“Our unique rewards program makes us stand out:” Veera’s Adityan Kayalakal

“Our unique rewards program makes us stand out:” Veera’s Adityan Kayalakal

In the case of the internet experience, content is a significant play.

Adityan Kayalakal

Mumbai: Mobile browsers have evolved far beyond mere tools for accessing the internet; they are now pivotal in shaping digital experiences tailored to smartphone users' needs. In a landscape dominated by giants like Chrome and Safari, differentiation is crucial. These browsers, built with Western audiences in mind, often overlook the nuanced behaviors and preferences of diverse global markets.

However, emerging contenders like Veera are redefining the paradigm. Veera's approach is distinct: prioritizing mobile-first design, optimizing for the Android ecosystem that dominates India's smartphone market. Beyond speed and ad-blocking prowess, Veera innovates with integrated casual games and a unique rewards program, promising a browsing experience that's as engaging as it is efficient. This strategic focus underscores Veera's commitment to delivering a browsing experience tailored to the dynamic needs of today's mobile users.

Indiantelevision.com caught up with Veera’s head of marketing Adityan Kayalakal to gain more in-depth insights.

Edited Excerpts:

On the unique value propositions that Veera offers differentiating it from established browsers like like Chrome and Safari

Veera is a product built based on a specific insight and with a clear differentiator. Despite there being one billion smartphones and 750 million internet users in the country, very few broad platforms exist that have been custom-built for the audience. Most existing applications were built with Western audiences in mind and for their behaviours. Veera is built for the phone first and to back this fully, we built the Android version of Veera (android accounts for the lion's share of smartphones in India today) first and focused on that version alone. We then looked at other key challenges across the ecosystem to understand how we could make the internet experience better. Third-party ads had gotten to the point where there were overtaking the amount of content on the page, so we incorporated the best ad blocker in the world to provide a better browsing experience.

We engineered to provide a faster daily browsing experience across devices, even low-end ones. We understood that memory was a concern and gaming a key passion (mobile gaming is now close 500 mn users in the country), so we gathered the top casual games and created Veera Games for which you don’t need to download any additional app and can play within Veera itself for free (saving you a ton of space on your phone). And to top it all off, to gratify the customer for the time they were spending with us, we created a unique engagement-based rewards program that gratify our users with Veera points and give them a ton of redemption options ranging from vouchers, gift cards to even cash.

This unique focus on the customer and delivering a great experience is what inspired us to encapsulate our experience through the line “Ab Internet Banega Bindaas”. It’s a promise that we deliver on every single time you use the app.

On tailoring your marketing strategies to ensure they are mobile-first, given that Veera is a mobile-only browser and the unique challenges and opportunities this presents

Our app experience is definitely mobile. But our marketing experience need not always be so. The mobile phone is in our customer's hand at every single moment and is often used to capture most moments they experience today. So we take that opportunity to create experiences and moments that get the customer to sit up and take notice. Take for example the privacy campaign that we did last year which featured a toilet at the center of it. The experience was physical, the conversation was on digital (and consequently on people’s phones) from where they sampled the app and chose to continue using it, and in some cases even brought their friends and family on board.

That said, we do a range of activities, some closer to a specific customer and a specific platform, some broader. But in all cases, the end goal and the idea dictate which platforms we pick.

On Veera leveraging consumer insights and feedback to enhance its user experience and services; can you provide an example where user feedback significantly influenced a marketing or product decision

From day one, we have been quite obsessive about speaking to our customers regularly. We did this during our MVP, we did this during our beta stage and we did this regularly the last few months. This has been a key focus and Veera invested early into this by building a dedicated customer experience team headed by the stellar Ankit Malviya, that regularly gets feedback, follows up on comments and notes sent in by customers, reaches out proactively to drive detailed conversations with our users.

It's driven multiple changes in the product, with the latest being the new Khazana section (our rewards section) which has been made far more intuitive and the design is a significant evolution and a sign of things to come.

Another key example is our cricket widget which is currently live with the World Cup scores. We realized that people earlier went to their browsers, went to search, typed in the name of the sport or the team they wanted to know more about and then went to a specific website to consumer that score and then went further if they wanted a detailed view. It was a tedious and unnecessary process really. We made the process much shorter by introducing a widget on the home page which was visible to users as soon as they launched the Veera app, with the score of the ongoing cricket game shown upfront. And we should have some exciting news on that front shortly.

On Veera utilising content to attract and retain users and are there any notable content partnerships that have helped boost user engagement

In the case of the internet experience, content is a significant play. We have onboarded partners like Times Internet, Sportskeeda, etc to provide a rich bouquet of options for our users. But the customer is looking for varied experiences – games, shopping, deals, new & unique experiences (AI now amongst them), and of course local content (ranging from politics to Bollywood, cricket etc).

Our focus has been to deliver these in unique ways to the users to make their experience simpler and more enjoyable – content through a easily accessbile news feed, games through a dedicated portal, cricket through an intuitive widget.

On Veera leveraging social media platforms in its marketing strategy, and your approach to building a strong social media presence

Social provides us multiple ways to engage users. Traditional posts on our own channels give us an opportunity to shape our brand image by amplifying our message, tone and personality.

Promoted content and ads allow us to target users with specific messages to inform and educate customers. It also allows us to be frugal, experimentative, and nimble, ensuring that we can learn from the work we put out there constantly. And using third-party channels such as publishers and influencers allows us to deliver our message entertainingly and credibly.

So for us, it’s really a Swiss army knife of sorts.