29 May 2020 18:29



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Thursday, 21 May 2020 00:00

Time to plan for the new Next

As things begin to open up and business leaders grapple with the new next, there are two questions arising. The first one is a basic one that's always been there - How do leaders cope up with the moving dynamics and hence re-skill, up-skill and come to speed with this changing world. Two, how to find ways to minimise the impact from the current crisis, quick enough, as Digital gets pushed to the centre, stronger powerful and changing us forever.

Irrespective of how the future shapes, this is the time to plan that mind-shift and bring it into action. Listing down some areas, many of which we may have already considered and are acting upon. They are simple yet powerful steps and as we begin to recover from the current COVID humanitarian situation; this short note below, hopefully provides direction helping us prepare for the bounce back and beyond.

1 About Action

Look back at the great ideas we all loved in the previous brainstorming meetings, those experimental projects and the we-could-try-these-too initiatives - they all need to see fruition. We need to get our top team to revisit, list and prioritise them. To bring them into action the moment we are back into action.

2 About Cohesion

Are all these half-through projects making a cohesive story? They ought to as this is the time to see them come together, get aligned with the macro goals of the Organisation. This will not be about that mammoth Digital Transformation story we had visualized once; but about making these smaller nuggets come together.

3 About Re-skilling

Any culture, environment will resist change, that we all know. Working with our Digital leaders and HR teams to identify what needs to change, the gaps in talent and then look at reskilling, realigning and listing the new training needs for the entire team. Consumers are going to change, their purchase insights, media consumption insights, social behaviour will undergo change.

4 About Success stories

Getting a team to share stories of other successful turnarounds is important. Look at China to see what shape brands are taking there. Watch consumerfacing companies or companies from Insurance, communication, media, entertainment, banking and consumer products who may be looking at the same future like yours. The entire world is learning 'work from home' dynamics and interacting with new technologies for the first time. How do these first-timers, this massive universe of newbies across generational cohorts make an impact on our future? Let’s start testing this now.

5 About Digital Every-Where

Digital is all people, all functions and no particular department. Each one has to embrace a new mindset and be accountable for their new set of KRA’s. Yes, new KRA’s. This becomes the time to set those new expectations because, when this COVID situation ends we need double the effort to build all back.

6 About Impact, Buffering and Mirroring

This is a model I use in my digital strategy workshops. Learning about possible impacts, getting a quick team to share new ways to deal with emerging technologies, from any field. We could be in healthcare, while a new retail technology at a far end, could signal an impact in our ‘area of ecosystem’ or for that matter open up a radical opportunity. How do you buffer for this threat and plan a new initiatives and subsequently mirror the environment? Let’s create teams that act as start-ups within our Organisation and push new ideas on the table.

Only time will tell how and when we are completely out of this, but we definitely know this is the time to get ready for the new next. A lot can be done and no better time than now.

Written by Rajeev Sharma, Founder, Awrizon - a performance driven Digital Consultancy.

Fever Network announces its next campaign ‘Digital Idol - A musical talent hunt’

Fever Network, the country’s leading radio network and house to the most popular radio stations Fever FM, Radio Nasha and Radio One is all set to go live with its next big property ‘Digital Idol’ - A Digital musical talent hunt show. After the success of the mega 100 Hours 100 Stars, Fever Network is back with a property to identify and give a platform to the eruption of talent on the digital ecosystem. The beauty of this property is that anyone can participate straight from the comfort of home without stepping out anywhere. The contest would be open to all age groups.

Digital Idol will give the listeners of Fever FM, Radio Nasha and Radio One a chance to become online sensations by unleashing their hidden singing talents.

The show will feature some of the prominent names from the music industry as celeb judges who will evaluate and groom the various contestants. The one of its kind, musical talent hunt promises to be packed with entertainment & will provide a platform for budding singers to come to the limelight and showcase their talent from different corners of India.

The campaign will go live on Fever FM, Radio Nasha and Radio One social handles. No other radio station in the country boasts of such a diversified portfolio of brands targeting the entire spectrum of listeners from Gen Z, Millennials and Gen X. Radio listeners can also tune into the Fever FM, Radio Nasha and Radio One radio frequencies to catch all the action on air.

RBL Bank’s Credit Card business to be significantly profitable despite COVID-19. Harjeet Toor, Head – Credit Cards Business for RBL Bank shares all you'd like to know about the economic and sociological ramification of this pandemic.

Here is the complete Q&A

How are you seeing spends being affected because of COVID?

We rank among the top 4 issuers on an average retail spend per card metric at almost Rs. 11,000 per month per card. Most of our peers have a significant corporate card portfolio with spends that are around 20-30% of their total spends which are part of the published spend numbers by RBI. We have chosen to focus only on retail cards.

In the month of April, because of the lockdown, we saw this decline by almost 60%, in line with what you saw in the rest of industry. However, since May 4 when lockdown started easing in some areas of the country we have seen these spends increase by almost 35% in the past week. We expect another large spike in spends the moment there is more easing in the top 10-15 cities which unfortunately are part of the red zone today.

Now to give you a flavor of where our customers spend on our card. Almost 75% of our card spends are towards grocery, fuel, utilities, telecom, wallet loading, health/insurance, food etc. which are very steady and resilient spend categories. The share of spends on our cards in areas which could see a prolonged COVID impact like entertainment, travel etc. are a very low proportion of our spends at about 6%. This has been on account of the type of co-brands we have chosen to be part of.

So when life starts returning to normal and movement begins across the country, we expect two trends to play out, first - spends on day to day expenses to return to pre-COVID levels and secondly, we see a rise in spend categories like lifestyle, ecommerce, fuel, food delivery etc. because of pent-up demand and also accelerated conversion from cash to card. The spend categories which would recover with a lag, as described above, in any case are a low proportion of the spends (only 6%).

What is the profile of the Bank’s card customers?

70% of our customers are salaried. In the balance self-employed segment, we have very stringent card on-boarding parameters. In fact because of this the difference in delinquency levels between salaried and self-employed is only 30-40 basis points in our portfolio.

82% of the customers have another credit card at the time of our card issuance. 95% of these customers have cards issued by the top 4 players in the industry. This therefore means our carded segment is quite similar to these players. The balance 18% who don’t have a card are credit tested customers.

I would also like to highlight here that our focus in the Bajaj Finance cobrand customer selection has largely been on their top tier EMI customers who already have a credit card with someone else. Bureau data which is periodically tracked and published, shows that customers with multiple cards have loss rates that are 50% of those where there is only a single card.

In terms of the age profile, 68% of our customers have an age greater than 30 years as against 60% for the industry. Higher age groups typically denote matured borrowers having more stability both in terms of work experience, lifestyle and financial prudence. Therefore as expected, we have observed that delinquency levels also decrease with age in our portfolio.

How is the quality of the portfolio when compared to other card issuers?

I mentioned above, the steps we have taken in building a favorable client mix while building our business over the last several years. This has resulted in a portfolio where delinquency levels are significantly lower than the industry. We also track the bureau data of our portfolio delinquency measured at a (90+ dpd rate) vs the industry regularly and the results show that our 90+ dpd levels are around 27% lower than the industry. You should remember that that the top 6 issuers (including us) account for 90% of the industry.

Similarly, our early vintage delinquencies which we measure 6 months from sourcing for 30 dpd again is 28% lower than the industry. All our customer acceptance scorecards are designed to keep delinquency rates lower than industry and are tweaked regularly.

This should help you get an understanding of the quality of our card portfolio. It is clearly better than the industry.

How do you see credit costs and profitability in the credit card business this year and next?

We have taken a very conservative view on credit costs and stress tested our portfolio severely for a COVID impact. Our estimate is that while our credit costs will increase, our profitability will be similar to FY20 levels and I will explain this in a little more detail

We expect our total revenues for FY21 to be higher year on year, despite a marginal dip in overall spends per card. A credit card breaks even on costs in 15-18 months. We had a net addition of more than 10 lakh cards in FY20. In FY21, we expect our net additions to be significantly lower.

Typically, when new additions as a proportion of the existing base reduces, operating margins improve sharply. This is on account of much larger card base generating revenue for the full year. Further, average advances for the year are expected to grow around 10 to 15% (vs 100% previous year).

There is significantly low upfront acquisition costs. Our card growth is expected to be significantly lower than the million cards in the previous year.

Majority of the costs are variable – costs related to spend promotion, rewards, service, technology etc. These automatically reduce during lockdown as well with spends and new acquisition.

As a result, our pre-provision operating income will actually be much higher in FY21 than last year. The increase in pre-provisioning operating profit will be able to absorb a significant part of the increase in credit costs we have estimated on account of COVID.

As we had been saying over the last few quarters, the cards business was significantly increasing its profitability in FY20 with every passing quarter and therefore it has entered FY21 on a much higher Return On Assets (ROA) trajectory than what we saw in FY20 on the whole. However, we have chosen to be conservative with respect to provisions for credit costs on account of COVID as a result of which the profitability in FY21 will be similar to FY20.

I will also want to add one last comment. We have built this business over the last 6 years to be among the market leaders and we look at this as an important cornerstone of the Bank. We have made enormous investments as we built this business in portfolio analytics, risk, collections etc. in anticipation of credit challenges in the market in the business lifecycle. We remain confident of the long term opportunity in this segment and if we see that the external credit environment is stable, we have the ability to ramp up business quickly. We don’t expect demand to be a challenge at all.

Using Brightcove’s video technology, NAB Show Express will be a digital experience that brings together the best in media, entertainment, and technology

Brightcove Inc., the world’s leading video technology platform, today announced that it will power NAB Show’s first-ever digital experience, NAB Show Express. The two-day digital event will occur May 13-14 and will include video on-demand assets for conference sessions, real-time video clips on its social channels, and eight hours of streamed content daily, all powered by Brightcove’s industry-leading video platform. For nine consecutive years, NAB Show has leveraged Brightcove’s video technology to power the largest show for the media, entertainment, and technology industries. The event was cancelled due to the COVID-19 outbreak, and NAB Show has chosen to use Brightcove for its first all-digital event.

Connectivity is vital to the health and success of the broadcast industry, which is why NAB Show is offering this digital experience as a conduit for exhibitors to share product information, announcements, and demos, and also to deliver educational content and programming that was slated for the live show in Las Vegas. By providing 24-hour access to live and on-demand video content from the industry’s top media, entertainment, and technology players, NAB Show is bringing together its community virtually, while also offering new opportunities for innovation and engagement in a way designed to keep attendees healthy and safe during this unprecedented time.

“Our annual NAB Show is known for bringing together thousands of the top minds in media, entertainment, and technology. Pivoting to a digital experience is our way of adapting to the current global circumstances, and, more importantly, offering the industry stability and stimulation during these challenging times,” said Chris Brown, Executive Vice President of Conventions and Business Operations, National Association of Broadcasters. “Video is essential to keeping our community together; therefore, we are counting on Brightcove’s video technology, including the company’s reliability, scalability, and integration with Frequency’s scheduling solution, to deliver what NAB Show needs to keep audiences engaged and informed during this time.”

“NAB Show has leveraged Brightcove’s technology for nine consecutive years to extend its reach to its ever-growing audience. This year’s event marks one of the most momentous as we’re not just a video partner to NAB Show, but the foundation to delivering a seamless digital experience to attendees,” said Jeff Ray, Chief Executive Officer, Brightcove. “We applaud NAB Show for its commitment to continue delivering innovative, cutting-edge content to its audience. We’re proud NAB Show relies on Brightcove’s video technology as the platform that brings the industry together.”

We are the people behind the world’s leading video technology platform. With our award-winning technology and services, we help organizations in more than 70 countries meet business challenges and create strategic opportunities by inspiring, entertaining, and engaging their audiences through video.

Is making visually mesmerizing videos an art? Yes! And, a major portion of making it look amazing boils down to the finesse of the editor. Most people think that video editing is only about cutting out all the stuff that does not look good, but, it's certainly a lot more than that.

It is the drama you create on the edit table, with the spice of emotions to tell your story in a better way. Fortunately, after running through a lot of points in my head, I have compiled a few which have come most in handy to me, over the years. If you are an editor in the making, you might find the following tips useful.

1. What is the blueprint?

I think every video begins with the idea. One needs to be certain about the thought behind the video/animation you are about to make. Unless we are not crystal clear about the concept, the entire flow ahead could topple over like domino effect.

2. Who’s going to watch your video?

Sometimes, a perfect edit might not be what a brand/project requires. If anything, it might need to purposely look a bit rough around the edges so that it matches the overall tonality of the brand. Hence knowing the purpose of the video will always guide you on making various decisions for the said project. After all, you are editing keeping the end consumer in mind. Impress them, not yourself.

3. Did you find references?

They say, when you start right, your journey through the end will be a good one. At times we get started on a brief too quickly and then we usually doubt the visuals or the flow; that is because maybe we have rushed a little and skipped referencing. Finding out more about the zone, genre or the style of the video is never a bad idea. The more you explore, the more ideas you get to add to your project. Many times, a familiar genre that you think you have mastered can take a surprising, edgy turn all because you did not forget to refence and research.

4. How long is it?

Duration helps bring structure to a project and a good editor always plays by the rules. A film in a theatre might go on for an hour or two while it’s just 60 seconds on Instagram, to tell a compelling story. The pre-set duration of the video not only helps you know the time in hand but also how you should divide the entire structure to bring about the right communication at the right time. In fact, various organisations such as award competitions always have a said limit, so if not considered beforehand it can be a huge stress later.

5. Is your video’s artwork up to speed?

I believe the entire look and feel of the frames set the drama alive. I recollect reading a good article earlier which stated that there is a psychology of shape, colour and different colours depict different moods, for instance Red emphasises excitement and boldness while Green can go for peace, health and growth. In the same way the correct design and art can raise your video’s appeal remarkably.

6. What’s it going to sound like?

Sound is king! I would say music is also somewhat related to art and along with art even music plays a major role in setting the mood and emotion of the video. Imagine, you’re watching a scene shot at night which slowly zooms in at a house. Now the music decides for the audience what the scene is about, if there is scary background score then definitely it’s a horror scene, but if you play on some contrabassoon music people might take it for a romantic scene. Also, sound effect is the hidden key to crisp up moments in a video, that microscopic sounds from spoons clinging to doorknob turning, always build a perfect clip.

7. Did you forget about the supers?

Very less often you need a lot of supers in a video, again the purpose and the concept are the key. But out of my experience one basic thing I have learnt is to have enough stay on a text-based frame. Usually we are so engrossed in the process, that we do not realise if the audience will be able to read the text or not. Hence many times I show the videos to my colleagues to ensure that readability is not being hampered. Also, since now the globe is turning towards smartphones and smaller screens for consuming all types of content, a reasonable font size can establish a seamless viewership. Too small may cause difficulty in reading and understanding and too big can ruin the frame and hide visuals in some cases.

8. Why did i forget to do this?

This is every editor’s worst nightmare. For most of us this is a ritual but still many times it just skips our minds. I personally use the common “Collect Project” feature after finishing up a project. (Collecting Project function allows the software to collect all your files used in the project into one single folder irrespective of where you had last saved them.) This function not only makes sure that the project is safe but also helps to make sure that no file is missed, and no media is displayed offline when you boot up next.

While we all are passionate about what we do best, having a few points in mind will help us push the boundaries a little more.


Written by Sahil Chauhan, Senior Motion Graphics Artist at Dentsu Webchutney

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