Ronnie05's Blog

Why SMBs will drive “online and mobile first” ad markets in India

Posted in Social context, media and advertising by Manas Ganguly on April 20, 2011

Of all the media and advertising channels available i.e Television, Print, Radio, TV and Cinema, the latest entrants, Online and Mobile advertising hold out the maximum promise, and growth in topline numbers in advertisement industry in India will be driven by these channels. Thats what is prompting a lot of International media houses to consider India as one of the hottest Online and Mobile advertising destinations.

Consider this, the size of Indian advertising markets is Rs.25000 crore ($5 billion) of which Online advertising contributes Rs.1000 crore which is roughly 4% of the total. This is dwarfed by the ad industry in Brazil which is approximately $20 billion.

The 4X number in case of Brazil is simply because of the fact that there are more advertisers in Brazil compared to India. There are 26.1 million registered SMB/SMEs in India, contributing 45% of industrial output, 40% of exports, employing 60 million people, create 1.3 million jobs every year and contributing to 22% of India’s GDP (by 2012). Of these 26 million, only about 100K ever advertise, a lot of them in very local and un-organized terms. The reluctance to advertise is because of them being RoI concious.

Within the existing paradigm of media channels, SMEs/SMBs donot find their moneys worth advertising or are simply unable to advertise. Downscaling the media channel costs and increasingly affordability while being location specific is a critical success factor for these SMEs/SMBs. A pickle maker in Trichy has no ambitions of advertising to residents of Mumbai. His immediate concern is his town and its outskirts, leave aside the district as well. Secondly given the 4-5% efficacy ratio for advertisements in terms of target group, the whole exercise of large scale advertisements through traditional media channels is a Loss-of-RoI exercise.

That is where the location specificity, target audience relevance and scalability (both up and down) will be important success factors for Online and Mobile ads.Products that cater to this ‘online and mobile first” market will create an extraordinary phenomenon and increase the advertising pie in India. Guess you know what exactly makes Google and Facebook interested in the pickle maker from Trichy by now.

iOS versus Android: All in way of massifying Mobile Internet!

Posted in Industry updates by Manas Ganguly on September 8, 2010

The Inevitable has started to happen, or so it seems if Quantcast is to be believed. Quantcast, a web metrics firm has in its August data laid bare the fact that while Apple’s iOS remains the leading mobile operating system in the United States for accessing the web, but Google’s Android OS is catching up fast.As of the end of August, iOS, which powers the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch, accounted for 56% of mobile web activity, while Android phones accounted for 26% and Research In Motion’s BlackBerry OS was a distant third and accounted for 9%.

Apple’s iPhone has seen a solid reversal of its downward trend since the introduction of the iPhone 4, however, this is offset for iOS share by the decline of the iPod Touch. The latest Android smartphones are hot – three models, the HTC Incredible, Sprint Evo 4G (also by HTC) and most recently the Motorola Droid X have all gained rapid adoption. The chart below summarizes these recent models along with the benchmark for Android handsets, the original Motorola Droid.


Whats moving up as a trend is that the iOS has been losing ground to Android steadily over the last year.Over the last year, iOS use for accessing the web has fallen 11%, while Android has risen 17%. RIM’s BlackBerry OS saw a 10% drop.

Another report by Nielsen estimates that Smartphone use was up 23% from the first quarter of 2010, to 25% of the U.S. mobile phone population. This is compared with 16% penetration in the second quarter of 2009 and by the end of 2011, the firm is projecting, smartphones will overtake feature phones. Mobile internet usage will increase at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 15.7%, much faster than the CAGR of 2.1% expected in mobile subscribers over the same period

The numbers are important because as more mobile phone users head to the web, so will the opportunity for advertisers. In addition, retailers and other businesses will benefit in being able to offer services based on the location of the mobile phone users. An increasing number of mobile phones are shipping with GPS capabilities, leading the way to a proliferation in location-based services.

Taking Mobile VAS further than just Infotainment

Posted in Value added services and applications by Manas Ganguly on March 15, 2010

Mobile VAS services and Data ARPU is looked upon as the redeemer of ARPUs in India. However, for mVAS to make an impact, it needs to be more than mobile infotainment. Profiling Conferencing, Mobile Adevrtisements, Education, Healthcare, Live feeds of Wholesale Rates, Mobile Payments, Ticketing and the UID tagging which will lift the mVAS game to mass usage levels.Here’s the top few expected to drive mVAS big.

Conferencing: Video Conferencing is increasing with companies cutting down their traveling to reduce costs and also for security reasons. This trend will not only help reduce costs but also reduce the Carbon footprint of physical travel.

Even if Mobile advertising in India is still at a nascent stage, Mobile as a medium has the highest reach in the country and the potential remains extremely high. 2009 saw a dramatic rise in Mobile advertising through the two main delivery mechanisms i.e. Voice and SMS. Mobile sMS Advertising will likely shift from being a mass advertising medium to selected targeting which will be based on subscriber profiling.

While Business and Advertising and Infotainment will be the drivers to MVAS in times to come, but the greatest challenge would be in terms of making MVAS mainstream.

Experiences in rural India show that information and communications technology can enhance poor people’s opportunities by improving their access to markets, health care and education.

Education: One such successful example of this is The Stanford Learning Lab that has created a prototype SMS quiz to aid learning of new vocabulary. The aim of this project was to provide highly flexible, mobile learning material that users could access in very short time-spans ranging from 30 seconds to 10 minutes. The constraints of the 160 character limit of SMS messages turned out to be an advantage as it forced the construction of suitably concise chunks for such short-term learning opportunities.

Healthcare: Apollo Hospital group has set up a 50-bed telemedicine center at Aragonda village (Andhra Pradesh, South India). It has also set up freestanding centers at Guwahati and Kolkata. These centers are equipped with facilities like CT- scan, X-ray, ECG and integrated laboratory and are linked to Apollo’s specialized hospitals at Hyderabad, Chennai, and Delhi for seeking referral services, second opinion, post-acute care, interpretation services and health education. The hospital group has also a web portal, Apollo Life that allows patients to interact with doctors via the web, upload all their diagnostics and reports on the net. Escorts Heart Institute and Research Centre (EHIRC), Delhi through its Escorts Heart Alert Service (EHAS), Utilizes telemedicine in establishing prompt contact with patients in distress. The EHAS subscribers can record their ECG’s at the time of discomfort through the cardiac beeper provided and transmit them through a telephone to the “heart alert centre”. These tele-ECG”s can be monitored 24-hours at the dedicated center and fully equipped mobile cardiac care units from the centre can be rushed to provide intensive care to the patients before they brought to the hospital for medical investigation. India is a vast country and the role of Telecommunications for realizing tele-diagnosis, tele-consultancy and tele-education can be a boon to people who still have relatively low access to medicine and healthcare.

Access to Opportunity: With the advent of 3G, fishermen can negotiate prices for their catch before heading for shore by sending in pictures of the type of fish they have on board. Similarly, farmers and horticulturalists who have perishable produce can take advantage of 3G services to bargain for the best prices before harvesting, by bypassing middlemen. Services like Mobile Banking, Mobile Money Transfers, Utility Bill Payments, Payments for purchase of movie tickets etc are also likely to take off.

Giving the Indian billion an identity: Identity authentication at banks, gas connection centres or while providing rural jobs will just be an SMS away. The Nandan Nilekani’s project will provide a unique identification (UID) number, not a card and the authentication will be made by using mobile phones. Once the numbers are issued the authentication will be done Online. The authorities will send the UID number to the designated points through mobile phone message. Also, the fingerprint of the person can be sent to the central database and the authentication can be received within minutes verifying the identity of the person. It will help provide portability to our farmers, laborers. When they move from state to state, this UID will help them get employment without hassles. Banks, mobile service providers, LPG gas connection counters and many more partner organizations can use this UID to verify their customer. With the growing mobile phone network, this will become an easy process for authorities to verify people. Nandan Nilkeni’s team is likely roll out the first batch of UIDs in 2010. They plan to issue at least 600 million UIDs over the next 5 years.

Finally, in a country that has been Infrastructure starved for all times, Indian companies have already laid out a 670,000 kilometres network of optical fibres even in the remotest areas and the progress on this front still continues. rural network based on the extensive optical fibre network, using Internet Protocol and offering a variety of services and the availability of open platforms for service development, viz. the Next Generation Network, appears not only to be an attractive proposition but a powerful one as well. Fibre network can be easily converted to Next Generation network and then used for delivering multiple services at cheap cost.

A study earlier had indicated the Telecommunications sector will increase its contribution to the India GDP from the existing 2% to 14%. That sounds a few degrees steep. But then the power that can be generated by linked a billion people together is also incomprehensibly powerful.

%d bloggers like this: