Vice President & CMO,
Amara Raja Batteries Ltd.
The heart of a business success lies in its marketing. How have you been crafting such marketing objectives for your company that your customers find credible and aligned with their values?
Amara Raja is a highly value based organization. We believe in being customer centric and, more importantly, in shaping customer requirements and preferences, through Innovation
The Perfect Brand Image”- what do you perceive from it and what all goes behind its creation?
While we create the brands, it actually resides in the minds of the people. We all know the main characteristics of mind, it is fickle. Hence, perfection in brand image is also a perception that has a limited life. Brand engagement is the key.
Amaron enjoys a significant share of Indian market. What are the challenges that the brand faces in the market?
Amaron is participating in a category where involvement levels are really low. Prior to us, this category was almost dormant. We energized it and built a significant share in the Indian market. The key challenges that we face are low involvement and unorganized intermediaries.
What is your prime focus for retaining customers?
Battery is a grudge purchase and the key to retaining customers is to reach them as fast as possible and shorten this time span.
“Money coming in says I’ve made the right marketing decision”- till what regard do you observe this quote?
It also means that “right marketing decision” has created a new benchmark. Money expects the benchmark to be raised, for it to favor you again.
In an industry so dynamic, how do you comply with respect to changing trends, behavioral pattern and expectations of society?
It’s simple keep anticipating trends and change yourself, to be ahead of the curve.
One thing you wish to change and one thing you wish to retain about your industry.
The best part of this industry is that it is recession proof. It provides you growth during both boom and recession. As far as change is concerned, industry needs to be move towards being more organized, for the betterment of the society at large.
How do you think marketing has changed over time?
It has definitely changed a lot over time from Rationing to reach to one way promotion to building engagement and now disruptive.
Awards are tricky; you don’t really aim to win, till you win. How has winning changed your approach to trophies and titles? From an accidental byproduct of good work to something you actively need to defend year on year, perhaps? Is there pressure to keep winning?
You don’t work for awards. They are just recognition or as you said an accidental by product of good work. Further, there isn’t any pressure to defend titles or awards, as the penalty for mediocre work, is far more than loss of awards.
Does data play a larger role in media planning (pre-campaign) or in gauging the efficiency of a media plan (post-campaign)?
Absolutely……..When crores are being spent in a very short interval of time, to achieve something so difficult to perceive, and on which the future of the organization depends……..it needs to be backed up by some hard data for decision making.