It will be an understatement to say that the concept of a ‘New Bharat’ is emerging. For a while now, brands have been trying to decode the needs and aspirations of a new set of consumers, and trying to understand the dynamics of a market that is powered by personalisation and the democratisation of technology.

“There’s been a shift from landline phones to mobile phones, leading to a disruption in consumption," said Ruchira Jaitly, Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) – India and APAC, HMD Global. “Moreover, Indians are still driven by value proposition and value for money; they are not going to put their money behind something that’s just nice. These days, they are coming of age and they are doing it on unabashed, self-confident terms, where they are on equal footing with businesses and brands."

The 10th episode of HT Brand Studio Live, Season 2, had industry leaders like Jaitly decoding a new marketplace and a more confident set of consumers.

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HT Brand Studio Live is a series that gets the brains behind India’s top brands to decode marketing innovations and more. It is anchored by Rameet Arora, Chief Operating Officer, HT Digital Streams, and co-hosted by HT Brand Studio and DMAasia.

Access is the keyword here; empowering consumers has never been more important. Saugata Bagchi, Head, Global Content Marketing, Tata Communications Ltd, said, “Smartphone access is driving change. It has made consumers more aware, more sensitive, more discerning and, in certain cases, more demanding, more clear about what they want from the brand in terms of messages, products, and solutions."

Bagchi continued: “If content is created to solve the brand’s purpose in today’s times, it may not always work. But if the content is created with a clear idea of what it is solving for, it will always work. The consumer does not want to know what a brand does; they want to know how a brand will solve their problems, and this is consistent across B2B and B2C sectors."

Mass personalization makes the situation trickier. This is because every product and campaign need to the defined by shifting consumer priorities. Tejinder Gill, Vice President of Global Sales (South East Asia, MENA and Africa), Truecaller, said, “A consumer gets 8-9 calls a day, which means we have 8-9 opportunities to talk to a consumer every day. Based on our AI and ML algorithms, we tell our marketers how to target their audiences effectively and deliver the right kind of message, at the right time."

This is of utmost importance when it comes to ‘New Bharat’, where there’s been a huge change in the way we look at the medium of communication, the consumers and the behaviour of the consumers on that medium.

A brand needs to solve for a diverse set of these consumers to be able to stay relevant. Ali Imran, Vice President (External Engagement), Ashoka University, said, “The new Bharat is aspirational, confident, and wants the best. There are a lot of similarities between people from metros and tier 2 and 3 cities, in terms of aspirations. But Tier 2 and 3 consumers are hungrier than those in tier 1."

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