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Indian consumers ‘haunted’ by remarketing: Report

Online shopping has become more than just a fad for the tech-savvy consumers in India and marketers are adding fresh attributes to enhance the experience for its consumer. Among the most recent, and the most sophisticated algorithms of marketing, remarketing has been touted as an important area of focus for the digital marketing community.

However, Indian shoppers are not enthralled by the idea of being bombarded with advertisement based on the tastes and preferences as feed to their digital device. Many of them put remarketing under the bracket of ‘being followed’ or ‘being haunted’ or ‘useless’.

“Almost 42 per cent and 44 per cent of the respondents remember being followed by ads based on their last search and last purchase respectively,” a report titled ‘India shuns Remarketing’ , released by India-based Digital Marketing Training Institute (DMTI) said.

Arnab Mitra, Managing Director and Co-Founder at LIQVD Asia said, “I was shocked to see the percentage of people saying that they feel trolled with portals following them with images of products that they have already purchased. This is only possible when somebody in charge of using this technology has no clue about user journey, purchase cycle and how online has opportunities to create communication on the fly.”

Providing relevant information to the consumer is of prime importance to marketers in the digital space as the attention span of consumer is getting shorter and access to information is getting easier. As a result, remarketing emerged with the advent of ecommerce in India. India’s ecommerce market grew at a staggering 88 per cent in 2013 to USD 16 billion, riding on booming online retail trends and defying slower economic growth and spiraling inflation, according to a survey by industry body ASSOCHAM.

India is moving away from remarketing despite this surge in online ad spends. One of the challenges that remarketing in India faces is that a large portion of the digital marketing community still has its roots in television, print and the other likes of traditional media and they are still not well-versed with the concept of media on demand.

According to the report, Indian marketers are killing the most advanced format of marketing, largely due to inertia towards learning the rules of the new game.

“This does not put us behind as a market, but it definitely puts Indian marketers behind other more sophisticated marketers. Our nature of trying to maximise opportunities forgetting sensitivities of our consumers is highlighted once again. As media professionals, we look for easy ways of meeting numbers subsidising the fact that there is much more about marketing than what meets our eyes. Another flaw is that consumers are getting more aware and protective of their privacy. There is a fine line between being reminded and being irritated,” said Mr Mitra.

The report also lists some key learnings for the Indian digital marketing community. Mr Mitra said that remarketing in India is done with the intention of maximising revenue, which is not necessarily a function of increased exposure.

Remarketing is the way forward for many global companies. To get the proposition right in India, is critical to be able to attract new monies in digital advertising spends. To get a better insight into the issues that is slowing this down, access a limited free download of the complete report here.