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[Editor’s note: This article is 2nd in a 4-part series of IAMAI 8th India Digital Meet 2014 Roundup]

In my first article on the IAMAI 8th India Digital Meet 2014 roundup, I presented the highlights of “Entrepreneur’s Stage”.

For the second session, I opted for the discussion Social Data or Market Research, which was moderated by Aditya Save from Marico and the panel consisted of Sanjay Tripathi from HDFC Bank, Rajiv Dingra from WATConsult, Kedar Gavane from comScore and Karthik Nagarjan from GroupM.

Some of the major highlights of the discussion:

  • Everyone agreed that actionable story telling is the most pressing need of Digital Campaigns today. Story which resonates and prompts the user for action.

  • Sanjay shared that the huge pile of social data being generated every second is just a representative data, having little or no value. The insights developed on this data are everything which can make a difference.

  • Social Listening mechanism was first adapted by airlines all over the world, when they started to listen what exactly their customers are saying about them. HDFC Bank, for example, actively listens to these social conversations around them, and makes maximum use of that for improve their performance.

  • Besides listening to your own brand, you should also listen to other brand’s conversations and extract vital information from that.

  • On comparing the data, it was shared that the social data is more dynamic and passionate compared to market research data. For example, a sports broadcaster successfully used this social data to integrate search queries and social mentions to come out with an even stronger campaign encapsulating both search and social.

  • Social Data can even be integrated with offline data such as a promotion inside a shopping mall. When 20 people gather inside a mall, and they share their experiences on social media, then the event actually becomes global and everyone can access that information and create an impression of the brand.

  • Sanjay shared that 50% of their hiring is mandatory to be done via Linkedin. He shared that earlier, Digital Marketing head used to be the junior most guy within the organization but now, Digital has acquired the central stage. Earlier, Social Media was considered like a dark art, but now, it is at the central stage.

  • The three most important elements of any Social Media Campaign should be: It should be measurable; comparable and actionable.

  • Karthik shared one instance when their predictions actually failed. They started a campaign with Sachin Tendulkar anthem for one beverage company, and they received a million views within 36 hours against their estimate of 3 weeks. But when the same steps and procedures were applied for some other brand without Sachin, then it fell flat with only 6000 odd views in 3 weeks! The message was that there is no single thumb rule in social media.

  • Rajiv shared that big data often brings in decision paralysis. The fact is that people always seek the new and the fresh; and the new and the fresh can’t be measured as there is no previous data of it’s performance. The vicious cycle which must be overcome at any cost.He suggested formulation of a real time dashboard to manage and optimize social media campaigns for maximum results.

  • Sanjay shared one big mistake which previously they had committed: Facebook Likes. Some time back, acquiring huge Fcaebook Likes seemed like a good marketing strategy, and good amount of money and resources were spent on that. But it achieved nothing as likes doesn’t convert into business.

  • Brands these days are aware of the importance of engagement with the influencers, and this is the reason they have scheduled year-long planning for Blogger’s meetup, Twitter users meetup and so on.

  • Twitter is these days is preferable customer service platform for net savvy users. Sanjay explained that how delay in response to angry Tweets can often snowball into a much bigger problem.

  • On a discussion on the topic Hype vs Reality, Karthik shared that dashboard is one big hype, which is rampant everywhere. Managers want to see social data on huge LCD screens with fancy graphics and reports; which is something of minimal usage in the actual world. Yes, they get the data real time, but they don’t know what to do after that!

  • On this topic, Rajiv shared that every hype is an opportunity for the brand to get better. The ultimate outcome should be to meet the business objective in the most subtle manner. Example being Facebook coupons, viral Digital videos and so on..

  • The importance of ideas in digital marketing was again highlighted, as Sanjay asked anyone present there to come to his office and share ideas which can justify spending of Rs 10 crore on a Digital Marketing campaign so that his business objectives are successfully met.

After an awesome lunch, I shifted to the Centre Stage, where session 3 and 4 were being organized. This was a Fire-Chat round, divided into 3 parts. For the first chat, Rahul Saighal from Samsung was joined by Sanjeev Kapoor from CITI India, which was moderated by Sandeep Menon from Google.

Some of the major highlights from the chat:

  • “Pace” is the new P of Marketing. And this has been shared by Philip Kotler himself.

  • In the current phase of marketing, we all are information rich, but insight poor.

  • Rahul shared that how aligning with a social cause can give tremendous boost to the overall marketing efforts, as evident with the “Save a Tiger” campaign where half a million conversations were recorded on different social media platforms.

  • The marketing world has changed 360 degrees, as we all are entering a phase wherein brands are directly marketing to the consumers, thereby eliminating need of any middlemen.

  • Sanjeev shared that technology is evolving at a rapid pace, and he was really surprised to know that the images shared on Snapchat is roughly same as that on Facebook, everyday!

  • Sanjeev shared another important phenomenon in the marketing world: the shift from basic segmentation to ultra segmentation. Now, the marketers are empowered to create ultra-niche campaign for that single guy, who has different needs and requirements.

  • To give an example of banking, marketers are aware of a person’s spending habits, his income flow and expenses and his social media activities along with the searches he is performing on the web. All these data, along with some intelligence can be combined to provide the most relevant and targeted offers to him. A perfect example of ultra-segmentation and niche marketing.

  • Business impact happens when one-to-one conversations happen between the consumer and the brand.

  • The information generated via marketing campaigns can be innovatively re-targeted to provide maximum emphasis. For example, a new technology called cinemagraph can enable you to create short movie type data, embedding several images and putting viral loop into that. When it was tried in email marketing, it really worked.

  • The most pressing demand is not introduction of new and bright ideas, as no one wants to invent the wheel all over again; but to present the same idea in a more meaningful way, thereby sparking interest and enthusiasm. And thought leadership is required to achieve this objective.

  • Sanjeev shared that previously, it the TV campaign which was most important, along with somewhat Print media and offline campaigns, along with little bit of Digital to complete the cycle. But it has changed so much now, as virtually every medium is a marketing platform. There is Youtube, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Google, Emails, Website etc. Every medium can be used to get more attention and more coverage.

  • The traditional way of marketing laid emphasis on that “One Big Campaign”; which has now changed to “every interaction” is important. Each and every point where the consumer meets the brand should be a delightful experience, which makes the brand stronger and robust.

Stay tuned for Part -3, where we discuss the fireside chat between Deepika Warrier from Pepsi with Anant Rangaswami from FirstPost and Debabrata Mukherjee from Coca Cola with Kirthiga Reddy from Facebook.

About the Author

Mohul-NewMohul is a Senior Online Marketer from Noida, India. You can follow him on Facebook to know his views on Online Marketing, Entrepreneurship & Life!


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