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Key takeaways in marketing, content consumption & data analytics from 2018

Viacom18’s Akash Banerji, Social Kinnect’s Rohan Mehta, JetPrivilege’s Zameer Kochar, BYJU’s Atit Mehta and J&J’s Channan Sawhney share the big learnings in marketing from 2018, as well as the dominant trends in content consumption and data analytics. 

Akash Banerji, Head - Marketing and Partnerships, Viacom18 Digital Ventures:
There is no one big learning from 2018. We are in such an exciting, challenging and volatile industry. There are many learnings that keep on co-ordinating through the year. But there are a couple of questions that still make us lose our sleep every day. One is very clearly about to what extend the 30-second TVC ad has got disseminated. We all know how the world of 30-seconders is actually getting pulled at two different ends – on the one end are your short durations, moments marketing, automated data driven led creatives, and on the other end under the guys of branded content. But, we are not so sure about the rate at which this 30-second ad will actually cease to exist, because this is still the big carrier of the brand message for more advertisers and clients. 

Second big question is, in this world of massive attention economy that we all live in, to what extend do we double down on the efforts with respect to creating personalised communication and giving out more relevant content to different consumers, because what has happened in mass entertainment in the digital age is actually about blockbuster content and not endless choice. 

Technology very clearly is skewing people’s attention towards the biggest brands and flashes platforms and consumers are very clearly taking the easiest routes, which is about watching and discovering the content that they may not necessarily love but what everyone loves. And I think as platforms, it has become more imperative to keep on shouting and really grabbing the consumers’ attention. 

There are many more similar conundrums that we face with respect to is brand building dead? Does it really have any value in today’s world? And of course, the classical question is about to what extent do you continue to focus on the awards business vis-a-vis the subscription business? 

Rohan Mehta, Co-Founder and COO, Social Kinnect:
One of my big takeaways from 2018 was the number of CEOs and MDs I saw in the room while participating in digital conversations, and the interest and intent from there to utilise digital as a core business channel for them was very exciting to see. 

Zameer Kochar, Head - Marketing & Member Engagement, JetPrivilege:
Though there are multiple learnings from 2018, there are a few that I would like to highlight. One definitely would be the need of organisations to focus on data that will be the fuel of growth, which is a better understanding of your customers, because today customers are very well connected. They are on various devices, various social media platforms, and keeping that in mind, it is important how can you contextualise your communication and keep it extremely personalised. That knowledge will actually come in once you understand your customers better through the data that exists. 

Going forward in 2019, it will be about how that data can again be more relevant, and that’s where the role of AI, machine learning, data science will come in. How you can automise the redundant comment asks and do it in a way that elevates the customer experience and predicts the intent more than the past historical data that is there will be imperative. So, that’s something which will be a big one for us. 

Atit Mehta, Marketing Head, Think & Learn (BYJU’s):
One key learning for 2018 has been the way consumers are moving away from traditional media, because the OTT platforms have hit us hard. We started with one big global guy, then the second guy came in and now all our Indian born broadcasters are also creating content which is really edgy and which most of us like to watch. So, the big trend is people are going where they enjoy entertainment, where they get easy access to content, where the cost of getting the content is cheaper. Thus, there is a metamorphic change, as what we saw in 2018 in terms of viewers moving to platforms, to places where content is driving their entertainment and consumption. 

Channan Sawhney, Head of Digital Marketing - Consumer, Johnson & Johnson:
The biggest takeaway from 2018 was how you can slice and dice and actually segment the consumer till the last mile and have data plans that are far more precise, and marketing plans that can reach the consumer well at the exact moment that they are looking for your products. So, that science and that evolution in terms of precision marketing is something I look back at 2018.

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