Enter The Talk Fest

Dec 25 2012, 04:37 IST
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SummaryThe age of one-way communication is over. Marketers need to move beyond transactions to relevance and be in constant touch with the new-age consumer connected with the world through her gadgets.

The Indian consumer is well on her way to being liberated from the shackles of space and time. Over 900 million mobile telephony subscribers in India are now able to navigate their day-to-day lives in a manner that was clearly inconceivable a decade ago.

While we continue to grapple with poor infrastructure, lack of water and electricity, poor access to medical facilities, lack of public sanitation and mass education initiatives; staying “connected” and in “control” of one’s life acquires a new meaning both for urban and rural consumers in today’s mobile and digital age.

As value conscious consumers, we have leveraged the mobile and digital platforms from being mere communication devices to becoming an integral part of our journey to progress. Consequently, marketers have an opportunity to join in this journey by encouraging a two-way communication process between the consumer and their brands to bring in new consumers, build long-term relationships and increase loyalty with their franchise.

Beyond “transactions” to “relevance” is the mantra that will engage consumers in today’s digital and mobile savvy world.

Marketers increasingly need to tune in to the needs of the digital savvy consumer while at the same time leveraging mass and niche mediums of connect since these are not necessarily substitutable.

The advent of social media creates new ecosystems where the consumer can be at the heart of the new ecosystem. This provides a very unique opportunity for marketers to participate and engage to build brand equity.

To begin with, marketers would need to move from one-way messaging to participative conversations with consumers. The brand idea should get dispersed systematically across multiple channels of conversation for the purposes of creating a unified and coordinated brand experience.

Second, as a country of story tellers (remember our grandparents narrating stories), we need to realise our content must have a compelling view for the consumer to engage with.

The third and equally important derivative of the changing landscape is 'the creation of stories that have to be expressed through every relevant connection'. For The Coca-Cola Co., each brand story must have value and significance to people’s lives. Our content is the substance or matter of brand engagement and conversation. As such, it has to be the world’s most engaging content. At the company, we are challenging ourselves to create content that moves freely amongst themselves but do not become separated stories. Rather, like molecules that become gases if they become too separate. Our stories must

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