2021 will see more innovations, launches for Indian consumers: Damyant Khanoria, OPPO

Damyant Khanoria, Chief Marketing Officer, OPPO India, tells us how the brand is looking to position the F series as the smartphone of choice for youth, and more

e4m by Ritika Raj
Updated: Mar 8, 2021 11:21 AM
Damyant Khanoria

OPPO is gearing up to launch its new smartphones under its F series -- F19 Pro and F19 Pro+ 5G. Damyant Khanoria, Chief Marketing Officer, OPPO India, tells us how the brand is looking to position the F series as the smartphone of choice for youth. Khanoria also shares that looking ahead, OPPO promises multiple product launches while focusing on an IoT ecosystem and developing the business of multiple smart devices.

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 Elaborate on the insight behind OPPO's new campaign theme ‘Flaunt your nights’ for the all-new OPPO F19 Pro+ 5G?

The OPPO F Series is a well-established and successful product family in India. Starting from the very first model, the F Series showcased a commitment to bring the latest tech to young discerning customers. Beyond the amazing design aesthetics, fast charging and superlative performance, the F19 Pro+ 5G has muscled up on the camera experience. The AI Highlight Portrait Video Quad Camera enables outstanding photography and videography in any lighting conditions. It addresses one of the biggest pain points consumers have - shooting quality videos in the dark. The campaign idea of ‘Flaunt Your Night’ is in essence about the transformative video capabilities of the F19 Pro+.


On your product associate actor Varun Dhawan, what were the synergies between the actor and OPPO?

At OPPO, we are committed to bringing bold innovations stemming from industry leading technology that speaks to consumers that seek and want to be their best. Varun Dhawan is at the vanguard of the next generation of actors who are pushing themselves and their art to new heights. His effervescent personality and staggering ability as an actor made him the natural choice for the OPPO F series. We look forward to partnering with him in positioning the F series as the smartphone of choice for youth.


What is the positioning of your new launch, OPPO F19 Pro+ 5G? What is the differentiator for the product and the new offerings?

The last generation in the F Series, the F17 Pro, was a massive success, especially amongst young creators because we push the boundaries of what a great smart phone should solve for. It’s our North Star.

The F19 Pro+ 5G features OPPO’s AI highlight portrait video that can detect and automatically apply algorithms that dramatically improve the visibility of footage at any lighting conditions. The brightness within videos shot at night can be increased by 26% while the overall saturation is increased by 35%. Night videos as result are not only significantly brighter but exhibit a more dynamic range in clarity along with richer colors with this device. All these features are making F19 Pro series devices the most preferred choice. We are confident that this device will be a big hit.


What is the TG for this phone and price point?

OPPO F19 Pro+ 5G is dedicated to consumers who are design-minded trendsetters looking for an elegantly designed smartphone that also boasts a powerful mix of creative features. As the 5G era brings video photography into the spotlight, this 5G device with AI Highlight Portrait Video Quad Camera, and Dual-View video mode the product opens door to new possibilities for users to shoot video creatively and explore portrait photography features. Dual View Video levels up a user’s vlogging skills with a new way to capture two perspectives at once. This smartphone will empower its fans to share their creativity with the world and easily record memorable moments.


The sales numbers for OPPO launches in the recent past have been massive, particularly your last launch, OPPO Reno5 Pro 5G. Can you tell us more about this?

With each generation of the Reno Series, we have experienced unprecedented growth. In Q3 20, it grew 50% and the Reno5 Pro 5G has broken all records with 91% growth in the launch week. The AI Highlight Video feature in Reno5 Pro has set an unparalleled videography experience and has received huge appreciation. Guided by our brand philosophy of ‘Technology for Mankind, Kindness for the world’, we continue to bring forth ground-breaking technologies and meaningful experiences for our consumers.


New launches are the hallmark of the smartphone industry. What can we see on this front from OPPO? Tell us about some India-firsts that are going to be introduced by OPPO in 2021.

Aligned with our customer-centric approach, we debuted this year with industry-firsts power-packed features with the launch of OPPO Reno5 Pro 5G with MediaTek Dimensity 1000+ chipset, industry-first AI Video highlight feature and full Dimension Fusion (FDF) Portrait Video System technology. 2021 will see many more innovations and launches for our Indian consumers. 5G is the future and we have multiple product launches lined up for rest of the year.

Another focus area for us in 2021 will be to build an IoT ecosystem and develop the business of multiple smart devices. Our most recent device in this category, EncoX True Wireless Noise Cancelling Earphones is receiving overwhelming response from users. Aligned with our IoT vision – Carefree Beautiful Life - we will continue to expand IoT portfolio with products that integrate cutting-edge technology and design aesthetics for a better life.


Looking at your media mix, how does OPPO leverage the different mediums?

We are focused on an aggressive multi-channel strategy and a hybrid approach to make our products available through all channels for our audience. We do constant research to understand the consumer habit formation, technology adoption and behavioral economics to make reasonable predictions and accordingly sync them in our marketing approach. One segment wherein we will be integrated more seamlessly in our broader marketing strategy will be digital and social. We are working aggressively to harness the power of digital influencers and creators to widen our reach and drive conversion on eCommerce platforms.


In terms of ad-spends, are you looking at upping your spends?

The spirit of creativity and adventure is fused into OPPO’s DNA and we aspire to create marketing in the same vein. India is a market of strategic importance for OPPO and we will continue to invest and lay the foundation for long term success in the market.


Can you tell us about the trends to look out for in the smartphone industry?

Pandemic has changed consumer habits in several ways, and this makes it more relevant for brands to adapt to this rapidly changing environment. It now makes even more sense to drive business with a humanitarian purpose and make the world better. Hence, with trust and brand loyalty becoming more cohesive, conversational and purpose marketing is going to continue to be an important factor in a successful marketing strategy. Purpose, Agility, and Empathy have now become the key focus areas for all marketers to build and strengthen trust with consumers and build credibility. Storytelling element is the most important aspect now to create a magic among the minds of consumers and builds loyalty further. 

Our recent collaborations with MS. Dhoni and Imtiaz Ali are a testimony of how OPPO tells its human-centric stories and creates multiple touchpoints for consumers. OPPO has an established network of strong partnerships across categories, to comprehend the pulse of the consumers. For instance, for Reno5 Pro 5G we recently collaborated with the talent powerhouse- Ranbir Kapoor for an out-of-the-box unboxing video and ace filmmaker Imtiaz Ali for a film that he entirely shot and directed on the video expert Reno5 Pro 5G.


What will be the core of OPPO’s marketing strategy in 2021?

As the start of a new decade, 2021 will provide a platform for future growth. Looking at ten years into the future, rather than focusing on incremental growth we aim to bring disruptive change for our users. At OPPO, our core belief is on ‘Technology for Mankind, Kindness for the World’ and we are working relentlessly to bring meaningful innovations that will make the lives of all our users better and smarter. Through our industry-first innovations while designing more appeal to our audience, as well as upscale customers around the world we aim at establishing a unique position for the brand. We aim to build a meaningful and contextual relationship with our customers.

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