ZenithOptimedia’s seminar on Measuring Return on Investment (ROI) for Profitable Communications saw a diverse mix of panel speak on the subject, and true to the nature of the panel, provided ample and diverse food for thought. The aim of the seminar was to make the audience aware that while trying to improve ROI for one’s marketing initiatives, a comprehensive approach is required too to measure the marketing effectiveness and outcome that one would derive from the same.
Guy Abrahams, Regional Director of Communications Planning, Asia, pointed out that ROI was a mindset, which if employees focused upon, was more likely to deliver. He also emphasised that to deliver ROI, there had to be a process. He said, “There is no one tool to measure ROI and many different tools can be used depending on what ROI you are looking to measure.”
Taking the point further, Suresh Ramanathan, Associate Professor of Marketing at the University of Chicago, Graduate School of Business, pointed out the kind of metric one focused on when talking ROI. He said, “There is an increasing need to justify spends on advertising and what’s happening is that the market is getting obsessed with short term marketing ROI at the cost of long run ones. Hence, it becomes imperative to find the right metric.”
While Abrahams and Ramanathan talked about the ROI and showed concern on the short term ROIs, other panelists, including Santosh Desai, CEO, Future Brands, and Arvind Mediratta, Business Head, Cash & Carry, Walmart India, expressed their concern on measuring ROI.
Desai, in fact, dubbed himself as an ‘ROI sceptic’. He said, “The very act of measurement, which gives only 65 per cent of the truth and probably just an illusion of the truth, is disturbing. It’s better to not know anything than just partial truth, and I am not comfortable with what really passes off as measurement.”
Mediratta, on the other hand, brought the reality to notice. He said, “In the real world, if my business does not move, I don’t grow sales, improve my top line and deliver bottom line, then no amount of measuring ROI would help.”
The seminar also discussed the ROI lessons from digital marketing, which was elaborated by Sachin Bhatia, co-founder, makemytrip.com.
Ambika Srivastava, CEO, ZenithOptimedia, concluded, “As a client responsive network, ROI is a theme that ZenithOptimedia has been working with for several years. The proposition of the company as The ROI Agency reflects our work ethos and commitment to drive the accountability agenda for our clients.”