PETALING JAYA: Marketing activities are picking up as companies gear up to capture consumers’ eyeballs as corporate Malaysia moves into the endemic phase of Covid-19.
Towards this end, marketers are stepping up their marketing promotions, advertising spends and innovation to recover lost ground and up their market share.
Speaking with StarBiz, Digi Telecommunications Sdn Bhd head of media and budget management Remus Hoo said the telco’s stance towards business remains optimistic, especially when it is in the essential service sector where connectivity has become unprecedentedly more important than ever.
He is optimistic of the marketing industry’s performance in 2022 based on the speedy increase in the vaccination rate and gradual opening of the various economic sectors which would fuel consumer confidence.
He expects more marketing activities to come back stronger to capture consumers’ eyeballs and top of mind, especially those that have halted their advertising fund during the pandemic.
“We foresee ad spend to come back gradually and stronger in 2022. In Digi, we are a strong believer of how advertising will impact the brand in the long term and that explains why we did not stop advertising even when the pandemic first started.
“Digi believes constant communication is key, especially in times like this, with the right message and at the right place (media mix).
“Maintaining the core remains key to our business as that gives a foreseeable base when coming to business performance. Besides increasing customer base, products and services innovation will be the primary growth drivers in 2022 that sets competition apart,” he said.
Key challenges for marketers on the whole, said Hoo, lies with the true understanding of the consumers’ mind post-Covid-19.
As for the strategies employed to boost business growth by next year, he said: “It’s going back to basics. We want to be the brand that truly puts consumers at the heart of everything we do.”
Meanwhile, Nippon Paint Malaysia assistant general manager for marketing Datin Wong Meng Lee said: “At Nippon Paint, we will make every marketing dollar work harder and continue to invest in building our brand for business growth.
“We’re optimistic of a brighter prospect for the marketing industry in 2022 and look forward to having more engaging brand experiences with our customers.”
At Nippon Paint, she said the company believes in providing values to customers and educating them about the importance of having a hygienic home environment as people spend more time at home.
Hence, a conducive and safe home environment is crucial, she said.
“We will continue to drive wellness through our products such as VirusGuard, Spot-less Plus and Vinilex Fresh Plus as well as invest in advertisement spending strategically in the correct channels, such as for our newly acquired Selleys brand,” Wong added.On the strategies or initiatives that the company would put in place for next year to boost its business, she said the company would continue to focus on product innovations and innovative marketing campaigns to drive business.
“Our strategic acquisition of Selleys and Vital Technical (V-Tech) in the sealants, adhesives and fillers (SAF) category will enable us to provide a total coatings solution for our customers,” Wong noted.
Vital Technical is the biggest home improvement solutions provider in Malaysia and the top player in the SAF market.
On another note, she said the company would also be generating consumer interest through story driven videos to create genuine connections and boost confidence in its brands.
“Placing customers at the heart of our business is always at the heart of marketing to bring unparalleled excitement and grow our base through visual and other sensory enhancements that are interactive and creative (such as the choosing colour experience).
“We also have corporate social responsibility towards the community to address issues such as Covid-19 through our marketing communications and product innovations to address their concerns using Nippon Paint anti-viral and anti-bacterial range,” Wong said.
Commenting on the endemic phase of the Covid-19, Claudian Navin Stanislaus, who is Baba Products (M) Sdn Bhd head of communications and consumer marketing, said as a brand, Baba’s is taking steps to pick up where it left off before the pandemic emerged.
“The return to dining in is certainly a boost, but surge of home cooking during this period is definitely something we will be looking to build on further.
“While we don’t really know what the future will hold, I think most brands have decided it’s time to trudge forward. It’s definitely better than marching in a spot only to realise later that you’ve slid a mile back!” he added.
Navin said the time is ripe for the marketing industry to reach out to the customers, regain some brand value that might have been discounted in favour of availability or price.
“Some brands, however, have not just learnt to cope but thrived despite the limitations amid the pandemic, so they may show more prudence moving forward.
“Each brand will have to find its own balance, for while the dust may seem to have settled – that ship hasn’t yet,” he said.