Siddharth Agrawal, OLX Autos takes us through the creative and strategic thought process behind the brand’s latest collaboration with Rohit Shetty, how the digital era is proving beneficial for the used-car industry, and consumer behavior seen in the sector.
OLX Autos recently came up with their ad film in partnership with Rohit Shetty for the ‘Shetty Ke Car Naame’ campaign. Social Samosa had a chance to interact with Siddharth Agrawal, Country Head -Marketing, OLX Autos who gave insights about their collaboration, the overall marketing strategy, and much more.
This being OLX Auto’s first celebrity-led campaign, what made you choose Rohit Shetty over any other trending celeb?
The first campaign we did started without a celebrity because our initial job was to create awareness in general. The campaign helped in terms of lifting our brand awareness. We also saw a change in the numbers of shares which almost tripled in the last six months; versus pre-campaign.
Moving forward the obvious step in the journey from a communication standpoint was to engage more with the audience. Therefore, we chose to bring in a celebrity and we did not want to associate with a celebrity just for the sake of it. But bring in someone who would seem more relevant to our digital-savvy audience and has a natural association with cars. With that filter in mind, we chose to work with Rohit Shetty. He has the right audience in terms of following in the digital environment but more importantly, he is rightly associated with cars as well which makes him a natural fit for the brand.
Take us through the creative process of “Shetty Ke Car-Naame” campaign
One of the insights we had when we started off, was what is the curiosity that existed in the mind of the consumer and why is he well known for his love for cars.
Through a quick survey internally we unearthed that people always wondered ‘what does Rohit Shetty do with the used cars?’. What ends up happening to the hundreds of cars used in his movies?
We wanted to build on the insight and use it to showcase that even Rohit Shetty thinks that OLX Autos is the best place to sell his cars.
With the digital age and pandemics playing a huge role, the pre-owned car industry has recently seen a huge boom. How does OLX Auto’s role in the whole segment play out?
The pre-owned car industry has already become bigger than the new car market. The growth rate of this industry is 1.5x the growth rate of new cars. The shares of organized players which stand at some 20% are likely to go upwards of 30% in the next 5 years. There’s a huge growth that will happen. And the role of OLX Autos the way we see it playing out is to make this category more relevant to the users and establish it as the first brand that comes to their mind.
As India’s used car industry is the 5th largest in the market, what do you think it will look like in the coming years?
Given the last COVID-19 wave there have been a few changing trends in India’s used car industry. Consumers have shown a high tendency to shift towards all categories that are online and that creates a higher responsibility for the organized industry to make the journey seamless and relevant to the users. Consumers do not have to walk out of their homes anymore and the immediate reaction to that has been, the requirement for home inspection v/s store inspection. 90% of all consumer visits are now being done at the consumer’s homes. Which is a huge shift in itself. In addition to that, the increasing trend towards the demand for used cars is driven by the fact that the new car as a segment is suffering from the shortage of semiconductor chips.
The market in India is still very nascent in terms of growth rates and how the used car industry will evolve. Only 15-20% of the market is organized, and the rest is still under process.
In recent times, vernacular and regional languages have seen a great reach in the audience. Does OLX Auto have any plans on venturing in that direction?
Not only OLX Autos but as a group also we have a very regional heavy approach in our communication. If you look at our current AD as well i.e., ‘OLX Autos hi deta hai aapki car ka best price’ we have applied this across multiple languages including Gujarati, Bengali, and more. We have given the colours of various languages to our communication and we will continue to do so.
Not only our above the line communication, but even messaging to our consumers below the line is being done in regional languages as well. We dig into the nuance of festivals of each region and that is how we communicate with our customers.
Can you talk about the recent partnership OLX Autos did with Star Sports for IPL 2022? What did the marketing look like for it?
It’s an extension of our ‘Best price’ message, we wanted to do a 360° integration, We wanted to bring out the message the core message of OLX Autos through and through, in the context of a high-impact property which is ideal. Our partnership aimed at sharpening of the conclusion that happens in the minds of the consumer when it comes to who’s actually giving the best price for their cars and we specifically picked up two properties – one being the fall of wicket, and the other is the decision review system.
In both these integrations what we tried to communicate was that with the fall of wicket we wanted to bring out the feature that ‘your car is out, but the best price is in’. Similarly in the decision review system, we wanted to bring out that ‘you shouldn’t be worried about what price you will get, because when it comes to best price only OLX Autos gives out the best price.’
We plan to continue to invest in such contextual integrations over a period of time. It has given us good results in terms of lifting awareness, driving traffic to our digital assets, and we will continue to invest in it.
When talking about the marketing blueprint for OLX Autos, which portion of the plan usually takes up the biggest chunk of the budget?
The whole focus is around developing the right communication and using the right brain power to do that. But in terms of budget it is usually the media that will take the higher chunk of the marketing outlay. Having said that the ship of it, for all marketeers is gradually shifting towards digital because it allows you to target and re-target your consumers better. Digital is gradually taking a bulk of our investments over a period of time, as compared to traditional offline assets.
Digital marketing plays a huge role in reaching the masses. What does OLX Auto’s digital marketing strategy look like?
Our strategy for digital revolves around 3 C’s – Connect, Communicate, Convert
- Connect: We use all the right channels when it comes to our consumers and our target audience. We use Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube depending on the specific customer groups we’re reaching out to.
- Communicate: Communicating is more about engagement. Effective digital marketing makes consumers feel that you are talking to them directly and makes it more purposeful and meaningful. Therefore you are able to create more brand followers who are loyal and that’s what effective communication is all about.
- Convert: This is about building on top of the mind recall. When the consumer wants to transact in the category, we are the first brand that comes to their mind.
How is OLX Autos approaching the Gen-Z?
The Gen-Z perception when it comes to selling their cars is very different compared to Gen-X or Gen-Y. They are far more open towards platforms like ours because they believe this is a far more easier and convenient way to sell. GenZ are the ones who most of the times initiate the transactions with us. More importantly, Gen-Z is more open to buying used cars as well. Therefore, the whole flywheel as far as Gen-Z is concerned starts with them and we are being able to tap into their mindset.