Germin8 is a Big Data analytics company focused on helping companies understand and act in real time on the conversations by its stakeholders. Dr.Ranjit Nair, CEO & Founder of Germin8 elaborates about the solution, its GTM strategy and business model and the overall Indian digital intelligence market.
What are the digital intelligence solutions and services you offer?
We have two software products that we offer called Germin8 Listening and Trooya.
Germin8 Listening is a social media listening product that enables brands to understand what consumers are writing in social media about them, their products, product categories and campaigns
Trooya is a social media customer service helpdesk that enables brands to respond to and resolve complaints, queries and leads from customers and prospective customers
In addition to these products, we also have a services team who offers analytics services and communication services on top of the two products that we have. These services are optional – we have some customers who use our products directly on their own and some who use our products indirectly via our services team
What is the business model Germin8 follows for these products? How is the payment structure with your customers?
For the two products, Germin8 Listening and Trooya, we have a SAAS model where customers pay a subscription fee each month based on the volume of conversations that we track and the number of social media channels that these brands have. On the other hand, the services clients pay us a monthly subscription for the product and a retainer fee for the services. The services retainer fee depends on the team that is deployed for that customer.
What this means vis-à-vis payment structure is that customers pay us a monthly subscription that depends on the volume of conversations that we track and also a monthly retainer fee for the optional services that they may avail of.
How do you ensure the authenticity of data coming from so many heterogeneous sources?
We ensure that we fetch data from sources that are reliable. Many of these sites have inbuilt mechanisms to clean up data and weed out fake accounts and bots. We also perform some analysis of the authors to see what else they have posted and whether there is any suspicious behavior like creating the account just moments before posting something about a brand, patterns of writing positive things about a particular brand, etc.
How is the unstructured data obtained from multiple sources structured so that it can be analyzed?
We use text mining and Natural Language Processing algorithms to annotate the unstructured data. This allows us to tag the data with fields like sentiment expressed brands, touch points being discussed, sentiment for the brand, etc. We also have determined the values of fields like gender and location of the author. Once we have these structured fields we can query the data and slice and dice it in different ways.
What is Germin8’s operating model with the customers? How do you maintain exclusivity and competitive neutrality here?
Customers access our two products on their own to identify insights or to communicate with their customers, or via the analytics reports put together by our services team. Some of the customers might be competitors in a particular domain. And though they are driving insights based on data about that domain, for subscription customers, each customer’s data is maintained separately without access to each other’s data. For customers who take services from us, we ensure that competitor companies are served by distinct teams with Chinese walls maintained between them, much like in a consulting company who might serve many companies in the same industry
What is Germin8’s GTM strategy and which are the verticals you are witnessing maximum traction? Who are some of your marquee customers?
For our GTM strategy, we use a combination of
- Referrals from existing customers
- Content marketing to get inbound leads
- Direct selling for named accounts
Financial services and FMCG have been the verticals we have seen maximum traction with some of our marquee customers including the likes of ICICI Bank, ICICI Lombard, Tata Sons, Tata Motors, Mondelez among others.
How big is this market for digital intelligence in India? Who are your main competitors?
According to our estimates, the digital intelligence market in India is worth at least Rs 300 crores a year and growing at around 25% each year. Some major players in this area and who are our competitors include OneDirect, Locobuzz, Simplify360, Brandwatch, Sprinklr.
How does social media intelligence data actually help companies in improving their overall productivity?
Social media intelligence gives brands a 360 degree view of their stakeholders’ actions, feedback, opinions, and sentiment with regards to the brand. These services help brands figure out trends, using predictive analytics, and monitor millions of social media sites, online news sites and social media brand channels in real time, across geographies and across multiple languages. We recommend using social media analytics to find out what stakeholders are saying about the competitor brands to assess and benchmark strengths and weaknesses of their products and services. It also helps to know how brand fares against their competitors on key industry-specific parameters.
What are some of the key tenets of analytics approach in Germin8?
The key trends of our approach are that analytics needs to be actionable and timely. This means that analytics needs to be tied to some business outcome so that it is useful and that it is customized for the industry or organization. Also, insights should be delivered in time. This means that if an organization is not ready for real-time decision making there is no need for the insights to be delivered in real time. But if the decision is one where acting in time is critical there is no excuse for the insights to not be available in a timely manner.
We believe that analytics needs to be democratized so that you don’t need to be a data scientist to be able to interpret the analytics we present. We are committed to ensuring that our analytics and the data we process are public and cannot be used to harm anyone.