With the rapid internet and smartphone penetration in India, the online platform is the next undiscovered space and is also at a very nascent stage. Recently, the Marketing Research students were exposed to the various facets of the digisphere by Jaideep Singh Juneja, Manager at Nielsen Online. The session also included a run through Social Media Research, which was taken up by Vinod Venugopal, who happens to be a Northpoint alumni.

 The session covered diverse subjects ranging from the changing scenario of ATL (Above The Line) activities to BTL (Below The Line) online methodologies used to target online consumers. The highlight of the day was the set of live case studies that were shared with the students, straight from the industry. The case studies revolved around designing the perfect solution for the client in order to evaluate its online presence. As mentioned earlier, online research is in its nascent stage and hence, there is single methodology set in stone. The Nielsen Online team focuses on designing and modeling rather than the actual study outcome.

Through the session, we learnt about the most basic and commonly used method of online research- online surveys. We were also introduced to the concept of online panels, which is relatively new and comprises of respondents who have opted to be a part of the online survey. The panel makes it easier to find the target audience in the vague space of millions of internet users for your brand.

The social media space is largely dominated by platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. As rightly said by Vinod, social media is a straightforward many to many communication. The last decade has seen an enormous upsurge in social media campaigns designed by creative agencies that drive the growth of brands till date.

The importance of digital media is growing at an unexpected rate. With brands shifting from brick-and-mortar to being brick-and-click, the future holds countless strategies that develop consumer engagement by providing them with convenience, variety and top notch shopping satisfaction. Online is the next big thing in the marketplace, and is definitely something that brands must keep in mind while servicing their consumers.

 By Neha Gaonkar

President, Academics Council

PGPMR 2014-15