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Velan Vaithilingam
Velan Vaithilingam

Velan Vaithilingam

Marketing Consultant

Free Lancer - Marketing Consultant


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Velan Vaithilingam's Advice

Branding creates difference

It is very important. The customer has to perceive the value of an organization and the product. This could happen only through proper Branding. ... more>>
Role in an organization
As a Consultant, I provide Marketing insights to the organization to which I provide consultancy. This includes in helping them to identify or revisit their Vision, Mission & Values to define their goals and work out the Strategy with clear mile stones to achieve their goals. Facilitating the Product Mangers and the Marketing managers to think and provide better value to the customers. This is done by questioning techniques so that they bring in their own valuable ideas to serve the customers. I believe that my role to the organization is working as a THIRD EYE especially in term of providing value proposition to the customers.
Importance of On line marketing
Marketing need to go along with the Social changes otherwise it will become obsolete. The IT revolutions is impacting the day to day life of most of the individuals especially the young generation who constitutes two third of world population. Hence Online Marketing and Social Marketing is important for each and every organization whether they are in B2B or B2C kind of business. However the relative importance and money to be send on Online and Social Media Marketing communication depends on the Customer segmentation – Target and Potential Customers.
The optimum allocation of budget for Conventional, Online and Social Media communication is the challenge to the Marketing dept of the organization. It is also very important that the Online or Social media communication facilitate the customer and do not invade in to the customer privacy and cause irritation to him.
Motivating Factor
The Major factors are..
• Starting my Carrier in Hoechst – An ideal organization with excellent leadership, well laid systems, great colleagues and excellent training programs
• The institution called Mr. K K Unni- Hoechst from whom I learned to think big, take risk, team work and how to mountains through positive EQ
• The IIM guys in Hoechst at Bombay from whom I learned many things in a informal way
• Mr. Ravi Agarwal of Natural Remedies and the challenges we faced from Heavy weight competition and the great team to work with.
• RW Nelson and Chris Nelson of Kemin for reinforcing the values & providing opportunity to learn through global exposure
• Books , audio and video cassettes on Marketing and Management
• My parents, who brought me up with great values, discipline and to love the fellow human beings
• My teachers and Elder brothers – Knowledge gurus.
• My wife and children’s who ensured that I need not focus anything other than my job.
It is very important. The customer has to perceive the value of an organization and the product. This could happen only through proper Branding. Branding is an exercise of Projecting the Organization to the Customers in a right way through effective communication and through right channels. The effectiveness of the branding depends on complete understanding of the value of the organization and articulating the same effectively both through text , visuals and most importantly by its activities to the customers, suppliers, employees, Society , country and to the world.
Achieving Targets
As a Marketing head my approach towards the sales people is they are our primary customers and Marketing need to treat the sales team as one treats the Customers. Marketing stand behind the Sales team telling them they are right. The Marketing support to the sales team is critical to the success of sales and it should be done effectively through…
a. Knowledge sharing – Product, Market, completion and Customer information.
b. Need creation through specific Marketing activities such as Seminars, Technical writing, Trade show participation.
c. Providing timely Promotional inputs, which is user friendly and effective to win over the customers?
d. Involve them in Market Research, Product need identification, Strategy planning, etc.
e. Catch them doing right and send communication on success stories & carry out motivational activities
f. Be a bridge between all other departments such as Production, Research, Finance and HRD with the Sales team.
What can be achieved
I do not see any limit for a Marketing Person in the corporate world as long as he knows marketing which includes marketing himself to the organization. Yes, at times one may face challenges in term of budget constrain, ability to get thing done through Sales team who do not report directly to the marketing person, but these will happen only when the marketing person is unable to market things effectively with the management, other departments and sales people. Actually the Marketing person has more opportunities then limits in the corporate world which is always in search of good marketing personals
Marketing and Selling are interrelated and they need to work in close coordination to be successful. However they are different. Marketing is primarily thinking job where as Selling is primarily doing job. Marketing person identify the need, analyze the Market, customer and competition to arrive at a specific strategy to sell the Product or service. The sales person actually execute the strategy be effective customer management and communication. The Knowledge of Marketing Strategy is essential for the Sales person to succeed and similarly the knowledge of Customer management is essential for the Marketing person to device the right strategy. The Marketing and Sales are like the right and Left brain and best coordination of both makes the organization highly successful
I will remind them the famous old phrase “ This also will Pass” to pep them up. I will sit with them and help them to go through what is done and what we learned out of it. I will ask the pertinent questions to motivate them to think further and re look in their strategies where ever required to refocus and help them to succeed. Learning from mistakes is the best way to succeed
Recommended Courses and Certification
I will recommend a Post Graduate degree or diploma from reputed business School with basic degree associated with the type of industry where in he will be managing the Marketing. The Soft Skills such EQ, Communication skill- need to articulate his communication, Creative thinking, analytical ability, in depth reading habits are very important certification required.
The Marketing Job is a “Thankless job”- All credit will go to the Sales people and all damage will to marketing person and hence the attitude to stand behind the success and willingness to take the blame is very important attitude or certification required to be in marketing
Importance of STP
STP is the key to successful marketing. One leads to other in the sequence and hence more attention to be paid for Segmenting, better it is done better the Targeting and the Positioning of the product. The Product mix 4 P’s Planning and execution should be arrived at based on the STP. One of the tendencies of marketing person is to Segment the market as per the Product convenience rather than Customer convenience and this should be avoided. After all the Marketing is from customer angle rather that product angle.
Positioning the product
The Product Positioning begins at the Product development stage itself i.e. Identifying the felt & Hidden need of the potential customers and developing a better value proposition. For good positioning One should spend quality time to understand
• Who are the customers
• What is the value proposition my product offers to them
• How it differ from other available and possible future Solutions.
Steps to be followed are
• Understanding of the need, the available solutions & their limitations
• Our product merit / demerit and the Key differentiators
• Customer Segmentation - Target Customers
• Perceptual mapping
• Using Point of Parity v/s Point of difference model
• Interactions with core group consist of Marketing, R&D, Sales, Selective Customers and distributors.
Articulating the Positioning through proper statement is very critical. I try to use appropriate phrase which is short, sweet, easy to remember and different from others. It should touch the heart and stimulate the brain
Importance of sales
As stated by Mr. Buck Rodgers/ author of IBM Way and Ex CEO of IBM .. “ To me the most important person in the organization is the Sales people. He is the one who bring in revenue to the company and but for him all others become redundant in the organization. The role of each one in the organization is to support the Sales team in selling. In fact every employee in an organization is responsible for sales and they can (other than the Sales team) do so by providing the required support and service to sales people so that they can serve the customers better than any others.
Importance of Marketing
Marketing is the Brain behind the Organization which plays a role in designing the appropriate strategy for serving the customer better and resulting in better growth, prosperity of the customer & the organization. While Sales from the front the Marketing works from the behind in sales generation. While R&D develops unique molecules the Marketing provide life to the molecule. While Operation produce the product it is Marketing which add value to it by packaging with bundle of benefits articulated to the customers. While finance ensures the revenue it is marketing which bring in the good will from the customer and the society.

As a Marketing consultant I help the organization to introspect and focus their strengths to add value to the customers.
One of the prerequisite to be in Marketing is the reading habits. One should continue to read good number of books, such as books on Marketing (Philip Kotler, Peter Drucker. Michael Porter) Branding & Brand Management, Books on Transactional Analysis- Thomas Harris, Books related to EQ, Subject knowledge books pertaining to the products or Industry, Any good magazines on Marketing and News Paper – Essential to be in day to day touch with the Political, Economical and Social Scenario which has a role in marketing.
Google is the best source find all kind of information and one should allocate time to read the Research, Technology and findings pertaining to the business, Marketing and Management. I also recommend them to read comics and watch Walt Disney’s cartoons to nurture the creative thinking with marketing personals.
Future trend
The fundamentals of Marketing remains same, however the applications undergone /undergo sea changes. The Internet and the Mobile phone revolutionized the world and the life style of most of the human beings. Today the customer has the access to any kind of information by fraction in his finger tips and at the same time there is NOISE – Information over load, which fatigue and irritate the customer. Therefore the challenge in marketing communication lies in making it available at customer convenience rather than invading his privacy. Resource planning in term of Marketing expenses v/s returns will be a key challenge. It need to be Customer and industry specific,
The old wisdom of “People buy things from People whom they Like & People in general like people who are trust worthy” will remain true for ever. Hence the challenge for the Marketing Personals goes beyond delivering the Product value. Need to ensure that the core value of the organization takes care of the Customer, Industry, Society, People and environment at large. The marketing will become the function of everybody in the organization irrespective in which dept. they work. CSR / CS activities will become the part of marketing function apart from Customer Relationship Management
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