‘Decisions can’t be based on data alone. You need leadership skills to use data insights’

Nipun Marya, CEO, iQOO, spoke at Pitch CMO Summit 2022 on how the smartphone company leveraged data to pursue the quest for differentiation

e4m by exchange4media Staff
Published: Jun 30, 2022 8:08 AM  | 3 min read
Pitch CMO Summit

Decisions can’t be based on data alone. You need guts and leadership skills to use data insights for your success, said Nipun Marya, CEO, iQOO. He was speaking at Pitch CMO Summit Delhi on Wednesday.

Marya kickstarted the summit by speaking on ‘Leveraging Data to Pursue iQOO's Quest for Differentiation’ and explained how iQOO made an entry into a cluttered smartphone segment and took it by storm with the help of data insights.

He started his session with a video clip of a 2011 film ‘Moneyball’, which is based on the real story of Oakland A's general manager Billy Beane who couldn’t afford big-money players. Beane defied conventional wisdom and collected the data of baseball matches and analysed each player. His team's victory created history in professional sports.

Sharing the success story of his brand, Marya highlighted that his company decided to pick one P (product) from the famous four Ps of marketing: product, price, place, and promotion.

He told the audience, “As a young company, we wanted to focus on the product. Camera is believed to be the most important feature in a smartphone. When we did data crunching to understand what our consumers want, we found that people wanted the best-performing phone with the most innovative features that can work flawlessly while playing games. Of course, they want top-line cameras as well.”

Our data also told us that 65% users accessed YouTube as a source to make themselves acquainted with the specifications of the product. They read reviews and feedback and understood each technology.

“Consumer insights told us that people wanted a multitasking and best performing phone which in turn needed a good CPU-GPU, cooling, haptics and sound features. We also worked on enhancing the gaming experience. With the belief that performance and innovation can come together, we launched IQOO 9 Pro,” he said.

Marya claimed that iQOO 9 is the only brand which has an intelligent display chip (IDC) that enhances both performance and gaming experience.

“iQOO picked Product as its core area, each company has to pick its own P depending on its category and specific market position,” Marya advised the CMOs.

Data alone can’t give you success, he said, citing Netflix CEO Reed Hastings’ famous quote, "We start with the data but the final call is always gut. It’s informed intuition.”

“You can slice data in as many ways as you want. But decisions can’t be made based on data only. You need guts and leadership skills to use data insights to get success,” Marya said.

“Many would think that Moneyball is the data success story. Actually, it is not. Baseball data has been available since the 1800s. Regression analysis techniques have also been there since the 1980s. Billy Beane had the conviction to use the data insights for his team’s success when others relied on conventional wisdom. Moneyball is a leadership success story,” Marya said in his concluding remarks.

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