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Brands on its way to digital success

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MUMBAI: As digital advertising and online presence gains ground for brands, they are increasingly realising that the digital world differs greatly from traditional media. A one size fits all strategy is unlikely to help brands leverage the full strength of the digital platform.

Additionally, user engagement in real time and dynamic digital environment is a challenge. To add credibility to visibility, marketers need to continue to make full use of online by listening and engaging-not just showcasing.

Discussing the same were panelists namely Dentsu Aegis CEO Ashish Bhasin, GroupM South Asia CEO CVL Srinivas, Producers Guild of America CEO, Bunnygraph and VP, new media John Heinsen, Culture Machine CEO Sameer Pitalwalla and Viacom18 Media MTV EVP and business head Aditya Swamy.

The panelist discussed the ingredients required to build a successful online brand presence. The session was moderated by film-maker Rohan Sippy.

According to Srinivas, the world is moving towards programmatic buying and advertising. “Most of the advertising media is getting automated on digital. It has huge implications on the brands,” he said.

Talking about brand’s engagement on the digital world, Bhasin feels that there is nothing different in the digital world earlier than the digital brands. He believes that many brands in today’s time are going wrong. “The principle of any brand is to identify the consumer’s needs and fulfil them,” he said adding that today many brands are getting caught between digital and technology.

He believes that the key to success will be to retain factors like - maintaining the principles of brand building and secondly speed of response accelerated to deliver a lot more basis on the consumer’s needs.

Heinsen opined that brands on digital platforms are the best combination. It gives visibility to brands even more. A successful brand building is the convergence of three things – traditional media, advertising and technology. According to him, integrating these things are needed to build a brand. “As content creators and story-tellers, if we have all these factors only then can you entertain, engage and influence the audiences.”

According to Pitalwalla, brands face two challenges on the digital platforms. One, there are multiple platforms and each of them comes with their own rules and have a lot more content than traditional media. Second, there is a fragmentation of content. He believes that TV commercials have become just one format in a way people are interacting with the brand.

Swamy has a different story to tell. He asserted that if people are not talking about your brand, it is considered that your brand has not made it to the heart and minds of consumers. He feels that brand management has now become a 24x7 and 365 days activity.

As a broadcaster and content creator, Swamy believes that everyone is messing with the format. “People are just playing with all kinds of formats. There is not one fixed formula to it, but people are just experimenting and waiting for it to hit the right chord.”

Swamy added that dialogue conversation with the digital audiences is very important to keep the brand healthy and live. He stated the example of Roadies. “When Roadies was launched, we noticed that there was buzz only for that time of the period till it was on-air. Offline, there were no conversations at all. To keep the brand alive, we launched a digital series, which is accessible throughout the year and now the digital has become a base and TV show just compliments it. That is the power of digital,” he informs.

Bhasin believes that today’s consumers have matured. Earlier, people consumed whatever was shown on television. “Now the consumers are telling us what to do. They are dictating the tonality to which we can pass message through our brand,” he said.

Heinsen believes in the power of conversations. “As a content creator, you should be able to create a content that can spark off conversations. And that’s where social media platforms come into play.”

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