Brand engagement must be consumer-centric: Charles Frump, Volvo Cars

The Managing Director of Volvo Cars India spoke about the power of TV, millennial consumers, purpose-driven marketing and much more

e4m by exchange4media Staff
Updated: Sep 27, 2019 12:45 PM

“Marketing for me has always been exciting. I like the opportunity to inspire people. I like that it makes my brain work both sides and that I can mix creatives with analytics. In the role of General Manager, I really appreciate and understand the importance and strategic nature of marketing,” Charles Frump, Managing Director, Volvo Cars India, said at the exchange4media Conclave on Tuesday. He was speaking on the theme - Brand Engagement In A Connected Era.

Quoting Henry Ford, Frump said: “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at 20 or 80. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young.”

Frump spoke on various ways in which brand engagement has changed. “The brand engagement has changed from feature pricing or discount-led to brand-led and consumer-centric. It has changed from TV commercials to commercials as online videos and original content.”

Talking about the power of television, he said, “I would like to reiterate that I do believe in the power of TV and I think it is exciting for us to tell TV is dead, but I also agree that there is a strong place for television in our media mix.”

Speaking about the millennial consumer, Frump said: “We are heading towards a point where the majority of our customers will be millennials. They have a different take on the world and advertising. We have to be more relevant and connect with them. We have to understand their passion because they will accept or reject us very quickly.”

Referring to Deloitte’s 2018 Millennial survey, Frump said: “The report revealed 91 per cent of this generation would switch brands for one championing a cause, with another study revealing seven out of 10 are willing to pay more for a product with a conscience.”

Speaking about purpose-driven marketing Frump said, “It is very important to really understand who you are as a company and as a brand.”

Quoting the guiding principle at Volvo, Frump said, “Cars are driven by people. The guiding principle behind everything we make at Volvo, therefore, is – and must remain – safety.”

He continued, “From the very beginning our purpose has always been safety. The seat belts were invented by Volvo in 1959.”

 Frump said that at Volvo they make their visions very explicit and external. Elaborating further on the company’s vision, Frump said that safety of consumers remains a primary vision at Volvo.

 “The company is completely driven by this vision and we have seen that in over 10 years, deaths in Volvos have plummeted. Our second vision on democratisation of clean and breathable air has received strong response across the country.”

 Frump also spoke about the rising level of pollution that has made clean and breathable air a luxury. At Volvo, it was decided to take the challenge of finding economical ways to extend the Volvo employee clean zone technology to those who need it the most and #Breathfree campaign was born, he said. “In this way they were able to start a much needed conversation around clean air.”

 As Frump concluded his session, he spoke on the third vision on gender equality. “It is a very important topic currently both in India and globally, and 23 per cent workforce in India constitute women. Our vision is to have a woman sales consultant in every dealership by 2020.”

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