[Interview] Emergence of platform agnostic brand voice

While content needs to be customised to suit platform specs, a uniform voice is required to create recall. Sanjay Tripathy, Senior Executive Vice President – Head Marketing, Product, Digital & E-Commerce, HDFC Life sheds light on maintaining agnostic voice while quitting the God stature.

For a serious industry such as BFSI, what kind of role do bloggers/influencers play in filling the communication gap?

Let me give you a personal example. For our recently launched brand campaign ad ‘Apno Ko Apne Dum Pe Jeena Sikhao!’, which showcased how a man is hard to replace in his family, we used an influencer activity by IndiBlogger to promote the brand campaign. This saw a huge impact, with over 7 lacs + reach and more than 200 entries by bloggers PAN India.

This is because consumers are now taking the digital route to complete their purchase cycle. Before buying a particular product online, customers indulge in a lot of online research. This research usually includes a trusted peer network of ‘new class influencers’ – popular bloggers, tweeters and YouTubers – who convince or influence them to buy or not buy the product. Their influence is powerful because the consumer believes they are unaffiliated and without bias.

How does HDFC Life maintain a standard voice across various social networking sites, with each site playing a different role?

The content strategy used across all the social platforms is tactically crafted, keeping in mind our brand’s core values – Excellence, People Engagement, Integrity, Customer Centricity and Collaboration.

As it’s rightly said, ‘uniformity is a thing of the past and we are in the age of elastic market segmentation’; likewise, everybody has an inclination towards certain social networking sites and spend quality time on each of them, depending on their choice. Eg: Facebook and Twitter contributes a major chunk of the young audience; LinkedIn reflects a much more serious crowd. It becomes challenging to reach out to the masses with a singular approach; hence we chose to be prevalent on a range of social networking sites with a customized set of content strategy, keeping the core message the same.

How effective has social media been in extending the ‘Sar Uthake Jeeyo’ in the core ideology to digital?

Yes, we have been quite effective in extending our core ideology through our campaigns. Take for example our Cricket World Cup 2015 Twitter contest, which keeping in mind our “Sar Utha Ke Jiyo” philosophy, leveraged the entire activity using the #MyTeamMyPride handle.

Following the success of this activity, we continued to associate all our online/offline activities with ‘Pride’. Our digital properties, Facebook, and Twitter, recently had an activity on the eve of Father’s Day, where we once again incorporated ‘Pride’ using #MyPapaMyPride.

Digital media, owing to its dynamic nature, tends to deviate from mainline communication at times. While we understand that this flexibility is required to an extent for the campaigns to be effective, we still believe that digital should work in tandem and under the same umbrella as all our media communication. Maintaining the same brand language and imagery in our digital media promotions is of utmost importance to reflect the same values.

Please share your views on measurement metrics for social media campaigns. What are the parameters that CMOs should keep in mind?

With loads of data available, selecting the right type of metric to monitor can be a tedious task for the marketers. Metrics like Facebook ‘Likes’ ‘Shares’ or YouTube ‘ views’ are merely good to have, but are not enough to monetize and generate business.

Being in BFSI segment the metrics can be categorized into 3 groups, according to the simplified flow of any digital marketing campaign:

Ø Traffic Generation
o Overall Site Traffic
o Traffic sources

o Mobile Traffic
o Click Through Rate
o Cost Per Click

Ø Conversion Metric
o Conversion Rate
o Cost Per Lead

o Bounce Rate

o Avg Cost per page view

o Avg Page views per visit

o Avg time on site

o Rate of return visitors

Ø Revenue Metrics
o Return on investment (ROI)
o Cost to acquire a customer (CAC)

Other than that, ‘Brand Recall’ and ‘Customer Satisfaction’ / ‘Happy Customer’ matter most. A brand needs to connect and engage with its customer and leave him with a happy and satisfied feeling. One happy customer is equal to 10 more customers. Considering how, it becomes all the more important for us to stress on it.
That apart, the ROI value that digital contributes to the brand and the impact that it has on visibility, reach and recall are important parameters to measure, if you are executing and analyzing an online media campaign.

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