Paytm CEO Vijay Shekhar Sharma’s views on in flight branding

Vijay Shekhar Sharma, founder and CEO, Paytm. Paytm has a customer base of over 100 million. What began as a recharge and bill payments platform is, today, a mobile wallet, an e-commerce destination and an aspiring payments bank.

At present, Paytm’s marketplace boasts a GMV (gross merchandise value) of a little less than $300 million a month; Vijay is confident the number will touch half a billion dollars by the end of this calendar year.

Paytm’s marketing budget for 2016-17 is Rs 600 crore. Among Paytm’s investors are names like SAIF Partners and Alibaba’s Ant Financial.

Among many questions he answered one is given below:

Q. Are you as involved in the media buying side? What’s your approach to media like?

To me, spending money on a media platform is like giving money to that platform, but not necessarily getting the returns you expect. There’s always a significant mismatch between the expectation and what actually gets delivered. We may spend money on a particular type of media, say OOH or TV, or on a particular TV channel, assuming our TG will look at it. But that’s an assumption. If the TG is not watching, our money is gone.

So we’re conservative about the way we choose our media properties. That’s why, instead of spending money on say, a newly launched TV channel, we’d rather experiment with something like, let’s say… aircraft branding. In fact, on Day One, Paytm was launched with in-aircraft branding, post which we did English radio branding. We experiment more than a traditional company would. These are tricky but critical branding decisions, because we want the brand to be visible to the correct person, the correct number of times.

Disclaimer – The article is an excerpt from AFAQS DOT COM. Please read the full interview here