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Goafest 2011: Constant engagement with the consumer is a must

By Anushree Bhattacharyya , afaqs!, Goa | In Advertising | April 09, 2011
The opening session of the Knowledge Seminar on the second day of Goafest 2011 saw advertisers emphasising on the need for brand owners as well as advertising agencies to have a continuous dialogue with the consumers, to understand their ever-evolving mindset.

In the opening session of the Knowledge Seminar held on the second day of Goafest 2011, held at Zuri White Sands, Goa, on April 8, advertisers presented their views on the importance of continuous communication with the target audience.

To ensure that advertising achieves its aim of benefitting the client, it is important that both the client and the agency stay in constant touch with the consumer base to understand their constantly changing needs and perceptions about brands.

Opening the session, Charlie Crowe, founder, Festival of Media, said, "It has to be kept in mind that any advertising campaign should be strong enough to hold the consumer's attention. One of the ways both the advertiser and the agency can achieve this is by making the medium of advertising the message, which can also be called interactive marketing."

Crowe then added that great ideas can be enhanced with technology, citing the example of how Parle used Twitter for brand Hippo to restart its supply chain.

He explained, "Good media ideas can change a product if integrated well with the business."

Crowe said that to grow in the future, advertising agencies will have to look away from the traditional sectors, at new areas and sectors which will drive the growth of the advertising industry going ahead. He gave the example of WPP, saying that in 2010, the advertising conglomerate acquired agencies working for unconventional sectors such as animal health, advertising measurement, shopper marketing, digital and many more.

Speaking next, Neeraj Narayan, president, Contagious Communications, said, "The business model for marketing is shifting from the 360-degree approach to 365-days approach -- which means a brand has to be available to its consumer base 365 days a year."

He added that agencies can tap the consumers by thinking about different and interesting editorial/content every time.

Narayan added, "It's about time that agencies reacted to consumer queries in real time by getting into a daily engagement process with the consumer."

According to him, the 1960 model of advertising is over, and the sooner the advertising agencies realise this and get into action, the more beneficial it will be for them.

"Agencies should understand that the consumer will be interested in any communication which is educating, exciting, entertaining and gives them a wonderful experience," said Narayan.

Finally, he stressed on the fact that advertising agencies should be ready to take risks and come out with interesting out-of-the-box solutions.

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