CaratLane is an online jewelry store in India that was founded in 2008. In 2016, the Titan group made a strategic investment into the company that led to a successful partnership between CaratLane and Tanishq, India’s largest jewelry brand.
CaratLane reached out to Poocho to get a deeper understanding of its jewelry buyers in Ludhiana and Chennai. The objective was to help the brand rethink its marketing strategy in order to increase brand recall, and so sales, at these two locations.
Each location was treated as a separate research study. However, the advantage of running two location-based studies simultaneously is that it allowed us to find overarching patterns in consumption behavior and sentiment that also superseded location-based specificities and context.
At each location, we spoke to a combination of brand loyalists (regular buyers/patrons of the brand) and “irregular” buyers who might or might not have purchased CaratLane jewelry within a stipulated time frame. Loyalists gave us a baseline understanding of where the brand succeeds with its customer experience while research with irregulars revealed the opportunity spaces to convert irregulars given what we already knew about a desirable brand experience.
CaratLane combined our qualitative research insights with in-house data they regularly monitor across the two locations. As a result of a more holistic understanding of consumer challenges and desires, the brand launched a successful awareness campaign in Chennai leading to increase in brand goodwill and much higher sales conversion numbers.
Types of consumer personas per location based on jobs-to-be-done and top challenges
Increase in sales conversion after revamped marketing campaign in Chennai
Minutes of interview data recorded, transcribed and analyzed
Week-long consumer diaries documenting daily life and everyday habits
As part of our research intervention, we opted to use “digital diaries” as a methodology to collect lived experiences of our participants. We onboarded 25 female jewelry buyers into the study that was conducted via WhatsApp. For 7 days spread across 2 weeks, we asked women to upload pictures and videos of their daily-wear jewelry as well as share their accompanying thoughts and feelings around what they were wearing and why.
Diaries became a powerful tool by which researchers could corroborate information collected from participants in interviews with in-context data. Women participated while at home and “on-the-move” - at shopping malls, from their cars, etc. Their everyday stories revealed aspects of their personas we could not have captured through interviews alone - for example, the prominence of jewelry (or not) in their daily presentation of self. Combined with interview data, diaries allowed us to build richer and more robust personas informed by realspeak and in-context multimedia insights.
A key premise to our research design was to uncover the socio-cultural drivers shaping buying behaviors of women in Chennai and Ludhiana. While each study was treated independently, doing them both together presented opportunities for deeper analysis as we were able to compare and contrast data simultaneously for more context-building. We were able to differentiate between socio-cultural drivers and universal behaviors and rationalizations that cut across both types of geographical buyers for more strategic planning.
We started with desk research and immersed ourselves in the cultural landscape of the two locations, especially as it came to jewelry and adornment practices. We also conducted a stakeholder workshop to understand how CaratLane understood differences in buyer behaviors across both locations. Together, these exercises informed our interview questions and diary prompts. The end result was data collection and analysis that was deeply rooted in uncovering influences (social, cultural, and environmental) that were deeply personal and contextually resonant. This information made its way into communication-based recommendations and influencer networks the brand leveraged as part of its new marketing strategy.
As an extension of our socio-cultural analysis, we were cognizant of how participants articulated their relationship to their jewelry (their favorite pieces, memories connected to them, people who gifted them) as well as how they described their jewelry.
We learned rather quickly that across both locations there were key differences in how women defined different jewelry categories. This information helped us further nuance our questions and diary prompts while the study was ongoing to hone in on why and how definitions varied across both groups. At a fundamental level, this insight debunked the assumption that one type of communication language would work across geographies.