Mercatique, the flagship business conclave of MAXIM, the Marketing Association of XIMB, was organized on 2nd August, 2015. The topic of the discussion for this year’s conclave was ‘Evolution of Brand and Customer Interaction’. The event was graced by eminent speakers from various fields of marketing like, Susmita Misra, SVP Karvy Insights, Arvind Suri, DMG Sales Sun Pharma, Mahesh Rao, Ex-CEO Switz Industrial Bakery Middle East and Ex-commercial Director, HJ Heinz and Amit Gope, Head Marketing, Century Plyboard Ltd.
The discussion was moderated by Prof. M.N. Tripathy of XIMB, who opened the conclave with words about the importance of customers and social media in marketing.
The first speaker of the day was Ms. Susmita Misra. She started her discussion on the metamorphosis of customer choice and how brands should utilize this to their advantage, especially in the retail industry. She pointed out ‘She economy’ and the role of children in consumer decision and how they have led to an in increase in retail industries like Apparel, personal care, ‘Retailtainment’. Mr. Arvind Suri was up next and he spoke about marketing from the perspective of a pharmaceutical company. In this domain, relationship with a brand is like relationship with a human. Some of the peculiarities of pharma industry were pointed out by him. He finished his discussion with an inspirational quote saying: “Remain alert. Remain focused. Remain dynamic… and remain in the market.”
Mr. Mahesh Rao, Ex-CEO, Switz Industrial Bakery (Middle-East) and currently teaching at the Wellingkar Institute started his address with an explanation of ‘Watsonian Behaviourism’ keeping the consumer behavioral habits in mind. He noted that one of the prime movers is the concept of First Mover Advantage and backed it with examples of Xerox and Dalda. Mr. Rao also explained how the focus has changed from Global Integration v/s Local Integration in the 1980s and 90s to Simultaneous Integration, Standardization and localization of a product and brand.
Mr. Amit Gope, Head, Marketing at Century Ply Boards (I) Ltd. highlighted the core objective of a marketer-“To make the customers to either accept the brand, love the brand or refer the brand”. He shared the examples of Unilever, ITC, Godrej etc. as being some of the companies who are trying to take initial steps in tapping into the receptive minds of customers. Lastly, he acknowledged the usage of Internet and Mobile phones as the most important mediums to drive Consumer Interaction in the future.
Post the Question and Answer session, the new newsletter of Maxim named ‘MAXPRESS’ was released by the speakers. Also, the winners of the competition ‘Intern Diaries’ were announced. The first prize was bagged by Somashree Chaudhury whereas the 2nd prize was bagged by Rajat Agarwal. Akshita Tiwari won the ‘Most Creative Entry’ award.
In the end Prof M.N. Tripathy delivered the vote of thanks and it concluded Mercatique 2015.