Marketing and sales are often confused. In India, the terms are used interchangeably, perhaps because of the fact that we've had a very controlled economy and a vast pool of low-cost educated people. India has always had a big emphasis on the feet-on-street model of sales. Marketing is required when you want to do 'pull', or want other benefits like a brand premium or loyalty.
Jessie Paul is the Managing Director of Paul Writer, a marketing advisory firm she founded in early 2010 that works with clients in the B2B, services and technology space to create optimal marketing plans. Previously, as Chief Marketing Officer of Wipro's IT business and as Global Brand Manager at Infosys, she has been recognised for her contribution towards putting the Indian IT industry on the global map.
With over 15 years in services marketing, including a stint with Ogilvy & Mather Advertising, Paul is considered an expert in brand globalisation, and has been named one of the most influential business women in the Indian IT industry.
In 2009, she authored 'No Money Marketing', a book on frugal marketing techniques, which become Tata McGraw-Hill's fastest selling marketing professional book. An avid blogger on marketing (www.jessiepaul.com), Paul is a Computer Science engineer from NIT, Trichy and an MBA from IIM Calcutta. Here's Paul in a freewheeling conversation with Tuhina Anand of exchange4media.
Q. What is the role of a marketing advisory firm in todayï¿½s scenario? How far has this role expanded?
India has an acute shortage of senior B2B and IT marketing professionals. This is because in the past, sales was prioritised over marketing and most marketing talent in these industries migrated to other functions. On the other hand, the industry is moving from a supply-driven equation to a demand driven one, which raises the importance of marketing.
We can help bridge the shortage by helping clients to create a structured, executable marketing programme and guiding them on the required execution engine. In the past, there was a belief that you had to do execution to get clients, but I think that brings the relationship down to a tactical level, where you never get to the strategic part.