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PMAR 2018: Experts on optimizing online spends

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PMAR 2018: Experts on optimizing online spends

As the spends on digital inch towards the 25 per cent mark, the conversation about digital is more and more about making digital monies work and showing results. This is more so in the FMCG category which is the biggest spender on advertising and is the mainstay for mainline advertising. Three digitally savvy industry experts, Meera Iyer, Head Marketing, Big Basket, Jyothirmayee JT, Founder & CEO, HiveMinds, and Vishal Chinchankar,Chief Digital Officer, Madison Digital, came together on Thursday to discuss “How can FMCG Brands get more out of Digital Spends?” at the 16th Pitch Madison Advertising Report launch.

Iyer who has a background in FMCG marketing and is now heading marketing at an e-commerce company had very interesting insights to share on how Big Basket uses digital to track consumers journey and drive sales. Looking at the product marketing funnel that includes: innovation funnel leads to the media mix being made and deployed, followed by sales and shopper marketing and finally a post-launch evaluation, Iyer said that digital has a role to play in every stage.

“Through research and crowd-sourcing of ideas, digital can help with product innovation. Some companies are already doing this,” he observed. Iyer also felt that since digital is currently around 17.5% of the total adex it has a big role to play in media mix and deployment. “It will also come into sales and shopper marketing with sales and shopper marketing taking on a big role in FMCG. While the share of FMCG e-comm stands at around one per cent for India as a whole, in Bangalore alone, e-comm makes up for 10 per cent of the FMCG market,” Iyer noted. Digital can also immensely help with post-launch evaluation, she said. Iyer used numerous examples from Big Basket to drive her point across. “Digital is very versatile and malleable. Companies should consider using digital marketing as a laboratory that helps with assessing decision making at every stage in the product innovation funnel,” she concluded.

Speaking about how the consumer journey is being changed and shaped by digital, Jyothirmayee, said, “Digital touch-points have exploded, making the consumer journey a complex system.” The consumer journey is more omni-channel, driven by consumers themselves, and even fragmented. “Since the system is no longer liner, we need to drastically change how we understand the customer journey,” she said. The consumer’s omni-channel needs demand FMCG brands to deliver a seamless experience across online and offline stores, “this is something FMCG brands will need to figure out more proactively,” Jyothirmayee said. She concluded, “Brands need to start innovating the consumer journey to influence brand growth.”

Chinchankar, shed light on how FMCG brands can use digital to build brands. The challenge that FMCG marketers face is at the encounter/awareness stage of the consumer journey. He listed three key suggestions to marketers on how to use digital to make their presence felt. “Digital may not be the primary reach medium for FMCG brands but it definitely supplements TV advertising. Moreover it works as a very effective frequency medium. Even if you park 7-10 per cent of your traditional media monies in digital you will get an incremental reach and frequency out of digital.” Questioning if targeting is required at the awareness stage, he asked, “Do you really need to apply these filters as an FMCG brand?” 
Finally he spoke about the greatest concern that gives marketers sleepless nights: Are my ads being seen? “Ad viewability is one of the biggest challenges of digital. Genuine OTS can give you a significant sales lift, it comes at a cost. And that’s when you are talking to humans and not NHTs (non-human traffic),” he concluded.
To watch the full session, click here. 

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