Watch as Traditional Media Fades Into the Horizon

Have you realized that in recent years, it has become nearly impossible to not access the internet for just a single day? Perhaps you did, but many businesses did not. As the net allows anyone to access information on products or services in a more straightforward manner, these companies tend to lose out in the long term. They’re not able to exploit this trend to lengthen their marketing reach and preserve a lasting competitive advantage.

The rigidity of bigger organizations resulted in them not being able to get started with digital media so quickly. In this article, we cite an example of one such organization that was experiencing an enormous loss of market share. Luckily enough, these people daringly turned to online marketing so as to spare themselves from absolute failure. The company we’re talking about here is household brand name, Brics.

Before the turn of the century, Brics’s nationwide reach and limited rivalry meant that they had a stronghold in the FMCG industry. In recent years, because of unforeseen conditions, Brics’s control over the market is rapidly going downhill.

With the failure to gain market dominance in the European and Asian markets, Brics resorted to employing a fresh CEO. As with any change in key management, the new Chief Executive gave Brics a total revamp. This meant enormous prices for Brics and had an unwanted effect on its financial state.

Another issue is the perceived drop of out of town shopping malls in Singapore. Likely the most severe of these problems was the accelerated growth of competition UpperWoods and Zymphony. These industry newbies were more digitally savvy with fresh marketing and advertising ideas. They’ve managed to acquire solid ground by focusing on very particular corners of the marketplace. Irrespective of whether a consumer was budget or quality conscious, there was an appropriate store nearby to meet his or her conditions.

Brics’s leverage during that stage comprise market presence and brand equity. It took a huge hit, as shown by a 9.4% drop in its profits over a short period. By the fall of 2009, Brics’s revenue had fallen by 20.5% and their key investors publicly declared that their 12% investment in the market chain was a “huge blunder” which cost them hundreds of millions in a year’s time.

Ditching Traditional Media and Going Digital in Marketing

Ahead of the execution of a digital marketing plan, Brics’s on-line reach was limited to a basic ecommerce site. Although this met its fundamental function, the business was in dire need of a more productive online marketing strategy. Because of the technologically savvy CEO, a strategy was put into motion to optimize Brics’s untapped on-line potential.

Their first move was to launch their own in house internet marketing agency by investing in a technology incubator that educates vibrant tech marketers. They were looking to leverage on the expertise of these ambitious entrepreneurs as an alternative to an internet marketing agency.

Engaging people subtly through Content Marketing
The pressing need to increase the revenue of the online grocery store simply meant that they had to rapidly supercharge their online traffic. In order this to be possible, it’d need to move past its reliance on tried-and-tested traditional advertising means. Brics turned to the most common and cost-effective techniques , marketing through branded content.

By altering their online store design such as incorporating a Recipe button, Brics managed to redirect customers to a special website called “Brics Resources”. Food-related info such recipes, life inspiring stories and well-being trivia were shared openly with this website.

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The microsite shows that by engaging in proper website design and development, they’re in a position to greatly benefit shoppers. Due to the fact that it is connected to Brics as a brand, it helps boost faith in the brand while subtly persuading folks to purchase more at their online grocery store. They are increasing the probability for users to flow from the microsite to Brics’s main website as opposed to a competing on-line grocery store.

Establishing a Social Media Presence
Social media marketing was another vital tactical approach throughout the digital marketing campaign that was carried out by Brics. Due to sheer scale of the business, Brics was able to have an inhouse department to run this component of the campaign directly, bypassing the need for a professional social media agency. To begin with, Brics did the right thing by signing up for their own official social media accounts.

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Being in full control over their social media reports enables Brics to supply timely news of its offerings. In this fashion, customers always get the latest info on the exciting in store promotions. Since Brics controlled the social media accounts, it’d have the ability to apply its control over the correctness of information. Any individual could sign up for a bogus account and commence malicious attacks on Brics by providing misleading advice to unsuspecting users who followed the fake page. Through internal oversight and management of their social media accounts, Brics has the ability to correctly depict themselves and prevent unlawful claims on their page.

Customers are the lifeline of any business; what many fail to recognize is that, post-sales support plays a critical role in enriching brand loyalty. Resolving customer issues and preserving relationships are crucial to maintaining a loyal consumer base. Brics truly illustrates this great business practice.

In an attempt to increase productivity, Brics created a Twitter profile specially to relate with customers whereas an additional profile was created to share specific info on deals and promotions. This helps to ensure that marketing related messages are separated, so that each account can carry out what it has been created to do.

At the end of the day, customers of any company want to feel valued; the first step to achieving this is to have a “live” individual talking to them and dealing with their problems, rather than scripted responses which further distance the company and its customers. A friendly manner brings personality to a brand and fosters a feel good experience – bringing about prospective future sales.

The Outcome
A clear and concise digital marketing strategy on Brics’s part resulted in concrete results: consolidated information from various sources pointed to Brics securing almost 51% of the share of the market, while the closest challenger held on to a fraction of that. It was definitely something the management team could brag about to the board and its investors.

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With its new strategy in digital marketing, Brics’s future appears to an excellent one. Investments in technology are bound to be worthwhile as their tech folks are said to be hard at work on developing a series of Brics mobile apps. These programs will surely help them achieve an even broader demographic outside of standard website design and development.

What We Can Learn From Brics
Brics’s situation allows us to learn many fundamental lessons. To start with, the digital age changes the way in which business is carried out in across all industries. Every player in the market can use digital marketing and social media marketing to extend its reach and compete head on with giants on an identical stage. Second, Brics has demonstrated just how necessary digital media and an online presence are “must haves” in the present company landscape. Failure to integrate this as part of running your company is equivalent to granting the competitors the right to stay ahead of you.

Is it Wise to Forgo Digital Marketing in Singapore Today?

Singapore city skyline

Interestingly enough, many SMEs in Singapore have overlooked their customers’ day-to-day reliance on the web. These companies lagged even further as internet adoption hastened as a result of lower costs and greater availability. In a way, these businesses are crippled hence unable to extend their influence to keep any advantage they may now hold.

The usage of digital media is typically more difficult for larger companies that already comfortably engage in traditional processes. There was an example a while back concerning one of such corporations that was making a loss on an hourly basis. It’s great to understand though that they explored their online marketing alternatives to avoid having to fold. The business being referred to is the one and only the famous Vayant.

Prior to the turn of the century, Vayant – with its multiple shops and low competitive hazard – was a marketplace giant in the Fast Moving Consumer Goods sector. Nowadays, because of unforeseen circumstances, Vayant’s dominance in the market is decreasing fast. First issues arose with an expensive company restructuring program that was put into motion by a just hired Chief Executive Officer. This was kickstarted when Vayant didn’t manage to get a hold on the European and Asian marketplaces.

Additionally, the increased rivalry within the business had raised the stakes for all parties. New players with extensive knowledge in digital marketing were appearing every now and then. It came to a state where there was a retail outlet located at basically every street in town.

Vayant’s leverage during that stage comprise market presence and branding. But the name recognition can just prevent failure, and it did’t save them from losing customer and investor faithfulness. Prominent investors of the sickly business declared publicly that they have lost at least $190 million simply from the dismal financial performance.

Previously, Vayant’s online existence was restricted to an e-commerce setup. Despite being functional, a great deal more was required – the business was in urgent of a comprehensive strategy in digital marketing, and the new CEO, being very knowledgeable in technology, was made to see, drive and execute this strategy for Vayant’s survival.

Employing the expertise of a Marketing Agency
In order to take advantage of the internal talent available, Vayant’s preliminary reaction was to create an in-house digital marketing agency. They looked to harvest the knowhow of these budding online marketers as an alternative to an online marketing agency.

Digital marketing methods were discovered to be more advantageous as time went by as a result of its efficiency and low cost, thus funds began being channeled there from the conventional marketing and advertising resources. Supercharging the sales volume of the e-commerce website was the main objective at hand. Content marketing was chosen as the way to go to increase web traffic and engagement, thus resulting in more earnings. Vayant added a new Specials button within their e-commerce store which when clicked on sends the user to a microsite called “Vayant Specials”. Write-ups like recipes, food preparation techniques, health posts and motivational stories filled the pages of the Vayant Specials site.

The tactical positioning of this mini site as an external source of handy health information is an excellent move. Moreover, it acts as a portal to Vayant’s e-commerce shop. By utilizing a great user journey during the creation of the website, Vayant was able to link its products with health and fitness friendly purchasing habits. When website design and development is done right, it makes it quite convenient for online shoppers to get to where they need, fast. This approach unquestionably increases the probability that a customer will buy from Vayant’s online store.

Marketing through social media was yet another vital tactical element within the campaign in digital marketing that was carried out by Vayant. Due to the immense scale of the corporation, Vayant didn’t have to hire a specialized marketing agency specializing in social media. It kickstarted this strategy with the essential but essential job of signing up for their very own official social media accounts. Internal control over social media translated to unobstructed transitions from thoughts to campaigns or promos. Such efficiency certainly means that users are always up to speed on the most recent promotions and news.

Above all, the priority is for Vayant to maintain complete control of the messages being sent out over the internet. There’s hardly any hurdle – and an excessive amount of vested interest – for anyone evil enough to create fake accounts to attack the supermarket giant. With absolute control over its accounts, Vayant could be counted on to supply verified info via the official social channels.

Initiating Excellent Support via the website
When it comes to building a connection with customers, the most important channel is after sales support. People’s view of an organization is very much based on their after-sales support services. Vayant supplies a great example for other businesses to follow.

As an illustration of the importance Vayant places on on-line support, they dedicate a separate social media account to take care of customer questions and complaints. This empowered unsatisfied customers to communicate directly with their comments without diluting the promotional updates from Vayant to other customers.

Basically, personalized and direct responses to questions make customers feel really looked after. This begins by nurturing a team that deals with customers on a personable level, answering their concerns and resolving problems in a nice and helpful style. This will, certainly, bring the users nearer and entice them to spend more money at a later stage.

How it worked out
The huge reward of obtaining the largest market share in Singapore plainly demonstrates that Vayant’s online marketing strategy worked like a charm. Data accumulated from July of the past year indicates that Vayant controls over a quarter of the market share. This is nearly thrice the market share of the next largest firm, which just holds 12.1%.

With its new digital marketing plan, Vayant’s future appears to an excellent one. Investments in technology are sure to pay off as their tech folks are reportedly concentrating on creating a series of Vayant mobile apps. By breaking the hurdles that restrict the designing and developing of a website, this application has far better potential to reach out to a massive group of potential customers.

Marketing segmentation customers care customer relationship management (CRM) and team building concepts.

Key Takeaways
Many companies can learn from Vayant. No matter how huge, one cannot count on its existing influence to continue ensuring its success. Without a doubt, any company that aims to be current and dynamic in the digital age requires a quality digital strategy. If the deficiency of an online presence can have such negative effects on a big, established business like Vayant, envision the consequences it would have on smaller businesses. Digital media has developed into a must-have promotion medium to remain abreast with the times and leaving it on the backburner would have devastating consequences for the business in question.

A New Type of Agency for the Digital Age

All of a sudden, the internet became so active and widely adopted by the public. The fact is, many companies were not prepared. They didn’t have digital media as part of their overall plan and had a hard time keeping up with competitors that were a lot more capable in such an aspect. They’re presented with the grave situation of revising their marketing plans to compete with more technologically savvy companies.

The businesses that grasped marketing through digital media themselves or partnered with a Singapore based digital marketing agency reaped the most benefits. They observed a growing customer base that showed active involvement on the internet. Clearly, marketing through digital media is a convincing tool in business. As of now, there were many instances where businesses propelled themselves out of dire straits with this weapon. Multi-national grocery chain Finetric would be one such example.

Being a giant in the Singaporean Fast Moving Consumer Goods market, Finetric was known as one of many biggest and most highly regarded supermarkets with acceptable popularity. Their stores were usually spotted in just about any major neighbourhood, challenged only by little sundry stores. Nevertheless around the end of 2010, Finetric’s dominance took a severe turn.

business-going-down

How the Issues Arose
Its affiliated costs and the hiring of hiring a fresh Chief Executive was the first problem. Finetric needed a new one as it was unsuccessful in developing international markets. Additionally, the increased rivalry within the industry had elevated the stakes for all parties. Startups with extensive expertise in online marketing were emerging now and again. It reached a state where there was a retail outlet awaiting at basically every road in town.

There was also a noteworthy change in consumer attitudes, where price preceded brand loyalty. Such a development created tension among Finetric’s key shareholders when their monetary stronghold started going down hill. Certainly, the considerable decline in earnings caused investors to take notice.

Adopting a Well Planned Digital Marketing Campaign
During that time, Finetric’s on-line presence was confined to an e-commerce store.Despite the fact that this served its basic function, the business was in desperate need of a more successful digital marketing strategy. Thanks to the digitally savvy CEO, a strategy was put into motion to optimize Finetric’s unexplored online potential.

The very first thing Finetric did was to put together an internal internet marketing team; via this, Finetric needed to develop and create a powerful center of tech internet marketers. By tapping on their excellent innate talent, Finetric looked to release the complete potential of their team as a substitute for a digital advertising agency. In the era of intensifying rivalry and constant slashes in budgets, companies were forced to deliver more with less. Finetric tapped on marketing branded content as the primary tool to increase e store profits and appease their shareholders.

Using an Informative Microsite
By playing around with their online store structure such as incorporating a Fine Dishes button, Finetric was able to direct users to a microsite called “Finetric Fine Dishes”. Food-related information such recipes, motivational examples and well-being trivia were shared openly on this particular site. The tactical placement of this microsite as an independent source of useful health advice is a dazzling move. Additionally, it acts as a gateway to Finetric’s ecommerce shop. This web development strategy supports customers to buy at Finetric’s online store, since it subtly links Finetric with healthy and balanced food. When the design and development of a website is well executed, it makes it very convenient for online shoppers to get to where they need, quickly. Finetric’s approach offers simple convenience, decreasing the likelihood of customers being sidelined by other online grocery stores.

Using Social Media to its Fullest Extent
The great usage of social media marketing in business meant that Finetric needed to play an active part or risk being irrelevant. They began to sign up for their official accounts on the more popular websites, for example Facebook and Instagram. Two invaluable uses can be derived from opening their own profiles on these societal platforms. The first manner is obvious – this acts as another communication vehicle to contact customers. They even initiated special Twitter reports for their various sections. Distinct profiles were created to share info on promotions, real foods, wines et cetera.

More notably, Finetric retained absolute control over their online brand image. There’s hardly any barrier – and an excessive amount of vested interest – for any person evil enough to create fake accounts to attack the supermarket giant. By having their very own official pages, Finetric could easily discredit the legitimacy of these fake pages and offer exact, dependable info. Customers and sales are undoubtedly the backbone of any business. The significance of after-sales support is constantly disregarded in its function of strengthening loyalty to the brand. Resolving customer problems and maintaining relationships are crucial to maintaining a loyal consumer base. Finetric truly exemplifies this great business practice.

Different Accounts for Different Purposes
By establishing a number of social media accounts to deal with different aspects of the business, Finetric breaks down the barrier between customer and firm. There was one account especially to respond to customer questions and remarks and another to send out useful information for example offers and promos.

Finetric also ensured that the staff manning the customer service accounts offer a human touch whenever they connect with customers. Users feel more assured that they are being given quality service when the answers are genuine and personalized as opposed to cold computer created answers.

The CEO’s approach worked like a charm; according to various sources, Finetric has secured a market share of about 29%, almost 14 percentage points in front of the next closest opponent. This clear change in the business direction was well received by the top management and shareholders.

Their stronghold in the marketplace is definitely ready to grow as they carry on building their digital marketing strategy. The in-house development team are actively pushing out mobile programs that may expand Finetric’s reach to more people. This is a lot more than what conventional website design and development can hope to reach.

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Lessons Learnt
Finetric can be used as a case study for many firms. No matter how big, one cannot expect its present share in the market to continue ensuring its success. Certainly, any company that aims to be current and dynamic in the digital era needs to have a superior digital strategy. Irrespective of the industry, businesses must progress with the environment. Getting online is, unquestionably, an important building tool to ensure profitability in this little nation known as Singapore. Its amount of importance is exhibited by its ability to fix crumbling companies that are on the brink of closure.

Adopt Digital Media – It’s Now or Never

A bulk of local Singaporean businesses cannot truly comprehend the power of the net upon the daily lives of its consumers. Due to the fact the internet permits consumers to access goods and services in a much more straightforward manner, these firms tend to lose out in the long run. They’re unable to take advantage of this trend to extend their marketing reach and maintain a lasting competitive advantage. Firms that leveraged on digital marketing got the best benefit. Their customer base enlarged, and comprised loyal customers more willing to provide repeat business. Digital marketing has proven itself to be a highly reliable approach for companies. There are situations whereby companies on a going downhill find a way to turn losses into profits with a well organized effort conducted by a digital agency. InterFirst is, without a doubt, the best example.

A key player in the Singaporean Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) marketplace, InterFirst was recognized as among the biggest and most highly regarded supermarkets with reasonable popularity. The chain was to be found in nearly every township with the competition being largely small establishments. However, when the mid of 2015 rolled around, InterFirst found itself fighting for certain things. With the failure to obtain market dominance in the European and Asian markets, InterFirst decided to hire a fresh Chief Executive Officer. As with any change in top management, the new CEO gave InterFirst a total overhaul. This resulted in enormous prices for InterFirst and had an undesirable impact on its cash assets.

Additionally, the heightened rivalry within the sector had elevated the stakes for everyone. Just about any little opportunity that appeared in the market was quickly capitalized upon by one of them. Beyond a certain point, it was not possible to disregard the existence of a rival store at virtually every street. All the while, InterFirst’s standing as a household name was amongst its strong suits. Regrettably, these natural values eventually did not prevent falls in sales and investments. Visible stockholders of the ailing firm declared on public record that they have lost no less than $260 million simply from the dismal fiscal performance.

So as to effectively reclaim InterFirst’s on-line ranking, the newly appointed Chief Executive – a devotee of technological advancement – wrangled up an internal online marketing team. Despite the fact that InterFirst’s web store at that time was excellent, the changing times required a completely new way of taking care of this online presence.

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Obtaining The Services Of A Digital Marketing Outfit
To execute the strategy, an in-house digital marketing team was assembled by the new CEO. The key objective of InterFirst’s CEO was to develop a digital marketing message that was strong and unified. Having said that, it was incredibly tough to carry on with the strategy by simply expanding the internal team organically. A more significant leverage could be put into motion with the know-how of a professional digital marketing agency. Productiveness, value and yield are of absolute importance in this really competitive age. InterFirst tapped on reaching out through branded content as the main tool to increase e-store profits and appease their shareholders.

An element of the content marketing strategy was developing an interesting microsite which was linked to the InterFirst e-commerce store. This tab sends them to “InterFirst Finest”, which is a microsite dedicated to sharing some pretty distinctive content: recipes and inspirational content to encourage healthy and balanced eating.

Its introduction enabled InterFirst to soft-sell itself by adopting an educational approach and being helpful to the customer. Moreover, it acts as a gateway to InterFirst’s e commerce store. This web development strategy (incorporating good UI and UX) supports customers to buy at InterFirst’s web store, since it discreetly links InterFirst with healthy food. The main idea behind this plan tends upon common consumer behavior which is dependent on instant gratification. This strategy definitely raises the chances a shopper will buy from InterFirst’s online store.

One more strategy that InterFirst employed in their digital marketing campaign was social media marketing. As the business was large enough, they didn’t need the expertise of a third-party marketing agency specializing in social media. It commenced this strategy with the simple but crucial task of signing up for their own social media profiles. Absolute control over social media allowed unobstructed transitions from concepts to campaigns or promos. Such efficiency certainly means that users are constantly up to date on the newest deals and news.

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Getting Into Full Control of their Online Brand Image
Next, it gives them far more control over their brand and image online. A problem arises when a customer or even a rival confirms an unofficial social media existence under their name. With zero influence or control of these accounts, it’d be straightforward for an external party to hurt the image of the company in question. This is a situation that an inhouse social media agency would never allow. Since InterFirst is the official channel for all updates, the business is shielded from such undesirable issues.

Customers are the ones keeping up a company. Responding to customer concerns and working together to solve the problem is an essential part of increasing loyalty to the brand thus ensuring repeat purchases. With digital media, InterFirst performs outstandingly in this area.

Compared to other businesses which just have a singular social media account to handle criticisms and promotional offerings, InterFirst has gone a step further to create individual accounts for each. This is seen when a single profile specially manages enquiries and complaints whilst another would drive sales through ads and special deals.

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Irrespective of the company, its customers would undoubtedly choose to speak to actual human being, than to browse through a series of pre-programmed replies only to have their problems unsolved. This is an effective manner to foster loyalty to the brand and encourage repeat purchases.

Dependable data showed that InterFirst’s nicely executed strategy in digital marketing paid off hugely. InterFirst commanded nearly one third of the market while the next competitor only succeeded in retaining half of that. The encouraging shift in market share was certainly something to brag about to investors. This tremendously impressive result acts to only further strengthen InterFirst’s faith in a digital strategy. InterFirst’s investment in technology like the creation of an innovative mobile program will just increase the avenues to which consumers can connect with InterFirst.

InterFirst’s example allows us to learn quite a few fundamental lessons. To begin with, the digital age disrupts and shakes all organizations, irrespective of how big they are. Every participant in the market can use a variety of online marketing techniques to expand its reach and compete head on with giants on an equal platform. If a market leader like InterFirst was so readily crippled by the absence of an online presence, imagine the implications for a smaller business. Whether or not to embrace digital media is no longer an option that one has, as it may have been in yesteryears – it’s a fundamental tactic towards company expansion and success.