Top Story

Home >> Marketing >> Article

Brands revel in festive shopping frenzy : Rajendra Khare, SureWavesMediaTech

28-October-2016
Font Size   16
Brands revel in festive shopping frenzy : Rajendra Khare, SureWavesMediaTech

Our lives today are a blend of online activity and real world lifestyles. We are constantly accessing information, sharingour lives on social media and showcasing our individuality writes RajendraKhare, Founder, Chairman & Managing Director, SureWavesMediaTech Pvt Ltd.

Yohoho! The D-days are around the corner with Diwali, December,Digitalshopping and Deals galore. It is indeed a great time for spoilt-for-choice shopaholics as retailers put their best festive foot forward.

Right from gifts, gift cards, home décor, apparel and accessories to electronics, food, luxury products and jewellery, shoppers are busy filling their shopping carts and gearing up for the festive season ahead. October to January is the busiest shopping season in India, with the onset of festive days followed by winter holidays. With wedding bells too ringing in the air, it is indeed a hectic time for retailers.

What with competition going full-throttle across all platforms, they, not only have to ensure their stocks are full, but also have to woo the well-informed, compulsive shopper in new and innovative ways. Unlike the West, our festive spirit starts quite early in August itself with the Great Freedom Sale. The season gathers momentum with Navratri and reaches a crescendo during Christmas and New Year’s, before it climaxes during Republic Day. Needless to say, other occasions like Ganesh Chaturti and Akshaya Tritiya too have been marketed to the hilt. Early bird offers, mind-blowing discounts and cash-back offers are all part of the marketing rhetoric, which is louder and crazier than ever before.

Apart from buying for ourselves and our close family, gifting is also a big part of the festival season. And so you have leading brands exclusively promoting this segment too. This is also the time of the year when corporates offer festival bonuses to employees, a time-honoured tradition that continues till today. Then you have the laid-back last minute shoppers. So, retailers have many plans up their sleeve, luring early birds with new stock previews and discounts and the procrastinating shoppers with extended shopping hours and enticing eleventh-hour offers. Then of course, the compulsive buyers become privileged customers with points and miles!

E-commerce is here to stay

So, what’s becoming clear is that shopping is here to stay..but the way we are shopping is changing. According to estimates, the year 2015 turned out to be a year for digital shopping and online deals. What began as an experiment a few years ago has now become a full-blown practice, withtransactionsworth $12 billion (gross merchandise value) recorded in the e-tailing industry last year.

Buoyed by the unprecedented demand from across the country, e-tailers like Flipkart, Amazon and Snapdeal are stepping up efforts to wooconsumersthis festive season through personalised offerings,more affordable high-quality products, easy returns and product exchangesand faster one-day/two-day deliveries.

Globally, event-based shopping is catching the fancy of retailers and shoppers. The United States set the trend with Black Friday and Cyber Monday and it has caught on in other countries too. In Canada, the first Sunday of December has traditionally been the busiest retail day; but in the last two years, Black Friday and Cyber Monday have taken over. Of course, no prizes for guessing who was behind the change. Ditto with the UK. But the latter tried to battle this with another event: Buy British Day on October 3, every year.

We don’t know if India will join the Black Friday frenzy, but we haveour desi versions such as Unbox Diwali, Great Indian Festival, Wish for India Sale and Big Billion Days Sale.

Innovation is the name of the game

The rise of the e-commerce players has pushed the offline retailers up the ante with innovative offerings and marketing promotions. So the stage is set for some intense competition between the brick-and-mortar and online retailers. In fact, the lines are blurring, what with offlinefolks getting online and online retailers setting up experiential points.

Offline or online or both, retailers are using the festive season as a good time for them to experiment with concepts such as augmented reality and experiential marketing. This is also the time when promotions play a key role in rising above the noise and clutter and be heard.

And so you have smart stores for smart customers with interactive touch screens, magical mirrors, style simulators, pop-up counters, self-checkouts and digital dressing rooms could soon become the order of the day. Experiments of this nature are already on in India and abroad. Brands like Van Heusen, Shoppers’ Stop, Lenskart, Samsung and Coca-Cola have already jumped on the bandwagon and I am sure more brands will follow suit.

Customer still holds the ace

No matter what technology or innovation retailers adopt, the ruler is clearly the customer, still at the core of it all. And so diversity in shopping is a reality.

Online retailers discovered this truth when they were backed in a corner in the face of technical glitches such as servers crashing and payment gateways failing and running out of stock during big sale days in 2014 and 2015. But this year it led to them completely upping their customer service and being adequately prepared for the festival frenzy.

Our lives today are a blend of online activity and real world lifestyles. We are constantly accessing information, sharingour lives on social media and showcasing our individuality. An increasing number of people are turning to Facebook and Twitter to discover Diwali deals and discounts by various brands. So, shopping too has become a social activity.

There is no denying that technology is playing and will continue to play a major role in influencing purchase decisions. So, retailers must listen to the voices on social media and cleverly push their products and services, without being intrusive of course.

Retail is set to become more service-oriented and mobile payments will become the order of the day.Consumers will move towards a sharing economy (rentals are becoming popular), consumer feedback will be increasingly online and everyday services too will go online. Retailers who move with these trends will ensure customers stay with them through the year, year after year.

The ‘what, how, why, where and when’ of shopping is still a mystery that needs to be discovered by retailers, more so in India.

The MD of Sai Estate Consultants, Chembur, on their marketing strategy, adopting a carpet bombing approach, response to the Wajood app and why he now allocates maximum of his marketing spends on digital

Prachi Mohapatra on fbb’s latest campaign, one-year after going omni-channel, and its growing reliance on content marketing

The marketing head of Greenpanel on marketing approach and how the company is working towards educating consumer about MDF

BookMyShow, Uber, Chumbak, Viacom18 and Radio City are some of the clients of the company

right
left
KARAN THAPAR & SHEKHAR GUPTA DISCUSS JOURNALISTIC ETHICS AT THE PRINT’S ‘OFF THE CUFF’ WOMEN ECONOMIC FORUM AWARDS 2018 RECOGNIZE WOMEN LEADERS OF THE DECADE THE 6TH EDITION OF IAA AWARDS RECOGNIZES THE WORK OF INDUSTRY PROFESSIONALS 11 INDUSTRY EXPERTS PRESENT  THEIR FAVOURITE DIGITAL CASE STUDIES @AD CLUB’S ‘D-CODE BUSINESSWORLD LAUNCHES 14TH EDITION OF MARKETING WHITEBOOK IN MUMBAI INDUSTRY VETERANS CHEER AS ADMAN AMBI PARAMESWARAN LAUNCHES NEW BOOK SPONG AAAI HONOURS VETERAN ADMAN RAM SEHGAL WITH THE 2018 LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWAR PITCH TOP 50 BRANDS 2018 AWARDS COMPANIES WITH BEST MARKETING PRACTICES TEAM BBDO ORGANIZES AJAI JHALA’S FAREWELL WITH FRIENDS & ASSOCIATES RADIO CITY CELEBRATES ITS 17TH ANNIVERSARY WITH CONCERT, AWARDS AND FUN 5TH EDITION OF TIMES NOW & ICICI BANK’S NRI OF THE YEAR AWARDS GLOBAL INDIANS PITCH CMO SUMMIT BENGALURU SEES TOP INDUSTRY LEADERS AND MARKETERS IN ATTENDANCE DISTINGUISHED JURY COMES TOGETHER TO PICK WINNERS FOR PITCH’S TOP 50 BRANDS PITCH CMO SUMMIT BANGALORE SEES TOP CMOS ACROSS INDUSTRIES IN ATTENDANCE 1ST REPUBLIC TV GULF INDIAN LEADERSHIP SUMMIT & AWARDS HONOUR STALWARTS OF INDIAN GULF BUSINESS COMMUNITY SONY YAY! CELEBRATES ITS FIRST BIRTHDAY WITH PARTY FOR TRADE PARTNERS THOUGHT LEADERS AND TOP DIGITAL MARKETERS SPEAK @ EXCHANGE4MEDIA GROUP’S TECHMANCH 2018 IN MUMBAI EXCHANGE4MEDIA’S IDMA 2018 RECOGNIZES INDUSTRY’S BEST DIGITAL MARKETING CAMPAIGNS REALTY PLUS UNVEILS COFFEE TABLE BOOK AT 10TH CONCLAVE & EXCELLENCE AWARDS @AHMEDABAD EMINENT JURY CONGREGATES TO PICK WINNERS OF INDIAN DIGITAL MARKETING AWARDS 2018

'The Bloody Ghoul' symbol has been sprayed on Sacred Games billboards across the city

Initiative's Mumbai office will manage the account. The account was earlier held by OMD India.

Qwikcilver’s Co-founder and CMO says their campaign for Onam addresses the gifting needs of the resident and non-resident Keralites