Word of mouth still works for us: Kyle Kiang, OnePlus

In a chat with exchange4media, Kyle Kiang, Global Head of Marketing, talks about the marketing philosophy behind the OnePlus brand

e4m by Abhinn Shreshtha
Updated: Jun 29, 2017 7:31 AM
Word of mouth still works for us: Kyle Kiang, OnePlus

The OnePlus 5, possibly the most awaited smartphone of 2017, launched among huge fanfare earlier this month. Launching as an Amazon exclusive, the OnePlus 5 will hope to build on the extensive fanbase that the company enjoys in the country and the success of earlier models, the most recent of which was OnePlus 3t.

Speaking to exchange4media, Kyle Kiang, Global Head of Marketing, defined the OnePlus 5 as“an extension of our philosophy”.

OnePlus has had a radically different marketing strategy as compared to other premium smartphone brands, generally relying on word-of-mouth publicity and this, says Kiang, has not changed. “Most of the people come to know about OnePlus because of word of mouth so that has not changed. We put a lot of attention on the product. I wish I could take credit for marketing but I cannot. When we do marketing it is not for a traditional or digital brand. I think people appreciate our brand voice,” he said.

However, this does not mean that the company is shying away from spending money as it looks to promote a phone that it terms “the best the company has ever made.”

The launch event in Mumbai saw 1,000 “fans” who could only get in through a special invite along with nearly 300 media and tech bloggers. The event also saw the culmination of a three month long competition, which saw one lucky winner walk away with a Rs. 1 crore cheque.

“The strategy for India is not different from anywhere else. I am very impressed with the tech-savvy nature of Indian consumers. E-commerce is a natural purchase model for Indians,” said Kiang, noting that a number of other markets are still behind India when it comes to the purchase of products online.

“I think they are very different from us,” he further added, when asked whether OnePlus would follow in the footsteps of Oppo and Vivo in associating with big ticket sporting events to promote the brand.

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