Innovate to keep ahead in today's fractured world: Proctor

MUMBAI: Marketing relies on innovation to keep pace in a fractured world, Mindshare Worldwide CEO Dominic Proctor said here today.

Speaking at The Mindsahre Brand Equity Compass summit, Proctor said innovation is becoming increasingly important with brands having to market in a new world eco sphere.

"The choice for agencies and brands is between being an innovator and being a mere spectator," said the man who founded Mindshare Worldwide in 1997.
The difference between a leader and a follower is innovation. Companies need to have robust proceses for innovation. "The challenge is that while the amount of information available is growing, it can get lost in a company if not properly sorted. There are logistical challenges and I have heard companies say ‘If we only knew then what we know now’. This is a common refrain,” said Proctor.

Mentioning several benefits of information, Proctor said that the first gain is that it facilitates faster innovation.

Citing the example of Dell, Proctor said that the company listened and reacted quickly through correspondence. "They turned Twitter feed into a consumer channel to deal with issues many of which were negative and generated millions of dollars in incremental revenue."
Information helps innovate quickly. “An idea is useful but unless you are a technology company, it is not a business. You must create a framework through which new ideas flow in. Consumer insights must occur regularly. The Quaker oats campaign came from an insight - that Indians want to look healthy rather than be healthy."

Another important thing to remember is that risk is important for innovation to occur. “The risk in failing is far less than what will happen if one is paralysed by the thought of failure; the business stagnates. At the same time, a proper structure of thinking is needed to minimise the effects of risk.”
Proctor spoke about how Live is being used to develop analytics. It has worked with Ford to develop marketing projects from research conducted in 20 countries. “Mindshare makes sense of data through consumer insight. An agency has to provide ideas at every level. You have to remember at the same time that an idea can come from anywhere. It is not just about having an office space. Openness and dialogue can provide rich information.”

Another benefit of information is that it can yield richer insights into innovation. Proctor noted that messaging has to be part of what a consumer wants to hear and not interfere with what he/she wants to head. He gave the example of Dove working with the cast of Mad Men. The brand can reach different touch points including digital in a more effective manner, he said.

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