This was the main takeaway at this morning’s cosy Carat-led breakfast event on Consumer Generated Brands – Listen to your consumers.
Patrick Stahle, Carat Asia Pacific’s regional CEO hosted the session at the Chijmes courtyard with a roomful of clients and partners and led a group of four panellists in discussing the topic.
The speakers were:
Barney Loehnis, Asia Pacific network director, Isobar
Tom Sipple, managing director, Yahoo Southeast Asia
Craig Harvey, director – media research, Synovate Asia Pacific
Walt Mayo, general manager, home and small business, Dell Asia Pacific
I just wanted to share with you a few of the more interesting soundbites that we were privy to. You will also see a few more names – these are people who asked questions to the panel.
Mayo: consumers have always been in control of brands but the difference now is that they are in much more control, things are happening much faster and more innovatively. You (the brand) are being defined every day.
Mayo: The question is how do you directly engage customers to help you deliver more value to them? We using online suggestion/feedback boxes. We have people tell us they want this and that operating system with their PC and we work on those suggestions.
(I’m not sure but this is most probably)
Sipple: Companies who listen to their consumers are the ones who will succeed.
Loehnis: The exciting things are going back to analog. A handwritten letter for example is the most exciting thing I can receive in the morning. [laughter] If people are going to be excited by a message, it has to happen through ground-swell so digital’s the best way.
Now all advertising is new advertising, because media, like TV, are getting more interactive and everything’s changing.
Chris Schauman, regional partner manager, MSN Southeast,
Stahle: Traditional advertising is getting very very complicated. Companies today more than before have to live their values.
Steve Garton, global head of media, Synovate: How is retail going to fit in?
Mayo: I don’t know but there have been indicators of a slowdown/ceiling in the amount people spend online.
Sipple: Don’t be afraid, open up and listen to what consumers are saying about you.
Mayo: Be honest, truthful about what you’re trying to provide people.
Loehnis: Be creative – figure out what you’re trying to drive and invest in measurement.