Yayvo.com, an online shopping portal launched by TCS in 2015, recently rolled out their first ad campaign to promote their website and create awareness about online shopping and delivery in Pakistan.
Yayvo.com is a revamp of TCS Connect, an online shopping portal launched in 2012. TCS, one of the largest logistics companies of Pakistan with about 800 express centres, 4,000 couriers, and warehouses across all major cities, launched TCS Connect at a time when online shopping portals featuring multiple verticals or categories had recently taken off (single vertical shopping portals such as Beliscity and Galaxy.com.pk were launched in the mid-2000s).
However, according to Naiyar Saifi, Director, Marketing and Public Affairs, TCS, “TCS Connect had a limited inventory and was not going anywhere – customers as well as the ecosystem were not ready for it, and we did not pay enough attention to the venture.”
He adds that the relaunch of TCS Connect as Yayvo.com was in the pipeline since last year and the website is a complete overhaul in terms of product inventory, website design and delivery mechanism. Product categories range from fashion to phones and computers, healthcare, books and automobile accessories.
Speaking about the site’s business model, Saifi says that the name ‘Yayvo.com’ sums up the site’s hybrid business model. The word ‘yay’ (‘this’ in Urdu) indicates the products appearing on the website – the inventory includes more than 15,000 products (the ‘inventory-based’ model). The word ‘vo’ (a spelling variation of the Urdu word ‘woh’ meaning ‘that’) represents those items that although not currently available on the site, can be procured from anywhere and then delivered (‘dropshipping-based’ model). The Yayvo team constantly monitors customer demand and if there are frequent requests for a certain item, it is added to the permanent items offered.
The site leverages the brand equity and distribution power of TCS and according to Salman Hasan, CEO, Yayvo.com, “no other local company has its own massively spread logistics and distribution network handling deliveries for them – we deliver in every nook and corner of Pakistan and in 230 countries across the world. People trust the name of TCS, and equate it with reliable customer service and timely delivery.”
Further elaborating on Yayvo’s competitive advantage, Hasan adds that Pakistani customers tend to feel safer with a brick-and-mortar presence, even for an online business and “the 800 express centres provide reassurance that if they need help or want to return an item, they can head to one of these centres, a facility neither Daraz nor any other competitor offers.”
Keeping the equity of TCS in mind, the campaign was conceptualised accordingly. “A lot of thought went into the TVC to reinforce the trust people have in TCS, and then to walk them through the order, delivery and payment process.”
Hasan adds that the 360-degree campaign addresses the “pain points of online shopping.” These are dissatisfaction about the quality of the products offered by shopping portals, not liking a product when they receive it, and complicated payment models. He adds that “the TVC is simple and functional, almost like an informercial – we will launch a more emotive TVC once we feel the awareness is there.”
Saifi adds that the “response to the campaign has been phenomenal; we tripled our orders since the TVC was aired.”
Given the technology-centric nature of Yayvo, digital has been used extensively. Apart from social media videos and contests, Yayvo has collaborated with Google for search engine marketing, and staff training aimed at monitoring and improving the digital promotion.
TCS has also collaborated with PTV Global’s (a terrestrial channel accessible even in the smaller towns and villages) morning show, Subhae Nau. The idea is “not to sell, but to create mass awareness of online shopping and address the hesitation of buying online,” says Saifi.
The collaboration includes branding the show as Yayvo Subhae Nau, helping to conceptualise the content, selecting guests and plugging in information about the website. To this end, Yayvo has selected four celebrity ‘lifestyle consultants’ - Nabila, Sam Abbas, Amir Adnan and Emu (of music band Fuzon) to talk about how Pakistanis can improve their lifestyle and appearance without spending a lot.
The programme also highlights the efficiency of TCS’ delivery system. The host displays two products on the screen and then asks viewers to call in. The callers then select one of the two displayed items. The selected item is delivered to the caller (as a gift) within the show’s time (two hours), and the caller then calls back to verify the delivery.
According to Saifi, the online market has immense room for growth and even new players – “we don’t have to fight for market share; it’s like a vast ocean.”