None of us had expected the lockdown to last for over 2 months; the fight against Covid-19 has only united us and in a way has prepped us all to adapt to the many ‘new normals’ that it brought with itself. The nation-wide lockdown is slowly being lifted across orange and green zones and life is crawling back to a new-normalcy.
Businesses and brands are now are making their way back into the business; planning their communication plans for a new world post the covid-19 lockdown, keeping a note of some of the new buzz words such as ‘social distancing’, ‘work from home’ and the latest one; ‘atmanirbhar’.
Medianews4u brings to you, yet another perspective, this time not only from a particular sector but from various sectors, and from the ones that were terribly hit by Covid-19.
Well Covid-19 is not over yet, but it’s definitely the start of good. It’s time for Back to Business…
Tata Motors in their Back to Business story on Medianews4u share their post-lockdown plans with anticipation in spike in demand of passenger vehicles because of social distancing playing a major role in the lives of vehicle owners.
How are you coping with the impact of Covid-19 on your brand? How effectively have you used the lockdown period?
As a brand, we are coping with the impact of Covid-19 by constantly staying connected with our customers through a variety of digital initiatives. Since the lockdown was announced, we have been actively engaging with our customers on various social media platforms.
We have also utilized the lockdown to design new ways of working, respecting the mandatory safety norms and aggressively adopting digital. Through rigorous sessions conducted virtually, employees, dealers and supplier partners have been acquainted with the new norms and trained on the feature-rich BSVI offerings to effectively conduct sales and engage with customers.
The quest for a solution to a particular crisis helps invent new business opportunities and sometimes leads to a revision of existing business models? What sort of innovation has or will the Covid-19 pandemic bring to your brand/industry/category?
In alignment with our endeavor to adopt digital, we have launched Click to Drive, which is an end to end digital sales initiative by us that has taken our entire passenger vehicle product sales online. This initiative will help customers buy cars from the safety and comfort of their homes. It has been integrated with all Tata Motors dealers from more than 750 outlets across the country and will also offer vehicle home delivery for our customers at a later date. Our PV customers can explore and discover our products with the innovative digital brochures that we have made available through our Click to Drive platform. The video brochure helps customers discover each car and its features in great detail.
We also understand that it is important to bring the human aspect of the brand across channels of communication. Our aim has always been to communicate that we are constantly available to our customers. Therefore, we are keeping our customers entertained with the help of online puzzles and games and by providing vehicle care taking tips to keep their vehicles safe during the lockdown.
While some parts of the country have become Covid-19 free, cities like Mumbai and Delhi are still in a lockdown situation. How are you planning to resume business across cities that are not in the Red?
We are closely working with all our dealers on multiple fronts to assist and bring them to speed on the new ways of working around the principles of safety and social distancing. We have issued a new set of guidelines for our passenger vehicle dealers to maintain social distancing norms. Our dealer staff will now provide precise timings for meetings and make appointments only after verifying all requirements.
The dealership staff has also been asked to put up a document dropbox for insurance and registration documents at the dealership, or receive them via mail to eliminate the possibility of any physical contact. We have also asked them to encourage customers to come with a minimum number of family members and to ensure that paperwork is kept ready at the time of delivery. We have guided dealers to stagger their appointments by touching base with every customer to run the workshop operations smoother. Pick-up and drop facility is also being promoted to avoid customer visiting workshops. Additionally, we are dispatching bio-degradable seat covers, steering covers, and gear knob cover for spare parts, which will be used in vehicles that will come to our workshops for repairs and disposed of later when the cars are repaired and get delivered to the customers.
Dedicated ‘Restart’ teams at each location have curated detailed guidelines and conducted intensive training for maintaining physical distancing at all workplaces, shop floors, and canteen facilities. Enhanced sanitization measures are being implemented and only limited, operationally required staff is being asked to come to work in personal vehicles or company transport.
Every employee re-joining the workplace is required to download and use the mandatory ‘Aarogya Setu’ app. Employees are also required to periodically check-in and declare the status of their own, as well as their family’s health on the Tata Motors in-house health track portal. In addition, all employees and visitors entering and exiting the plant premises are also being screened for temperature checks.
More than 400 sales touchpoints and 450 workshops are already operational with a new set of the standard operating procedure (SOPs) for enhanced safety advising minimal interactions and prescribing prudent social distancing norms during interactions between customer and dealer staff.
What will be your communication strategy post the opening of the lockdown? Understandably bringing customers back to you would be difficult… What will be the objective of the communication/marketing strategy?
While our ‘Click to Drive’ campaign was originally conceived as an additional point of the sales platform for our products, it has served us well during the lockdown period by not only minimizing the amount of physical contact but also by lending us a leg-up to procure bookings and to confirm sales, thereby giving us a head start to ease into our other selling methods for when things return to normal. However, the online model will not completely replace the traditional model of purchasing. The digital model is aimed at minimizing the amount of physical contact that the traditional model requires. Furthermore, digital product demos will play an important role in making product exploration more experiential for the customer.
How did you keep the morale of the employees during this lockdown period?
At Tata Motors, the safety and wellbeing of our employees, customers, and ecosystem partners continue to remain our utmost priority. Accordingly, we are continually evolving new ways of working respecting the mandatory safety norms. The rapid adaption to work from home (WFH) on a large scale, virtual collaborations across restrictions of geography, and evolution of a new work-life balance offer interesting learning to build on. We launched a health portal, wherein employees check-in and declare the status of them and their family’s health. This information has enabled our Medical team to reach out to those who needed help and provide them support. In addition to this, we have also launched the ‘Employee Assistance Program’, a confidential counseling service for employees and members of their families to foster their emotional well-being. Apart from the above, we have also rolled out a variety of corporate offers of up to Rs. 15,000 for our employees and vendors on our entire BS6 range of products.
What are some of the post-lockdown business strategies that you will use to bring the business back on track or at least get it in the right direction and also create demand for yourself?
Although the situation is uncertain right now, the pandemic has brought about a significant change in the perspective regarding transportation usage in the minds of consumers. We anticipate that as people adapt to the norms of social distancing and move away from using public transport, the demand for personal mobility is expected to go up, thereby driving the demand for passenger vehicles. So certainly, we will be ready to address this spike in demand, in the coming days.