Marketing and Communications

Marketing Communications: five finger story

Marketing and communications in terms of scope are very vast as well as in terms of reaching its huge since everyone in business needs to do marketing and even for personal branding its essential. The concept of marketing has changed a lot over a period of time.

A few years back it was more or less word through the mouth from actual customers/users. Soon trend started of putting hoardings at the prominent sites where traffic of people is more and also through pamphlets distributed at signals and some common places like fairs, movie halls, etc,.

Then came the era of business exhibitions where companies participated to showcase their products by having stalls at exhibitions and also through live demonstrations of their products.

I remember buying my first laptop in the year 1996 from one of the exhibitions. I was completely taken away by the product and also because of their offer. The decision was spontaneous so paid advance on the spot.

The laptop was being launched first time in that exhibition. Soon marketing started on television as a commercial advertisement as viewership grew over a period of time.

Marketing on Television will be long-lasting since viewership is always growing as penetration is increasing in rural areas across India. Channels beamed the world over can also be seen on laptops/mobiles.

Then came mobiles which have changed the concept of marketing totally and in terms of reach/viewership since the internet was provided with mobiles. Companies started making mobile apps and advertisements were displayed in apps on almost every click.

Now marketing a product there is no boundary and continuous advertisement to the masses created trust among viewers to make their decisions. Also due to the continuous hammering of a product, one is tempted to buy and try out at least once.

The digital age in marketing has come in for 360-degree change since the last 15 years when companies started marketing through emails in bulk. In one email more than 100 prospective customers were addressed and details were mailed about products with attractive pictures.

Some companies also gave an analysis of mailing as to how many emails were opened and many more such points. Soon this became regular practice as mass mailing was the in thing then.

Now in the digital age Companies as well as individuals are marketing their products/brands through webinars and online platforms like Facebook, Google, Instagram, Linkedin, Youtube, and many more such platforms.

In fact now if you happen to open any browser first thing you will find is advertisements whether its any site or email. Companies have also started marketing by paying commissions to Affiliate marketers

A good marketer is one who has a thorough knowledge of his products and in a position to demonstrate as well. So communication becomes very essential and connecting with people as well as understanding their needs and problem areas.

I remember one cooperative bank in the remote village of Maharashtra where all communication was necessarily done in Marathi. So almost for 2 hours, I gave a demonstration of Banking software in Marathi. Later I gave complete training of software in Marathi on acquiring the same customer.

Before scheduling a demonstration with the bank I had studied their pain points and other ground realities and also which companies have already demonstrated software before us.

So during demonstration point by point, all points were addressed and interaction with staff was very encouraging due to which we were selected. We got the order to implement software at their head office and branches.

Our authenticity proved beyond doubt because of our communication in their own language and by addressing their problems and clearing queries/doubts of all staff members. Experience always counts, especially in the marketing field.

The more you know about your product/brand and meet customers/prospects your experience grows and in real life also the same principle applies.

In order to market your product, you should have complete knowledge of your product as well as that of your competitors and good communication skill which will give you an edge over others.

In order to become a good marketer try to communicate through emails regularly, by calling, by interacting, and conducting surveys on a regular basis. Even experiences from other facets of life can be added.

For my customer Avatar, I had designed a survey form from the site. After adding 20 questions I found that the free version was offering only 10 questions so I made a survey of 10 questions.

I was a Software consultant to one of the urban banks in Mumbai whom I had provided Banking software. I had started when they had two branches and then over a period of 10 years it had reached to 15 branches.

I achieved this purely because of communication and adding modules as per new products and by adding new features in existing products. I would like to share one observation which I did at one of the branches.

Cashier use to throw small chit everyday evening after logging out from the software. When I inquired he said all exchange done during the day was written in the chit and then adjust denominations in the final summary.

This incident prompted me to add an exchange feature in software which was a great blessing for the cashier. This feature was not available in any banking software.

As a part of the exercise, the survey was to be done for the customer avatar. Analysis of surveys, by calling and interacting with them helps in formulating the marketing strategy.

Even before launching a product or deciding the name of the product many companies conduct opinions of respective age groups by interacting with them personally. They also give feedback forms to access the mindset of people about their product.

I created a survey form to analyze demographic patterns for the customer Avatar. I have sent a survey link on the Whatsapp group of a Bank in Mumbai where I was their consultant a few years ago. 16 people responded to my survey on the Whatsapp group.

Analysis of this survey is as follows – 

As seen from the above results of the survey you can target all types of products which can be offered to a family and also offer products who are doing jobs. Another product could be for travel and tourism since most of them are interested in visiting India’s tourist destinations.

I think Deepak applies maximum strategies for marketing his brand by mailing regularly, conducting webinars, interacting with his prospective customers, and taking feedback in the form of comments, and sometimes from surveys during webinars and through his Blog.

During the session, we learned a lot about Deepak’s personal life, his tastes, and views on many topics that continued for a long time ever after the actual session was over.

I think today he had recollected lots of old memories and from that, he had wanted to escape could be the reason to be so personal and share as much as possible about his private life so that he will feel better and lighter in terms of his personal life.