GLOBAL DATA and consulting firm Kantar expects brands to shift to digital advertising from traditional media channels soon, as consumers become more selective in their purchases.

Kantar Asia Regional Director for Brand Guidance Anita Rao Kapur said that while digital advertising in the Philippines is still slightly less established than in other Southeast Asian markets, the group expects the shift to happen “very quickly.”

“Engaging with a consumer is not the same as it was a few years ago. You have to work out what will engage the consumer today and not assume that if it worked in the past, it’s still gonna work today,” Ms. Kapur told reporters after a presentation in Taguig City last Friday.

In a presentation for Kantar’s latest study, entitled “Mastering Momentum,” which analyzed 3,900 brands from brand equity database BrandZ over a three-year period, Ms. Kapur said that eight out of 10 consumers in the Philippines discover new products via social media. Of this complement, nine out of 10 are millennials.

Ms. Kapur said the shift has been most visible in fast moving consumer goods (FMCG), for which companies are now adopting influencer marketing to attract more customers.

Personal care and beauty brands have increasingly been working with video bloggers to promote their products. “If we look at beauty brands, in a lot of markets they have tied up with influencers… [As a consumer] I’m taking notes, because I intrinsically trust them as an expert in the category to give me the best recommendations,” Ms. Kapur said.

The Kantar executive noted that, aside from choosing the most effective channel strategy, brands should also focus on connecting creatively.

“It’s understanding how to connect creatively, what messaging will work, how I should articulate it, how I should spin it in a way that’s personal and relevant and connects to me as an individual and what I’m looking for, and then it must be supported by channel strategy,” she explained.

Kantar’s study also recommended that marketers focus on three key points in the buyer lifecycle to sustain growth.

This includes experience, which influences repeat sales by delighting existing users; exposure, or influencing future sales by reaching out to potential buyers; and activation, or influencing immediate sales by ensuring that the brand will readily come to mind when making purchases.

Brands that can effectively address the three activities can be expected to grow sales 65 times more than the average, according to Kantar’s analysis.

“Sustained, long-term growth is hard, but there is a huge opportunity for businesses that are willing to look beyond simply delivering the next quarter’s numbers,” Kantar Chief Global Analyst, Insights Division Nigel Hollis said in a statement.

“The brands that concentrate marketing investment into moments that matter will be the ones that thrive and grow regardless of fluctuations in the global economy.” — Arra B. Francia