MartechBrain | E13 – Rahoul Anders – Market Intelligence

In this episode, Rajesh Jain speaks to Rahoul Anders, CEO of LSI Micro-Marketing Service India (MMS.Ind), about “Market Intelligence.”


Rajesh(Host): Hi everyone, welcome to MarTech Brain, a Netcore initiative where we speak to the best brains in Martech and for deep into one topic. My guest for today is Rahoul Anders, CEO of LSI micro marketing service India popularly known as MMS which is into Market segmentation customer analytics and consumer data. It’s a fascinating field and we will delve deeper into Rahoul’s chosen topic for today for a conversation Market intelligence. So Rahoul, it will be good for us to get an idea on what MMS in does and then we’ll go deeper into the key area of Market intelligence.

Rahoul(Guest): Hi Rajesh, it’s a pleasure to be with you here today and to discuss exactly this and first of all also hello to the audience to everybody. MMS in is an Indo German joint venture and we have started in 2010 in India. I myself co-founding CEO of the company have come from Germany, my background in fact I am half Indian and half  German but so to say everybody in the Indian side of my family, the cousins have moved with I decided as literally one of the few the only one who moved to East at a certain point of time. We started this company here to bring into India the concept of micro marketing and what you do over here is you really segment and segregate large complex markets, which Would be geography wise the cities the rule areas into subsets of consumer homogeneous Behaviour classes or behaviour groups. There is a element of cost to a to build in economic segmentation, which is the household level income information. There’s an element also to it, which is the typographic segmentation, which looks at identifying the consumer type more offer or orientation and aspiration gentrification. Let me give just maybe an example by these two segmentations are today not only important but they are from the beginning so to say the moment of individualism they start to just let’s think about a young techie that is living in Bangalore and have just hit first job from Company where he’s a python developer and came to the town from a different region in the country. And let’s take merchants and Traders was in all his life in the city with a couple of store and both of them have let’s say a monthly earning of 1 lakh or 80,000 rupees. Now will these two people be but the same type of consumer? And from  BSFI to retail to any kind of business they will of course, they know these two people behave very differently and they are by income they could even be by age and also families data, so to say socio-demographic twin, but they will still have a different mentality which expresses itself and comes out that they will Spend their money differently so what for me personally has always been also in very interesting aspect is to analyse and identify these existing behaviourism and MMS in what we have built in this journey of a decade now up to today is segregating down to the individual Residential Building for total Urban India and for Rural India down to the individual Village level of these fixed points for black Villages. What is the customer behaviour in lifestyle of energy segmentation income and product purchase of communities. We have build up a lot of partnership here. We have got today a lot of data Partnerships, which also you require since we are not maintaining any feet on the street ourselves for door to door house old level survey.

Rajesh: So Rahoul know what you’re really doing is if I can summarize it is there is no of course PII data, but what you’re doing is taking your you’re breaking up India into adding small sort of micro grids, micro cells and then each cell you are basically saying this is the this is the income level This is the spending patterns of people you’re sort of clustering people together. It’s not giving any Zone in India. The small zones a profile.

Rahoul: Absolutely Rajesh, micro cells can the really bear a high Riser next to a slum is in Mumbai, very small. They are still flexible inside. But what is very important when you work with non emi transaction-based information which we consume to build the income, to build a lifestyle segmentation because outdated heading those or sample surveys households do not Yield anymore that position which over here companies is needs when they do digital advertisement where also our segmentation help to enhance over here consumer profiles link to advertisement IDs all they want to identify within the same pin code, within the same locality. Which of my small Kirana to have what kind of product mix of Here so that the optimal distribution of my product happens if he gains the customer profile of micro location, then we are doing this today without PII information, helping companies to enrich their own customer or do a very close-knit location and granular than the general like PIN codes or localities.

Rajesh: And in the power of this comes and if you take an example, like of a bank has say of course millions of customers, but what you are saying is that typically for every customer could potentially give them a code which identifies the customer, gives the bank and idea of what is the income level of that person in that area and therefore what is the business that the bank should be doing with that customer and you can do the business acid the country.

Rahoul: Exactly, one of the used it is over here for banks is that not in all cases of their customers, They have a recent documented income also customers which are little bit with a vintage with the bank and secondly also we know how promised you is over here. We consumers interact not only with One Financial partner that means I might have but one Bank investment with another bank, I will have my regular salary account and perhaps even the Third Bank by credit card. So each of them will be missing on cornerstones of my actual composer composed customer potential and the banks are seeking the information not only perhaps across cell but also With the angle to a geospatial analysis. Let’s look for example at the secured or unsecured real-time loan issuing over here a lot of customers with a credit score, real time check do not get populated with a credit score. So in that case what can Banks typically do. The credit worthiness to location is nothing new that also by here clusters or coup in the market where one would have default Behaviour or so to say green light area where one can feel safe about nothing is going to happen unpredicted with regard to loan defaulting and payment default. That is very clear but it has been done typically open code level now. Let us have a look even in the city like Mumbai, a Posh pin code, in Bandra pin code 50, We have a great diversity in this area. So also over here a micro Market segmentation has to kick in to deliver the next level of precision required. I cannot discard neither approve totally on pin code level,  any consumer requests because both of them will yield the dangerous corners of either losing business or buying into fraud not fraud that buying into customer negative behaviour.

Rajesh: This is very interesting because what it really does is at a micro level, at what you call a micro Market, it gives businesses insights into their Target or potential customers. 

Rahoul: Yes, exactly and at the micro Market level it is built because it uses these kind of information data set which come really proper transaction-based level. So we have corporations with online platforms, we have cooperation with telecom companies was also anonymize financial status records are used but it is always the situation that you have to over here Safeguard data privacy and also like this we see that with the latest Amendment to the data privacy guidelines in India implemented in 2018. It goes finally into a overall International same direction like GDPR where the sustainability of such kind of consumer segments like we have done that abroad only comes into life. Once you also from the very first moment on a data privacy, consumer data privacy, which is absolutely what we also do when we work with clients or when we have built our segmentation and it’s a very interesting aspect also with regard to this year 2020. The life is changing, new normal is they are or is coming up and while for example tie-ups with online platform in India, like swiggy, zomato, Flipkart have resolved for a lot of retail business. The last mile delivery, it is also still that the direct-to-consumer aspect is so important now because the consumer does not come any more into shop. So easily will not be visible like you and I see each other now to say over the counter and if I would need to serve you as my custom, I would also look at the appearance and in the moment decide what products are you. This is all now in the dark, this is all know. So to say something not directly visible as if shopkeepers judge the prospect of customers walking into their store and one has to see that one gather over here information about consumer profiles which help you to identify who to roll out what and the need of the hour is indeed consumer insights, but also from a perspective that they can be appended to somebody from whom I don’t know the name, From whom I don’t know already the phone number or an email address. So if I can leverage sources of information which would require the Personal identification tag, I might not be even able to resolve my situation. So we work with this micro Market aggregation and also cutting out even at a building level that PII information especially also to serve these ports of usage.

Rajesh: One question is for you is that other companies globally say in the US or other markets, which do something similar?

Rahoul: Yeah, for sure. So we know for example Axiom which is globally well established company, which has caught also partner with local data companies across more than 50 different nation, which over here implement the in the consumer Tech notation market and a little similar way also safeguarding data privacy. Further one can look at Ac Nielsen Experian, last but not least also Claritas who has actually been built in the way of the prism Tech segmentation for the very first time, segregating consumers into lifestyle Affinity job not only by specific product and income in Economic.

Rajesh: If we expand the kind of questions, so what are the questions that you typically get that companies are looking to answer or marketers also are looking to answer with the services that MMS offers?

Rahoul: It can be from a location perspective that secures our sector brand comes and says we are in the business of coffee shops. Where do we add in Bangalore our next 10 location? We need an overview on the existing coffee shop Network. We need an overview which would be the high priority location that can also be that somebody comes I’ve got three possible commercial vacancies for deciding upon one to open up my coffee shop here, my resident, my store which one should we take? And in that case in our geo-mapping platform whether building precise GPS coordinates scores and customer potentials are combined. You do location analysis with drive time irrespective of the Administrative boundary and anything which is limited to pin codes on locality location or another business comes and says we are having customers from whom we do not know what other further products we put Market to that would be General Insurance receiving incoming mortar ensure customers, but home to roll out and home insurance or real estate company who get a vast amount of prospects but then looks at okay who to retarget now with what kind of offering do we have an understanding in what kind of real estate purchase grass Somebody has a liking to go. Also with regard to what we discussed Bank does not have necessarily for each customer sufficient amount of transaction based information to mould through themselves understanding very precisely customer potential so over here external information Bridges the gap.

Rajesh: And that’s very helpful I think to understand really where many different applications of what you’re offering. So I want to cover one more element Rahoul. What you said earlier is that there is a very wide array of data inputs that you are aggregating together. So this data is basically transactional data, demographic data, geographical location data all kinds of data is being put together right in all of this. So you get a full consume it full 360-degree view of geographical a micro market for small area.

Rahoul: Yes. That’s right. So they are different categories. They are anonymize transaction based information aggregated to location. So also this will be not of course some things accessible to a name of a customer of a business or the Amount of purchase or in that way for the PII information, but by product category how much have been sold to people living in a particular location. Then there’s also information which we at our and plate and put together ratings of the commercial and residential habitat which we call that which is today looking also at how entity’s how across the total country on micro-level the locations have evolved because one thing we want to still be cognizant about is that this is a general principle birds of a feather flock together which today also identified that people of a like mindedness  lives together and that also are cluster that manifest Geospatially in cities in smaller towns in rural area. So it’s one level that one gather over here information pertaining to individual Behaviour, but you blend and merge that together with territorial data and that of course is now nothing and more very human touch can actually manage all of this. So you have to feed that into SPSS Cognitive driven and factor analysis AI algorithms which computes and what our income classes to cover all expenditures, which you played pertaining to a micro location or the interpret over here, from the input data what brand people have been purchasing to build the lifestyle affinity Segmentation. In both cases, the input data doesn’t vary but it is the algorithms which are also set differently to carve out different viewpoints.

Rajesh: Rahoul, the coverage that you have today is across Urban and even rural areas, right? It’s got a the same ideas can apply into small and large at the Village level also.

Rahoul: I think yes, that’s right. I think where we have changed is the granularity but not the coverage. So what you try to do at the beginning is already set up a model which will show you how to you can’t aggregate from Himalaya to Kerala the total country. At  that time, we were not that granular even ten years ago already that model which we rolled out as version 1 or Market intelligence platform India is a different one than today. We have evolved today using further sources having also over here deeper inside with our clients on the behaviour of how the trend evolved. So what we can say today, which is for example, really Residential Building precise has been at that time at the start Point Square half kilometre grids or square kilometre Grid in which you would typically like a tile system segregate Market more on the mathematical way. Today we are completely of these mathematical Market segregates agnostic looking really at the clusters of different consumer Behaviour as they occur. We also have a much more close Mets update titles possible than it used to be because a lot of more also very Dynamic input data I have come in over the years.

Rajesh: Yeah. I think I’ve seen you an MMS evolve a lot through the years. I think we had first met about six or seven years ago and I remember that time you I was fascinated by this idea is the country and you can break the country up into 500 meter or 1 kilometre by one kilo meter squares and then estimate and you are saying now. Soo at that time it was now it’s really down to even smaller levels at a building level You’re able to give insights to customers.

Rahoul: Yeah, professional groups just think also how for example complicated or how then also in Metro City wall-to-wall different consumer segments reside next to each other. There can be a galley next to a high Riser, chianti next to tower, there can also be a railway worker Colony next to a very Posh three-ring apartment gated community as that is all part of course also, the explosive Dynamic of this country and its cities and market and its location how they develop.

Rajesh: I think it’s been a fascinating Evolution and very good insights and into the world of Market intelligence. I think it’s really interesting in terms of you know, that the level of detail that can be caught the augmentation of data or the enrichment of data on that can be done and which can then be used for decision-making. So fascinating view Rahoul and we come to the last segment which is what I call the five ones. So what is one future Trend or technology that excites you?

Rahoul: Future trend that really excites me is obviously also something where I can think of consumer data to be used. I find that very exciting how one can actually reach consumers today on their mobile phone with very targeted messages. They have caused also the great responsibility to act Ethically and not over here use private data, consumer private data, but how you can today send push messages knowing device MAID knowing then further to whom this device belongs and reach today consumers with relevant information. They’re also growing landscape of a lot of offering if I today want to have a loan, I do not need to go like 10 years 15 years ago to a bank. The least people actually do that. They are so many options I can get so many different apps in my app store shown which promise me I’m near a Bank X or bank Y and I can do a real time approval of your loan. So my option scary, diversify and huge at the same time what’s technically fascinates me is that we can reach in real time consumers and where we bundled in the back end consumer behaviour and consumer profile data.

Rajesh: Yep, I think this whole world of sort of micro targeting Omni-channel personalization, I think is very powerful and it’s and it’s a continuously for of self-updating world where the more people sort of reveal about themselves through their actions behaviour and transactions, the better it gets for Brands and for the customers.

Rahoul: That’s true.

Rajesh: So one Trend or Tech that has disappointed you over the years. 

Rahoul: The same thing actually are Rajesh just used not in the right way. That means starting off and that is maybe a little anecdote I can say because I have been till 2010 born & brought abroad in Germany. Also did my earlier professional years over there at the moment you set up over here India and you have a phone number which was Maybe 6 months old and you also use one and the same phone not like two or three members, which I only understood then very quickly. Also what benefit that is you get a vast amount of marketing calls on your phone at times of any at any time of the day from background which would be sometimes be so not me and also not Applicable to me. I had always also had other things on my mind for which I would have potentially been interested to have information. So the accessibility of individuals today not only by our calls or SMS comes with great responsibility to make it a great and very useful experience, but also can be very off-putting. So I’ll put that up as the twin two Both of your questions.

Rajesh: Absolutely, adding very nice angle on that. One good book recommendation.

Rahoul: One good book recommendation, not in recent book but book that really also made me think and I try to extrapolate out of it something even on the personal level is that book Blue Ocean strategy, which I find interesting but Because it says that you come out of a bloody competition of the red ocean while also were here just not aligning to the general practices and be at MMS in for example have also not done yet as a huge amount of marketing. We are so to say a word of mouth product over the 10 over the 10 years and I find very interesting over here that you have to always look at whatever you invent, whatever also strategies you put around it has to be the experience which targets. It cannot have only the invention as Centre of Your Action or just adding another strategy as a different procedure. It also has to have the quality of an experience. Otherwise, if that emphasis is not there then the benefit of a new technology also the benefit strategy just evaporate and then you’re victimizing yourself also that you are laying out something where then so to say others can hatch the eggs that you have.

Rajesh: Very well and next question for you is one good person or podcast to follow.

Rahoul: I would also need to say I don’t have one person. What I find right now Interesting is something called That’s a mix of statements, opinion, blogs all around marketing latest trends from contact Market, Social media marketing. I just recently I read something which was everyone hates marketer, which is a nice and very true thing. It’s a guy called Louise Grenier who over here interviews marketers and the podcast focuses on helping this man to get more website visitors, more leads, more customers, more long-term profits by using good marketing. So it’s a little bit with the humour and more of cynical comment also on some currently today executed marketing strategy that I find always refreshing. So I try to keep myself a little bit open towards so what Let’s see how platform put up as different bloggers. Again, Yes. I have to say data marketing consumers. That’s definitely what interests me.

Rajesh: Right and finally one key driving belief in your life.

Rahoul: Personally and also professionally I would say don’t do to others what you also not want others to do to you. That has been taking my personal life and also my professional life actually always with a good intuition and know it’s over staying on the right side forward. So I think when you’re in the responsibility of running a company and also have employees to take care of and also in this year I think every business every company especially people who run the company or are responsible in a higher position had to suddenly in the beginning of a pandemic for a moment also rethink whether something could happen to their business and how to react to that. So while I would say this is like the healthy yin yang or karma like one would extend that to a concept well known here in India. This is what I try to follow. 

Rajesh: Well, great words of wisdom. Thank you very much Rahoul.

Rahoul: Thank you very much Rajesh.

Rajesh: And friends that was yet another edition of MarTech Brain. We spoke with Rahoul on the wide world of Market intelligence. You can check out his site MMS in thank you for listening in or viewing us. We’ll be back with a new edition of MarTech brain or next week. Thank you.

Rahoul:  Thank you very much.