Reinventing Marketing ROI – Through the lens of performance branding

The DIGIXX 2021 Summit and Awards started with a riveting discussion on ‘Reinventing Marketing ROI – Through the lens of performance branding’ which saw some industry stalwart share their insights and experiences. Moderating the session was Anita Nayyar, ex-Head Customer Strategy & Relationships, ZEE5. The panellists included:

Prasad Shejale, Founder & CEO, Logicserve Digital

Shantanu Sirohi, Chief Operating Officer, Interactive Avenues, a Reprise Network company

Tushar Vyas, President – Growth & Transformation, GroupM South Asia

Vivek Bhargava, Head, dentsu Performance Group

Commencing the discussions, Anita Nayyar remarked that while it’s true that ROI matters to brands and marketers and performance marketing delivers that ROI, but there’s no emotion or romance in Performance Marketing. She went on to ask the speakers whether there is any innovation in performance marketing really.

Vivek Bhargava responded with an observation that, “Money does not get you happiness, but if you have enough of it you can get any key made!”

Continuing further, he said, “Performance marketing may be boring, but it delivers outcomes to brands and agencies make money. So, it can get very interesting and romantic. In the last 10-15 years, there has been tremendous innovation in marketing and the first innovation is to do with targeting people based on the profits that they deliver to the brand. Can you target people based on the customer life time value that they deliver to the brand? The biggest innovation in the last five years has been where people are using first party data of targeting people who can deliver you the profits.”

Nayyar then asked Shantanu Sirohi whether top of funnel marketing is taking advantage of the innovations in the digital performance marketing space.

According to Sirohi, “Our definition of innovation needs to be separate and we need to see where we need to innovate in the modern day context of the consumer where it is possible to have data signals about the consumer to reach out and target or talk to him at the level of one.”

Nayyar, here remarked that creating an ad is an art, but performance marketing is hardcore science. “How does performance marketing impact branding?”

Prasad Shejale remarked that what gets measured, gets improved and performance is all about getting measured. “But if you see the innovations – the whole adtech, martech, automation, audiences with respect to opportunity, similarity, different ad formats, the landing page optimisation tools, CX, personalisation techniques, data insights – everything if you see there is a seed which has got built into such a beautiful tree there.”

In marketing there is nothing sacrosanct, performance marketing pushes the branding, he added.

Speaking on the growing importance and role of digital in media spends, Tushar Vyas pointed out that “digital has done better last year, compared to all other medium and the money has definitely shifted to digital. Fencesitters are now looking at digital in a bigger way. At the same time demand for ROI and demand for accountability of media spends is increasing and somewhere digital has played the role of catalyst in terms of what you can measure and how you can attribute spends. I guess a similar level of attribution and accountability we are getting from other media as well.” Vyas further said that a fundamental shift in marketing approach is happening. 

Catch the complete conversation below: 


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