Guest Article

Future of India Marketing in India

The shift in the marketing operations in the last 10 years. What responsibilities have been added or removed? How has it changed over the years, what is being asked of your teams that wasn’t a decade ago

  • In the past decade, marketing has undergone a tectonic shift and now encompasses a 360-degree approach where the customer is at the center of all things
  • Marketing now operates on a more ‘pull’ than ‘push’ strategy. Marketers need to go to where customers are. They need to be present on platforms that their customers actively use and keep them engaged with fresh and evolving content, constantly
  • The change began with the adoption of technologies like Artificial Intelligence, Machine, Learning, Automation, Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality and Analytics in marketing
  • Audience segmentation based on psychographic and geographical differences became a crucial part for targeted messaging
  • Insights derived from analyzing customer data are now used to create personalized experiences for the end customers
  • Authenticity and honesty have become guiding values, resulting in a more conscious consumer and a recentralizing of customer experience
  • Digital marketing, mobile marketing and social media marketing are the go-tos for all brands today, to reach their audience
    • Online presence has become key. Over the last ten years, companies have adapted to using the online world to listen, research, and find products/services. For any business in any industry, it’s no longer a nice to have, it’s a necessity
    • Social media marketing has revolutionized the way marketers reach their customers. Brands don’t indulge in monologues anymore, but engage in dialogues with their customers on open platforms
    • Studies show that as of 2020, over 50% of India’s population has access to social networks, and this number is expected to reach 67.4% by the year 2025.
    • Another study suggests that people spend close to 3 hours per day on average, on social networking and messaging platforms
  • For a business to succeed in the marketing world now, they need to be brand consistent with their messaging, branding, etc.
  • The cost for marketing has also increased drastically. Major technology advancements have led to larger budgets so businesses can stay ahead of their competitors
  • In terms of process, marketing companies/executives need to ensure they keep up with constantly evolving trends- be it technology, evolving consumer behaviors, or current events like the impact a global crisis like this pandemic would have on the mindset of the consumers.
  • Communication has digitized and expanded extensively over the years. With the introduction of multiple platforms like social media, newsletters, blog spaces and much more, marketing teams have had to keep a track of and tap into several portals to reach their target audience. To increase efficiency, Vertiv’s marketing team is equipped with tools like Eloqua for e-mail communication about complex campaigns and workflows. From a partner standpoint we have Marketing View as a partner-oriented application and Impartner, a partner portal. A few other tools we have employed are News on Demand for newsletters, ON24 for webcasts and teams events, Power BI apps for global and regional tracking, applications like Cision for PR & SOVs, Sprinklr for social media, and Oracle PRM for Partners,  among others.

What are the areas you are investing across organisation to set yourself up for success in 2020 and beyond? 

  • Technology and network infrastructure are major investments that we are making to help solidify our marketing efforts in the next few years
  • Given the dramatic changes in customer behavior as a result of these lockdowns, customer buying patterns have changed. Research and Development will become another area of investment for marketers- to understand the new customer and plan campaigns accordingly
  • At Vertiv, we will be increasing investments into our marketing efforts over the next 5 years. We will explore newer tools we can adopt to make our marketing efforts more productive and targeted.
  • Investments in Digital marketing and other digital applications will be the new shift from physical events and trainings. We definitely foresee large investments from a technology and digitization standpoint.

What are the major trends and risks that marketing operation leaders are planning for the next 3 years?

Trends: 

  • One major trend marketers are anticipating in the coming years is the role ‘voice’ enabled technologies would play in marketing
    • With voice enabled searches increasingly becoming popular, and the growing usage of virtual assistance like Siri, Alexa, and Google, marketers can tap into a whole new world of opportunities to reach their customers
    • In 2017, Juniper Research estimated that voice ad spend could reach $19 billion by 2022
    • Studies suggest that as of May 2019 witnessed a 270% growth in voice enabled searches and as of December 2019, 82% of smart phone users in India are making use of voice activated technology
  • According to GroupM’s TYNY report released earlier this year, India will continue to top the list as the fastest-growing major ad market in the world. TYNY forecasts India’s advertising investment to reach an estimated Rs. 91,641 crores this year. This represents an estimated growth of 10.7%, for the calendar year 2020
    • Digital secures number two position as the most used media vehicle and is estimated to reach 30% of ad spend in 2020 with growth coming from 3Vs (video, voice, vernacular-Indic) and advertising on e-commerce
  • Marketers will need to factor in advanced technological developments to engage with relevant consumers
    • Marketers will explore the potential blockchain and location-based technologies could have on the marketing industry- this would include reaching customer on social media based on their location and preferences
    • Adoption of AR and VR to create real life experiences for consumers
  • Personalized marketing, coupled with interactive content, will become key to engaging with consumers in a meaningful way
  • In a post-pandemic world, brands will need to alter their messaging to ensure they communicate with the customer more empathetically
    • A Gartner report suggests that, today, most people are seeking comfort and security to create a protected and sheltered environment for themselves
    • The same research indicates that consumers expect more mindfulness from brands in these testing times by addressing the larger issue than being opportunistic

Things marketers need to be careful about:

  • With increased mobile marketing and data analytics, data privacy will be one major concern for marketers to keep in mind
  • Customers have access to information about the brands through various platforms- blogs, social media, reviews on e-commerce platforms, etc. Marketers needs to ensure that their brands’ perception is not misinterpreted
  • Grievance addressal has also become more real-time. Hence, brands need to put in place a system where consumers’ queries are resolved and looked into almost immediately

How does technology and operation work hand in hand? Are they a subcategory of operations or are they equal?

  • Technology and marketing operations work hand in hand, especially in today’s world. Marketing technology has become an ecosystem in itself where companies are studying customer data to gain insights from it and offer personalized solutions to its customers
  • It reduces human intervention and increases efficiency in busines process and makes it easier to measure the reach/outcome of campaigns
  • Digital transformation has also helped marketers reach the consumer faster, providing real-time solutions to queries
  • Overall, the responsibility of marketing operations is to deploy the most appropriate marketing technology, data-driven approaches, efficient processes, and effective measurement

 

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