Now discover all types of offers on redanar

By Vinit Maniar

 

July 19, 2012 0 Comments

Since our beginning redanar has been just about offers on cards. We developed our app so that people who shop using credit/debit cards don’t miss out on offers they are entitled to. Going was good but then after a while we started getting requests from our users to cover membership and loyalty card segment because there are deals on those cards as well. We did our research and found there are certain clubs which give amazing local deals to their members (yes, clubs too give out local deals so do check the same with your club). We thought a deal on (any) card is a deal so we jumped the gun and started adding loyalty/membership cards and kick started the process of covering deals given by membership clubs to their members. This is how from deals on credit & debit cards we expanded into the territories of membership & loyalty cards.

At the same time we thought it to be essential to do a thorough user analysis (one of the golden rule of business say you should constantly see what your users/clients are upto and try to understand their behavior). After running complex SQL queries we managed to generate a report of user behavior. Every metric indicated we were growing, but one thing caught our attention — the engagement metric.

For us the engagement metric is, on an average a user opens our app how many times in a day and views how many pages. Technically you can define it as average page views/user/day and average users/day. We found that the engagement metric was really high and increasing by the day.

The most common conclusion you can draw from this is that users (or consumers if you generalize it) want to save their hard-earned money in all possible ways and are constantly looking for deals around them. Thinking of it, it makes sense because this is what we as consumers do — constantly look for deals (on cards, off cards), so that we can save money. An old saying goes, a penny saved is a penny earned, so we must always try to save as much as possible.

Then we thought as consumers we too try to save money by using sales offers and shop a lot during end of season sales so why not leverage our technology and ability of managing content to expand into general offers category?

After asking this question to ourselves the first thought that popped up in our mind was, if we do general deal then we lose our niche. We started off as a company which helps consumers discover card based offers around them, so if we start covering general deals then we lose the niche we started off with.

When we were discussing this question internally, the team started listing pros and cons of listing general deals and breaking away from our niche. On the plus side, we can target a bigger audience. We can keep on covering card based offers but at the same time start adding general deals so that all consumers regardless of whether they have a credit/debit card or not can start using our app. Another plus is consumers will be able to discover all types of offers on redanar. We thought of an ideal scenario when all a customer has to do when he/she is going out for dinner or movie or shopping or is planning to travel or visit  parlor, is, open redanar & discover places where he/she can save hard-earned money.

On the flip side, we lose our niche as card based offers and general offers will get mixed up. But then we thought we already have filter concept to filter deals so card based offers will not get lost in the pool of general offers!

So after an elaborate discussion spanning few days we all agreed we’ll only gain post adding general offers because our target audience will increase exponentially. By covering all types of deals virtually every Indian and everybody in the world is our customer! Never before we felt so good and hopeful about our app. We thought it certainly makes sense to not only focus on our original niche but also expand into other territories to grow our business (another golden rule of business states you must be always on a lookout for growth and should leave no stone unturned to grow your business).

Having come to a conclusion we pulled up our sleeves and started adding general offers. Though it is too early to say how it’ll come out, we are sure it’ll be good for business because it is good for consumers (another golden rule of business says customers always come first, so always provide best service & try to give as much as possible).

So if you are a consumer then download redanar & start discovering all types of offers around you and save your hard-earned money. If you are a merchant and are running a sales event then do contact us at vinit [at] redanar [dot] com to list your offers on redanar.

redanar app in the field

By Vinit Maniar

 

June 25, 2012 0 Comments

Recently our team went to SOBO Central Mall at Tardeo, Mumbai to check how our app works in the field. We had already added cards on app so we were just waiting for a notification to pop up mentioning nearby offer. And boy, the app worked well and notification indeed popped up listing nearby deals from The Coffee Beans & Tea Leaf, Birdy’s, Cocoberry, etc.

Enjoy the video of redanar in action and let us know what you think of it.

How to select a credit card

By Vinit Maniar

 

June 22, 2012 0 Comments

The words “credit card” in these economics times, will induce fear into the hearts of even the most gallant human being. Hence, the first question to ask yourself is why do you want a credit card? Is it because you like how the shiny plastic reflects light or is it because you understand the various advantages that you receive with having one. Swiping a small plastic card does not induce the same emotion as cold hard cash; this is just the way we are programmed, so understanding the effects it can have on our life is imperative. Now, once you have decided that a credit card is right for you, its time to learn the steps to obtain the best suited card for your future.

Credit cards are termed as unsecured credit; hence a bank must be sure that you will repay them in an appropriate period of time. Now, in case you are just starting out with your career and you have little knowledge of finance and no income, you are not likely to be approved for a credit card. The best procedure in this case would be to get a checking account in a well-respected bank, use it for about a year. You will also be given a debit card along with the account. Once you have enough knowledge of finance and your own income, apply for a credit card.

 

FEATURES OF A CREDIT CARD:

Annual Fee

Now in case of a person looking for his/her first card, it is recommended that you look for a card with no annual fee. A card with an annual fee usually gives you a larger credit limit and cash back in case of certain expenses but for an initial user, the cons outweigh the pros.

Credit Limit

This is the maximum amount of credit that the bank offers you. This feature must be used very carefully since credit is money that is still not paid by you so it must not be taken for granted.

Cash Withdrawal Limit

If you swipe your card for cash, then this is useful for you, but it is recommended that you use debit cards for yielding cash.

Acceptability

Is your card accepted across wide range of establishments? Is it accepted internationally? While Visa and MasterCard are universally accepted, Diners and American Express have limited acceptability.

Other charges and penalties

Besides fees and interest, remember the bank also charges you various other fees like late payment fees, cheque bouncing fees, over limit fees, etc. Watch out for these fees, as they are very high.

Quality Of Service

Not all banks provide the same level of customer service. Check out if the bank offers 24×7 customer service for its credit card customers. This is helpful if you have to report stolen card, check your credit limit or want to discuss any billing problem with the customer service.

 

HOW TO COMPARE CREDIT CARDS:

Rate Of Interest

Interest is applied to your outstanding balance from a previous billing cycle. You must be very careful since these rates can be hiked by banks at any time. You should select a card with minimum rate of interest. The interest rate can range from 6% per year up to even 40% per year. Just remember that if you pay your bills on time, you will not be charged any interest.

Based On Your Requirements

The next thing you must look for in a card is the reward points you earn in the area where you spend the most, for example, if you travel quite a bit for work, select a card with high flight related reward points.

Annual Fee & Joining Fee

As I said earlier, your first card should not have any annual or joining fee. You should closely analyse these fees to make sure you get the best deal.

Grace Period

This is the period that is given to you to pay off your balance before an interest is charged. It is important to keep a set date to pay off all your bills so that you do not fall short. The grace period can be from as high as 55-60 days or as low as 15-20 days. Hence you should select a card with a maximum grace period.

Lucrative offers

Now the greatest feature of these cards through which the redanar app was born! Each credit card will have a long list of offers running into the hundreds. These range from dining to travel to beauty & spa and many others. Hence select a card with the maximum number of offers that are in your field of interest.

 

THE FINE PRINT

There are the specific terms of the credit agreement, including annual fees, low introductory interest rates (which will likely skyrocket after a fixed period of time) and rewards benefits. Please read through the fine print carefully before signing anything. Use the factors given above to guide you through the process. Also, look out for excessive fees, such as balance-transfer and late-payment fees.

Keeping no balance on the card is an extremely good financial habit, and will definitely help you in the future. With the advent of the internet, you are able to link the credit card with the bank account and pay off your credit card online, and that is a big convenience. This makes it easy to pay off your balance if you’re busy or out of town. If you do have some outstanding balances then keep track of the interest rate as it could be hiked at any time & pay it off as soon as possible.

Now, another important tip is to use your cards in such a manner that you get thousands of rupees worth gifts and cash back each year.Having more flashy plastic cards than anyone else does not do you any good, the idea is to manage them in a way such that you get most benefits out of your day-to-day purchasing activity.

CONCLUSION

Even though getting a credit card right after the credit crunch might not seem like a good idea, if done properly can be a major boon in your life. The key is to use them responsibly and pay off the balance in a systematic manner. Also, do not forget to user redanar to check offers on your cards!

Note: This article was written by Rohan Marwaha (our summer intern).

Problems in marketing offers on cards

By Vinit Maniar

 

June 21, 2012 0 Comments

As I mentioned in the last post, banks are back in business and are chasing consumers with offers and rewards on their credit & debit cards. This is a good news for consumers but question is how many consumers actually avail these offers? From what we have learned from banks very few cardholders use such offers because most of the time they are not even aware of offers on their cards! For banks this signals bad news because they employ a sales force to get good deals and a great marketing team to market their reward program left, right and center, but even after doing all this if consumers don’t avail of reward offers then it certainly is a BAD NEWS.

And let me tell you for most banks’ reward programs this is the reality, so it is obvious there exist a problem in the way reward system work. If you ask us then problem is neither with sales team nor in marketing. Thing is consumers quickly forget offers on their cards after viewing them on banks’ websites, therefore they don’t avail of offers when they are ready to spend their hard earned money. As a consumer I faced the same issue in the past — even after viewing offers on a bank’s website I just couldn’t recollect them when needed. Had there been a system back then which I could use at the last minute (i.e. just before visiting a place or just before spending) to view offers on my card then I would have definitely availed offers on my credit card.

Now some people may say you can check banks’ websites on mobile phone when you are out and look for discounts, but being honest it is not the most efficient way. Firstly, most banks have completely unfriendly websites which even a rocket scientist will find it difficult to navigate. Second, there is no way to get a nice deal around our location. On banks’ website all you get is a list of places where you can avail discounts, arranged in random order or alphabetically, so there is absolutely no way of knowing a place around you which is offering discount on your card unless you start viewing all offers with detailed information like merchant address, phone number, etc. Now answer one simple question, who in the world has so much time?Certainly not me and I can bet my month’s salary that most of you too find it cumbersome to navigate banks’ website looking for deals on cards.

The most efficient way according to me is an app on which you can see offers applicable on your cards at the last minute. The main requirement for such an app is a nice and easy to navigate UI, and location feature. Another important feature is being bank agnostic, i.e. all banks’ cards should be supported. Simply put, the app should have all deals provided by all banks and filtered according to users’ cards and location.

Enter redanar.

With redanar we are trying to solve the problem which exist in reward programs — informing consumers about offers on their cards when they need them the most. All the app ask for is type of cards you have and based on your location the app filters deals. It is an easy to use free app which helps you save money on your everyday shopping, dining, travel, etc. For people who use their cards on a daily basis and occasional users it is a must have app because they can stay informed of nearby offers available on their cards and avail them, thus saving money. Just give it a thought, you have downloaded redanar and added your credit/debit card (without entering the number because we don’t ask for it) and see a nice dining deal which you can avail of tonight or a great travel offer using which you can save money on your next business trip. Sounds good? It is and for proof we have a hefty user base who is using redanar day in, day out and saving money by availing offers on their cards.

As far as banks are concerned the app is good for them as well because more people can stay informed of offers and avail them thus increasing transaction and redemption rates. In addition, cost of putting offers and marketing on redanar is far lower than traditional mediums. Now the best part, with traditional methods (like mailers, print, SMS, web, etc.) the conversion rate is hardly 1%, but we believe with our system conversion rate can be much higher because we inform consumers of offers exactly when they need them. Moving further, if you integrate banks’ systems with our system then you can track which user viewed which offers and whether he/she availed of any offer or not — this can help track effectiveness of the campaign like none other. Additionally you can analyse user preferences, cards they have, offers they have availed in the past, their location, etc. and provide deals accordingly.  In simple language, you can personalize reward program like it has never been done in the past.

If you agree this is a much better way to handle reward program then we have another ace up our sleeves — the notification feature. What notification feature does is notify users about offers in their neighborhood. For example, if you have XYZ card and there’s an amazing offer at a nearby store and applicable on your card, we’ll send you a notification that there is this amazing deal in your neighborhood which you can avail of. In marketers lingo you call it push feature.

This is pretty powerful feature for banks as well as big and small retail outlets. Banks can notify their cardholders about reward points they can accumulate by shopping at a certain place in their neighborhood and offers in their surrounding to increase transaction. As for merchants they can also increase their transaction by sending notifications to their cardholders and loyal customers when they are in vicinity of their shops. For example, if a particular Pantaloons cardholder/loyal user has not shopped with them in a while and if they are in vicinity of an outlet, Pantaloons can send a notification saying he/she will get a special 15% discount on next purchase. What this will do is entice consumer to shop (increasing transaction) and increase respect and loyalty towards the brand.

We truly believe we have built a wonderful mobile marketing platform which will help increase offer redemption rate and overall transaction for banks as well as merchants.

Would love to get your thoughts on problems in marketing offers on cards and reward programs, and our prop, so please share your thoughts with us through comments.

Analysis of Indian credit & debit cards and offers

By Vinit Maniar

 

June 13, 2012 1 Comments

A recent article by Economic Times on May 30, 2012 says credit card market in India has started booming again but this time it is about smart use of plastic money instead of wild use of mid 2000′s leading to the collapse of the whole market in 2008. We have done our own analysis on Indian credit & debit card market and can confidently say that banks are back in the business and are chasing consumers to expand the card market.

But this time it is not about no-credit-checking and quick-issual of cards. From what we understand this time banks are not interested in increasing their customer list blindly and are instead focusing on increasing usage of cards. To solve the issue of huge defaults they check data from credit bureau before issuing cards and give credit limits more cautiously. And to entice consumers who can spend money, they are coming out with amazing offers and rewards. If you ask us, this is the best way going forward — issue cards more wisely and entice consumers with offers. If you follow this principle then you get best of both worlds — high monthly/yearly card usage and low default rates.

Total number of cards by bank:

This pie chart shows Top 15 Indian banks by number of cards they have, including credit cards, debit cards and prepaid cards (don’t confuse it with the number of cards issued). As can be seen in the graph, ICICI Bank has the most number of cards, followed by SBI, Citi, HDFC, Axis and others. If after taking a quick look you are wondering why do you need 125 different cards or for that matter even 50 then you are not alone. Even we cannot understand why these banks have so many different cards considering a credit card is a credit card and a debit card is a debit card. All you do with a credit card is spend on credit and with debit card spend as much as you have in your bank account.

But it seems banks think differently. They want separate cards for separate purposes like shopping, traveling, fueling, etc. That is again fine by us but we fail to understand why have almost 50 co-branded credit cards (read ICICI) with colleges, telecom companies, NGOs, etc.? Why not have only a few, selected cards loaded with all possible benefits? Why can’t Indian banks pull off something like American Express? They have just 23 different cards in Indian market, each loaded with all possible benefits. And talking from organizations’ perspective, less cards would be easier to manage and market as well.

Comparison between number of credit cards and debit cards:

This graphic is self explanatory. If you compare only credit & debit cards available in India then there are three credit cards available in market for each debit card. If you think about it then it is obvious for banks to have more of credit cards and less of debit cards because they make more money when a credit card is used compared to money made when a debit card is used. And with credit cards there’s another stream of income — interest. Each time you forget to pay your card bill on time you are charged a hefty amount. According to the ET article, total credit card transaction in India stand at INR 96,600 crore in fiscal 2012, so even if banks earn a tiny percentage as interest from late payment, amount of money earned from interest alone would be huge.

Total redanar users by bank:

As can be seen in the graph, most of our users hold American Express cards (the creamy crowd :) ). HDFC Bank comes close by, followed by Citi, SBI, and ICICI. If you are a number cruncher then you would have surely noticed that in spite of having too many cards in the market, percentage of ICICI Bank cardholders is pretty less on redanar. And on the other hand though American Express offer few cards, their representation is pretty solid on redanar.

The main reason for putting up this graph is to show Top 10 banks whose cardholders are tech-savvy and are interested in making the most of their cards.

Comparison between credit and debit cardholders on redanar:

Now if there are three credit cards available in market for each debit card, number of credit and debit cardholders is of course going to be in favor of credit cards. The above graph validates our assumption. As can be seen in the graph, of total number of credit and debit cards added by our users, 82% are credit cards and only 18% are debit cards. You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to understand Indians love credit cards.

Total number of offers by bank:

Coming to the most interesting part, the above graph show number of offers by bank. Basically, we have listed Top 15 banks by number of offers they have at this moment on their respective cards. As can be seen, ICICI tops the list with the most number of offers, followed by HDFC, Citi, SBI and others. The list also throws up unexpected entries like that of Allahabad Bank, Vijaya Bank, Central Bank of India, Punjab National Bank, sold-out Royal Bank of Scotland and closed-down ABN Amro Bank. The reason why they are present in this list is Visa and MasterCard offers.

For the uninitiated, there are basically two type of offers — offers by banks and offers by Visa and MasterCard. Big banks come out with their own offers, applicable only to their cardholders. In addition to this, there are offers by Visa and MasterCard, which are applicable across all banks. For example, Citi bank cardholders are entitled to offers given by Citibank as well as Visa/MasterCard depending upon the card you have. If you have a Citibank Visa card then you can avail of Citibank’s own offers as well as offers given by Visa, and if you have a Citibank MasterCard card then you can benefit from Citibank’s own offers as well as offers given by MasterCard.

So even if a bank doesn’t have its own offer program you can still avail of Visa/MasterCard offers. This is the reason why small banks who don’t have their own offer program have popped up in our list of Top 15 banks by offers. These banks have a good amount of Visa and MasterCard cards, so you can still avail of amazing deals.

Now if a bank has developed its own offer program then you get doubly lucky (bank + Visa/MasterCard offers) as you have far too many offers to avail. If I have to pick banks with outstanding offer program then I’ll choose Citi, HDFC, ICICI, American Express, Kotak, SBI, HSBC, and IndusInd. And between Visa and MasterCard I’ll choose MasterCard because they have amazing dining program which Visa can’t match.

Talking about ICICI and why it tops the list, reason is ICICI has their own offer program, plus it offers MasterCard as well as American Express cards (the only bank in India to offer co-branded American Express cards). So if you pick your card well you can avail of amazing ICICI+MasterCard or ICICI+American Express offers.

A tip for card buyers: If you have figured out interest part then choose between Citi, HDFC and ICICI card with premium MasterCard branding (like Platinum, Titanium, Premium, or World), so that you not only get banks’ respective offers but MasterCard offers as well.

Total offers by category:

This graph proves that India is a nation of food lovers. As can be seen in the graph, 86% card based offers are dining deals, followed by travel (6%) and shopping (5%). Talking about why there are so many dining deals, everybody goes out for dinner at least once a week so it certainly makes sense for banks to offer dining deals (assuming you’ll swipe your card more often). Another reason why there are so many dining deals is that deals on restaurants are easy to come by because margins are pretty high in restaurant business. It is no big deal for a restaurant to offer 15% off or 20% off in return for some marketing, but you can’t get the same amount of discount from say a travel company because margins are not that good in that segment.

Total number of offers by city:

This is the city wise break down of number of offers. As can be seen in the graph, Delhi NCR tops the list with most number of offers, followed by Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Pune and others. This graph also proves that for most banks their cardholders are from these major metros, and that’s why they are offering more deals in major cities compared to deals in tier II or tier III cities.

Note: Total number of offers by category is different from total number of offers by banks because in total number of offers by bank, one MasterCard deal applicable on say five banks’ cards was considered as five deals (one each for each bank) where as in total number of offers by category we have only taken into account valid deals in each city regardless of it is applicable on which banks’ cards. But even in this case one Cafe Coffee Day deal in say five cities will be considered as one deal in each city.

 

Conclusion:

As can be seen from number of offers these banks have come out with to entice consumers and the amount of marketing they are doing it is obvious banks are back in card business. And the amount of transaction done in past few years proves consumers have again started spending money through cards. So connecting two and two together we can safely say that there is a demand of cards and there is a supply of cards. We just wish banks do their work of issuing cards more responsibly and consumers spend money more responsibly, so that the party which has just began can continue forever.

How rewarding credit & debit cards can be

By Vinit Maniar

 

June 9, 2012 0 Comments

The title makes you remember those long lost reward points you earned on your cards? I won’t blame you because for most people reward on credit/debit cards mean reward points they earn after a purchase and which they forget quite easily! While that is true, now a days there’s much more to card based reward programs.

The basic concept behind selling credit/debit cards is to entice consumers with rewards so that they’ll shop using cards. In fact since a long time banks are offering reward points on each transaction, which can be later on redeemed for goodies. As a kid I remember asking my dad to always pay by his credit card when we used to go out in order to earn points which can be redeemed in future. I specifically recollect being rewarded twice — once with a pair of Reebok shoes & once with Big Bazaar vouchers. But the sad truth is we were rewarded only after spending a fortune. Though I don’t remember how much my dad actually spent using his card & worth of gifts, I am pretty sure the ratio wasn’t good. In fact during our analysis of this sector we have found that on an average reward to spend ratio is only 0.5%, which means you get a Rs. 500 gift voucher after you have spent Rs. 1,00,000! Too bad, no?

But things are surely changing for good. Banks have realized consumer is king and have therefore started offering a much better deal, in terms of offers on cards! Though the reward/spend ratio remain the same you at least get to avail amazing offers using your credit/debit cards. To give you a perspective, Citi bank credit & debit cardholders are entitled to over 1,000 dining deals alone. Then there are deals on shopping, entertainment & travel. Interestingly, these deals are not reward points based. These are pure discount offers, like 15% off or 25% off. Most of the time you get instant discount of upto 25% and sometimes cashback of equal amount. In addition to this you earn reward points which gets you goodies once in a while. What is even more interesting is that in order to avail these offers all you have to do is settle the bill by card instead of cash. That’s all — no pain only gain! At this point are you recollecting the old saying, “when something is too good to be true, it probably ain’t”? But believe me it is true. I put these deals on redanar day in, day out so I can actually say this is true.

And Citi bank is not alone in enticing consumers with amazing offers. All leading banks in India including SBI, HDFC, ICICI, Kotak, American Express, HSBC, Standard Chartered, IndusInd, Axis, etc. now have a special “deals” program. On top of that there are deals by Visa & MasterCard, applicable across all banks. To give you a number, there are over 9,500 card based deals on redanar at this moment, spread over multiple categories including dining, travel, beauty, entertainment, shopping, etc. and applicable across India. Interesting point to note here is these deals are applicable at our everyday merchant stores, not only at 5 star hotels & expensive shops. When you go through the list of stores running offers, more often than not you’ll see name of merchant stores you visit often. So just think how much money you can save during everyday shopping and dining by paying with cards instead of cash. Again to give you a perspective, here’s name of few merchants where you can avail discounts using credit/debit cards – Domino’s Pizza, Subway, Pizza Hut, Cafe Coffee Day, Barista Lavazza, Mocha, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, Guardian Pharmacy, Apollo Pharmacy, Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces, Lemon Tree Hotels, Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Big Bazaar, more Supermarket, Sia Art Jewellery, Gili Jewllery, Snap Fitness, Fastrack, MakeMyTrip.com, TravelGuru.com, Fame Cinemas, Cinemax, PVR, BookMyShow.com, eBay, Croma, eZone, Reliance Digital, etc.

I am pretty sure you regularly go to at least one or two places mentioned in the list, so imagine getting 15% or 20% off, just for paying by card instead of cash. If you ask me it certainly makes sense to avail these offers. In fact a while ago I myself availed of an amazing offer by Standard Chartered Bank at eZone. On the occasion of Republic Day back in January eZone had a nice offer — buy any product & get 6% cashback if you pay using Standard Chartered cards. As I was thinking of buying a digital camera, I immediately went to eZone and purchased a Canon digital camera, and paid using my brother’s Standard Chartered credit card and got 6% discount (cashback was credited to my brother’s account after a month or so). Just by using a card I was able to save around Rs. 600. It was amazing!

Lets take another example. If you go to Cafe Coffee Day often then there are three deals which you can avail of — Free Choco Rocks drink above bill of Rs. 150 by MasterCard, Free Choco Latte above bill of Rs. 200 by Standard Chartered, and Free Tropical Iceberg above bill of Rs. 125 by Loop Mobile. So if you happen to have these cards and go to CCD often imagine how much money you can save by availing these offers.

These were just two examples, but as I mentioned earlier there are over 9,500 deals to be availed of in our day to day shopping, dining, entertainment & travel. So no matter which banks’ card you have there are amazing offers to be availed of. And the best thing is, you don’t lose anything. Just pay by card and save money. Simple.

Seems logical? If you ask us then it is really amazing for people who use their cards for almost everything and people who use their cards occasionally.

Who says credit/debit cards can’t be rewarding? So go ahead and enjoy offers on cards (do use redanar to discover offers :) ), but keep in mind the following note.

Note: When using a credit card always use it carefully and only when needed. Don’t over do just because it is on credit as at the end of the day you will have to foot the bill. And always pay your bills on time to avoid interest payments and hassles.

Our first outdoor ad!

By Vinit Maniar

 

June 1, 2012 0 Comments

Marketing is really important for any business. After designing a wonderful product all you can do is pray and market it to everybody and hope it works! And we are no exception to this funda!

The above embedded video is of our first outdoor ad, running on DSN Global’s screens at select McDonald’s across India and suburban railway stations across Mumbai. As soon as our ad went live and friends called in to say they saw our ad I couldn’t stop myself from visiting McDonald’s. So I went there and took out my phone to record a video and waited for the ad to show up. After waiting for few minutes redanar ad came, I got excited like a kid, and shot the video of our ad! Honestly, I was very happy to see our ad and in the excitement had two burgers, fries, wedges, & a large cola! And oh I just forgot to add a chocolate soft serve!

By the time I had my meal I had seen redanar ad multiple times, but couldn’t have enough of it so spent some more time watching the ad!

Now my next visit is going to be at Cafe Coffee Day because that’s where redanar ad is going to show up next! This one’s going to be a different ad so will upload the new video pretty soon.

Meanwhile check out our ad here as well as at McDonald’s, Cafe Coffee Day, and Mumbai suburban railway stations.

Liked the ad? Please share it with your friends and family and share your thoughts with us through comments.

Introducing our startup

By Vinit Maniar

 

May 30, 2012 0 Comments

If you are reading this post then you need no introduction to redanar. So I’ll take this opportunity to introduce our startup, our team, our work culture — basically all behind-the-scene details.

The idea of redanar came about in mid 2011 when Sharmil went to Geoffrey’s (a popular bar in South Mumbai’s Marine Plaza Hotel) and stumbled across a leaflet saying you get 15% discount on food and beverages if you use your SBI Credit Card to settle the bill. He was surprised to learn that this offer was running for the past 9 months… being a frequent patron of Geoffrey’s, he could have saved hundreds of rupees over the past year if he had just known about the offer! After shaking his head many times he availed the offer by settling the bill with his credit card instead of cash and took advantage of the 15% discount.

On his way to home that fateful summer night, he realized that if there was an offer at Geoffrey’s, there have to be many more such offers… offers which regular consumers like him are not even aware of to take advantage of them. After coming home he took out his credit card kit and found a booklet of SBI offers. He went through it and found nice offers at many places he frequented regularly. The rest as they say was history… Sharmil decided to create a mobile app which would showcase these offers to consumers based on their location.

The app would have a list of all the credit and debit cards issued in India (and eventually globally), it would have offers linked to those particular cards, and all merchants, restaurants, shopping centers, malls, etc. would be geotagged so that consumers could discover offers in their neighborhood through their phones while on the go!  It would also be advantageous to have a notification system to notify users about offers in their vicinity and applicable on their cards.

Sharmil did some more research on deals on cards and found that most banks have amazing deals for their cardholders but very poor way of communicating them to their consumers. If you take all the major banks together, there are over thousands of amazing offers which can be utilized by consumers for their everyday shopping, dining and entertainment spends. What’s great is that these offers are valid for almost the entire year (completely opposite to the daily deals which expire after a few days), so more and more people can benefit from it as and when they get time. And the best part about these offers.. wait for it.. THEY ARE ALL FREE! Banks give away these offers for free to their consumers as long as they use their cards for payments instead of cash!

redanar’s first version was quickly developed for iOS and Android platforms. The application was well received by early adopters, so he started working on a new and improved version for both these platforms. During this time he met his old friend Devang after many years (both were in the same school). Soon they got chatting and Devang loved the idea. Devang is one of the promoters of digital outdoor advertising company called Digital Signage Networks. He quickly understood how great the idea was as a media and marketing tool for banks, brands and merchants and wanted to partner with Sharmil and help develop the app further and market it. Sharmil was also happy to have him on board as a co-founder, so both teamed up and decided to make redanar the best and most loved app in the consumer space.

They soon started expanding the team and hired Akshata as iOS developer. Then came Arul as BlackBerry developer. I was hired after that to handle content. Then came Yogita and Arshad for testing. Soon Shaul was hired for designing and Ghanshyam to help put amazing content. Sharmil himself handles all the php stuff and Android app, while Devang looks after marketing and tie-ups. This is our team as of now but it’ll grow in near future as we need few more team members.

Our office is located in South Mumbai and we have pretty chilled out work culture with both bosses being really cool! I have been in this company since last four months but have never seen Sharmil or Devang being “bossy” with anyone though you are expected to put in your best. Their thinking is work as you like but give your best. And as it is a startup you have to take ownership of your work and fire all cylinders to get the work done.

We work like crazy and have already updated the app thrice, each time adding meaningful new features. Fourth version is almost ready and will be out in next week or so. That’s not all we have already started work on a new version which will be drastically different from our current version. In the new version we are trying to bring in a “social” element and are changing the complete UI. As it is a drastic change from our current app, we got truck loads of work, so ending this post here to get back to some other work, but I will be back shortly with a new, interesting post.