We saw 40-50% increase in demand for PCs compared to last year: Amit Doshi, Lenovo India

Amit Doshi, Chief Marketing Officer, Lenovo India, reveals the Personal Computer business for Lenovo has seen nearly 200% month-on-month growth in volume and 12% share gain in the last two months

e4m by Misbaah Mansuri
Updated: Sep 2, 2020 8:59 AM
Amit Doshi

The strong demand during the lockdowns as work and learning shifted to homes fuelled the shipment of tablets in India by 23 per cent in the June quarter, according to a new report. Electronics company Lenovo has continued to lead the tablet market with a 48 per cent market share, growing 24 per cent (QoQ), according to CMR's 'Tablet PC Market Report Review for Q2 2020'.

Moreover, the brand has just announced the third chapter of Rise of Legion - an esports tournament - to be conducted across the entire Indian sub-continent, inviting gamers from India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, to compete in a Rise of Legion event from the safety and comfort of their homes. #PlayApartTogether campaign is a global e-sports initiative to encourage the adoption of responsible gaming virtually using the best safety practices during this worldwide pandemic.

On the sidelines of the same, exchange4media caught up with Amit Doshi – Chief Marketing Officer, Lenovo India, on their unique global campaign, surge in demand for the company’s PC business post lockdown, challenges to market growth and more.

Edited excerpts:

To what extent has the lockdown resulted in an increase in demand for laptops as work from home becomes the new norm? Can you share the kind of traction/hike in sales that the brand has been witnessing?

Lockdown and the pandemic have led to a growth in laptop demand, across segments - starting from commercial laptops for working from home, consumer laptops for WFH and online classes, and the gaming laptops for more virtual engagement amongst the gaming community. In the last couple of months, we saw about 40-50% increase in the demand for personal computers when compared to the previous year. In addition to this, the gaming PC business of Lenovo also saw nearly 200% month-on-month growth in volume, and 12% share gain in the last two months.

What are the challenges to market growth in this scenario though?

The PC category is seeing a spike in demand due the large-scale shift to remote working and learning. The challenge is to understand the changing need of the demand – both in terms of what consumers want to buy and where they would prefer to buy. We see a shift towards digital and online platforms, with consumers preferring to research and buy from the safety of their own homes.

Tell us about the Rise of Legion tournament and why is it a part of Lenovo’s overall marketing plan?

Over the last few years, gaming as a category has risen and especially during the lockdown – it has become more mainstream. Due to this, there has been a dedicated effort across all brands to focus their energies on this new TG. Two key aspects to engaging with the gaming community is with the right set of product offerings and multiple platform engagements. Our gaming outreach via League of Champions and Rise of Legion (ROL) is a dedicated move towards the latter. ROL is a platform for gaming enthusiasts and esports professionals alike. Most gamers see the Rise of Legion (ROL) as a stepping stone in their e-sports career, which also gives us an opportunity to expand these tournaments across geographies. There have been 3 chapters of the ROL tournaments so far.

The third leg of ROL was the first eSports tournament conducted across the Indian sub-continent, inviting gamers from India, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka, to compete in a Rise of Legion event from the safety and comfort of their homes. It was commenced on July 7. Through the tournament, Lenovo also championed the #PlayApartTogether campaign – a global e-sports initiative to encourage the adoption of responsible gaming virtually using the best safety practices during this worldwide pandemic.

Share with us some of the community engagement, unique social media campaigns, and teasers planned for this year's Legion.

Lenovo Legion is growing as an innovative challenger brand, which is strongly committed to support the gaming ecosystem through investment in eSports, gaming conventions, and strategic partnerships.

• 2019 saw the entry of Legion into the eSports arena in India. Two of our eSports properties are Rise of Legion (our online gaming platform) and Legion of Champions (our flagship gaming competition). The latest Indian edition of Rise of Legion was in 2020, while latest edition of the local Legion of Champions was held at the Comic-Con Bangalore, which saw active participation from 20K gamers at the LOC Arena.

• We just wrapped up the recent chapter of Rise of Legion and it was mega successful which saw over 200 teams participating over a span of one month.

• Speaking of social media campaigns, we recently hosted an interactive Instagram campaign to co-create a comic strip for one of the Legion game characters. This campaign – called #LegionOrigins – encouraged people to collaborate and develop a character story, and led to an increase in the followers of Lenovo Legion India Instagram handle by 6.5 thousand within four weeks.

• At a global level, Lenovo Legion has also partnered with popular Battle Royale game – Apex Legends, and plans to explore the same approach when that campaign is announced in the near future.

What marketing mediums will the brand leverage to give it the canvas of visibility?

For Lenovo Legion brand, our campaign spends are carefully calibrated between mass media channels like TV to deliver reach at scale and digital video platforms like YouTube, Hotstar and social media platforms to build frequency and get to light TV viewers. Due to the nature of the community, a lot of marketing is focused on engagement across communities and our social media platforms.

What will be your focus areas for the brand for the next fiscal?

We will keep our focus on the customer’s needs and aspirations as the world continues to transform. This means we will offer products and services that push the boundaries of possibilities for gamers who want to work hard and play hard. We have many exciting plans and cannot wait to share them.

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