Product Head- Digital Imaging | 15 Feb 2005
We are a very dominant player for handycams and we command a major chunk of the market. We would like to repeat this achievement for digital cameras also. Currently, we are at the second position but we would like to take the number one position as soon as possible.
As the Product Head of Digital Imaging Division of Sony India Pvt Ltd. since January 2003, Ranvijay Singh is responsible for the sales and marketing of the digital imaging products in India. He provides strategic direction to the products and sets objectives in terms of sales, profit, market share and growth of the category.
Singh is responsible for model selection and pricing of the products that are to be launched in India. Before joining Sony India, he was Senior Executive, Sales and Marketing – Washing Machine Division, LG India. Prior to that he was with IFB Industries and Godrej & Boyce. In conversation with Rummana Ahmed of exchange4media, Singh talks about the marketing strategy and other brand initiatives of the company. Excerpts:
Q. What is going to be Sony’s current area of focus?
Sony is obviously the global leader in digital imaging in India. We are a very dominant player for handycams and we command a major chunk of the market. We would like to repeat this achievement for digital cameras also. Currently we are at the second position but then we would like to take the number one position as soon as possible.
Q. Can you share with us your communication strategy?
Since we are the leaders we have to educate the customers in terms of the benefits of digital imaging in this country. For example, in our recent TVC we not only talked about the benefits but we also educated the consumers on handycams. We talked about how they can burn CDs, enjoy them on their DVDs and also share the CDs with others. Similarly for digital still cameras we keep educating our customers through our communication strategy on the benefits of digital imaging.
Q. The products are targeted at very niche customers. Do you think there is a rural market for your products?
You will be surprised to know that a place like Lucknow is number three for us in digital imaging. For handycams, sub-metros and small cities are also doing very well. As far as digital still cameras are concerned, I agree that at the moment, it is limited to metros and sub-metros. It may take some time but it is definitely growing in other cities.
Q. How do you deal with competition in your domain?
Competition at the moment is really good because it is a growing market. It will increase the market and thus the industry. As far as handycams are concerned, we are the dominant players and no one is helping in growing the market. The entire responsibility of growing the industry lies with us.
Q. How do you visualise the Korean competition?
Koreans are very aggressive competitors and as I said, any competition is good. It is a big market and everyone can have its share. We are dominant as far as handycams are concerned and we would also like to be the dominant players for cybershots.
Q. Can you tell us something about your marketing initiatives and the strategies that you have?
Our marketing strategy is to pass on the latest technology to the consumers and also to bring all the international products that are available to India. We offer very strategic and competitive pricing for customers. Other promotions include the benefits that we pass on to the customers, like a three-year warranty and zero per cent finance up to two years, which makes buying a digital handycam or camera very easy for the customer.
Q. There have been quite a few product launches at Photo Imaging Asia this year. What kind of advertising are you looking at?
The advertising depends on the products. It may not be necessary for us to advertise all our products. Like the products we launched at the Photo Imaging Asia, it is not necessary to advertise these products as they are totally targeted at the professional people. For example, the high definition camera that we launched is for the photographers and people in the electronic media. There are other platforms like Photo Imaging Asia and that is also like an advertisement. We keep advertising for the consumer products but for professional products we are still do decide on the strategy.
Q. What is your retailing strategy?
In terms of retailing, we have the best channels available with the Sony World and Sony Exclusive outlets. They display the products very nicely and have the best practices of demonstrating the cameras to the customers. We have 125 such channel partners that display and demonstrate the products very well.