Digitalising, the way forward for winning brands | Daily News

Digitalising, the way forward for winning brands


LBR LBO Brand 2016 was held recently at the Cinnamon Grand. The focus of the forum according to Lanka Business Online founding publisher, Lakshman Bandaranayake is on leveraging digital to build winning brands. It is a known fact that the digital is taking over nearly every aspect of day to day life.

It was said that while this can be a challenge in the marketing world it is also an opportunity as it provides an opportunity as the digital will no longer be just a platform to create brand awareness but also to build deeply intimate, meaningful and profitable customer engagements.

“It is evident that the digital will progress at an outrageous pace. And if businesses fail to adopt digital at the same pace, there is not only a risk of being left behind but also being completely bulldozed by more digitally savvy companies,” Bandaranayake said in his introduction.

It was mentioned in the forum by many of the panelists that in the modern world any brand could be challenged if it does not provide something that the customer requires. Thus customization of goods and services is one of the methods of keeping in line with the competition.

Charulata Ravi Kumar, Chief executive officer of Razorfish India said Sri Lanka needs to move away from its island mentality and look outside as the world should be its target. She also mentioned four areas of innovation and development for the Sri Lankan market: Biz tourism, hospitality, fashion and tea.

” Given Sri Lanka's geographic location, Biz tourism is an ideal area to look into and expand into. In terms of hospitality, Sri Lanka is a country that everyone wants to visit. I have seen that Sri Lanka is developing their apparel industry, a lot is happening but there is space for innovation in terms of fabric. When it comes to tea, Dilmah has taken a step forward in creating an experience based strategy but it needs to be communicated to the world,” she said.

She also mentioned that innovation is a very backward area in our part of the world. She believed that it was no longer technological backwardness but it was cultural. Most of the South East Asians do not come forth in questioning, without questioning the capabilities there is no moving forward.

Zoe Lawrence, TNS Asia Pacific in her key note address in the forum stated that the consumer has an appetite for the digital, their statistics of Sri Lanka for the year 2016 with regard to time spent on the digital shows that 44% of the time is spent instant messaging, 41% social networking, 29% checking video clips on social networks and 26% checking news. These values are consistent with the world. Thus Sri Lanka too is rapidly growing in terms of the digital. Therefore it was highlighted that it was important to understand that social fragmentation ins occurring.

“Research showed that 2.4 million apps are used daily and 4.7 million apps are used weekly in Sri Lanka, and it is not just by the younger generation, the gap between the younger and older in terms of the digital is fairly small. Thus it is beneficial to consider content,”

It was in fact impressed upon that content would be the future of marketing, with the digital there comes an explosion of data that allows brands to create intimate connections with the consumer that helps in the customization process.

Joe Milward, 3M Sydney said society is moving from single channel to multi-channel to cross channel and now to omini-channel where everything is connected.

Vidya Sivaraja of Fonterra said the connection of everything creates a blurring and as mentioned before it is not happening only among the young. She stated that 53% of the Facebook users are over 25 years of age and that the majority of the internet visits happen via mobile phones, in a country where there is a mobile phone penetration exceeding its population it creates massive market opportunities.

She said it is necessary for marketers and entrepreneurs to look at the digital but to first consider the consumer, the consumers moments of truth and then to consider how the brand could be integrated to suit their needs and how the digital could help in locating the consumer needs.


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