Homegrown brand Noise has carved a niche for itself in India’s lifestyle tech space, which is highly cluttered with multiple players. From noise-cancelling headphones and truly wireless earbuds to smartwatches and Bluetooth speakers, Noise covers almost everything that one might look for to lead a convenient life. Founded in 2018, the company is leading the industry with a 24.5% market share in the wearables category, as per IDC Worldwide Wearable Device Tracker. Amit Khatri, Co-founder, Noise, reveals more about the brand, its business model and strategy to lead the India market, in an interaction with Ramesh Kumar Raja. Excerpts:
What was the idea behind the inception of Noise?
The inception of Noise happened when we saw a nascent latent market gap of not finding a decent solution in the connected lifestyle category for ourselves and others. While relating with it, we realised that there is a huge opportunity with no other Indian brand standing strong and building a lifestyle and fitness community of a kind. This led to the setting up of a brand that’s all about quality, innovation and above all, what the consumers need.
Can you tell us about your product category?
As a lifestyle gadgets brand, we operate in the audio and smart wearables categories. At present, we have more than 30 products catering to different segments of consumers.
How do you keep yourself different from your existing competitors?
Our uniqueness lies in our customer-centricity, where we engage with our consumers in order to create products that truly fulfill their needs. When this approach comes together with data-driven design and development, we are able to set ourselves apart from our competitors.
How difficult was it for you to set foot in the wearables market in India?
In a cluttered market with multiple players, the first challenge was building a product that was innovative, differentiated and matched the consumer demands. This is because we are a people-first organisation, and that also translates into how we function as a brand back on home turf. Becoming a culture-driven company where people and their voices matter was a challenge that we were excited about and today, we have a team of more than 150 young, enthusiastic and creative people who work together to bring the best to the Indian consumers, while understanding what they exactly need.
|“Whether it’s a work call or a Netflix binge session, our audio devices help in doing both with perfection, without the need for any extra gadget. Being at home with minimal physical activity, people have now become more conscious about fitness, which is where our smart wearables come into the picture with a variety of features to keep up with their changing needs”|
How much did your business model change because of the COVID-19 situation?
The spread of COVID-19 pandemic across the world had a significant impact on the consumers’ expectations and demands across categories. From changing lifestyle to the emerging WFH scenario, there were multiple behavioural changes in the customers’ psyche. After providing a seamless experience to our customers before the pandemic, identifying transition in the buying behaviour and needs was of paramount importance. We diverted all the marketing efforts towards digital media and in leveraging the available e-commerce platforms effectively. Keeping the WFH scenario in mind, we introduced new smart wearables and audio products so that the tech demands during the new normal could be met. So far, it has been a successful exercise for us, as the response has been phenomenal, to say the least.
How much new-age tech solutions are in demand nowadays?
The consumers are constantly looking for the latest technology that can add value to their lives. For this, they want nothing but the best and we help them by bringing new-age tech solutions in the form of audio and smart wearables.
What is your marketing strategy?
We have always been a digital-first brand as that’s where our target audience is. Our strategy revolves around reaching out to people where they are and speaking to them in the language they understand. Apart from that, we have also forayed into traditional marketing techniques via print and offline ads lately.
Can you please tell us about your market share in India?
As per IDC Worldwide Wearable Device Tracker, we are leading the industry with a 24.5% market share in the wearables category. Going forward, we would like to maintain the lead by being at the forefront of innovation and technology.
How has the consumer behaviour changed amid the pandemic?
With work from home becoming the norm, people now need gadgets that help them switch seamlessly between their professional and personal lives. Whether it’s a work call or a Netflix binge session, our audio devices help in doing both with perfection, without the need for any extra gadget. Being at home with minimal physical activity, people have now become more conscious about fitness, which is where our smart wearables come into the picture with a variety of features to keep up with their changing needs.
What’s your expansion strategy?
After successfully exploring digital avenues, we are now planning to expand further via offline mediums. Our recent partnerships with Reliance Digital and Vijay Sales are helping us reach out to a larger section of consumers who we haven’t talked to before.