By Sanskriti Sharma
India is aiming to increase the turnover of its digital and Information Technology (IT) industry to $1 trillion by 2022 from a current value of $270 billion, as the country shifts its focus to start-ups, financial technology, and other new-age technologies.
India’s digital and IT industry, in its current form, is primarily driven by the IT and IT-enabled services and is estimated to stand at $150 billion, followed by financial services at $50 billion and electronics manufacturing at $40 billion.
What’s hot in the digital world seems to be changing rapidly. While the cool gets cooler, some inventions simply wear off after much hype and anticipation. If smartphone and internet usage statistics are to be believed, India is quickly becoming a digital-first nation where the adoption levels towards new trends are much higher. Consumer attention is rapidly shifting and new, lucrative routes towards being digital are building up. In times like these, where opportunities for digital success are in abundance, the need to constantly evolve or provide value has become vital for organizations.
The IAMAI 12th India Digital Summit held at The Lalit on the 17th and 18th January, 2018 was an insight into all the changes and new developments in the digital trends taking place in India, by the top entrepreneurs, businessmen and professionals in the country. The theme of the summit was, “Digital India: A Trillion Dollar Economy by 2022.”
The sessions have been covered below.
Predictions for the changes in the digital trends (Session I)
Speaker: Rajan Anandan, Chairman IAMAI and MD, Google India
Rajan Anandan is an active angel investor in early-stage technology companies. He has invested in internet, mobile and software startups in India. He addressed a couple of questions about content, quality of news, videos, etc., and stated out a few predictions for the changing digital world, such as:
In a country like India, 95% of the population doesn’t watch TV in English. A few large brands in India have high-quality mobile assets in regional languages. Therefore, India has a giant online video market, where the language medium will not be English.
In the next 2 decades, most of India will indulge in offline and unorganized retail sales. It is imperative for brands to have a web presence, but the strategies must revolve around bringing people to the stores.
The big idea in digital is to drive offline sales but also to capture the attention of the online customers; like many large retailers around the world are already doing. There is a need to build even simpler ad products and enable small businesses (that contribute to 40% of India’s GDP) to go digital.
Addressing the question of content quality of news media, he believes that the payment infrastructure in news media is not solid in the country. He believes that consumers are ready to pay for good quality content if payment options are easily available. Especially for publishers, it is critical to building a non-advertising based model.
Searching content in the local language is a big problem. He feels that voice search will take India by storm, evolving into a user-friendly interface.
On a question regarding the competition startups are facing due to the use and investment in AI by top brands, he said that the first thing startups should do is ask themselves “How will AI improve their business?” In fact, Indian startups are already leveraging AI solutions.
Key differences between a businessman and an entrepreneur (Session II)
Speaker: CEO Sanjeev Bhikchandani, Info Edge
A businessman walks on the defined path, but an entrepreneur believes in making his own path, which becomes a guideline for other businessmen. Most of the people have a misconception that the terms businessman and entrepreneur, carry the same meaning, due to which they use them interchangeably.
Sanjeev Bhikchandani, CEO of Info Edge explained that there is a fine line amidst the two. An entrepreneur is always a market leader and a businessman is always a market player. A businessman is only doing business but an entrepreneur is someone who pioneers and innovates. He believes that a customer’s money is more important for a business than investors’ money. It is important that money is a little scarce because it is only then that an individual makes an effort to work even harder and multiply his earnings. Any successful company builds on deep consumer insights about unsolved problems, and the best products are always created in close proximity to the customer. If there is another aspect of a business that can be kept in control it is the cost, not the revenue.
Scalability of personalization od consumer experience (Session III)
MODERATOR: Kunal Tomar, GM, Cheetah Digital
Aman Satija: Head Marketing, Lenskart
Rajat Gupta: Head Growth Marketing: TIL
Uma Talreja: Chief Digital Officer, Raymond
Sameer Jain: Director- Digital Strategies and Customer Engagement, Shopclues
Gagan Arora: CMO, Foodpanda
Virtual Reality is going to be the game changer it has promised to be. In 2016, we witnessed products such as Sony PlayStation VR, Samsung Gear VR and Oculus Rift making all the noise, along with mobile app and game developers creating content to keep consumers passionate. With brands aspiring to create new experiences and personalized UX/UI, with the desire to move their status to a preferred brand, it has seen acceptance in real estate and travel too.
The panelists mentioned their key strategies for customer engagement and they discussed what they did to personalize the customer experience.
SHOPCLUES: A personal product recommendation
FOODPANDA: Hyperlocal personalization; it sorts a list of restaurants which changes as per the hour as per the region you are in. A personalization effect like this has led to 20% rise in conversion rate.
RAYMOND: Raymond soon plans to begin a self-body scan to automate how measurements will be taken.
TIL: Data analytics helps in identifying which song will be automatically played as per the customer’s likes on gaana.com.
LENSKART: A feature built into the website which allows one to wear their glasses online. (3-D)
Challenges with personalization
The real journey of personalization is knowing what the customer wants without invading into his privacy and being able to create a product of utility for mutual benefit. For most, the line between the two blurs. Machine Learning is non-parametric. It cannot be customized therefore the model itself has to structure as per the algorithms. Old data vs new data will be a challenge. Customer preferences are changing very fast and recommendations based on old data will not be effective.
The inference drawn out of the session was that the way to achieve personalization is the disruption of your own business model. It is a continuous process, rather than a one-time experience.
Digital transformation in healthcare (Session IV)
MODERATOR: Alok Agarwal, Ex-FMCG marketing director, GSK consumer healthcare
Viren Prasad Shetty: SVP strategy and planning, Narayana Hrudayalaya
Hari Thalapalli: CEO, Callhealth
Ravi Virmani: CEO and Founder, Credihealth
No one can dispute technology’s ability to enable us all to live longer, healthier lives. There is value—human and financial—in bringing new technology to the healthcare market. Digital transformation is revolutionizing patient care from Surgical robots to Smart hospitals. The Centre cleared the long-awaited National Health Policy 2017, which promises to increase public health spending to 2.5% of GDP in a time-bound manner and guarantees health care services to all Indian citizens, particularly the underprivileged. It’s predicted that the digital revolution can save $300 billion in spending in the sector, especially in the area of chronic diseases.
An in-depth analysis took place at the summit with several viewpoints to put forth. CEO of Callhealth, Hari Thalapalli’s understanding makes him believe that the future of healthcare will move from a curative space to a predictive space. Although, Viren Shetty, took a counter stance and expressed that humans are increasingly outsourcing their responsibilities to bots and that however much we may digitize, our core responsibilities towards healthcare cannot be done by bots.
On the question of customer service and experience, Ravi Virmani claims that customers are very demanding. Feedback and benchmarking is the best way to improve service quality in healthcare.
Viren also explained the relationship between hospitals and fintech firms. He says that technology will only work as an enabler. It will not really solve diseases unless we talk about genomics. There is a need for greater communication and collaboration between doctors and patients.
Healthcare will become one of the most lucrative sectors to go digital. Hospitals have already been established as brands. Greater collaboration and overcoming the challenge in real time monitoring are not enough. At the very heart of it, empathy has to exist which is a challenge for technology to achieve.
Featured image: Wikimedia Commons
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