Ambika Sharma National Head, Jagran Solutions
India’s leading new age marketing agency Jagran Solutions has recently set up an end to end MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences & Events) Division to offer end to end Conferencing services. BestMediaInfo.com got hold of Ambika Sharma, National Head, Jagran Solutions to know about the various aspects of brand activation. Here are the excerpts from the interview:
Q) You’ve been in new age marketing & brand activation space for over 13 years now, what kind of transition you’ve seen in the market? It has changed quite a bit. In the beginning it was very much unorganized. There were very few professionals initially and the experience was also very minimal as it was a very new industry. Over the years it has got formalized. I can say that the transition have been in the same way as in advertising industry.
Q) How has brand activation emerged as an integral part of marketing plans? It is difficult to overlook brand activation now and it has to be a part of any marketing plan. It was optional about 5-6 years back but in last 3 years, it has become the integral part of any marketing plan.
Q) What remain the major parameters for measuring the effectiveness of activation? There is only one particular parameter. Before you plan any activation you actually decide what you want, and then plan it. You first decide the objective which you want to achieve and then around that any activation is planned.
Q) You use various consumer connect strategies with new media solutions; simultaneously you are also using BTL strategies. How does this all work? Consumer connect strategies and BTL strategies are more or less same things. Activation is experiential marketing which means that there has to be one on one interaction with the consumer.
Q) Convincing Indian clients that low cost below the line marketing would work for them has always been hard for the agencies. What are the reasons you see behind this? In contrary to what it used to be 4 years back, it is no longer difficult. Medium and large spectrum clients discuss and appreciate. It is a part of their plan. Some are using activation for many years altogether. It only becomes difficult when it does not deliver desired results as per your plan.
Q) What are the challenges you feel in brand activation? In activation, the cost per contact is fairly large in comparison to other mediums like television and print. It won’t be fair to compare brand activation with the media vehicles because at other places you get some 30 second exposure but activation is something which has a more potential.
Q) Does this model of brand marketing hold the potential of superseding conventional models? No. I don’t think TV and Print are competing mediums but I believe it will surpass out of home definitely very soon.
Q) How has been the industry response to Jagran Solutions? It is excellent. We started 5 years back and today we are a leading activation agency in the country.
Q) You recently launched MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences & Events) with the objective to create integrated approach & better value for the customers. How does it work? While we provided the service of conferencing as part of our offering however this is a concentrated effort to own and integrate all requirements under a single offering. This not only has definite cost advantages but also reduces stress for the clients with a single point of contact for all arrangements. We have invested time in getting our partnerships and alliances in place across all levels and now have the facility of providing an online conference travel desk for clients for the duration of the conference. This detailing and in-house infra will definitely enable us to pass on its benefits to our clients. We have a energetic and dedicated team of professionals with years of experience in delivering turnkey MICE solutions.