Director - Growth, Marketing & Partnerships at Tata 1mg
Charting the Evolution of Marketing: Insights from Priyang Agarwal's Thrilling Journey from Engineer to Marketer
Over the years, marketing has undergone a remarkable transformation, evolving from traditional advertising methods to a dynamic and data-driven discipline. This journey has been marked by groundbreaking innovations, changing consumer behaviors, and the relentless pursuit of better customer engagement.
In this insightful conversation, Rishabh Shekhar, COO and Co-Founder of Pepper Content, engages in a thought-provoking dialogue with Priyang Agarwal, Director - Growth, Marketing & Partnerships at Tata 1mg.
Together, they delve into the fascinating world of marketing, exploring the rise of content marketing, the powerful impact of AI, and the ethical considerations that shape the industry.
As they navigate these shifts, they shed light on how marketers are striving to create meaningful connections with their audiences in a rapidly evolving digital era.
Let us embark on this journey with Priyang and gain valuable insights into the future of marketing.
Here are some excerpts:
1. Could you tell us about your journey as a marketer and how you found your passion for it?
My journey as a marketer has been nothing short of a rollercoaster ride, filled with self-discovery and personal growth. Unlike many who follow a predefined career path, I stumbled into marketing not by force but by a conscious choice. Growing up, I was always known for my extroverted and mischievous nature, which naturally drew me towards fields that involved interaction and creativity.
Upon completing my engineering degree, I came to a realization that the traditional engineering path wasn't aligned with my true passion. Despite spending years studying the subject, I felt disconnected from it. This moment of introspection led me to question my career choices and fueled my desire to pursue something that resonated more with my personality and traits.
It was during this period of self-reflection that I discovered marketing. I was drawn to the idea of being in a profession that allowed me to tap into my natural inclination towards creativity and interpersonal skills. Marketing seemed like the perfect blend of strategy, creativity, and human connection, which aligned perfectly with my characteristics.
With this newfound clarity, I embarked on a journey into the world of marketing, leaving behind my engineering background and immersing myself fully into this dynamic field. Since then, I have never looked back. Every step of the way, I have embraced learning and adaptation as the industry constantly evolves, driven by technology and changing consumer behaviors.
2. How do you see marketing changing in terms of industry-specific and industry-agnostic approaches?
Marketing has undergone significant changes over the years. In the past, industry-specific marketing strategies were more prevalent, with each sector adopting its unique approaches. However, with the advancement of technology and data-driven insights, marketing has become more industry-agnostic.
Content has emerged as a central element in modern marketing efforts. Regardless of the industry, brands are focusing on delivering compelling and valuable content to their target audience. Content cuts across all marketing channels, from performance marketing to brand marketing and CRM marketing.
Moreover, the shift towards customer-centricity has driven marketers to understand their customers on a deeper level.
Personalization is one of the biggest innovations in marketing today. When customers receive personalized experiences, it creates a lasting impact.
Personalization has become a key trend, and marketers are now striving to deliver tailored experiences to their customers. This requires a thorough understanding of customer preferences, behaviors, and needs.
3. With storytelling becoming a vital aspect of marketing, do you think traditional direct advertising will fade away?
As a marketer with extensive experience, I firmly believe that storytelling has become a vital and enduring aspect of modern marketing. However, I do not think that traditional direct advertising will fade away entirely. Instead, both approaches will coexist and serve different purposes in a well-balanced marketing strategy.
Storytelling has gained immense prominence in marketing because it speaks to the subconscious mind of consumers, leaving a lasting impact and emotional connection. When brands use storytelling effectively, they create authentic and relatable narratives that resonate deeply with their audience. These stories evoke emotions, memories, and experiences, making the brand more memorable and compelling.
In contrast, traditional direct advertising targets the conscious mind of consumers with clear calls to action and incentives. It aims to trigger immediate actions and drive conversions. For certain products and services, such as limited-time offers or seasonal promotions, direct advertising can be highly effective in generating immediate responses from the audience.
4. How should a marketer approach storytelling and traditional advertising?
The key lies in striking the right balance between storytelling and direct advertising. Each approach has its unique strengths and serves different purposes. Storytelling helps build brand identity, emotional connections, and long-term brand loyalty, while direct advertising drives short-term sales and conversions.
An excellent example of the coexistence of both approaches can be seen in the famous Marlboro ad from the 1980s. The ad employed storytelling to associate smoking with a rugged and masculine lifestyle, creating a strong emotional appeal to consumers. Simultaneously, the ad still promoted the product by subtly showcasing the Marlboro brand logo. This fusion of storytelling and direct advertising was a brilliant marketing strategy that resonated with consumers on multiple levels.
In today's fast-paced and tech-driven world, where consumers are inundated with advertisements and content, storytelling provides a breath of fresh air. It cuts through the noise and captures the audience's attention in a way that traditional direct advertising might not always achieve.
However, this does not mean that direct advertising has lost its relevance. On the contrary, it remains an essential tool for specific marketing objectives, especially when time-sensitive actions are required or when promoting limited-time offers.
5. In your experience, how do ethical considerations come into play, especially in industries like real estate and healthcare?
Ethical considerations are paramount in industries where decisions can significantly impact people's lives. In real estate, for instance, customers are investing their life savings, and it is the marketer's responsibility to provide transparent and accurate information.
Similarly, in the healthcare sector, marketers must approach their campaigns with utmost care and sensitivity. They are dealing with people's health and well-being, and any misinformation or deceptive marketing practices can have severe consequences.
Ethical marketing is crucial, especially in industries like healthcare, where decisions can have a profound effect on people's lives.
As marketers, we must prioritize authenticity and truthfulness in our communications. Delivering content that is genuine and reliable not only builds trust with customers but also establishes a strong brand reputation.
6. What are your thoughts on AI and ML technologies in marketing? How can they be leveraged effectively?
AI and ML technologies have revolutionized marketing in numerous ways. These technologies offer sophisticated data analysis and automation capabilities, enabling marketers to make data-driven decisions and optimize their campaigns for better results.
One of the significant applications of AI in marketing is personalization. AI algorithms can analyze vast amounts of customer data to understand preferences, behaviors, and purchase patterns. This allows marketers to deliver highly targeted and personalized content, increasing the chances of conversion.
AI-driven chatbots have also emerged as valuable assets in customer support. They can efficiently handle routine queries and interactions, freeing up human resources for more complex tasks. The instant and accurate responses provided by chatbots enhance customer satisfaction and improve overall customer experience.
Moreover, AI can predict customer behavior and future trends, allowing marketers to plan ahead and stay ahead of the competition. By identifying customer needs in advance, marketers can create relevant and timely content, which resonates with their target audience.
In summary, AI and ML technologies empower marketers to optimize their efforts, enhance customer experiences, and achieve better returns on investment.
7. As you expand into smaller cities and rural areas, how do you tailor content for different demographics?
Expanding into smaller cities and rural areas requires a thoughtful approach to content creation and distribution. One size does not fit all, and we need to adapt our content to suit the vernacular language, preferences, and cultural nuances of these diverse demographics.
For instance, we can create content in regional languages to resonate better with the local population. Utilizing offline media, such as pamphlets and posters, can also be effective in reaching audiences who may have limited access to the internet.
Additionally, leveraging social media platforms like WhatsApp can help us engage with consumers directly and on a more personal level. By understanding the unique needs and aspirations of each demographic, we can create content that is relatable and compelling.
8. What's your ideal content marketing stack, and what tools do you find most beneficial?
An ideal content marketing stack should consist of a few essential tools that streamline the content creation and distribution process.
Firstly, a Digital Asset Management (DAM) tool is crucial for managing and organizing creative assets. DAM helps ensure consistency in branding and allows us to reuse content effectively across different channels.
Secondly, tools that analyze content performance and audience insights are invaluable. These tools can help us understand which content resonates best with our target audience and identify areas for improvement.
Lastly, an AI-powered content recommendation system would be highly beneficial. Such a system can analyze customer behavior and preferences to suggest personalized content, enhancing the overall customer experience.
Overall, an efficient content marketing stack enables us to deliver high-quality content consistently and achieve better engagement with our audience.
Get started with Pepper’s Content Marketing Platform.
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