General Manager | 16 Jun 2003
"The people who have already experienced the lifelike sound of Bose are the biggest advertisers for us through the â€˜word of mouthâ€™. Besides some routine advertising we believe in letting people experience the products."
Responsible for Bose India and leading the expansion of operations throughout the country in both professional systems and retail, Ratish Pandey was appointed the General Manager Bose Corporation India Pvt Ltd in January 2001. Ratish has been with Bose Corporation since 1995 when he joined the organization as a consultant. In 1996 he became member of the management team serving as Controller and was responsible for the Financial, Legal and Logistical functions of Bose India. In 1999 he was named Divisional Manager of the Professional Systems Division. Under his leadership, the division has strengthened and achieved an impressive sales growth.
Q. What were the key insights, which formed the basis of positioning Bose in the Indian market?
The key insights, which formed the basis of positioning Bose in the Indian market, is primarily to familiarise the Indian consumer with "quality sound" and to make available products which reproduce â€˜lifelike soundâ€™ to the Indian consumers.
Q. What is your key differentiator?
We believe in quality sound, whatever the application â€“ professional or home, and our exceptionally strong commitment to research is the key differentiator. At Bose, we reinvest 100% of our profits into furthering research. We've taken our commitment and our passion for innovation and applied it to develop unique sound solutions to meet virtually any audio challenge in any application. Our commitment to provide better sound through research makes us path breakers in audio systems.
Q. What is the extent of your marketing activity? Do you rely heavily on below-the-line support?
We have a fair amount of advertising budget for this year but our major focus will be on below-the-line activities to promote our Direct Marketing Division. Recently we have initiated a multi-city â€˜Bose Connect Programâ€™ aimed to address the Indian consumersâ€™ desire to experience â€“ touch and feel - the product, before making an actual purchase. The program is conducted in the cities where we donâ€™t have a retail presence. We expect such programs to establish a direct contact with our customers in cities where we do not currently enjoy a presence, which will further boost our sales, thereby enabling us to replicate the success enjoyed by the Bose Direct Marketing Group in North America, UK, Germany and Japan.
Q. Why has promotion become such an important part of the marketing mix? Is it because advertising is not as effective as it used to be?
Promotions help in stimulating sales. Recently to promote our newly inaugurated store in Gurgaon we initiated a month long inaugural offer.
Q. The consumer electronics category generally witnesses a demand surge during festival time or special sporting events like World Cup. During the rest of the time what is your view on advertising? How do you utilize advertising during such lean periods?
The people who have already experienced the lifelike sound of Bose are the biggest advertisers for us through â€˜word of mouthâ€™. Besides some routine advertising we believe in letting people experience the products. This year we aim to create multiple programs to establish a direct connect with our customers some of the plans include demo points at places like Music World and Landmark, multi-city road shows under â€˜Bose Connect Programâ€™, increased pace in growth of our retail presence etc.
Q. Tell us about any new products you are launching.
We will be launching Bose AcoustimassTM speaker systems very soon; it's patented technology eliminates audible distortion without betraying its true location. All the sound appears to come from the tiny cube speakers. This advance allows the Acoustimass module to be placed almost anywhere.