Meet the MENA Effie Thought-Leadership Program's speakers.
The pandemic has turned life and business upside down, challenged plans, and tested processes. In this context, companies need to seriously raise their game to be effective and succeed. The MENA Effie Thought-Leadership Program is your chance to Rise and Shine. Two mornings of sessions that will show you how to improve your performance and impress the Effie jury.
Leading up to the event organized by Mediaquest on May 18-19, Communicate presents a series of interviews with the speakers on what effectiveness in marketing means in 2021.
Today, meet Mitin Chakraborty, Head of Marketing, Babyshop at Landmark Group. Mitin will participate in a panel around "Why organizations with a purpose succeed in tough times."
What has the pandemic changed in terms of marketing effectiveness?
There’s no doubt that the pandemic has had a huge impact on the role of the marketing function within a business. In more ways than one, we have all had to redefine the ways of working within our teams and with our wider ecosystem of partners.
While businesses faced an unpreceded amount of uncertainty, I have seen the function being at the forefront of all critical decisions, from leading on consumer insights to strategy and building the most favorable proposition, and then further to execution with agility. Within our industry too, we have witnessed an extraordinary surge in digital and e-commerce adoption, which made us rethink our entire operating model. Overall, this has been an incredible year of learning and we couldn’t be prouder of where we stand today.
This pandemic, however, hasn’t ended yet and it will continue to throw new challenges at our businesses. As marketers, we just need to sustain our leadership position, have faith in our abilities, stick to the basics, learn the new, stay agile and relevant, and we’ll continue to be a driving force in the business team.
What has been a salient case of creativity and effectiveness in the last year?
For me, there were many wonderful examples of creative storytelling from last year. Some of the best ones were Apple’s “Creativity Goes On”, Heineken’s “Connections” and “Back to Bars” and KFC’s decision to pause on their tagline – but if there’s a brand that stood out in its creative execution, it was Nike’s “You Can’t Stop Us”. A masterpiece in production, this is filled with grit and the right balance of emotions — truly conveys everything that the brand embodies.
In a crisis, who reaps the biggest rewards and why: the brave or the cautious?
Whilst this depends on various other factors — the business category or the nature of one’s challenges/opportunities — I’d rather be cautious and protect my turf in such tough conditions, than go bold.
Covid 19 has been a tough one, filled with multiple layers of uncertainties. It’d be foolish if one went all-out without understanding the impact on stakeholders.
What does the new normal mean to you?
The new normal to me is a life that, on a regular basis, is pushing us out of our comfort zones. It is pushing us to think harder, to move faster, and be on top of our game, every day, every hour.
How prepared were you for the unexpected and how have you adapted to uncertainty?
Certainly, this pandemic wasn’t something we were ever anticipating in our lives. However, given our business values and our infrastructure, in hindsight, we feel we were much better off.
For me, this has stolen away two to three years of our normal lives, if not more. While we have learned and gotten used to new ways of working, this hasn’t been easy on any one of us – our colleagues or our families.
As a business, we have simply listened to our customers all throughout the period, to serve them in the best possible manner. We continue to do so through various programs. This, in my opinion, has been the single most [important] factor driving business and brand performance.
Some argue that limited budgets enhance creativity. What do you think 2021’s creative output will be like?
I don’t think our creative output will ever suffer. If anything, I only see more interesting work being churned out by agencies and brands. Even during the lockdown, and after, we have witnessed some of the best work this industry has produced.
In fact, with optimized budgets at play, we’ll hopefully see creative ideation ruling the roost in a brand plan. For me, now is the time to build in creative capabilities on all sides of the marketing spectrum – from ideation to production and execution.
What are the top three skills the marketer of the future will need?
Whilst there’s a lot that’s expected from a Marketer, the three standout skills for someone who wants to champion the next few years will be:
To attend the MENA Effie Thought-Leadership Program, book your tailored experience now.