Report on Shemaroo

Digital media budgets, e-commerce selling surge in 2020: MMA report

Discretionary categories like F&B took the hardest hit.

MUMBAI: The Covid2019 pandemic has triggered a definite shift in the consumer and business landscape. The advertising and marketing industry has had to quickly adapt to the new normal, realigning monies and deploying new tools and tactics to connect with audiences; in this regard, digital ecosystem has been the biggest gainer. In fact, digital media budgets have registered a 34 per cent increase over the past several months, states the Modern Marketer Reckoner report released by GroupM and MMA India.

The report, which takes a deep dive into the business and media ecosystem of the country, underlines that 23 per cent of business respondents have focused on ecommerce selling this year.

It further states that 54 percent of businesses in India have been impacted by the pandemic, of which retail, travel and tourism have been hit the hardest. It highlights that almost 90 per cent of people are more careful about how they spend their money in the new normal. 50 per cent of people have delayed big purchases and almost 38 per cent have cut down on day-to-day expenses.

Most affected by consumers' tightened purse-strings are the discretionary categories – 77 per cent have reduced eating at restaurants, while 55 per cent have cut down on purchasing clothes and fashion accessories. Further, 48 per cent respondents have reduced spending on consumer electronics.

What has seen a positive impact are the areas related to health and hygiene – 29 per cent are exercising more at home, 24 per cent are consuming more vitamins and supplements, and 23 per cent are spending more on groceries.

With the onset of the pandemic, people stepped out of their comfort zones, tried something new, picked up diverse skillsets. Among the digital-first timers – 45 per cent streamed movies, 33 per cent used an e-learning app, 28 per cent purchased grocery online, and 22 per cent consulted a doctor online. As work from home became the norm, 43 per cent respondents utilised software to smoothen the workflow.

This year’s Modern Marketer Reckoner report focuses on two major perspectives – the consumer lens and the marketer lens. The consumer lens focuses on the theme “Nothing Is Certain” and it captures the uncertainty and the changes which happened in 2020 at various levels from a consumer’s point of view. The first half of the report talks from a consumer sentiment perspective and the impact it has had at a socio-cultural level. It also highlights the media consumption perspective, with a special focus on digital and mobile app ecosystem. This looks at the growth in the mobile and digital ecosystem in the last few months and how it has leapfrogged. And lastly, it highlights the shopping perspective, focusing on how the shopping basket has changed for consumers, the shift towards essentials and the huge increase in ecommerce as a mode of shopping.

The second half of the report – ‘Everything is Possible’ – focuses on providing a modern marketing reckoner to marketers on the key strategic tentpoles they should look at, so as to navigate the ambiguity and the uncertain business and economic landscape. It highlights the strategic pillars of modern marketing which marketers should deploy to not only deal with the current uncertainty but is a reckoner, even beyond. This part focuses on how the way consumer content has been changing and therefore how the content ecosystem is seeing the emergence of new formats and trends. Thus, it showcases and discusses how brand communication has moved from creativity to proliferation and thereby what should brands do to retool their strategies. It also highlights the growing importance of accountability in marketing and why it is more critical at times like this.

GroupM south Asia CEO Prasanth Kumar said, “The advertising and marketing industry has been encountering some fast changes in the past few years with the advancement in innovation and technology. In this current wave of uncertainty and ambiguity, it becomes even more critical for marketers to measure ROI and therefore, invest in data and technology to do the same. This year with the report we wanted to decipher the changing face of content and influencers, new communication formats and channels, and the ways to build powerful brands.”

“The reckoner underlines the marketing industry’s certainty when it comes to the rapidly expanding mobile channel,” said MMA MD APAC Rohit Dadwal. “The industry, on the whole, recognises that the modern era of the market is upon us and we need to embrace it. This new age of marketing is going to be built on tools and technology that this report helps to outline along with great examples through the lens of various industry leaders who are the torch bears of this change… helping shape the future for marketers and agencies in India and abroad.”

GroupM south Asia president Tushar Vyas said, “One of the biggest areas of impact that has emerged is the digital ecosystem. It plays a huge part in the way the business landscape of today has unfolded. We believe that modern marketers will have an advantage if they can apply deep insights to understand the changing landscape. In this period of uncertainty, we need to be more outcome-driven and mobile aligned to usher hope and dynamism into the life of the consumer again. With this report, we wanted to address the huge changes in the industry and talk about the new ways to embed data into every part of the business and decode them to get powerful insights which in turn can help brands communicate better.” 

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