Vivaki executive sees no boundaries for digital innovation


Rishad Tobaccowala, chief strategy and innovation officer for Vivaki, stressed that the future of marketing and brand-building does not fit into containers, or mindsets, of the past.

When forming a strategy for marketing, Tobaccowala said, the global landscape of digital platforms needs to be taken into consideration. Digital is not simply the Internet and its Web sites; real digital usage sees no boundaries. Tobaccowala referenced Apple, a company which he said will compete with other innovative companies like Nintendo or Nikon because Apple does not abide by any boundaries.

Moving into the digital age, Tobaccowala said, transitions are happening more quickly; the marketing world is in an age of renaissance. “The focus needs to be less on the publisher and more on the audience,” he said.

Behavioural aspects of the people whom marketers serve, the marketers themselves, and the competition must be evaluated when marketing and brand-building.

Tobaccowala said that people (readers, consumers, human beings) are mostly confused, and looking for access and relevance. Tobaccowala describes them as “twitchers,” or people who basically feel the need to be a part of something; for example, a social media site such as Twitter or Facebook.

Tobaccowala said marketers should use high-quality content which they believe they can engage their audience effectively. When assessing competition between marketing companies, Tobaccowala said they just need to “chill.”

“Magazines jumped all over the iPad when it first came out to beat other magazines to the punch. Not only are the magazines competing against each other now, but also other iPad apps like Angry Birds,” Tobaccowala said.

While companies move forward and transition with the demands of their demographics, Tobaccowala said now is the time for organisations to come together and make changes as well.

“Get completely drunk with your co-workers, and take out a sheet of paper and start writing out the goals and assets of your organization,” Tobaccowala said. “Try to come up with two different models of the changes that you want to happen, and go from there.”

Tobaccowala also advises companies to look inward. Look at the culture of some of the people working in your organisation. Tobaccowala said that some of the best people in your organisation are 10 years younger than you — so listen up and take their advice. Content on the Internet is endless, so focus on environments and high-value content.

“An organisation will not change without totally re-inventing itself,” Tobaccowala said.

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