.
  • When you want to retain the traffic generated during this period, do not take the viewers for granted. Do not start thinking that you know what the viewers want. Always keep on planning for better retention strategies and listen to what your viewers want.

Insights from individual experts:

Sapna Arora

  • In times like these, uncertainty regarding what is going to happen is always there. So it is better to avoid getting off track in terms of strategy,. It is important to remain on track according to your long term strategy, as far as your product and technology are concerned.
  • Think from a humanitarian point of view, especially in times like the pandemic, while making any decision. One should also try not to sell too hard. Always be careful about what to communicate and be sensitive as you won’t know how much the damage would be in terms of people's health and lives.
  • Talk about what is relevant for the consumer at a particular time. For example, OLX, being a pre-owned good platform, talked about the products at home their customers hadn’t used for a while and about decluttering. It is very helpful for the consumer to hear messages around that because they could start planning as to when the lockdown opens, what are the things that they could get rid of. Also because people's wallets are getting tighter and people are becoming very conscious of how they spend, these kinds of messages will help them plan.

Abhishek Joshi

  • Better app engagement will only be possible when a brand/app starts seeing things from a different perspective and approaches them differently. Being customer-centric is necessary in certain situations to maintain and grow brand engagement.
  • Viewers/customers should never be taken for granted by any brand or app. This might lead to people moving away from your platform a lot faster. One should get back to the drawing board, keep a close ear on the ground and start listening to what their viewers want. Only then the generated engagement can be retained.
  • The definition of engagement and retention is changing. Brands must study how they are perceived to understand what the consumers think of them. The results from this kind of study can be used to make better campaigns and keep up with the change.

Harish Narayanan

  • When the business is not functioning or when there is a time with close to no transactions, it is smart to utilize this time to plan for the future or when you reopen. This will help you to utilize your time better and stay a step ahead of everyone else.
  • Get to a point where you can engage audiences on an e-commerce platform even when you can't sell anything to retain them. Create positivity, be sensitive to their sentiments, and serve them the way they want to be served. Audience engagement will prevent your DAU from falling down. Create content that will bring people to your platform to just browse and to engage with you and to consume your content.
  • The biggest problem that arises while working from home is that the boundaries between work life and personal get blurred. A solution to this would be to establish clear guidelines on work norms to ensure that the work is done and the employees are comfortable.

Anugrah Honesty

  • It is absolutely necessary to shift your campaigns in accordance with customer behavior to survive in a highly dynamic environment. In a time like the pandemic, it is important to focus on the needs of the customer.
  • Remember that at times challenges are not only from the buyer side but from the seller’s side also. Try to increase the adoption rate of the service so that the ones who are usually selling through offline channels start selling more online, thereby improving their incomes.
  • Ensure that all the stakeholders and decision-makers reach a consensus for smooth functioning. Even when you create a new mindset or a new point of view, make sure that all the decision-makers and stakeholders share it.

Panel 2: Aligning Product and Marketing for Better CX

The panel was moderated by Scott Pugh (APAC Director, Mixpanel) and included Aditya Chintawar (VP, Product, Koinworks), Ameya Sawant (Head of Growth, ONE Championship), Kushal Manupati (Head of Digital, Zilingo) as the panelists. 

Here are the overall highlights from the panel:

  • The first thing that is important for a business is to understand the current time and what are the key products which they would like to sell at this time. Remember that it is not the right time to celebrate something or launch something when people are losing their jobs. So bring sensitivity to your marketing campaigns.
  • When time requires it, you need to adapt your strategies. In business, one should do this from not only a product perspective but from a consumer perspective as well. You need to align the vision of your product with the needs of your customers.
  • Do not shy away from using technology that you can acquire or buy in the market versus building it yourself. Sometimes a technology or a platform that has been tried and is trusted works well.
  • It is important to maintain a proper marketing budget. The way you drive the marketing budget will affect decisions like launching something new and investing in acquiring new users. Building a platform that consumers find valuable also plays a role in driving the marketing budget as it can lead to less spending and getting a good return.
  • After engaging the users on your platform, ensure that you work to retain them from the very beginning. Retention can be seen only when you have something to offer and your customers are satisfied with it. So, identifying and fulfilling their needs should be the first priority.

Insights from individual experts:

Aditya Chintawar

  • Be sensitive about what the consumers might be going through. Try to educate people and give back to society during tough times. Positive sentiments are important to bring people back to your platform.
  • Marketing in the right way is necessary. For example, if you want people to read your notifications, they would have to find something useful in them; you will have to get them hooked on it. One should remember not to overuse it. If a consumer gets too many notifications that he/she might not like or find disturbing, then it might drive them away.
  • Increase the cadence of brainstorming sessions of what you want to push out to the market. No idea is ever really small. Everybody should be welcome and a concept or a philosophy of discussing problems, not solutions should be implemented to align marketing and product better. This will not only create a more inclusive environment, it will also increase the inflow of ideas.

Ameya Sawant

  • During times like pandemic, it’s important to keep the customers engaged. It is important to reach out to customers. This can be done by launching social media campaigns and putting in more effort towards the social media presence of your company. This is because most of the people rely on social media for entertainment and killing boredom during times like these.
  • One should avoid wasting time and effort in building something that has already been built well in the market. Your end goal is to provide the customer with the best experience and if that goal can be met by a technology that already exists, then you can simply avoid wasting the time, efforts, and resources to create an identical thing.
  • It is important to have the right product analytics tool. Use it to engage with the stats. The right use of analytics stack and the product stack in product tweaking enhancement works well to create better customer engagement.

Kushal Manupati

  • Learning how to innovate, finding lighter ways of bringing products or services to customers is necessary. Better innovations draw people to the platform without the company spending a lot on marketing. Thus, if done correctly, innovations can lead to reduced costs and better returns.
  • Always maintain your marketing budget. The way one is driving the marketing budget will affect other decisions like bringing innovation or changes to the platform that determine customer engagement.

Panel 3: Crafting a Brilliant Omnichannel Experience

brilliant omnichannel experience

The session was moderated by Kunal Sharma (Senior Director of Growth, MoEngage) along with Vani Dixit (Head of Customer Management, Zee5), Brajesh Rawat (e-commerce Head, Marks & Spencer), Mahendra Dhiraj (Head of Business Analytics and Consulting, GTech Digital), Paul Bantayan (Head of Marketing, Cashalo) as expert panelists.

Here are the overall highlights from the panel:

  • When a brand is creating an omni-channel experience for the user, it should be devoted to the needs of the consumer. Being customer-centric at the core of the organization is important to bring sensitivity to the whole process of creating an omni-channel experience. This can only be done when one has a very strong customer data platform.
  • Customer segmentation data is of importance in order to identify, understand, and meet each customer's requirements. In terms of differentiation and segmentation, one should use the data that the customer's input and the behavior that they show and, put certain tags and certain values across certain milestones. You can create multiple segments based on permutations of these tags and values, each with different messaging, pricing, and the product being offered.
  • Building a good customer experience across all channels is based on two major things- First; a consumer should see the same of you no matter what platform he or she is using. Second; personalizing the customer’s journey based on the product, messages, creatives, and channel.
  • To remove hurdles from the omni-channel experience, use the following approaches.
  • For a seamless experience, use the top-down approach of management
    - Bring data together to present a unified approach
    - Have the right logistics to support your efforts for a brilliant omni-channel experience
    - Pay attention to the technology and the connectivity according to the dynamics of the business
    - Communication and marketing should be highly targeted and personalized.
  • Remember that it is not just customer 360. It is also about the product, it could be promotions and even customer service. At the end of the day, you need to have a unified view to actually go to the next level. In both online and offline worlds, it's very important for a customer to have a seamless experience. You have to ensure that you are giving back to the customer. It's very critical that you have a single unified view because before a customer actually purchases with the onset of all the social media, websites and internet, etc, they have at least seven touch points before converting. So, having a unified profile will help you to create a personalized experience for your customers.

Insights from individual experts:

Vani Dixit

  • The starting point for crafting a brilliant omni-channel experience is by making customer-centricity the DNA of the organization. If everyone is thinking for the consumers, then this sensitivity will itself come into the process. The cornerstone and the starting point of all of this is to build a very strong customer data platform.
  • Two things are important for a smooth experience:
    - Unified Segmentation- Whichever channel a consumer uses to interact with your platform, he or she is seeing the same of you.
    - Personalization- Finding out different kinds of things that go into optimization to see that it's to the right user, the right product, through the right messaging, watching the messaging language in terms of creatives and communication, and also through the right channel is important.
  • The pillars of building a good customer experience remain the same even when we are building differentiated communication strategies. One should be where the consumer is. Segmenting your consumers is also a good step. Seeing how many users are coming from a particular genre or language, and do you have enough from there helps create data to input into content strategy.

Brajesh Rawat

  • Being conventional brick and mortar retailers, we often look at the omni-channel experience and a 360 view as an entirely different channel; channel largely for liquidation, or channel largely for giving more discounts. This should be avoided because it might make the core offline customers feel cheated.
  • As a brand, it is important to think of the customers first. It is important to have a single view of the customer to understand exactly what the customer is doing within your ecosystem. This will lead to a better personalization of their journey across all the channels of your brand.
  • There are some important KPIs that should be monitored to improve the customer journey. Some KPIs to be monitored are:
    - The channel which customer is using the most to give geo-targeting campaign offers or promotions
    - Information like operating time and days because right now those are also very fluid in nature
    - Observe customer purchase behavior across channels offline and online to understand how much you can cross-sell
    -  The channel where customers usually respond on
    - Last but not the least, the kind of campaign users react to

Mahendra Dhiraj

  • Create a 360-degree view of the customer to offer a personalized experience to your customer. For that, it is important to have a unified profile. So, a customer data platform (CDP) layer on top of any platform is very critical for any organization. A CDP would have structured data and unstructured data. All this needs to be seamlessly unified into a single view to actually act on it and to give the customer the experience, which he actually deserves.
  • Some approaches to take for crafting an omni-channel experience:
    - It has to be a top-down approach. At the end of the day, it's about having a seamless experience and not about a price war. So the first thing you need to have is a top-down approach of any management
    - Sometimes the data and metrics are very disjointed. It has to come together to give a unified experience to the customer.
    - The logistics part has to be mature enough to support an omni-channel experience.
    - Communication and the marketing part should not be cluttered. It should be a unified single communication to the customer so that he or she is not confused at the end of the day.
  • The key thing for B2B fleet management systems would be how nimble and how easy it will be to integrate to an existing platform. Broadly, it's about scalability, flexibility, easy integration, and where it is hosted.

Paul Bantayan

  • In terms of differentiation and actual segmentation, using the data that the customer's input and the behavior that they show, put certain tags and certain values across certain milestones. So you can create multiple segments based on permutations of these tags and these values, each with different messaging, pricing, and the product being offered to meet the customer requirements.
  • In FinTech, in terms of omni-channel, definitely use up all the data that you have in order to make your predictions on when customers are most likely to repay when and where they are most likely to repay. You can use that data to push them to certain channels where they can actually repay.
  • To run a collection campaign, it's really important to collaborate between the marketing team and the collections team. Use and leverage all that data that you have in order to improve collections campaigns. So it's a collaboration between the two. Leverage all this data that you have to lead customers to the best place that they can actually pay back the loans.

Panel 4: How to Effectively Scale Personalization Across the Customer Journey

The all-women panel moderated by Divya Jagwani (Growth Manager, SEA, Moengage) had Olivia Kurniawati (Head of Product Marketing, Tokopedia), Agnes Lie (Head of Growth Marketing, OVO), Jenna Kosasih (Chief Commercial Officer, Mapemall), Christina Lee (Senior Director of Client Success, Verticurl) on the panel.

Here are the overall highlights from the panel:

  • Personalized one-on-one experience can increase sales and influence customer behavior. According to a short report, 40% of surveyed customers said that they actually purchased something more expensive than they planned because the customer experience was personalized. Better word-of-mouth promotion and increased customer loyalty are some of the outcomes of personalization.
  • According to the panelists, it is important to create a solid foundation for a personalization strategy. A solid foundation ensures that the user experience is good from the very beginning and simplifies the retention process.
  • Panelists also answered various questions from the audience about personalizing customer journeys in different business environments. They discussed a few common mistakes that marketers make while attempting personalization.

Insights from individual experts:

Olivia Kurniawati

  • When one is building a customer journey, it is important for all the team members to be on the same page, i.e., everyone must be customer-obsessed. It is imperative for the marketers to be aware of their collective end goal in order to not let any of their efforts or strategies go in vain.
  • To be able to build campaigns, one needs to be aware of:
    - Frequency: Does the user transact frequently or do they visit a product page multiple times?
    - Intention: Does the user ever purchase or do they just check out but never pay, and are they loyal to the brand.
    - Monetary Value: It defines the value of the buyer and the geographical segmentation because every geographical area is very different from one another.
  • A customer should not feel threatened by the way a company uses its data for personalization. The company should only leverage things that are really able to move the needle, so don’t use any data that will not have the customers moving their purchase intention.

Agnes Lie

  • More sophisticated personalization would require a vast amount of data but in the end, personalization is quite worthwhile for a need-based product despite all the complexities. Sending out the best offers or sending out the best communications at the right time is important in cases like this.
  • One shouldn’t wait for their product to be ready to start user research. They must start it early so they can gain insights at an earlier stage. Get insights on what it takes to get a buyer to purchase a product and start from that point. This will help the company remain one step ahead.
  • Keep experimenting. Experimentation provides marketers with insights about the consumer’s experience with the product and enables them to improve personalization and thereby the experience.

Jenna Kosasih

  • Take a holistic approach to personalization by aggregating offline and online consumer behavior. Most offline brands understand what the customer wants offline. However, by aggregating it with data online, they can make personalization more effective.
  • No matter how good your platform is, never assume that every customer will understand your platform journey completely. A company can actually show them what they want based on their previous digital path or based on their previous history and simplify their journey. It is advisable to create a journey according to the consumer’s digital path. That will help to redirect them to shortcut their journey.
  • While balancing the costs and personalization, prioritize the data that you want, so you can manage with a limited budget and ensure that you do not end up exhausting the entire budget in experimentation.

Christina Lee

  • While shifting from brick and mortar to online stores, it's critical to take an online strategy towards personalization and engagement so that the experience is personalized for customers in the virtual space.
  • Organizational alignment between sales and marketing teams is a necessity scale personalization. It makes it easier for both the teams to be aware of marketing qualified leads and sales qualified leads. It makes the crafting of personalization easier.

Panel 5: Modern Growth Stack for the Mobile-First World

The panel was moderated by Ben Desailly (Senior Martech Advisor, The Lumery) included Kshitij Hastu (Senior Director of Growth, SEA, MoEngage), Sherry Chao (Senior Solutions Engineer, Segment), Ben Glynn (Head of Growth, APAC, Mixpanel), Govind Kavaturi (Director of Partnerships, Branch) as experts.

Here are the overall highlights from the panel:

  • Like finance owns the flow of cash in and out of a company, growth owns the flow of customers in and out of a product. Growth is about identifying the different tactics and levers that you can play with at every stage of the funnel from the top of the funnel right through the bottom of the funnel. Earlier much focus was placed on just acquisition and not retention but now it is also about the retention and increasing the lifetime value of the customer so that he/she keeps coming back. This change is brought by martech. So martech initially paved the way and then SAS and e-commerce businesses really accelerated the growth function.
  • In current times, traditional companies are also being forced to adapt to mobile-first ways. Traditional businesses are trying to take on that change that is coming rapidly in the world and sometimes struggling, taking a while because it takes a long time to change anything in large organizations and having all those mobile-first startups disruptors coming through and just kind of owning that space. It’s on all of us to educate them about the martech and growth stack scenario.
  • IDFA is core to the app attribution industry since the beginning and it's unique and consistent across all apps and devices. The possibility of deterministic matching is brought to life with it. If the developer has no right to collect the IDFA, there cannot be any deterministic matching. So when the user clicks on an ad or any link outside of the platform, the app cannot say that this user came from that link. This will bring a huge impact on the entire industry of attribution, ad networks, and engagement, re-engagement, remarketing as they bring about personalization, and are basically living on it.
  • The toughest part about building this growth stack is figuring out the exact tools you want to use and then also finding the engineering resources to implement them all. A platform requires an analytics tool for gathering insights, a communication tool for sending notifications and email, etc. to the users. You also need to see if you still have some leftover budget that can be used for running ads across platforms to target and acquire new users.
  • When you need to add some kind of technology to your platform, there is mostly an option of building it yourself or buying it from someone who has already built it. At times building something like that might take a lot of time and resources that can be utilized in something else. So it is better to acquire technology from outside that someone has already spent a lot of time on to direct your resources towards better things.

Insights from individual experts:

Kshitij Hastu

  • When you're looking at a growth stack, if you're looking at the CDP that you need to start tunneling data to the right places, you start looking at the analytics, the marketing automation piece, the messages you should be sending, the attribution of what's working. Having such a broader view of the entire growth tech stack is definitely one of the best ways to reduce the confusion of differences between your products, the other products, and just the noise that exists in a space.
  • There is definite value in using some out of the box machine learning system. It is critical to remember that machine learning is only as good as how much data you're able to collect, understand, and draw trends. So always go with a solution that knows what it is doing. Rather than trying to build everything from scratch, focus on what you do best. Invest in a platform that allows you to get to your end-goal quicker.
  • Sometimes companies think that sending out a huge number of notifications will get them as many conversions, but that doesn't hold true at all. If one is able to personalize at the user level with the growth stacks out there today, think that your conversion rates are a lot higher. Your retention rates are a lot higher because consumers actually trust the brand and they know that you're not just selling the same thing to them that you are to everybody else.

Sherry Chao

  • When starting from scratch, you definitely need a tool for gathering insights about your app or your website. So this is going to be like an analytics tool. Then you need to actually be able to see specific users and what they're doing and create funnel reports. For communication use push notifications and SMS. Beyond analytics and an email or a marketing automation tool, if you still have budget left, definitely invest in AD platforms to acquire new users.
  • The focus should be on reusability; getting multiple outputs from one effort. Features vary significantly across every single CDP. The basic idea of segmentation is to create standards and libraries that are specialized for collecting customer behavioral events or data. And then it allows you to use it for multiple purposes to maximize its value. So they serve as a single collection point and we allow you to create a 360-degree view of the customer. They also maintain integrations with like 300 plus different tools.
  • A person has multiple channels to use. You have to make sure that those channels are integrated in a particular manner. It is a challenge to stitch them together but one has to be conscious of that as it will give a better experience to the user. And then also, mobile-first means having to stay on top of mobile trends and things that are happening in the market.

Ben Glynn

  • While working within a limited budget, prioritization is the key. One should start by thinking about the experience they want to give the customer. Only after the customer experiences a good experience, they are going to stay and repeat the purchase. So, it is important to think about what is going to drive this behavior. Once you identify this, you must find the right tools to deliver that experience.
  • For enhanced personalization and creating efficiencies, one can use machine learning across the stack. Keep in mind that machine learning could have a good effect or impact on the bottom line of what you're trying to achieve. You need a certain element of data to start with in the first place. And then at the other end of the spectrum, if you've got all that data available, there's kind of this decision that businesses need to make whether they're going to build their own machine learning capabilities at a very basic level or they want to buy that technology.
  • The mobile-first landscape order has created two problems - One, it has become very complicated for businesses to build technologies for a great mobile experience. Second, some amazing brands have really set the bar high in terms of what the customer expects. With mobile-first interaction, customers prefer getting on-demand and real-time access to services.

Govind Kavaturi

In terms of choosing or thinking about growth stacks, it is important to first think about where you are as a company in terms of maturity. If you are a mature company like e-commerce or short video formats, where you already have successful models, then you need to divide areas there. But if you're dealing with a new segment, there should be a lot of trial and error there. Keep yourself out of growth stack and think about what you need to do in terms of creativity there.

Session 1: How Best-in-Class Brands Onboard New Customers onboarding new users #GROWTHAsia 2020

In this session by Govind Kavaturi, Director of Partnerships at Branch (industry leaders in mobile measurement, deep linking, attribution, and persona mapping) talks about the importance of UX in onboarding new customers. Govind further drills down into the impact of a consistent experience across various channels on user retention and the approach employed by customer-obsessed brands with use cases from his experience at Branch.

Here are the overall highlights from the panel:

  • A rough cross-platform experience can lead to frustration in the users. While using mobiles, everything is in one particular device. Whether a user wants to watch something, buy something, perform an activity, running, walking everything they do is on the mobile and if they are not given a seamless experience, they are not going to continue with that brand.
  • Smoothness in cross-platform working helps enhance the customer experience. The three-step cross-platform provided by Branch includes:
    - Linking- When a user clicks a link, they should get the best possible experience. Linking experience allows the users of a particular brand to interact with the brand in a much simpler way.
    - Attribution- Once the user clicks on the link, what is the user doing, where is the user going, what is the journey of the user until the user gets into a particular page into an app and then purchases? By tracking this, the entire ecosystem is taken care of in terms of attribution. Regardless of the channel or the platform, brands should be able to bring together user activity no matter where it happens.
    - Persona Graph- Because a number of users would be clicking on a link, it would be possible to actually create a graph of these users that will in turn show accuracy in attribution and linking. By using integrated brands, it is possible to recognize users even when they are not logged in.
  • User journeys have evolved to cross-platform interaction from single touch-points. To stop users from abandoning your app at any time soon after they install it, it is necessary to provide the best-in-class app and web experiences to reduce the friction that occurs in multiple activities. To ensure customers stay, brands should try to provide the customers with information about what the app does even before they log in. Building such direct onboarding experiences relate directly to the user flow.
  • The ease and quickness of users in completing their first task in an app determine successful onboarding.
    While onboarding B2B customers, it is possible to focus more as one might have a lot more data of that user as compared to B2C. With B2B, one can build user experience with available data in a much more advanced way. In B2C, one deals with millions of users. It is necessary to take care of each user's experience at a scale that can be challenging.
  • The discussion for this panel revolved around the needs of modern consumer marketing, and what technologies & tools are must-haves to be cutting-edge in consumer marketing. In this exciting session, the experts from Mixpanel, Branch, Segment, and MoEngage unpack the complexities of modern growth stack: what it means, the tools and APIs (analytics, communication, marketing automation, and ad platforms) required, resources required to build it, expected user experience use cases it aims to resolve, and how it can be implemented to overcome challenges in the mobile-first world.

Session 2: How OYO Maximizes Mobile Push Delivery

mobile push delivery #GROWTHAsia 2020

One of the most popular brands in India's hospitality sector, OYO has optimized customer engagement through efficient push notification delivery as a channel. In this session, Arjya Nathvani (Head of Growth Marketing, OYO International) and Nalin Goel (VP Product, MoEngage) discuss push notification delivery rates and how it depends on the OEM, factors affecting it, and how it can be resolved using MoEngage's Push Amp+ offering.

Here are the overall highlights from the panel:

  • While deciding the right channel to use for communication with users, it is important that a brand keeps in mind the efficiency as well as the efficacy of the channel. Channel like email is low cost but then its engagement rates are also low. WhatsApp and SMS are very costly so they cannot be used for scale. Push, despite low CTRs, is very cost-effective. So it is important to make the right decision based on your purpose and these two factors.
  • One of the most important factors impacting delivery these days is the OS. The second would be the OS level controls. The communication and factors of recency and frequency of engagement are also really important. Most of the OEMs have similar problems with regard to push delivery. They all have these custom OSs written on top of Android and everywhere they are handling it in very different manners which sometimes leads to the user not receiving notification.
  • To work at the OEM level with push amplification, try to understand which of the OEMs are having low delivery but high share, so they can maximize the impact for a marketer if the delivery is amplified for those OEMs. And this solution works across all OEMs. It has a special booster for Xiaomi and the impact of the push notification delivery rate for Xiaomi goes from 40% to 80-85% also in some cases.
  • Other than the delivery rate metric, the efficacy of push channels can be measured by looking at the CTR and CVR. CTR is Click Through Rate and CVR is Conversion Rate. Focusing on both of these would add an amount of value for the consumer, which one should always try to achieve. Keep communication highly personalized in nature, use a recommendation engine to send better notifications. This leads to a direct impact on the conversion rate also.
  • The optimum amount of communication that needs to be sent out to the consumer should be figured out for each segment. Look at the uninstall rates, and look at consumer response, etc, to determine what is the best and optimum amount of push notifications as far as frequency is concerned for a particular segment. Too many notifications might disturb the user, leading to turning notifications off.

Insights from individual experts:

Arjya Nathvani

  • A channel can be looked at from two dimensions- channel efficacy and efficacy. Push is not the most effective channel in terms of getting the highest CTRs but when looked at from both the dimensions, its cost, and efficacy make it the most important channel. So with a cost-benefit analysis, push definitely is the better performing channel than most of the other ones.
  • The world is going to move to a place where users will not want to be probably disturbed as much and everyone is going to see new rules come up. Brands have to continuously adapt to coming changes. With almost every channel, it starts off as a channel where you can use it at will, you can use it in scale in volumes, but then slowly you have to put guardrails around the same to ensure that customer experience remains the topmost priority for your brand.
  • In order to solve the deliverability issue that you can face due to Chinese OEMs for smartphones, using Push Amplification is surely one of the things that help to drive delivery rates up.
  • The two solutions to fix deliverability are- one, use the Notification Center on the app. So if pushes aren't delivered, they are at least there on the app for the person to see. Whenever the person opens the app, the communication that we wanted to convey is right there. Two, internally begin some experiments, such as trying to schedule or rather include a few scheduled push notifications in code to see if that works. We call it to pull base notifications and we are trying that as well.

Nalin Goel

  • Push delivery is dependent on multiple factors starting from the device that the end-user is using, or how recently the user has been active on the app. In most cases, the low delivery rate in the mobiles for push notifications happens because of the OS rating. The recency and frequency of engagement plus communication are really important at this point in time.
  • The ecosystem at this point in time is really large in terms of there are only limited variables that you can control. What everyone should largely be working on first is- understanding the problem. Next, attend these problems and try to see what can you pull out on your side to improve the push notification delivery. Based on this, Moengage came up with something called Push Amplification in 2017.
  • At Moengage, we believe that push can be made more engaging. There can be multiple form factors of push, in terms of the capability. Push can actually act as a mini app on the notification tree by the kind of functions that they can do. There can be different kinds of push on which you can engage the customer in a very different manner. You can make them more interactive and get higher CTRs and conversions out of it.

What’s Next In Store?

Since #GROWTHAsia 2020 broadly covered topics around growth structure and stack, omnichannel marketing, and customer engagement strategies, here are a couple of articles for further reading on the above-mentioned topics and themes: 

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About The Author
Creates and builds insightful content for the B2B/B2C marketing community by the day, moonlights as a pop culture aficionado by the night. Published author with global and national publications like e27, TechInAsia, Yourstory, Tripoto, Huffington Post, and YouthKiAwaaz. Can be found binging on Sci-Fi and High Fantasy when not churning content.
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