DAN-e4m Digital Advertising Conference 2019: Experts discuss digital beyond performance

The panel was chaired by Shamsuddin Jasani, Group MD, Isobar South Asia.

Panel

Let’s face it. Digital media can have a huge impact on a company’s cost per acquisition, if done right. So the discourse around digital beyond performance makes more sense than it ever did. At The DAN e4m Conference, thought leaders weighed in on the topic.

The panel comprised Hiren Gada - Chief Executive Officer – Shemaroo Entertainment, Pradeep Dwivedi – Group Advisor – Sakal Media Group, Sai Narayan - Head of Marketing – Policybazaar Group, Vikram Tanna- VP & Head of Advertising Sales and Business Head of Regional Clusters – South Asia Discovery Communications India, and was chaired by Shamsuddin Jasani, Group MD, Isobar South Asia.

Narayan asserted that initially, it was all performance but we have gone beyond. “That’s happened due to the evolution of digital. Ten years ago, it was mostly TV for creating awareness. As the consumer searches for the brand and then the pressure is put on digital for performance. But now things are changing. We have moved beyond just performance,” he said.

“A considerable amount of media spends are being used towards building brands with digital as well. It’s about brand-building, performance is something that comes automatically. The way I see it, a major chunk of money will go towards video content. As a marketer, I need to be where the consumer is. And the fact of the matter is that people are moving towards the digital platform,” Narayan added.

Gada’s key message was that the consumption of digital video is real and is here. Sharing some stats, he said, “Three years back, digital constituted less than 10% of our business. Today it is nearly 30%. Due to the broadband explosion, we have seen humongous rise in video consumption. One of our key channels that showcases retro songs has 90 million monthly active users.  Shemaroo has 70 million active monthly users. No other music channel has that many active monthly users.” He added that the brand’s OTT app-video streaming service is also in the works.

Tanna made an interesting point. “The full-form of TV is total video. And total video is now television on digital. The lines are blurring.” According to him, perception is bigger than performance. “The difference is that you are talking to the heart or the mind of the consumer. When it’s about reach, TV stills gets you that. But are you able to fine-tune in the programmatic manner which digital is giving you? You will see ad-dollars being split and it is all about what your brand objective is,” he opined.

Dwivedi contended that if you talk to any marketer today, their ultimate litmus is not about which medium is being used but about the ROI they are going to get on their marketing spends. He said, “There's no death of print. The combination of print and digital is the example of how content requirements have changed.” As a print player, which is now transforming into digital, he shared the two key things that are now emerging. “How do we integrate the digital DNA into our organization? How do we make sure that every part of our value chain understands that the information flow today is largely digital-based?” he added.

Dwivedi shared that a lot of print and TV campaigns done by them have a digital component and is a part of the integrated solution. “By integrating, we are able to give the client a larger ROI beyond the traditional methods. “ He commented that as a news organization, credibility of content becomes paramount. “Our ability to put branded content becomes limited. We tend to do contextual advertising. That reduces the efficacy from a return standpoint.”

Narayan said, “If you create an excellent content that talks right about the brand, the content automatically finds its own medium. The great test is when it’s being shared on a WhatsApp group which was not even planned. As a marketer, we see that building brand is important, the medium becomes secondary. Though we have to admit that digital is eating into major part of our TV budgets.”

Tanna highlighted that the thing with digital is that it allows you to target a user versus a buyer. “Once you have a user, he is your marketer. The word-of-mouth of this person, to me that is the tipping point. Can you get to the user?” he raised the question.

 

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