Shankar Nath , SVP , Paytm
Shankar Nath is the Senior Vice President of Paytm, India’s largest mobile commerce platform. An alumnus of Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, Shankar brings on-board valuable experience in domains such as entrepreneurship, market research, competitive analysis and market planning. And also oversees the marketing initiatives at Paytm.
Before joining Paytm, Shankar founded www.PolicyTiger.com and scaled the business for over two years. Prior to that, he worked with top companies such as Helix Technology Solutions Pvt. Ltd., Mindfire Solutions, Aviva Life Insurance, CitiFinancial and GSK.
In this exclusive interview with Ratnika Swami for India Digital Review, Shankar talks about Paytm digital is still catching up with the offline media, the shift to paperless wallets and the challenges faced in tapping into the Digital medium. Excerpts:
Q. How does the digital medium - Internet as well as mobile - figure in Paytm’s plans to reach out to consumers?
We are a mobile first company & have used digital channels to build our app strategy. We understand that our core audience is on the digital platform & there is significant focus towards building media strategies for user acquisition & engagement through relevant & highly targeted cross channel campaigns.
Q. At what stage of evolution do you think is the digital space in India? How do you think it is growing—or not growing?
Digital is still catching up with offline media. Video innovation & brands willing to spend more for performance has resulted in closing this gap over the last few years. Mobile is one channel where digital spends have started to shift & we predict lot of digital growth is going to happen in this space.
Q. What online marketing initiatives help you to stay ahead of the competition in India?
There are wide range of marketing initiatives such as tying up with publishers & apps and OEMs for strategic partnership & promoting brand to relevant audience. Apart from that there are other high impact ad strategies we implement to create a strong brand recall value.
Q. How do you integrate your online and offline marketing efforts?
All marketing plans are executed with 360 degree view. Each marketing channel work on their own objectives & complement each other to deliver on overall marketing strategy for Paytm. Digital campaigns are more performance oriented & Offline campaigns are more brand building. All of this is knitted with our strict brand guidelines & design language to ensure we portray the same message to consumers across every channel.
Q. What percentage of your total marketing spend is on digital? And how do you maximise the ROI on your marketing spends?
We see approx. 50% of our spends on digital platform. ROI for us is the total effectiveness of each digital channel which contributes towards driving a purchase or an action. We look across standard ROI from each channel along with their role in customer lifecycle. To measure across each channel we have built across custom attribution models. With every campaign, we have objectives & we optimize with lot of data to get maximum out of each channel.
Q. As a CMO, what are the main challenges you face engaging with your target market?
There is a lot of clutter in the market, and thus it has become even more important to remain top of mind in the consumer's consideration set. Continuous effort and investment needs to be made towards that.