“When one uses social media, he has access to many more ideas at the fraction of the cost of conventional approach. At the same time, the output is also as strong as the conventional route. And, in open sourcing, there is a possibility for greater engagement with the consumers,” said Rahul Welde, Vice President, Media services, Asia AMET Unilever, Singapore.
He was speaking on ‘From mass media to social media’ at the fifth CII Brand Summit 2010, being held in Bangalore on February 19-20. Welde remarked that mass media was far from dead, in fact, it was thriving.
He noted that across the country, the one media that still had the potential to reach a large number of people was television. Television was being watched in different forms, he said, adding that fragmentation was also a reality today.
On Unilever using mass medium extensively, Welde, said, “We create products for the masses and, therefore, continue to use mass mediums.” Attributing the explosion of social media to human nature, irreverence, anonymity, borderless, information, engagement and entertainment, he said that worldwide, users of consumer generated content were increasing.
Taking about the disruption approach followed by Close Up in Vietnam and Peperami in the UK, he said that Close Up had used only social media for its launch in Vietnam. Similarly, there was no advertising agency for Peperami when it was launched in the UK. Welde informed that an advertising brief posted on the Internet received 1,200 responses, and added that when one used social media, they had access to many more ideas at a fraction of the cost of conventional approach. At the same time, the output was as strong as the conventional route.
In his concluding remarks, Welde said that media should not be seen as mass or social – integration worked better. “Mass media’s influence is still valuable and strong in many parts of the world. However, social media should be at the heart of any marketing activity,” he stressed.
Earlier, in his introductory remark session, G Krishnan, Chairman and Executive Director & CEO, TV Today Network, said, “Every youth today is a media owner. If we don’t change, we cannot communicate with the generation next. Today’s consumers are spoilt for choice and marketers are puzzled as to how to reach out them.”
Ramarathinam Sellaratnam, Head of Bangalore DC, Infosys Technologies; Deepak Srinivasan, VP - Corp & Business Development, Ankeena Networks Inc, USA; Ivan Pollard, Partner, Naked Communications; and Dr Saul J Berman, Partner, Global & American Business Strategy Leader, IBM Business Consulting Services, USA, also spoke at the post-lunch session on Day 1 of the CII Brand Summit.