With consumers apprehensive about stepping out to buy smartphones, Vivo has introduced a new model to connect offline retailers with prospective customers. 'Vivo Smart Retail' will leverage the company's strong partner network of 30,000 Vivo brand ambassadors (VBAs) and 20,000 retailers to facilitate lead generation to purchase new devices.
"With our new retail model, we aim to assist our offline partners with business continuity. Through this solution, we aim to address the existing demand for smartphones across the country leveraging our vast offline network. Our VBAs will engage with customers through an SMS number, the company e-commerce website or Vivo India's Facebook page. Depending on the query, the VBA will pass on the lead to nearest Vivo retailer who shall address and solve the customer's requirement. The new model will comply with all government guidelines," says Nipun Marya, Director Brand Strategy, Vivo India.
Vivo has adopted this new model to enable business continuity for its pan-India retail network that will help consumers connect with retailers from the comfort of their homes. The SMS-based connectivity is already operational, while the other two platforms will be available to customers before May 12. The pilot shall be initiated in a phase-wise manner with the objective to be available pan India.
Since the nationwide lockdown announced in March, Vivo had mandated 100 per cent work from home for its employees deployed at the Gurgaon office and the production at manufacturing unit was also suspended. Vivo has not yet resumed manufacturing. "We are in touch with the district administration of Gautam Buddha Nagar. We still await clarity from them as the location falls under a red zone. We will start operations only once we get a go-ahead from the concerned authorities," clarifies Marya.
Vivo is positive that once the lockdown is lifted completely, the business will thrive again.
Vivo's current portfolio includes three product series. The Y series (Rs 8,000 to Rs 17,000), the S series (Rs 17,000 - Rs 20,000) and the V series (Rs 20,000 to Rs 30,000). All models that are currently in circulation with offline partners shall come under this new program, and in a scenario that the retailer who has received the customer query doesn't have that particular device in stock, the lead then shall be passed on to the next retailer.
Continuing its support in the fight against COVID-19 pandemic, Vivo India has recently donated 15,000 PPE suits and 50,000 litres of sanitiser to the Central Government to ensure the safety of caregivers and healthcare professionals. The brand had earlier donated close to 9 lakh masks to state and central governments, police agencies and other municipal corporations.