Click on Play to listen to Soumyadip Chatterjee on The Master’s Voice
Our guest in the latest episode of our podcast series The Master’s Voice is young Brand visionary, Soumyadip Chatterjee, National Brand Head at Snapdeal, one of India’s Big-4 ecommerce platforms — where he deploys the wisdom from more than a decade of solid experience across multiple brands from diverse sectors – to drive brand awareness and communication on the pillars of empathy and purpose to deliver value to every stakeholder.
SnapDeal, Soumyadip tells me, helps and support every ‘third-party partner’ who fulfils Snapdeal offerings, as also each end-customer who shops on Snapdeal, and Soumyadip ensures the entire value chain is well served and supported by the Brand team so that customers receive ‘Brand Wali Quality, Bazaar Wali Deal’ — which is how the company’s recent brand campaign described its promise to them.
I learn of how Snapdeal has been championing the small, local sellers, and has been emerging as their preferred platform over the past few years. This, because, as Soumyadip says, “Snapdeal remains a neutral, value-focused platform whose business processes are aligned to the needs of its sellers – no inventory lock-up, no inventory-led operations that compete with them, and so on. Consequently, 100% of our sellers are third-party, independent ones. The growth in volumes is being serviced by them directly, and there is no conflict of interest for the Company.”
“So whatever growth we say that Snapdeal has had,” says, Soumyadip, “is essentially, directly passed on to the sellers, who are fulfilling those companies. There is no conflict of interest. We are all in the same team.”
Soumyadip speaks of how consumer behaviour has been shifting, changing. Consumers are are no longer enamoured by the fame of the brand, but are moving towards functional, more utility-oriented products. They are looking at great quality and not necessarily which brand is tagged with it.”
He also shares insights on how the changed times enforced by the pandemic have made most good brands – that have an ear to the ground – to shift to empathy-driven marketing. “Brands are really listening to the customer and then building their communication.”
An excellent insight Soumyadip offers is that it is often easy to get carried away when we are in the echo chamber of similar thoughts. So it is important to be able to step back and listen to the customer. And to help with that, Soumyadip’s team has a customer-emotions session every week, when they gauge how customers are feeling and how they think about the brand; the objective is to understand the customers’ pulse across geographies.
Soumyadip says it is important for marketers to speak with with normal, real people every day to see how the customers really think. Otherwise, of course, as he says, “if you torture data long enough it will eventually tell you whatever you want to hear.”
It really is about team work. leadership driven by empathy — for colleagues and, of course, for the customer. As Soumyadip says, “There’s a lot more a team of average individuals can achieve when they are working together, than a very talented set of people working individually.”
Why he loves working at Snapdeal? Well, the young man who says he has had an insight into more than 40 companies across his career, says Snapdeal is not only a wonderful place, it has an exceptionally collaborative work culture which is output-driven and not really input-driven. What particularly appeals to him is the exceptional balance between inspiration and insights. And because even as Snapdeal is delivering great value, equally significantly, it is acting as a great democratizer of quality products.
There’s a lot more, of course, in this deep dive. So…
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