Eight represents ‘infinity’ in numerology. In universal terms, this can mean both good and bad—endless strength, power, success, achievement and abundance on the one hand, and the possibility of anarchy, earthquakes, negative control, misuse of power and uncommon events on the other. The number ‘8’ is considered to be the great universal law which rules races and individuals. In the Hebrew Tree of Life the eighth Sephiroth is Hod representing splendour and the procession of feminine potency. In Greek mystical studies, eight represented the ‘higher mind’ and is a variation of Jesus – Iesous equals 888 and is the sacred number vibration of the Christ. The Celtic wheel of the seasons has eight spokes—spring, beltane, summer, lammas, autumn, samwain, winter and imbolc. In China, eight is the number of Universal Good Fortune. In Buddhism, eight means completion and all possibility.
As BrandWagon celebrates its eighth birthday this month, we bring to you a different kind of anniversary special—one that grapples with infinite possibilities, the chance to explore the hitherto unexplored, across eight key industries that are poised to shape our future.
Things have never been racier in the fields of media and entertainment. According to the FICCI-KPMG 2015 report, the Indian media and entertainment industry is set to grow at a CAGR of 13.9%, from R1026 billion in 2014 to touch R1964 billion by 2019—a growth rate that is supposedly almost double that of the global media and entertainment industry. It’s no surprise then, that a part of this growth can be attributed to the fact that India became the world’s fastest growing smartphones market last year, which is further aided by the advent of 4G services, a healthy number of 3G and 2G subscribers, and multi-media content consumption. The Internet of Things or IoT is poised to be the next big thing, and a technology explosion round the corner is set to take the industry by storm, changing the way people consume, shop and share—which is why we have Lloyd Mathias of HP penning down his thoughts in a new column this time, highlighting the infinite possibilities in digital technology.
So where does that leave print media? Not too far behind, if print behemoths can keep up and learn to adapt digitally. This is the point of view put forth by Suprio Guha Thakurta of The Economist Group, who, in his column, touches upon the key factors affecting the publishing industry. He highlights how print growth is being propelled by Tier II and Tier III markets, with regional language editions outperforming national editions and English dailies, perhaps fuelled by growing literacy rates in these regions. The result? Hindi and vernacular papers command 67% of the ad revenues of the industry.
Sudhanshu Vats of Viacom18 gives a sampler of the ‘infinity conundrum’ faced by TV content creators. The vast number of content platforms available for distribution is both a boon and bane, and to ride the ocean of possibilities in this sector, he highlights what broadcasters need to bear in mind. Then we have Rohit Dadwal of Mobile Marketing Association, who speaks of the possibilities in one of the most happening sectors currently—mobile. But what will it take for mobile marketing to catch up with mobile proliferation? And all this has just made the job for ad and media agencies tougher and more exciting at the same time.
Satbir Singh of FCB Ulka pores over how the fundamental DNA of an ad agency—creativity—has taken a backseat to other business priorities and needs to be brought back. In his words, “Today, a brand’s communication is fighting for eyeballs with the video of a duck crossing a street during rush hour traffic somewhere on this planet with her ducklings.” And clearly, the consumer is winning this debate. So what do agencies need to do to catch up? Food for thought.
Meanwhile, Anita Nayyar of Havas Media Group asserts that the agile marketer needs to take cognizance of digital media, and a smart media agency is one who will keep a track of three promising sectors in India—e-commerce, automobiles and luxury—as these are set to take India places.
We cannot mention e-commerce without having someone from the buzzing industry write to us on the endless possibilities the sector poses. We have Latif Nathani of eBay India, and he draws a parallel between India’s entrepreneurial culture and the e-commerce boom, as the two work hand in glove. The e-com ecosystem is further propelled by a simultaneous boom in digital payment structures, mobile wallets etc, all of which spell good news for e-startups. But traditional retail isn’t far behind on innovation, as TRRAIN’s founder and Shoppers Stop’s non-executive vice-chairman BS Nagesh asserts. He talks of future-ready malls, traditional brick and mortar stores going for omni-channel models, and how the next five years are slated to be the best years for Indian retail.
Yes, optimism is in the air, but as our expert panel of writers points out, it is all backed by scientific data. So go on, get a sample of what the media and marketing world is going to look like in the years to come, with a sea of opportunities out there just waiting to be tapped. Happy reading, folks!