Westbridge Capital-backed bike taxi start-up Rapido plans to spend about $25 million on advertising and marketing, in CY2020, Aravind Sanka, co-founder, Rapido, told BrandWagon Online. The start-up claims to have spent about $10 million in marketing, so far. According to Sanka, as the company increases its reach to 85 – 100 cities, it is imperative for it to focus on establishing the brand in the minds of consumers. “So far our marketing spent was focussed on driving transactions, but from here on we plan to strengthen the brand’s position,” he said.
As part of the marketing strategy, the start-up will focus on creating videos that will be played on platforms such as TikTok, YouTube besides TV. “The product has clocked more than 15 million downloads so far, and to take this number to 50 million, we intend to use video marketing as a key tool to increase reach and create a high brand recall. This is the quickest way to reach out to consumers,” Sanka added. Further, the company plans to roll-out campaigns in regional languages, especially in the markets where it is present.
Out-of-home (OOH) is another medium the bike taxi start-up plans to tap into. From billboards to bus stops, the company is looking at using various OOH mediums at strategic points in cities. For Sanka, the cost of consumer acquisition has reduced over the year with now being less than Rs 50 per user. “In the last two years, we have registered 10 times growth. 25% of the consumers have returned to use the platform after two years,” he added. The start-up claims that more than eight million users have completed one transaction in a lifetime. The average ticket price, the start-up claims to be is less than a dollar.
It further plans to expand operations to 200 cities. Moreover, the start-up is looking to electrify its fleet of vehicles. As per Sanka, the company is the largest in terms of market share in the category. The company posted 13 times increase in revenue to Rs 10.64 crore, on the back of net loss of Rs 53.29 crore, for the year ended March, 2019, as per regulatory filings with the Registrar of Companies (RoC).