Lenovo India is part of the $46 billion Lenovo Group – a Chinese multinational technology company that manufactures, designs and sells PCs, tablets, smartphones, workstations, servers, electronic storage devices, IT management software and smart televisions. It is also a Fortune 500 company with operations across 60 countries, including India, where Lenovo has gained significant market share in the last two years. And in 2015, Lenovo India has disrupted the lower-to-mid end smartphone market and become the undisputed leader in the segment. Its tablet and PC sales, too, have grown steadily in the past two years. And since August 2015, it started manufacturing smartphones out of its Chennai plant, thus aligning itself with the central government’s ‘Make in India’ initiative.
Experience Commerce is one of India’s top Digital Marketing agencies connecting Brands to Digital Consumers, since 2006, lending us deep understanding built over a decade’s work on digital consumers. As an organization, we are a melting point of Business, Art & Technology, transforming Data into Insights & Insights to Emotions.
We believe in the Belief>Business>Behavior model where we first immerse & evaluate the brand belief then influence consumer behavior to ultimately accomplish a business goal. We lead by strategy, backed by the ability to execute state-of-the-art creative technologies. Our expertise & domain capabilities includes but is not restricted to: Brand Asset Management, Branded Content & Community Programs, Digital Media (SEO & SEM), Social Media Programs, Brand Campaigns, Customer Advocacy Programs, Strategy.
Lenovo had been selling phones in India for a year-and-a-half before the A6000 came about. But it was yet to make a dent in the smartphone buyer’s mindset. While Indian consumers regarded Lenovo among the leading PC/tablet makers of the world, they were yet to feel the same for its smartphones.
Our challenge was to reposition Lenovo as a youthful and imaginative proposition in smartphones, one that could compete with popular local brands as well as established global names. We had to make sure that Lenovo was in the consideration set of smartphone buyers, something that had eluded them until then.
We had two sets of objectives – business and behavioural – to achieve for the client.
- Lenovo had to become the first choice in 4G handsets in the sub-10K segment (that constituted about 65% of the India’s smartphone universe).
- We had to fit into the 1:8 flash-sale conversion rate on Flipkart (the platform with which Lenovo has an exclusive tie-up) which basically means that 1 out of every 8 registrations on Flipkart translates into a purchase. With this, Lenovo was trying to reinvent its sales model in India.
- We had to ensure the campaign generated high demand and Lenovo is able to sell half a million A6000 devices and its variants, and through Flipkart, make the 4G phone available to about 1,000 towns and cities in India.
- We had to position Lenovo as an imaginative, youthful, trendy brand in smartphones – one that would excite consumers who were perhaps buying their first smartphones (after doing due diligence).
- We had to bring about a perceptional change about the brand in the minds of impressionable, young phone buyers. And improve brand awareness levels and brand consideration levels.
The Strategy/ Execution
Our chief strategy was to launch actor Ranbir Kapoor (he is Lenovo India brand ambassador) on social and create real-time content with him on platforms where most of our target audience was, i.e. Snapchat, Vine, Tumblr besides the usual suspects: Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Ranbir was to be the creator and the A6000 as the device of creation. Our campaign idea was rooted in tapping the power of real-time social engagement while utilizing the star actor’s appeal in our TG. And all this with the A6000 at its centre.
To build anticipation around the launch, we leaked the news of Ranbir joining social media to his fan clubs. The excitement in his fan base was understandably palpable. So much so that #WelcomeRanbir started organically trending on Twitter and occupied top two trend spots for over 48 hours, even before #RanbirHitsA6 started. Following that we leaked images of the phone to select technology bloggers in Bangalore who subsequently flooded the web with reviews even prior to the launch (Ranbir Day). The eagerness and anticipation among tech enthusiasts grew by day.
Then came the reveal phase where we launched Ranbir on six social media platforms at a go. What does Ranbir do when he’s on social media for the day? He creates supercool content and interacts with his zillions of fans. And ably aiding him in that pursuit was the Lenovo A6000.
Ranbir’s eagerly awaited first Facebook post was done using the “voice to text” feature on the phone. After that came a series of innovative Vines, cool Instagram selfies, fun tweets and little GIF-sets, all created, packaged and delivered in a jiffy through the A6000. The audience lapped it up. Live engagement soared by the minute. #RanbirHitsA6 on social became the talk of town, with the microsite on Tumblr curating everything of the activity.
Ranbir Kapoor became Ranbir KA6000R for the day and ‘broke’ the internet so to say.
- The unique combination of engagement plus performance marketing led to a total of 1.8 million clicks on Flipkart. We received 2,55,000 registrations for the first flash sale. On the day of the sale, 10,000 units that were made available flew off the shelves in 2 seconds.
- In the next flash sale, 20,000 units were sold in 3 seconds, followed by 30,000 units in 4 seconds in the last. And in six months, we sold 3,00,000 units of the A6000 making us a bestseller in the under-10K category.
- In six months, Lenovo had sold 1 million units of the A6000 and its variants – A6000 plus and A7000, becoming the leading 4G smartphone manufacturer in the lower-to-mid end of the market. Its market share in smartphones went up to 4.4% from 1.5% a quarter ago. Lenovo A6000 also became one of the most-searched items on Flipkart.
- Lenovo’s brand awareness levels went up from 15% to 26%, and brand consideration climbed from 11% to 18%. We’d managed to break into the consideration set of budget smartphone buyers.
- On Twitter, #RanbirHitsA6 trended in the top spot for over 48 hours and generated 30 million impressions. With this campaign, Lenovo India’s Twitter following shot up to above 70K from less than a thousand.
We realized that real-time-marketing works wonderfully with the millennials because they lead heavily plugged-in lives, and most of their awareness and education about brands happens on social.
Ranbir’s presence ensured that Lenovo was able to attract attention from the massive film-loving section of the TG. The star’s popularity created a ripple effect that benefited the brand. Also, filling a vacuum that existed – Ranbir’s absence from social media – turned out to be a masterstroke.