Forward thinking on awards

  • Advertising & Media
  • Saturday, 30 Jul 2016

Interview Putra Brand Awards 2016 organising chairman Andrew Lee

Putra Brand Awards may see some changes over next few years

THE Putra Brand Awards, which is into its seventh year, may see some changes over the next few years but any new developments should be carefully planned to maintain the quality of the award show, according to the awards organising chairman.

Andrew Lee, who is also the vice-president of the Association of Accredited Advertising Agents of Malaysia (4As) and managing director of Havas Worldwide Kuala Lumpur, says there are plans to introduce new elements to Putra Brand Awards and any move to do so should be carefully weighed and done in a stringent manner.

“Brand building is a serious business and we need to be careful not to introduce new elements or awards that may be frivolous and affect the image of the awards. It’s the People’s Choice Awards and the methodology which we apply in compiling and choosing the best brands in various categories are conducted in a very diligent, impartial and stringent manner,’’ Lee tells StarBizWeek.

There are 24 award categories for the Putra Brand Awards 2016 in addition to five special award categories. To be held on Aug 12, the event utilises a robust consumer research methodology developed by IQ LeanLab, which is the research partner of the awards, to engage with at least 6,000 consumers nationwide through digital platforms to determine Malaysia’s favourite brands within multiple categories.

Survey respondents rate the brands based on their impression of them, their intention to purchase the products, their forced-choice brands and brands that they would recommend to their friends and families. Star Media Group is the media partner of the Putra Brand Awards.

On the key differences in terms of the brand evaluation criteria between the awards for this year and in the previous years, Lee says the criteria are almost the same as in the past years but with higher emphasis on purchase intent and brand advocacy.

He notes: “A lower weightage is placed on brand awareness and brand recall because over the years, it is becoming more evident that high brand awareness and recall do not translate to high brand equity. Just because consumers have heard about it doesn’t mean they will buy the particular brand or brands in the market. At the same time, purchase intent and brand advocacy have a direct impact on sales and are two important factors in brand growth.”

In an era where consumers are generating their own content digitally, will traditional media remain relevant? Lee says it will. Traditional media are evolving to connect with consumers and it still has an important role in connecting brands with consumers. “Consumers are active in the digital space and actively generating content but are still consuming traditional media when the contents are something relevant and appealing to them,” he adds.

To a question on how brands can measure the success of the content marketing campaign, he says this will depend on what is the business problem a brand needs to solve.

Lee explains: “The brand may be selling well and is making good profit but if its loyalists are old and the young consumers are not interested, its campaign may not be addressing immediate sales and profit.”

Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly-defined audience and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.

Touching on the trends of content marketing, he foresees content marketing, especially branded entertainment becoming more important. “Most of us and not just the millennials are into the habit of skipping ads on both traditional and digital media. Branded entertainment content and content created by influencers are effective in reaching the consumers, and

connecting with them,’’ Lee says.

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