Business-first digital and digital-first business is the future: Angad Singh Manchanda
We saw the pandemic accelerate the digital transition process of businesses last year. A year later, the implications of this transition have been significant and wide-ranging – from creating consumer experiences & engagements, to e-commerce, online education, e-payments, online medical consultations – almost all off-line activity is now done in the digital space.
Digital spends have gone up manifold, and brand strategies now incorporate reaching out to consumers in the online space. With this, there has also been the need for upskilling the workforce to tackle the business operational requirements in the new normal.
In the run-up to DIGIXX MEDIA SUMMIT 2021, Adgully will be bringing a series of interactions with India’s leading Digital evangelists as part of our series on DIGITAL DIALOGUE.
Keeping a sharp eye on all the Digital developments and disruptions is Adgully’s industry leading premier property – DIGIXX. Like in the previous years, DIGIXX MEDIA SUMMIT 2021 is all geared to discuss, analyse, crystal-gaze and explore the world of Digital trends in a day-long event comprising Panel Discussions, Master Classes, Keynote Addresses and Fireside Chats.
Merge Infinity is an independent parent firm focused on growth consulting and digital transformation for businesses with futuristic tools that leverage the expertise to advise on strategy, build projects, work on execution and convert ideas into revenue growth.
Merge Infinity houses a multifaceted creative agency, Chimp&z Inc, a fully integrated production house called Griffin Pictures Worldwide, a performance marketing firm called Saber Tooth, an ROI driven digital agency called Yellophant Digital, an AI & Machine Learning driven SEO analysis tool called Search Munky; all a part of its global network.
In conversation with Adgully, Angad Singh Manchanda, Co-founder & CEO, Merge Infinity, speaks about how Digital is helping businesses scale up their operations, why brands need to focus on human assets to plan, strategise and lead initiatives rather than investing their valuable time in monotonous processes, and more.
With the accelerated transition to digital due to the pandemic crisis, how has this helped businesses scale up their operations? How do you see this shift to digital panning out over the next 5 years?
Digital has always been around; the process of transitioning into a digital-first business process has been gradually developing in the last 10 years. During the pandemic, the first movers just had to move their current modules to the already existing digital-first module. It was the late adopters who had to take swift action to ensure that they don’t miss the digital train. In the next 5 years, new technologies like AI, ML, Blockchain, and Audio technologies will be the right avenues for businesses to invest in. In the times to come, as the consumer is going to drive the change on digital, more and more businesses will need to change their practices by keeping the digital consumer in the center of the business plan. Business-first digital and digital-first business is the present and the near future.
Digital and performance go hand in hand. How are brands evaluating and measuring their performance on digital as a medium?
Performance today exists because of the influx of digital. Only the top brands in every category are invested in analytical tools and technologies at the moment, in order for brands to create accurate target groups and bifurcation of their performance budgets, all brands – whether large or mid-size – will need to base their marketing budgets on hardcore days driven insights. Brands will need to focus their attention on stickiness rather than a one-time purchase of their products and services and brand loyalty, because of the influx of multiple emerging brands will be difficult. Hence, the focus should be on data collection and using consumer data responsibly and ensuring the consumers and users are gratified from time to time for their loyalty.
Talent has always been a challenge when something new disrupts the media world. How are digital companies scaling their knowledge and imparting training to people?
Thanks to the vast population of India, there’s a lot of talent in the Digital eco-system. This talent needs to be groomed on a day-to-day basis and updated with trends from global and national avenues. Training structures in digital agencies need to evolve as swiftly as the current marketing trends are evolving. Reactive changes to training and development program is a must along with a lot of predictive trend analysis. A brilliant opportunity that digital agencies here have today is that they can create trends if they can convince their clients to invest in newer technologies and avenues, hence having the first mover’s advantage and also making it easier for the agencies to train and develop their teams. Lastly, keeping yourselves up to date and ensuring your teams stay hungry is a cultural change that agencies need to make rather than a training change.
What kind of investments digital companies need to plan to face the future challenges, both in terms of skill and technology?
Technology today has evolved multiple folds and can literally manage half the work that teams do today on a day-to-day basis. The idea here is to ensure that human assets are used to plan, strategise and lead initiatives rather than invest their valuable time in monotonous processes. Using human EQ and IQ to create processes using the flawless nature of technology and code to automate outdated processes to have more time in hand for thinking teams is going to be the biggest challenge that companies face. Also, ensuring that new talent from newer industries is invested on expanding their current offerings. Lastly, hiring younger talent who represent the newer generations and their ideologies, which are very different from the target groups that companies have been serving for ages.