Physical drive remains a key marketing trend

Economy March 25, 2014 00:00

By Pichaya Changsorn
The Nation

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'Pure digital campaigns still ineffective'

“Digital turning phygital” – marketing jargon that is a contraction of “digital” and “physical” – will be among the four key marketing trends of this year, since purely digital campaigns are still not effective, according to Minteraction.
Leading marketers at Minteraction’s digital marketing conference yesterday agreed that integrated marketing communications (IMC) campaigns dubbed by GroupM’s digital-media agency as “digital turning phygital” would prevail in the advertising and media industry this year.
The other three trends are performance marketing and optimisation and the reaching of critical mass in online video and mobile data penetration. 
“Greater competition and the current economic situation will force marketers to be more sales-oriented and more efficient … ‘performance marketing’ will be the answer,” said Niklas Stalberg, chief operating officer of Minteraction.
Minteraction forecasts digital advertising to grow by 38 per cent this year and account for 4.3 per cent of total ad spending in the country. 
Saowarat Opasayanont, a marketing manager at Unilever, said that as Facebook had become a mainstream, the digital landscape was still evolving and digital marketing continued to be an experimental task. 
“[But] I would like to encourage [marketers to try digital marketing] since it provides [you] an equal-playing-field opportunity. [With digital marketing] small brands can make their way into the market, if you have creativity and courage to experiment with it,” she said.
It remained a challenge for marketers to find a fine balance in their digital marketing campaigns so that they are not too offensive and cause consumers to turn off, while they can effectively deliver their brands’ key messages, she said.
Sitthichai Lertsutthiwong, online marketing manager for Advanced Info Service, said that thanks to last year’s auction of third-generation cellular licences, network infrastructure was now ready to serve the digital and mobile marketing era. However, the challenge remained for cellular-network operators to persuade 50 million subscribers to convert to their new 3G networks. 
The IMC age is still around. AIS has continued to use traditional media since it cannot ignore this group of 50 million customers, who are about half of the total 94 million mobile subscribers in the country. 
However, the rise of cheap smartphones should help accelerate mobile data penetration, he said.
Patcharah Sirikietsoong, general manager of PHIL and Nuffnang, said a purely digital marketing campaign still could not fully cover mass consumers, while a physical campaign could not actually reach them.