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Survey shows Zomato is doing something right with brand awareness

About 53 per cent of respondents from these Hindi-speaking states knew what Zomato is, which is significant. But it is well below the awareness for Paytm.

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Zomato is in the news again. It is in the process of getting listed on the stock exchanges at an expected valuation of Rs 65,000 crore or nearly $9 billion. On average, a person orders food worth Rs 400 through Zomato. So, for it to be valued at Rs 65,000 crore, ideally, all Indians 130 crore should order through Zomato. Of course, that would be a very simplistic interpretation, since the market value is based on an overall computation of customer lifetime value and not just by the number of people ordering food.

But nevertheless, analysts have pointed out how Zomato, which only delivers food, is valued more than the companies that cook it. Zomato is valued more than the combined worth of Domino’s Pizza, McDonald’s and Burger King. To be clear, this is not to suggest that the food delivery app is irrationally overvalued. It is merely interesting to observe how consumer companies are valued and what relationship they have, if any, to popularity and adoption by actual consumers on ground. Is it really the case that Zomato is more popular and used by Indians more than Domino’s Pizza or McDonald’s?

Prashnam decided to find out this week.

Also Read: Zomato, Flipkart, Paytm — flush with unicorns, India’s tech moment arrives

Popularity of Zomato, Dominos, McDonald’s and Paytm

In two surveys, with 767 people in the first and 838 people in the second, across the five large states in the Hindi-speaking belt – Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, and Jharkhand – we compared the popularity and awareness of Zomato vis-à-vis Domino’s Pizza or McDonald’s. We also decided to add a non-food consumer technology product for comparison and chose Paytm.

We asked three questions to people in these states. 

Q1: What is Zomato?

a. It’s the name of a movie

b. It’s an app to order food

c. It is an app to make payment

d. I don’t know


Q2: What is Paytm?

a. It’s the name of a movie

b. It’s an app to order food

c. It is an app to make payment

d. I don’t know


Q3: Which of these foods have you eaten at least once?

a. Domino’s Pizza

b. McDonald’s Burger

c. Both

d. None

About 53 per cent of respondents from these Hindi-speaking states knew what Zomato is, which is significant. But it is well below the awareness for Paytm. Nearly 69 per cent of people surveyed knew what Paytm is. News reports indicate that Paytm is also planning to list itself in the markets soon. Clearly, a much higher awareness for Paytm vis-à-vis Zomato could means good for the former’s valuation.

Graphic by Ramandeep Kaur | ThePrint

Among those surveyed, 43 per cent said they had either eaten a Domino’s pizza or a McDonald’s burger, or both. This is not to be compared with the 53 per cent awareness of Zomato since being aware is quite different from having used the services. The comparison between quick service restaurants and a food delivery app such as Zomato should strictly be limited to using Zomato and eating food.

Graphic by Ramandeep Kaur | ThePrint

Readers may recall that in May 2021, Prashnam had carried out a survey on Zomato that checked awareness as well as measured its usage. Forty-seven per cent in these same Hindi-speaking states were aware of Zomato in May, which is comparable to the 53 per cent now since Zomato has been in the news these days. It also proves the consistency of Prashnam’s results as for any survey, consistency in results over multiple rounds is the true test of accuracy and credibility. In the May survey, only 12 per cent of those who were aware of Zomato had used it in the previous week. So, weekly usage of Zomato is also vastly different from its awareness.

Graphic by Ramandeep Kaur | ThePrint

Also Read: Is Zomato IPO like Virar local? Should delivery guy tip you? Memes go nuts amid unicorn frenzy

Awareness and brand recall are crucial

Awareness and brand recall are essential attributes for companies that rely on consumer revenue. Given India’s size, diversity, and poverty, the first challenge for any modern/new consumer company is to spread the word and be recalled. The fact that most people in the Hindi belt seem to be aware of Zomato augurs well for the company.

One caveat Prashnam is an artificial intelligence-driven interactive phone survey platform. Its respondents will naturally be those who are somewhat technology savvy–to the point of knowing how to respond to IVR surveys. So, to that extent, an app-based consumer company is likely to be better known among Prashnam respondents. 

Prashnam, in keeping with its principles of transparency and integrity, makes available the entire raw data of this survey here for analysts and researchers to verify and analyse further.

Disclosure: Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma is among the distinguished founder-investors of ThePrint. Please click here for details on investors.

Rajesh Jain is founder, Prashnam, an AI technology start-up that aims to make opinion gathering more scientific, easy, fast, and affordable. Views are personal.

The article is part of ThePrint-Prashnam Vox Pop series.

(Edited by Srinjoy Dey)

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