What makes a Smart Marketer?
One of the most enjoyable past-times of college life is watching any and every sitcom/TV series that one can lay one’s hands on. There may be times when people are actually judged by the number of them watched and the record time in which they have been watched. Now, in such a scenario, college’s DC++ acts as every students buddy. But, in cases when due to technical glitches it refuses to work, online websites come to our rescue.
Very recently, while streaming one of my favourite shows, there was one thought that crossed my mind, leaving me all guilty. While watching our favourite TV shows on our laptops, how many of us actually bother to go through the entire advertisement preceding the shows? A lot of efforts and money go into making these commercials and yet, we never flinch away from pressing the ‘skip ad’ button. Then how is it that these advertising agencies and the companies that hire them thrive in the market?
In today’s world, there are hundreds of marketing channels available. The truth is disintegration, proliferation coupled with the crassly free flow of information has complicated the once-simple job of marketers. The mantra today is to reach out to the newer generation by using innovative tactics infused with practical acumen, so as to acquire an edge over the slower-adapting rivals.
Smart marketers take advantage of the most unconventional and untapped mediums and platforms of communicating with customers that have been most conveniently overlooked by others. We are gradually shifting to the era of online or internet marketing, something that is being embraced even by the hard-core bricks-and-mortar businesses. Be it the highly unconventional song ‘Kolaveri-di’ becoming an overnight sensation owing to the impeccable online marketing strategies adopted (also called viral marketing) or be it Channel V utilizing the online social media platform to create buzz around the revamp and re-launch of their channel, internet marketing has proved to be highly successful. In fact, even the Indian politicians are slowly embracing mediums like Twitter to promote their candidature, ahead of the impending 2014 elections.
Today, company’s revenue measurement metrics have changed a whole lot from what they were a couple of years back. A company’s marketing efforts are evaluated based on three major parameters – how often a new customer is acquired and the cost that goes into it, the rate at which customers are retained and the profits that are generated per customer. If a marketer harps onto the traditional methods of revenue-gauging by forecasting future sales based on the company’s past track records, he is sure to be overthrown by his competitors. Instead, smart marketers use live data obtained from various surveys, panel discussions, interviews, questionnaires etc. to keep up with the current trends. We have slowly entered the era of direct marketing, where the time between intimating target population about the product/service and receiving orders is plummeting. With the advent of e-commerce and e-business, the biggest advantage that marketers have today is the opportunity to test potential waters before venturing into them. Like for example, if I want to start my own online shopping site let’s say in the baby care segment, I can first have a pilot test of the type of products that Indian parents will be ready to buy and the amount of money that they will be willing to shell out for the same. This will be instrumental in helping me know the customer requirements better and eventually, prevent me from losses by faltering on the same. Smart marketers use high-end tools like marketing mix modelling to estimate the effect of various factors and tactics on sales of their organizations that further equip them with the knowledge of the areas where decreasing or increasing of investments is required.
There is no black magic in successfully attracting customers. In fact, it is the right amalgamation of the right tactics that eventually decides the fate of the brand.
An Upantya Visharad in Hidustani Sangeet and in Bharatnatyam, Venu has been the epitome of versatility and consistency throughout school and college life. An EC engineer, she was a member of AIESEC & NU Tech where she managed various activities. She loves micro blogging and working for stray animal welfare. She is currently a management student at IIM Kozhikode (Class of 2015).
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