On the CBPM’s third day in New Delhi, we spent the day with the team at Google learning about the Indian consumer, company culture, and how Google tailors its products and offerings to the Indian market. While the tech industry differs from the consumer packaged goods industry in many ways, both share an important, central notion: a relentless fixation on putting the consumer first.
Our visit to Google allowed us to learn firsthand about just a couple projects the company has implemented to serve the Indian consumer specifically.
Internet Saathi: Two thirds of India’s population lives rurally, of which a staggering amount lacks literacy and even awareness of the Internet. Faced with this situation, Google partnered with Tata Trust to launch Internet Saathi, or “Internet Friend” in Hindi, to empower Indian women across rural parts of the country to learn about and use the internet. The program leverages influencers in local communities who hold group trainings to teach Indian women how to use the internet. So far, the program has reached 11.5 million Indian women, just a fraction of today’s 410 million Indian Internet users.
Google Translate and Google Voice: In India, there are 22 national languages, and more than 1,300 dialects spoken in cities and villages throughout the country. This means that often times, someone from one region of the country speaks a completely different language than someone from another region. To tackle this conundrum and bring Google products to more users throughout the county, Google implemented Google Voice in 8 Indian languages, and Google Translate in 9 Indian languages. Now, more Indian consumers can find the information they need, when they need it, in their native language.
Our visit ended with a tour of Google's New Delhi office boasting a rooftop terrace, nap pods, game rooms, and fully stocked kitchens. But what was more telling of Google's team and culture in New Delhi was the warmth and hospitality of everyone with whom we met--a warmth characteristic of Indians throughout the countr