EP #6: Amplifying User Growth with Actionable App Analytics Like BalleBaazi

EP #6: Amplifying User Growth with Actionable App Analytics Like BalleBaazi

About this Podcast

As part of our #PersonalizationThursdays series where we had an insightful chat with Diksha Singh, Head of Product at one of India’s biggest fantasy sports gaming platforms: BalleBaazi! Diksha talks about the following:

  • The growth and scale of the fantasy sports gaming industry in India
  • How Contextual App Walkthroughs, a part of Netcore’s cutting-edge app analytics suite, helps BalleBaazi improve the in-app experience
  • The use of Screen Analysis and Uninstall Analysis that have enabled BalleBaazi to increase user retention
  • The future of mobile marketing – driven by personalized participation recommendations – in the fantasy sports gaming space

Listen in to learn how fantasy sports gaming platforms can deliver personalized user experiences at scale with granular insights from Netcore’s actionable app analytics suite!

Episode Transcripts

PRADYUT HANDE (HOST): ):  Hi, guys, welcome to another episode of The Mar techno Beat, a specially curated podcast series powered by Netco Smartech, where we interact with leading group practitioners who continue to break new ground at the cutting edge of marketing and technology. I’m your host Pradyut Hande, and today I have with me Diksha Singh, head of product at Ballebazi, ; one of the foremost players in the fantasy sports industry of India. Welcome, Diksha. It’s a pleasure to host you
DIKSHA SINGH: Yeah!! Pleasure’s all mine. Hi, how are you? 

PRADYUT HANDE (HOST): ): I’m good, thank you. And it’s such an uncertain time right now. We’re all cooped up at home


PRADYUT HANDE (HOST): ):  and I’m sure we’re still continuing to deal with the business issues as normal, even though it’s been extremely challenging. So thank you so much for joining me. And, you know, for our listeners today, I just want to give them a little bit of context on what we’re going to be talking about. So, this episode primarily revolves around how businesses, how mobile app businesses can actually leverage granular data analytics to figure out how they can improve user engagement, retention, and conversions in the long run. And this is specific to the fantasy sports industry. And it’s a segment that’s grown by leaps and bounds over the last five, six years alone in India. And in fact, a joint report published by KPMG and the Indian Federation of Sports Gaming estimates that the fantasy gaming platforms grossed 70 million users in India in 2013 alone. So this is an industry where, you know, money’s there for the meeting. There is a latent audience across tier I & tier-II cities. And that actually leads me to my first question. How do you see Dikhsha, the evolution of this particular space, and where does Ballebazi,  find itself? What is its true USP?

DIKSHA SINGH: So your Ballebazi,  is quite ahead of the curve right now, if I can say that it appears at this point the growth is exponential. And as you have already mentioned all these stats from that amount of love for the people who love cricket. It is a child in India. So with the amount of love you are getting currently, I think it’s going to be amazing. And plus, we are the first one to launch different kinds of fantasy formats like batting fantasy, bowling fantasy people used to just click on 5 players, choose 5 players in their team and they are good to go. They can create their batting teams. And then they have a partnership program for the users and rewarding people more


 DIKSHA SINGH: on refereeing and then the context of the reward program. And the concept is amazing. If even a team is losing, you’re still winning


DIKSHA SINGH. You encash, you win baby coins.

PRADYUT HANDE (HOST): ):  So it’s fair to say that, you know, that’s a major differentiating point because that’s not the case with some of the other platforms in the market and the fact that it is so centrally focused on cricket, as you mentioned, which is a religion in India, it makes you know, it makes the platform so much more appealing across audiences.

DIKSHA SINGH yeah, True!! Actually, it is completely true.  We place ourselves as a fantasy gaming application, a fantasy sports application. But still, you know Ballebazi, cricket is a child.  Cricket is a religion here in India.

PRADYUT HANDE (HOST): ):  Right. Right. Yeah, that makes sense. And in such a context, with so many players that have sprung up over the last five years alone, you know, engaging your app users in real-time, at least while they are active within a session can be a challenge because, at the end of the day, you want them to get started as soon as possible without abandoning the session. So how does Ballebazi, go about addressing this?

DIKSHA SINGH So when we talk about engagement, the reason why Ballebazi, But, you know, he has the I think he’s really in the market because of the attention to detail. So every learning, every decision we make here in Ballebazi, is backed up by the data & insights and our team. And our team in analytics is just like the strong point here in Ballebazi. We have figured out the science behind creating engagement by integrating here is net code as a platform for that application. We know Netcore helps us to create more clean analytics on the application and mistakes are informed and then make an informed decision on what people like, what users are liking,  how can we make things more engaging? And by creating the conceptual work tools on the application. So, OK, it was difficult when, you know, we have so many things to show to people, but, you know, we cannot tell them where to start and where they will be going. So they have multiple features like when you’ve been using this new application, they can actually join the team by, you know, spending no money and still, they can spend.


DIKSHA SINGH That this is a free league and was a difficult thing. But using conceptual workflows, will they be able to figure out, OK, from this point, you would be able to join this league for free and then still earn money? 


DIKSHA SINGH: So, yeah. 

PRADYUT HANDE (HOST): ):   that’s true. I think that’s an interesting point that you mention the fact that some very valuable features like contextual app work through to essentially direct user users along the conversion path or an action path much faster, because as you were saying, that, you know, someone who lands on the platform or launches the app for the first time can get a little overwhelmed by what to do next. And the idea for any mobile marketer today is to reduce those points of friction, to ensure that you don’t drop-offs are minimized. So feature-length or contextual app work through definitely comes in handy. You mentioned that Ballebazi has one of the highest engagement rates in this particular domain. And if you could share a little more insight into that.

DIKSHA SINGH So, Yeah, I do believe that we have the highest engagement rate because we have so many things that still using and stick to our application, even if you know them, even if they match started and there’s nothing to do on the application, they still can go through the rewards section. Then there are multiple things in the rewards section. They can still go into the analytics experts that we have planned so they can still see. OK, in the next match, if I go and buy this player, this is the actual stats of the player.


DIKSHA SINGH And then the, you know, give this idea to the users, on what they can do next so that they’ll be able to earn more. 


DIKSHA SINGH: And that’s why we bring up, in the rewards section. And now we are planning to launch a few more things that are going to make our application more engaging. 

PRADYUT HANDE (HOST): ):  OK, OK, fair enough. And I mean, you spoke about how you build that degree of engagement and stickiness while a user is active within a session, how do you look at, you know, user retention as a problem? Because developing that platform loyalty, that app loyalty in this space can be a challenge. So what is Ballebazi, ’s take on that? How do you guys go about looking at it from a data analytics point of view?

DIKSHA SINGH  So there is always a character for a reason and they keep on playing on the application. We have nominal,  we have light nominal entries for this and huge winnings and there are no losses. And for retention, we have a zillion things on the product. So our product team is like, for these guy’s cricket is crazy.

PRADYUT HANDE (HOST): ):  OK, and so the division of new programs to identify the fans like them. So we have recently launched a few things. So we have these bonus timers, the user can come early on the application and they can still you know, they’ll get more discounts on the application, or you feel we want them to remain on the application for more time.


DIKSHA SINGH  then we have more cashback, more bonuses, and in general, we try not to restrict users to just keep playing football, cricket. We want them to play football. We have kabaddi. So we keep on giving them something or the other to go over there, play that match, you will be able to earn more. We have a jackpot league but then they have for, you know, we have a mega league like gadget league. You can actually earn gadgets, we have given iPhones and TV and stuff to the users.

PRADYUT HANDE (HOST): ):  Yeah, OK, that’s interesting. So there’s something for everybody. And the fact that you know, you started off with cricket and then you ventured   into other increasingly popular sports such as football & kabaddi


PRADYUT HANDE (HOST): ):  That you are increasing your target audience exponentially with each passing sporting season. So there’s definitely a lot of reason for users to stick back by. And not from a data point of view I just want to gather thoughts on you know how Ballebazi,  goes about tracking uninstalls. How is uninstall analysis a critical piece of your mobile marketing machinery?

DIKSHA SINGH: So, We have currently, as I already told you before. We are currently just integrated netcore platforms.


DIKSHA SINGH: So, we have seen this, one time and the uninstalls were marchingly high. We have not seen that kind of uninstall on the application. But then we realized what the casualties were? Because we will be able to analyze the application screen by what users do. Like exactly what they do.  Just before uninstalling the application


DIKSHA SINGH: So we realized that there is a break where the user turned off 


and we just cleared that space and now the uninstalls are back. So there are no uninstalls. They have literally improved the uninstall because of that reason. So, you know, screen analytics is one of the major reasons why the integrated netcore because, for the product like us and because of us. We literally have to find a way, analyze each and every screen and analyze what the user is actually liking. 


DIKSHA SINGH: So they like this kind of product or this kind of screen. It helps the product team to make informed decisions, that what the user is actually liking in the application.

PRADYUT HANDE (HOST):  I do. But again it brings us to the same point where every individual has a different journey. Every individual looks upon the platform differently. Their likes and dislikes vary. So, it’s so critical for any mobile app today to drive deep & figure out what are those basket of factors, that can be co-related and identified as potential and you know vulnerable events that, may be causing an individual user to uninstall. So, those are definitely very valuable granular insights that I’m sure are helping Ballebazi, as well. 


PRADYUT HANDE (HOST): On that note, it brings to my next question. As I was mentioning, every individual user has his or her own journey and the way they interact with the app is different. The times in which they launched the app are different. The kind of matches they choose to play is different.


PRADYUT HANDE (HOST): You know, it brings us to the entire concept of personalization. How it becomes a focal point for brands across industries today. Especially in the kind of recommendation that an app or website makes. So I just want to gather your thoughts on how important is personalization to Ballebazi,  as a platform?

DIKSHA SINGH: It is very important. Every user should think it is a personal thing. It is their application.  And then we have a very niche crowd of sports fans. They absolutely love fantasy gaming. So whenever there are India’s specific matches or world tournaments or world cup or IPL or something like that.


DIKSHA SINGH: So, people are going crazy. We can see the hike in the number of users being active at a similar time. So, we were planning you know; personalized recommendations and for the user that they can have that personal feeling when they hold Ballebazi, app in their hand. So you can see there are few recommendations or few things that are actually personal to them. 


DIKSHA SINGH: There are few quotes or few leagues that we show to a specific user because you don’t like playing the matches in similar manners. 


DIKSHA SINGH: So they are able to see a few things on their phones which are different from the people sitting right beside some.



PRADYUT HANDE (HOST): And I’m sure there is a degree of MLIA involved in this because you are dealing with, you know, thousands and lakhs of users and this makes sense that at the end of the day you would want your MLIA engine to, you know, do the heavy lifting when it comes to making those relevant recommendations. 

DIKSHA SINGH: True. True. Completely true. So, you know, not on the marketing level. You know on the product level as well. We really want to give people more insights. 


DIKSHA SINGH: and MLIA completely helps in that matter. So, even when users select a team, we want to give them better analytics.


DIKSHA SINGH: Let’s say, for example, I want to select a player and I want to see how this is. How this specific player, says Yuvraj Singh. 


DIKSHA SINGH: Play on this specific kind of pitch. Or how he performs against some XYZ team.


DIKSHA SINGH: So, we want to give that kind of analytics to the user. We want them to understand the player while he selects that player. 


DIKSHA SINGH: So, on the Emilia part, we are creating so many things for the user to make an informed decision.

PRADYUT HANDE (HOST): Okay. Okay. That’s interesting. You know, I really admired the part where you mentioned that you are actually, while, you guys are actually using data at the backend to take for an informed decision. This also allows your users to do the same on your platform. That way it’s an interesting insight. 


DIKSHA SINGH: Yeah. Data is the most important part currently. It has the most value than the currency I believe. Data has The most value.

PRADYUT HANDE (HOST): That’s true. That’s true. So very well said. And Diksha on that note, I actually now have come to my favorite question of this particular episode. We spoke about how important it is to keep a handle of things when it comes to getting your app analytics stat right. Ensuring that your engagement & retention metrics are kept track of. Understanding user behavior at a very basic sub-minimal level. Fearing out how you can use features like contextual apps, walkthrough to make them more active while they are live with-in a session”. It now brings me to the question, where I would just like to tick your brains on what you think is the future of mobile marketing. What do you think is the future of apps in the fantasy sports space especially in India? How do you see this entire industry shaping up? 

DIKSHA SINGH: So, with more and more brands coming into play every single day, we can target more and less in the app user behavior that is likely to install fantasy gaming apps.


DIKSHA SINGH: and the future is getting more and more into details as much as possible. And it is the Edward of AI which has been growing at the speed of light. Days are not far when machine learning, you know will help the people to identify the teams and the games that they are well played.


DIKSHA SINGH: Even Now, we can, you know; can apply many filters and as Facebook ads or takeout ads that are going to scale. You know the future is well. So it increases fit to install play ratio


DIKSHA SINGH: We can scale it up as much as we want. There is no stopping point. There is no full-stop to it.


DIKSHA SINGH: It is just wanting to grow.

PRADYUT HANDE (HOST): And it just wants to grow provided that poor thing, don’t get canceled. 

DIKSHA SINGH: True. True. Data wants to grow and we want to grow with it.

PRADYUT HANDE (HOST): And that makes so much sense. And I just want to summarize all the wonderful points that you made for all of our listeners. So, to begin with; You spoke about the entire blistering space that the fantasy sports market is growing in India. How is it so critical to build platform loyalty? To build that you need to have a solid mobile marketing stack in place which is driven by data, which is keeping a firm handle on your user retention and engagement metrics. Leveraging features such as a contextual app walk-through to ensure that live user engagements are maintained and the application on MLIA to ensure that relevant recommendations are made across the board. Loved your point about how you are providing data to empower your user themselves that they are you continue to build that platform stickiness and loyalty and yes. Thank you so much for those wonderful and extremely valuable insights Diksha. It’s been a pleasure hosting you.

DIKSHA SINGH: Thank you so much for having me across. Thank you. 

PRADYUT HANDE (HOST): Fingers crossed. Let’s this coronavirus pandemic go over asap.

DIKSHA SINGH: Fingers crossed for that.

PRADYUT HANDE (HOST): Thank you so much Diksha.



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