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Almond Solutions is a leading technology transformation company that launched ‘Vingage’, an innovative and new-age hyperlocal marketing platform to engage with nano influencers. ‘Vingage’ is an internet agnostic, mobile-first audio and video-enabled platform that connects brands with local influencers like painters, contractors, carpenters, mechanics, drivers, plumbers, electricians, and retailers to promote their businesses through them. This interactive, scalable, secure, and cost-effective platform enables companies to build up a strong connection with the end customer through local influencers.
Below is a transcript from a recent interaction between Abhinav Jain, CEO and Co-Founder, ALMOND Solutions, and team IT-Voice.
Prateek: How this platform is helping in increasing sales of a brand?
Abhinav Jain: Between every brand and its consumers, there’s a group of offline influencers, subject-matter experts whose opinion/expertise impacts consumers’ buying behavior. The influencers include professionals like a painter, mechanic, salon hairstylist, or point-of-sale individuals like dealers, retailers, and shop staff. The platform enables brands to engage with these influencers and leverage their power to build product awareness and drive sales. The platform helps the brand build a long-term loyal association with these influencers, and instantly reward them for every sale activated. Moreover, the platform works as a two-way communication channel wherein the influencers can also share feedback & insights with brands. When brands use Vingage for strategic always-on engagement programs, it organically leads to the influencers becoming brand advocates and catalyzing sales & awareness. For e.g. for a cement brand, the platform engaged contractors, masons, and painters, upskilled them through gamified edutainment program, provided them with on-demand content and professional support, and built short-term sales rewards & long-term loyalty program.
Prateek: How this platform is helping in building up connections with customers who have feature phones/smartphones?
Abhinav Jain: The platform uses simple and sophisticated tools to drive sales in the most efficient and effective manner. SMS, IVRS, WhatsApp, lightweight web-apps, digital wallets, data/mobile top-ups, and audio & video content – usage of such tools & more means the platform can reach, engage and reward every mobile user on the planet.
Prateek: What tech platform ensures hyper-local communication?
Abhinav Jain: Hyperlocal communication is derived through the use of targeted data, hyperlocal content, and platform intelligence. The data is further enriched through on-platform pre-engagement activities, and thus specific communities can be reached and engaged through the deployment of messaging & content that’s relevant and easily comprehensible for them.
Prateek: How does this platform ensure getting maximum ROI out of it?
Abhinav Jain: The platform was built to optimize offline engagement with stakeholders and solve its four key challenges – Cost, scale, communication consistency, and real-time data. The platform solves all these challenges at a considerably reduced cost and add-on benefits like instant gratification. Since there are no physical assets or manpower deployment required, the ROI delivered through repeat usage is phenomenal.
Prateek: How this tech platform is combining gamification, e-rewards, and data analytics and how is it supported in the feature phone?
Abhinav Jain: The engagement on the platform leverages principles of gamification – learn, contest, win. The users on the platform perform multi-level tasks through audio, video, and gaming modules. On successful completion, they can choose their own rewards. Rewards include coupons, vouchers, wallet-cash, data/talk-time top-ups – and all of these are delivered to the user’s mobile phone immediately. The engagement generates cohorts of data that are analyzed in real-time to deliver business intelligence through our c. On feature phones, the only limitation is the use of video. For example, to promote the habit of handwashing and prevention of diseases and infant deaths, an FMCG brand engaged rural influencers like kiraana shopkeepers, ASHA workers, and community leaders. They were engaged through modules of learning and given tasks related to information dissemination and involving community members. They were rewarded, and the data collected through the tiered engagements helped the brand understand the reach, effectiveness, and action-based impact of their program. The business intelligence also helped the brand scale up the program and optimize its sales efforts.