Posted 21. 09. 2017
The target of the third year of Brand Management was to uplift the importance of brands as an integral part of the company management and company strategy, projected into products, services, people, environment and communication. Among 14 speakers the biggest star was Rita Clifton, who has not just given the best speech but also moderated a unique debate of three prestigious brands that control their global marketing from the Czech Republic. Successful employer branding was interestingly presented by Pavel Stratil, CEO of Lidl. More than 400 participants of this year's Brand Management actively participated in the panel discussions concentrated mainly on how to elevate the role of brands so as to bear the attributes of clarity, coherency and leadership.
In the introductory part of the Conference Katie Axam, Marketing Director, IBM CEE, focused on the era of cognitive marketing, and how it is different from computing we’ve used so far. Customers have individual relationship to brands and we need to analyse data that will allow us to understand better each of them. A large amount of data that are available, are not structured. Cognitive solutions help us think better and take more informed decisions, to reveal the individual customer purchase impulses, target on them with our personalized communication and establish a better relationship with the brand.
Impact of creativity on brand growth was the topic of Stefan Siedentopf, Head of Planning, Ogilvy CEE. Modern marketing dilemma lies in the fact that the global economy is in the trap of relatively low growth, which stimulates the price sensitivity and rational communication of products and brands. "Sensible" arguments, however, bring only short term effect and do not increase the brand value in the eyes of consumers, while the use of emotional communication grow brands more quickly, and with long-term effect. Creativity and emotional associations support better relationship with the brand.
Jindřich Skrip, Marketing and Product Development Director of Kooperativa insurance house explained how to „stand firmly on the brand“. Kooperativa is the conservative brand. Clear and coherent brand identity stabilizes our market position. We need to clarify what is important for our brand and hold on it. " Ideal insurance company is safe, simple, human and understandable, meets the expectations and needs of clients. Modernity is not just a technology, it also means to be fair and follow what you have promised.
Pavel Stratil, Managing Director, Lidl Czech Republic filled the expectations of the audience with his presentation on Employer branding. "If we want to be a great company, we need great people. When building a brand you can't hide anything from your customers. Thanks to new communication platforms and social networks, anything is a public information. If we want to be attractive for our customers, we must first be attractive for ourselves, for our colleagues and employees“. The cornerstones are fair valuation, qualification, care, full information and integration. And also, satisfaction, motivation, understanding of the values of corporate culture, with mutual respect as a key factor. People come because of the brand, but they remain because of their bosses. All Lidl employees had the opportunity to experience and share company values in series of internal meetings and workshops. The company's management highlights the principles of open communication, accountability, and personal approach. "This is our way to create a strong and healthy brand. A strong brand is primarily a reflection of the people who work for it!"
The most inspiring part of the conference Brand as a company organizational principle was crowned by the speech of Rita Clifton. She focused on the role of brands in digital age. „The world is getting more complex, more confused than used to be. Shopping path is no longer linear, there is a number of shortcuts and points that influence purchase decisions, and new brand loyalty. Today more than ever, a strong brand can help to cope with the complexity and volatility, and to bring business success measured by the company value. Strong brand drives revenues. It has not only positive impact on sales (capturing new customers or creating the loyal ones, that are able to pay more), but it can also reduce costs, for recruitment of new staff or motivation of own people in general. Also business partners prefer to cooperate and offer better business conditions to Brands than Non-Brands. Positive WOM of customers in social media reduce advertising costs. And all that together increases profit. Brand should be an integral part of the strategy/management: I do not run a business, I run the brand. Brand, its mission, its rational and emotional values should be reflected in the company products, services, people and their behaviour, environment, business channels or communication. The main principles for a strong brand are: Clarity, Coherence and Leadership“. Her view of the brands and their stories Rita reflected using example of several case studies Apple, Microsoft, Sony, Samsung, Google, Amazon, Alibaba, Mc Donald´s, Xero or Asos.
In the follow-up discussion panel Rita Clifton talked with representative of three attractive Czech brands in different stages of development: Jana Barbati Chadova, Head of Global Marketing, Bata; Martin Dlouhy, Strategic Partner Development, UGO and Gabriela Lungu, Marketing Communication Specialist, WINGS (previously Head of Global Marketing, Notino). Among others they discussed about diversity and common attributes of these three brands, the influence of the digital age, the process of simplification or about effects on global and local level.
The afternoon part tried to answer the question How to be consistent in all touchpoints? Jan Binar, CEO, McCann Prague and president of AKA introduced 6 speakers – 6 best practices of companies , that are excellent in specific points of contact with the customer, and at the same time they work consistently in all the essential "touchpoints“ Jan Binar summarized : „When you know what you're doing, when you have a mission you believe in, your brand has its own identity and difference, and your colleagues and employees share its values, you will be successful."
Lukáš Koutník, Blue Events
tel.: 730 804 077, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
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