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Digital media allows the flexibility of impact marketing for brands

Marzin
R. Shroff is the brand trustee of 3 Superbrands – Aquaguard, Euroclean and
Eureka Forbes, and has the task of steering the largest vertical of Eureka
Forbes. His responsibility is thought leadership, category leadership, and
market leadership. Marzin started his career as a Brand Manager at Eureka
Forbes.  Subsequently he has been
associated with, consulted, and trained a number of well known companies. His
last stint was with Suashish Diamonds where he set up their Brand operations. In

Marzin
R. Shroff is the brand trustee of 3 Superbrands – Aquaguard, Euroclean and
Eureka Forbes, and has the task of steering the largest vertical of Eureka
Forbes. His responsibility is thought leadership, category leadership, and
market leadership. Marzin started his career as a Brand Manager at Eureka
Forbes.  Subsequently he has been
associated with, consulted, and trained a number of well known companies. His
last stint was with Suashish Diamonds where he set up their Brand operations. In
an exclusively interview with India Digital Review, Marzin R. Shroff discusses
Eureka Forbes’ vision about digital marketing in India.

How
does the digital medium – both internet and mobile figure in Eureka Forbes’
plans to reach out to consumers?

If we look at the way the internet is
evolving, we will see that it is moving up in the amount of time spent by
people on it in comparison to other forms of media. Secondly, internet is a
two-way medium where you can interact with your audience but in a print and TV
ad, you can just communicate the message. Internet allows dialogue to happen. Internet
is a very powerful tool in order to reach out and provide information to the customers
today.

Here to four years back, we had identified
that internet is the medium of the future and we invited digital agencies to
pitch for our business. We got ranked very well in terms of our corporate
website listng. We got around 200 thousand visitors on a monthly basis and that
is a significant traffic for us.

As far as mobile is concerned, we marry the
internet and mobile together in some of the activities that we do. For instance,
we have a call back through structure, where a customer calls in from ‘x’ place,
he is dispatched to the nearest branch manager of that particular location and
through this technology he can talk to the customers and the guy who generated
the lead, can be followed up in less than a minute. We have been recognised by
the industry for this and this has helped our business a lot.

Eureka
Forbes is a direct selling brand, and direct selling in itself is a social
exercise. What are your thoughts on social brand building exercises on internet
in India?

Direct selling is a route to reach the customer
and when I am saying direct, it means we are in the direct business and we are
not just a direct sales company. It means that we not only sell to our customers,
but also service them and reach out to them on one on one basis. Hence internet
does play a critical role in reaching the customer in a one on one basis.

Social media gives us an opportunity to integrate
the brand into the lives of our customers. It’s not necessarily linked to
buying or purchasing of products. Social media plays that critical role of
engaging and building affinity and relationship with the customers for us. Today
we have 350 thousand fans on Facebook and we have an active dialogue with them.
We intend to take this forward as today people prefer to do things online compared
to a phone call.

How
important is having an ecommerce presence for Eureka Forbes in India?

Extremely important. There are two ways in
which ecommerce happens. One is the traditional ecommerce where people buy on
the internet. The other way is to generate a lead online and the transaction
happens physically. In any ecommerce transactions today, people are preferring
cash on delivery. Even today, most customers done want to give their credit
card numbers online and for them there has to be a way out. On our website we
are growing ecommerce very strongly.

What
answers do you seek from your digital advertising agencies and digital media
partners while promoting your brand on internet?

The brief is
very simple. We ask questions like how can we be relevant to our consumers and
be their friends for life. We have an initiative of ours called EuroAble. EuroAble
is a call centre manned and operated entirely by physically disabled people. Now
how can we get more companies set up similar things? We put this message out on
our social media and web page to get organisations to follow the movement. These
initiatives have nothing to do with Eureka Forbes’ business, but are corporate
social responsibilities of the company. These are the kinds of things we are
talking to agencies about and asking them to tell us how to engage and have a
dialogue with other corporate bodies.

The customers are very aware and intelligent.
How do we stand out in the whole process. Is social media going to remain the
same in the next three years? People have stopped mailing and are getting on to
messaging. How is that trend going to impact our customer of tomorrow? How can I
create a mobile app where a customer can know about our services and products? We
need to look at agencies that provide a cutting-edge solution to all of these.

With
new content forms such as videos coming up on internet, what are your thoughts
on visual brand building exercises on internet in India?

We have a fair presence on YouTube, with
some videos put up by us and some by our customers, friends, partners etc. We are
looking at building an app where we can instantly generate request and inform
customers about when their service is due etc. Once that is there, we will have
a dialogue going on with the customer and engage with him in a real time basis.

Mobile
is being held as a great medium for brand communication, but still, very less
amount is spent on the particular medium. What is your take on this?

SMS marketing is very intrusive and is a
very poor and weak way to get in touch with customers. I would hate to spam our
customers because it creates a negative brand image. Permission marketing is
what we believe in doing?

Internet
is said to be a measurable medium. What is your take on this? Have we overdone
the measurement quotient and made this medium hard to understand for the brand
marketers?

Not at all. Everybody today is looking at something
measurable and not at something which is arbitrary. The concept of measurement
of the internet is a boon for marketers and not the other way around.

How
do you see your marketing objectives aligning with what the online medium
offers from two years down the line?

Every company’s marketing objectives are to
have more customers and have more business out of existing customers. Digital media
allows you the flexibility of impact marketing and we can measure RoI on an
ongoing basis. We know exactly how much we are paying for each lead and each
sales. ‘Half of my marketing dollars is wasted, I just don’t know which half’, doesn’t
apply on digital.

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