Mumbai-based WebEngage was founded in 2011 by Avlesh Singh and Ankit Utreja to help companies devise marketing plans better. WebEngage’s Retention Operating System is a suite for marketers to store user data, provide actionable insights and orchestrate omnichannel campaigns by leveraging user insights to provide hyper-personalised end-user experiences.
The marketing automation platform helps brands drive revenue from existing customers and potential users across 10 communications channels. Its clients are spread across e-commerce, edtech, fintech, food tech, media and publications, gaming, BFSI, healthcare, and online retail industries. Some of WebEngage’s key customers include brands like HUL, Bajaj Finserv, Unacademy, ALT Balaji, MakeMyTrip, Zivame and First-Cry.
During a recent chat with Analytics India Magazine, Raahul Seshadri — Director of Engineering at WebEngage, takes us behind the scenes of the marketing automation platform. Raahul joined the company in 2019 to drive the technical direction for WebEngage. He is responsible for creating innovative solutions leveraging AI and solidifying security practices.
Edited excerpts from the conversation:
AIM: What pain point is WebEngage trying to address?
Raahul Seshadri: WebEngage helps brands realise the importance of retention. It is a practice that is often ignored by businesses at an early stage while they prioritise acquisition — which is 5x more expensive. WebEngage is a new age Retention Operating System allowing marketers to get actionable insights and orchestrate hyper-personalised campaigns across channels. We aim to educate the B2C digital consumer business community on the impact of customer retention.
AIM: What are your products and services?
Raahul Seshadri: WebEngage is a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) product with three major parts:
- A Customer Data Platform (CDP) pools all customer data in one place and builds a 360-degree profile.
- The Engagement aspect allows the creation of highly dynamic lifecycle campaigns at scale.
- Finally, the Personalisation aspect makes sure that every user receives communication tailored to their attributes and behaviour.
AIM: Explain the tech behind WebEngage’s Retention Operating System.
Raahul Seshadri: WebEngage is powered by custom solutions built for speed, scale, and efficiency. Being in the cloud (AWS), we’re able to scale arbitrarily to handle billions of data points every day and send out hundreds of millions of engagements in a day. All of this has been achieved by careful planning and continual optimisation of the whole stack.
AIM: What tech tools do you use?
Rahul Seshadri: We are heavy users of AWS, Slack, Recruiterbox, Zoom, Atlassian, and Click.
AIM: How are you leveraging AI and ML technologies to automate marketing?
Raahul Seshadri: AI and ML technologies are leveraged in several areas. ML has a reputation for being slow and costly, especially when you have a large data warehouse. We’re able to build specialised models that are not just accurate but also fast. We approach AI and ML from the lens of first principles. An example application of AI is send-time optimisation, where we predict when a particular customer should receive a push notification.
AIM: What is your USP?
Raahul Seshadri: Customers love the simplicity of the product and our dedication toward making our customers successful. We have made our product intuitive while creating very complex life cycles of customer engagement. It is a one-stop shop for all marketing automation needs.
WebEngage was a leader in the Mid-Market Grid report for Marketing Automation by G2 for Spring 2021, ahead of many competitors. Additionally, we received six awards in the Martech awards 2020 by E4M.
AIM: How is WebEngage reimagining the marketing automation landscape in India?
Raahul Seshadri: With mobile technology as a core focus, we aim to humanise marketing further, improve and innovate our current suite by enabling more contextual, relevant, and engaging communication for brands.
Our vision ahead is to help all digital B2C brands accelerate growth and engage users with technology-enabled solutions.
AIM: What are the future plans of WebEngage?
Raahul Seshadri: The main driver is to enable more personalised, engaging, and relevant communications by leveraging AI and ML. This would involve making the product more powerful while keeping it intuitive so that the marketer can focus more on the strategy rather than on juggling tools.