We talked to Priyanka Sharma of Cignex about marketing during COVID-19 times.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Priyanka Sharma: Thanks for asking. By taking all the necessary precautions, I’m glad to say that we are all safe and doing good.
Tell us about you, your career, how you joined Cignex.
Priyanka Sharma: I joined the company in 2014. After completing my MBA, during the initial years of my career, I worked in advertising, where I got a chance to work on various campaigns for some of the leading brands. This helped strengthen my knowledge of how branding & communication works in the real world. With a stronghold & expertise in the domain, I wanted to move to an area where these skills, when combined with a company’s offerings, could lead to business benefits. With the world moving towards digital, the online space is an area which if effectively leveraged, could yield tremendous benefits. As a marketing leader, we combine our advertising & communications expertise to effectively position the company’s solutions & services in a way that it can generate leads/business for a company along with building the right brand image.
How do you innovate in the marketing of the solutions & services?
Priyanka Sharma: In such competitive times, it is imperative that we continuously find new ways to reach out to our audience. With the help of analytics, we understand that which of our strategies are working the most & then compound them for effective results. Not only this, analytics helps us understand what the customers are looking for. Once we know that, we create appropriate messaging & build a communication strategy executed as a part of a 360-degree campaign. With all the tools we use, our objective is always to understand what the customers are looking for & reach out to them via all the possible means to solve their business problems.
How the coronavirus pandemic affecting marketing, and how can companies cope up with it?
Priyanka Sharma: Due to the coronavirus pandemic, there is definitely a decline in the requirement of products & services. Most of the companies have put their procurement on hold.
It is difficult for companies to persuade a customer to make a purchase during the period. Highlighting the benefits of the offerings is a way to grab the attention of the customers. The other way is to keep in touch with the customer & communicate to them how important or beneficial a company’s services are so that when the situation returns to normalcy, they can get in touch with us.
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Priyanka Sharma: The career choices I have made have been the most difficult ones for me to date. When all options seem good, we never know if the one we are picking is the right one for us in the long run. The lesson I have learnt is that no matter what choices you make, the important thing is to dedicatedly commit to it. That is the only way you can succeed.
How do you deal with stress and anxiety? How do you project yourself in the future?
Priyanka Sharma: Being positive & looking at the brighter side of things helps me deal with stress and anxiety. Indulging in activities that one likes the most is a proven remedy to relieve stress & it works for me too.
The domain in which I work is continuously evolving with new innovative ideas as well as technological advancements. I wish to learn the new tricks of the trade (along with creating some of my own) & improvise them to gain the maximum benefit out of all the marketing efforts that are being put in.
How do you plan to stay in the game?
Priyanka Sharma: Being focused on the goals & coming up with new creative ways of reaching out to new customers can help marketers stay in the game. In a world where businesses & customers are continuously evolving, marketing as a function definitely needs to be a step ahead to ensure that their brands are visible to their target audience when they look around.
Your final thoughts?
Priyanka Sharma: During these unprecedented times, marketers are trying to build lasting relationships with their customers. With the profound changes the pandemic has caused, marketers need to think differently to address the prospects in the next normal. With the use of analytics, they need to identify customer trends and creatively design their campaigns for maximum reach and mileage.