'We see ourselves as creative experts & thought leaders, looking to add value to brands'

Rhea Patel, CEO and Founder of CLIQ, shares insights on emerging media and holistic marketing strategies, influencer marketing, and more

e4m by exchange4media Staff
Updated: Sep 3, 2021 9:14 AM
Rhea - Cliq

When Rhea Patel launched CLIQ, she had one primary focus which was to be able to provide unique, out-of-the-box creative digital solutions that can help brands enhance their marketing efforts. Today the company works with several leading brands as an extension of a brand's in-house marketing team that helps enhance marketing efforts with their holistic creative pool of solutions.

It offers creative marketing strategies for all businesses, be it small, medium or large-scale and across all sectors like Retail, FMCG, Fashion and Services to name a few. Some of the large-scale brands CLIQ has serviced are Adani Realty, Waghbakri Tea Group, Lubi Pumps, Aava Water, Rashmi Uday Singh, Umang Hutheesing and Uncut by Aditi Amin. In conversation with exchange4media, Rhea Patel, CEO and Founder of CLIQ takes us through how the agency has grown over the years, emerging media and holistic marketing strategies, influencer marketing strategies and more.

Edited excerpts:

Take us through CLIQ's journey and how it has grown over time?

CLIQ is a creative community. We service clients PAN India across industries like real estate, F&B, FMCG, beauty and wellness and more. We are known for our out-of-the-box strategic campaigns and content which we design for brands across marketing platforms online and offline. We are a team of talented individuals from across the country and service over 35+ national brands Like Adani Realty, Wagh Bakri Tea, Azafran, Umang Hutheesingh, Aava Water and more. Unlike other agencies, people have always worked with us for a few simple reasons:

o Quality for every penny spent

o A non-cookie cutter approach

o A wide resource pool- ensuring the best is given to the brand

o Complete transparency and flexibility

I started CLIQ back in December 2018. Before that, I did a program at NYU In digital marketing and worked at a couple of agencies thereafter. I always sensed a gap. While I know it sounds quite unlikely, given the number of agencies out there and everything they offer at the scale they do. However, only after having worked 18 hours a day, thinking from the perspective of a brand and an agency, did I realise this gap. While agencies promise creative value and results, how much are they willing to invest back to ensure those results are delivered? How well do they work as an extension of in-house marketing teams, bringing on the table what's best for the brand? How many agencies ensure unique concepts, designed and executed via the best of the creative fraternity specifically for a brand's TG? I had a lot of thoughts and my motive was to build a community that professed and offered all the above via the community. 

What is a cookie-cutter strategy and how are brands subconsciously investing in it?

Brand custodians usually know their target audience very well. They think of ideas and strategies to sell to their TG based on the limited resources available to them in-house or are forced to envision marketing campaigns via the limited resources an agency can commit to the brand. Just like a cookie cutter they narrow down and restrict themselves to ideas easily attainable by them.  While that could get results, it doesn't ensure the best results. Brands are often mistaken that a presence is all that matters to sell. Instead, building a loyal community and offering meaningful messaging and conversation is in fact what ensures a lifetime of loyal customers who not only understand the brand journey but also engage with it. That's why putting out the best for the audience is required. That's where a community like ours helps. With a resource pool of a wide variety of photographers, illustrators, artists and more we ensure we think out of the box. We ensure we bring unique solutions and extraordinary campaigns that help a brand start apart in the clutter and are worth every penny they spend. 

What influencer strategy do you recommend marketers use? 

There are primarily two kinds of influencers. Micro and macro influencers. We generally always advise a mix of both. Pick a few CAT-A influencers and a large number of micro influencers to support as well. That helps build a well-rounded strategy. It is super important to ensure engagement levels are high and the quality of followers is genuine and active for micro-influencers. In addition to that I'd say ensure the influencers understand your brief, they get your vibe and are able to translate that with genuine content. That helps further amplify things. In addition to that, running user-generated content-driven giveaways via influencers help amp reach and engagement. Influencer strategy is just as important as choosing the right influencers. 

• Volatile markets and contingency strategies

In such uncertain covid times, the market has seen quick and drastic shifts from time to time. Consumer behaviour changes by the day and mindsets tend to alter depending on the external factors at the time. In such times it becomes even more important for brands to have empathy and yet to be smart. It requires brands to re analyse audience behaviours almost every week and tweak or alter strategy accordingly. Most importantly, if things get a little too dire, it is also important to always have a plan B in place, that is executable and yet even meaningful during such times. 

Take us through a few emerging media and holistic marketing strategies?

Content plans must be well thought and linear. It can't be one thing today and another tomorrow. It's like when you read a book but pick random pages to read each day, the story doesn't make sense right? Just like that, content strategy and thought are game changers because they change the way your content is consumed and understood. Marketers need to understand that digital platforms offer a 24/7 touch point. It's important to make a brand a part of the TG's lifestyle. For that, it's important to ensure marketing campaigns are thought of first holistically. What happens on one platform must translate everywhere else. That way when an individual wakes up and scrolls through their Instagram feed to casually find your content engage with it and move on, just to realise that they see another version of it in the paper and probably another version of it on a hoarding, another version on an affiliate website later at work,a fun translation at a physical place and more. If you don't want your audience to be irritated by this level of presence and instead be able to generate good recall, content will matter. By now you may have realised that it only gets better when you are visible across platforms. It doesn't mean it's absolutely necessary that you do it all, but more the merrier if you are able to leverage each platform well and meaningfully. In the recent past a lot of new emerging forms of media have cropped up. ONce can choose from the mix based on what their product offering best fits. Things like experiential marketing and Virtual reality and bringing forward many new ways for a brand to really create a worthwhile engagement for their audience. 

What is new-age conversational marketing and how has CLIQ applied this for its clients? 

Conversational marketing is nothing new. It is just creating content such that brands can hold conversations with their TG, understand their point of view, listen and engage with them. It's all about ensuring your strategy and content is created to drive conversation, inform and educate the audience. In attempting to do so, platform-specific content that leverages the conversational features of different platforms can also be very effective.

What are the future plans for CLIQ?

We see ourselves as creative experts and thought leaders, looking to add value to meaningful brands. As we expand by the day, we are looking to extend our support and honest contribution to brands across industries looking to make long term relationships with their consumers. 

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