Top Retail Marketing Leaders reveal their strategies to generate sales during COVID-19

Turning on the television on a fine day learning about COVID-19, who knew that microscopic element would bring a massive impact to our lives at a global level.

Halfway through the year and in the middle of a consequential crisis the world has ever seen, the world around us- from lifestyle to economy has changed.

Aisha was an avid shopper pre-pandemic. A single offer by her favourite brand, Fabdesi would get her on her toes. However, the lockdown and safety concerns brought about a drastic change in her buying behaviour. Despite the stores re-opening, Aisha’s preference changed in terms of the product she buys, the amount she spends and the safety concerns.
Although brands claimed their physical stores to be safe, it became difficult to regain their loyal customers’ confidence.

Both the Marketing and CRM Heads at Fabdesi were worried about bringing their favourite customer back to shop with them.

To Fabdesi and all other Retail Brands struggling on how to make their customers buy their products at the times of pandemic, the leaders from top brands are here to share their learnings and how a brand can leverage change in user- behaviour and re-thinking marketing strategies to generate revenue.

Here is a list of all the insightful revelation from the top Retail Marketing Leaders in Your’s Digitally Podcast:

When we say Retention is the new Acquisition after the new normal, what is going to be the role of CRM to tackle uncertainties?

Nazif Tejani: A major chunk of marketing spend has been shifted from New- customer acquisition to spending money on reaching out to the best customers who are likely to make a repeated purchase.

If we talk about the role of CRM in the acquisition of new customers, it has to be a lot more targetted and there need to be efficient ways to get new customers. There need to be alliances, potential tie-ups and databases for look-a-like audiences as they’d have the capability to spend.

We’ve often heard about Retention when it came to shopping offline. With the shift of focus from offline to online channel, how does Retention work in E-Commerce?

Mudita Pandey: “Growth is not just about Customer Acquisition, Retention is equally important and both have been equal at 1mg.”

Not only does it ensure repeated sales but the overall cost rescues when focussing more on retention comparing the ROI generated. Retention is the key to long term sustenance.

“One needs to understand what Retention is for their company and how to measure it. For 1mg, being a healthcare platform, it could simply be customers who are transacting on the platform, how many times they are transacting, times they are engaging with the app, it could also be Net Promoter Score.

  • The first step is to understand the customer’s lifecycle and see the times it is coming back to the platform.
  • Measuring for your current retention is and what ideally it should be to benchmark with the frequency of transaction of customers.
  • Coming out with ideal retention score

It is very crucial to identify the main problem and knowing the area to focus on. Whether it is Engagement, Transaction or the Net Promoter Score”


Customers are typically changing their behaviour, as an offline retail brand, how has the spend on Marketing campaigns changed over time?

Ravneesh Dhaneshwar: Earlier, the acquisition funnel was quite elaborate, it had been multi-channel and a bit complex with social-medias, push notifications, SMS etc. Talking about the current scenario, the attention span and conversion has become faster. Essential and need-based items and now the drivers of consumption. People now have an idea of what they are going to consume and when they are in that consumption mode, the conversion has to be quick. Being able to understand which is the right time for the consumer to convert is crucial in today’s period.

In order to fix these problems,the strategy has to be framed. Knowing what the person needs when the person needs and how you are basically going to fulfillit.

In this case, the collaboration between customer service and marketing teams become very important.

“New acquisition is the retention of older customers. It is very important to retain the older customers. Retain and sustain your customers”

Being a leading brand in the beauty industry of India, what is Colorbar doing post-COVID to ensure customer retention?

Samir Modi: The brand has been focussing a lot on customization. Having over 1001 shades of nail paints, innovation is very crucial for the brand with the coming time. We are going deep down with the customers, providing them with virtual makeup artist program and helping them customise their own nail paints and lipsticks.

Since the customers refrain from moving outside, Colorbar has also started its own mobile vans that’d come to your localities and ease the shopping experience.

Reaching out to loyal customers and ensuring them with their no contact safety standards along with the Bespoke programme became a game-changer despite the pandemic

Being a CMO of a brand, how’d you re-allocate the marketing budget and what should be the medium to focus on for engaging with the customers?

Jiten: “The marketing budget has been re-defined over time. Marketers having a smaller marketing budget would now want to focus on the medium that’d generate higher ROI and efficiently re-engage with the customers.”

Content strategy also plays a major role. For acquisition, existing channels like Facebook, Instagram, Whatsapp etc are being used where one could use the power of video through live streaming. If the customers can’t come to the store, why not bring the store to the customers?
And to engage with the existing customer in order to retain them, brands need to deep-dive into their customer’s behaviour and thus being more relevant to them

Phew, these retail marketers have made everything sound so easy! It won’t be tough for brands like Fabdesi to bring their loyal customers like Aisha back to their platform and shop with them. Consumer behaviour is changing and it is now very crucial for brands to analyse their buying behaviour and pattern in order to keep ensuring them a happy and delightful shopping experience!

Can’t wait to learn more?

Tune into India’s first Podcast on digital personalisation, Yours, Digitally now to get more insights by the top marketers from Retail and F&B industry in India!

Available on all your favourite podcast channels. Spotify, Apple Podcast, Google Podcast

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