Sneha Biswas

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On March 25, 2020, Sneha Biswas commented on Udaan- India’s Amazon or Alibaba? :

Thanks Marius! Yeah there is risk of multi-homing and that’s why as I have mentioned in the blog they would have to work on increasing the stickiness of their platform so that wholesalers are incentivized to sell through them. Fortunately, not many competitors exist in India right now. Also Flipkart, although better know, has spread itself across a whole range of products and channels ( B2B, B2C) , while Udaan has the advantage of being more targeted ( wholesale- retail)

Logistics, I agree is a heavy capex space that they have entered in. Although an integrated approach of financing, sourcing and fulfillment sounds very attractive!

On March 22, 2020, Sneha Biswas commented on Boatsetter: Democratizing The Sailing Experience :

Wow, that is interesting! Worth checking out – when the world gets back to normal and we all can travel again!

I agree with Matt above that while this seems like a great idea, the platform needs to incentivize boat-owners in order to keep them on the platform, especially if this seems to be a lucrative business and more competitors come in. To increase the stickiness of boat-owners and to reduce multi-homing, Boatsetter could offer add-on services to the customers (renters) during usage if booked through their platform e.g. free goodies, special offers etc.. This way both sides of the platform are encouraged to stick to this company over other competitors.

Andres, I agree with you that there is “network-clustering” for this platform, but I wonder how large are these networks. The advantage of an online platform vs. traditional offline car dealers is the broader reach. Cars need not be physically transported to be shown to a potential customer on this platform. Therefore, all the cars, irrespective of their location, should have the same weight for a person browsing to buy. Someone from Texas can more easily purchase a car from California via Carguru vs. visiting physical dealer-store where he/she is tempted to buy something immediately available. What do you think?

On March 22, 2020, Sneha Biswas commented on Too Good To Go: A Win-Win-Win Situation :

Wow, this sounds like a great initiative. It is great that they have come up with a business solution to a problem that many NGOs try to solve, often with little efficiency. While I agree with you that there will be strong network effects, I believe it will be difficult to ever leverage a cross-region network effect. The food distribution and collection has to be localized. However, may be global chains ( e.g. McDonald’s, KFC etc.) can create a “global” buzz, thereby generating some broad network effects (not through direct benefit of the product – food- on the platform, but from social acceptance of being on the platform). Thanks for sharing!

On February 12, 2020, Sneha Biswas commented on Burberry (1856 est.) -164 years old or phoenix in the digital world? :

Thanks for your comments and questions, @iBot. Indeed it will be interesting to see where Burberry goes from here. I think they have been able to spot trend early on which enabled them to lure the millenial through digital marketing and their digital retail stores. With higher spending trends among young people, compared to the previous generation – luxury brands do not need to wait for people to reach their 50s to buy their first Burberry coat. Do they really need to balance their old-school, traditional history if they are able to create a brand identity for right set of customers willing to spend on their products? Also, these millenials are the future – grabbing their attention early could help the company keep them engaged through their later years too possibly.

On February 11, 2020, Sneha Biswas commented on Burberry (1856 est.) -164 years old or phoenix in the digital world? :

Thank you for sharing your experience here, Jack. Yeah, indeed bold to go out there all digital to reach the “masses”, hoping that the right(rich) audience will sieve through. I was particularly surprised by its presence and high activity on SnapChat which in my head is basic – but clearly, they are doing it all right – the stocks say so!

On February 11, 2020, Sneha Biswas commented on Burberry (1856 est.) -164 years old or phoenix in the digital world? :

Thanks Ricardo! I was actually just thinking about that. One of the blogs here is on Sephora and reading that I realized that most of their digital initiatives are to improve customer experience and deliver better product/service. Very little of the digital space is being used for actual marketing. In contrast, Burberry seems to capture most of the digital space in the form of advertising and marketing. Apart from its high-tech retail store which is blurring the line between physical and digital worlds for its customers, there aren’t much “experience-driven” digital initiatives. Great thought, thanks!

On February 11, 2020, Sneha Biswas commented on Mattress Firm: Losing by betting on bricks in the age of clicks :

Great blog! I agree with London L. above on how the brand that Mattress Firm has somehow created is that of a “cheap, basic” company. Funnily, that’s the image I told too!
Agree with you on the Omnichannel approach is worthy of a trial, but I wonder if simply keeping a physical store along with digital presence solves the purpose in today’s world. I think the world is moving towards a place where physical is luxury, exclusive and experience is important, while digital is quick and convenient. If that analysis of mine is to be believed, Mattress Firm did not stand a chance. I will enter a physical place to make a purchase, watch a show or study in classrooms only if the experience is what sets it apart. A “cheap, basic” Mattress Firm-like store gives me no incentive to leave my couch where I can easily shop around, compare prices and get someone to come to my place to deliver me the items. The retail experience has to be more than just a store.

On February 11, 2020, Sneha Biswas commented on Sephora – Blurring the line between Digital and Physical :

Great blog, Trishi! I did not know that Sephora was the only beauty brand that maintained a physical store within the lab space to test in-store experiences. This speaks about the brand’s retained focus on customer experience, and not just product innovation. Today with other forms of marketing like those through social media influencers advocating for specific brands, I wonder if Sephora (with that data that it has already) can create its own “influncers” platform or some form of “crowd-sourcing” to advertise but exclusively for Sephora.

All the digital steps taken so far seems to align with making the customer experience better. While that has an advertising component, I am thinking if Sephora will indulge in pure advertising “Digital” initiatives too.

On February 11, 2020, Sneha Biswas commented on Coursera – Revolutionizing Education For Anyone, Anywhere :

Great post, Danielle!

I agree with your analysis that the market for MOOC is large and multiple players catering to different segments of this market can operate together in harmony. But wonder how a for-profit organization like Coursera plans to keep its edge against an almost similar-segment player like Khan Academy which is non-profit and is free. Quality of content could be a differentiating factor. I wonder if Coursera been able to use technology to bring itself an advantage over Khan Academy?

On February 11, 2020, Sneha Biswas commented on PayTm- Disasters are Subjective! :

Thanks Krish, for bringing up a thriving Indian startup to this discussion. While I totally agree that the young company could leverage its position and come across as a winner at a time of crisis (demonetization) , I would like to know your opinion on the way forward. Fintech is rapidly picking up in India and competing companies such as Mobikwik are gaining traction. With still only 21% internet and smartphone penetration in the country, obviously the potential market is huge and may be there is room for many players. But, isn’t it also a threat that a new player with more savvy digital capabilities take a lion share’s of the remaining 80% of the market? Do you know if Paytm is doing much on technology and innovation side to keep away competition?

On February 11, 2020, Sneha Biswas commented on Burberry (1856 est.) -164 years old or phoenix in the digital world? :

Thank you for your comment, Chris. Agreed that Burberry’s position in the market allowed it certain power – but I am not sure if the “millennial” segment that it identified and targeted through technology back in 2006 was where it had a leg-up back then. My feeling is that they created this market for themselves.
Yeah, it would be interesting to see how they use all these years worth of data to outperform their peers and if their strategy is any different from the rest in the years to come.