afaqs!

Zomato appoints Alok Jain as chief marketing officer

By afaqs! news bureau , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Digital | September 06, 2013
Jain was associated with DealsAndYou.com. In his new role, his job is to transform the image of Zomato to a global brand.

Info Edge (Naukri.com Group) backed online restaurant and events guide Zomato.com has appointed Alok Jain as its chief marketing officer. Confirming this to afaqs!, Jain states that he had joined the company a week back and as CMO, he will be responsible for all of Zomato's marketing efforts globally.

Alok Jain

Earlier, Jain was associated with Smile Group's daily deal website DealsAndYou.com as CMO. Jain's stint at Smile lasted for a short period of five months. He also has entrepreneurial experience, having founded and led the mobile apps firm, Unyqe, in 2011; a Singapore-based digital marketing solutions firm, Think Net, in May 2010; an online digital photo printing service, PhotoMasti.com, in March 2006; and an online T-shirt portal, Teepsy.com, in March 2005.

Besides being an entrepreneur, Jain has also been an independent digital marketing consultant had worked as territory manager with GE Capital from 2001 to 2002.

Speaking about his immediate responsibilities at Zomato, Jain informs that the company is in the midst of its global expansions and his job is to transform the image of the company to a global brand. "We are a consumer company and we need users on our website to survive. Once we have that global image as a brand, it becomes easier for us to operate in the markets where we already have a presence and in those will be launching our operations soon," Jain informs.

In July 2013, Zomato had entered New Zealand by launching operations in Auckland and Wellington. It also strengthened its operations in South Africa and United Kingdom by launching operations in Cape Town (South Africa), Manchester and Birmingham (United Kingdom) respectively. In March, Zomato expanded to Southeast Asia by entering The Philippines.

Jain asserts that the company will do a lot of B2B (business to business) advertising campaigns as it intends to reach more restaurants across the country. "We make money from the restaurants and that is why it is critical for us to reach them extensively," he adds.

Commenting on what comes across as a major marketing challenge for the company, Jain states that Zomato's end goal as a consumer internet company is not to spend anything on marketing. "We are not an e-commerce company and hence our goals are different when it comes to marketing. We don't do excessive advertising and rely on below the line activities and word of mouth for our brand to grow," he says.

Jain is an alumnus of the University of Tulsa, Oklahoma, and holds a Master's degree in business administration from the Goa Institute of Management. Founded by Deepinder Goyal and Pankaj Chaddah in July 2008 for restaurants in New Delhi, Zomato has expanded its services to 28 cities across eight countries with listings for around 1,18,000 restaurants.

In February 2013, Info Edge pumped a fresh round of Rs 55 crore in Zomato as a continuance to the previous investment of Rs 31 crore made in Zomato through three earlier rounds, taking the total investment count to Rs 86 crore.

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