Gagan Singla

CMO

Angel Broking Pvt Ltd.

What makes a good marketer?

A good marketer is a vital link between the consumer and the enterprise. The one who understands the pulse of the consumer of the product or service – and positions firm’s offering in a way that the consumer readily identifies with. A great sense of timing and the trends are crucial for marketing any product or service. A good marketer is aware and updated of the changing consumer tastes – not while they happen but before they happen. He is someone who is scientific and data-driven in approach, yet knows when to experiment with an out-of-box approach. A professional who places the reputation of the firm above everything else and ensures it is maintained while marketing the offering.

Most importantly, “He is the voice of the customer in the boardroom”.

Three things you look for when you hire people?

It is not always that you find an ideal candidate for a particular position. Hiring people – mapping an applicant’s capabilities with the organization’s requirements – is a tricky art and science. As a leader, I try to go beyond appearance and certificates of the candidate. I try to understand his rigor, determination, attention to detail and hunger for getting into the depth of things. I think these things reveal his true character. I feel, what a candidate has accomplished is important but prefer to place higher weightage on what a candidate is capable of. Say for example, if I’m hiring someone for an online marketing post but the candidate is from offline marketing background, I would gauge his expertise in offline marketing, but at the same time, try to understand if he is confident about and interested in learning the new things that will make him an expert in online marketing as well. Ambition, ability to influence and willingness to learn are some of the traits that I look for while hiring people.

Three things would never do a meeting without? 

Meetings are an important part of corporate life; however, many meetings fail to achieve their objectives if participants of the meeting are not on the same page. I feel that meetings must focus on expected outcomes and the stakeholders should refrain from moving beyond the objectives and agenda of the meeting unless absolutely necessary. When participants of the meeting are not on the same page, the discussions end up being wastage of corporate time and resources, which is highly undesirable. I would never do a meeting without clear objectives and agenda circulated with ALL participants. I would want to ensure the availability of all data / information that is necessary to drive the proceedings of the meeting. Also, I would not do a meeting without the presence of the key decision-making stakeholders

When did you decide that Marketing is what you wanted to do?

While I am trained in technology, I have always been amazed with the dynamics of the marketplace. It is my firm belief from the very beginning that a product or service – however great on its own merit – needs a push, which comes with right positioning and intelligent marketing. You can create new markets and customers for your products or services if you can look beyond the obvious.  I come from a consulting background. Hence data and analytics have been my forte all through my career. Over time, while learning the functioning of corporations I realized that I can contribute significantly to the marketing function with my data-driven approach. To me marketing is all about understanding the aspirations of the people. My data-driven approach helps me map aspirations of a large number of people and helps me formulate strategies that ensure I can communicate the message of my product/service to all those who need it, but do not realize it yet.

 Your most memorable advertisement that you still remember?

Advertisements are a key element of overall marketing. While some advertisement campaigns become trending topics, some become folklores and are remembered by people for a long time. Some campaigns like Amul become the reflection of the society and the everyday life. Advertisements influence consumers’ conscious as well as sub-conscious minds and are an important factor for creating an image of the product or service in the minds of consumers. They are a powerful medium to create awareness of your product and service with the consumers. All of us have fancied about advertisements as we have been exposed to them from our early days. One such advertisement campaign that I still remember with a lot of excitement is Dunlop’s TV Commercial for its Spectra Wide tyres. The advertisement created a lot of curiosity in my young mind with its imaginative visuals. In the ad, the characters – the sportspeople – are shown to be getting additional help from objects like wider cricket bat, the wider tightrope, the wider tennis racquet etc. These exaggerated, yet familiar visuals of the advertisement left a lasting impact on my mind about the product and the company.

Do you love data or hate data?

Of course I love data. After food, shelter and clothing, data is a basic necessity for my professional life. While life moves in random format, there are certain common patterns in the choices people make in life. These patterns can be captured only through careful observations over a period of time and represented by way of data. Data scientists are like fortune-tellers who – on the basis of the past patterns – can claim with reasonable confidence how things will be or how things will change in the future. It is really exciting to be in a position to predict the future and (only) data can give you the power to be able to predict the future. At the same time, data empowers you to make positive influence on the lives of a large number of people that can be a greatly satisfying feeling. And above all, the enormity of data also humbles you as an individual and keeps people realistic about their expectations from life.

One app that you cannot do without @ work

It is extremely important to stay organized in professional lives. My work involves meeting people, making sense of the data, making presentations, understanding driving forces behind people’s behavior and many other things. I need to be at different places interacting with different people at different points in time. And I need to have my data with me everywhere I go. What helps me stay organized at work all the time is the suit of Google Apps.  With Google Apps, I need not worry about by data back-up as it is available to me at all time in a single package that works seamlessly on my computer, phone or tablet. With Google Apps, I can communicate with my stakeholders, store my data, collaborate with my stakeholders and manage my work and all of these with a single sign-on, without worrying about multiple login ids and passwords.

What are your marketing priorities for the year 2017?

As Chief Marketing Officer at Angel Broking, I have certain goals for 2017. My priority is to reinforce Angel Broking’s position as India’s most preferred retail broking firm. To achieve our goal, all of us in the organization are working in tandem towards this common objective. Since last 2 years, Angel Broking, a traditional retail-focused broking firm, is re-inventing itself through a Digital Transformation.  It has built a strong team of technology experts comprising Data Scientists, Programmers and Developers, who are working round-the-clock to make this transformation possible while retaining its identity of being India’s most preferred retail brokerage firm. Angel Broking’s recent successful roll-outs include digital initiatives such as D-KYC, Digi-Pitch, Trade-in-1hr, #CustomerService on Twitter and Facebook, all aimed at making the organization more customer-friendly, agile and efficient. While some of these initiatives are focused on Customer Acquisition, Servicing and Marketing, the company has also launched digital initiatives aimed at strengthening its Human Resources. This year, we would build further upon these digital initiatives and drive core growth of the brand organically.

 

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