BrandArena: Industry Summit Advocates for Sustainable Marketing Practices to Drive Growth

Tuesday 7 May 2024

Industry Summit Advocates for Sustainable Marketing Practices to Drive Growth

The imperative of embracing sustainability in marketing took center stage at the recently concluded Industry Summit themed "Sustainable Marketing for Growth," held in Lagos. Addressing a diverse audience of industry experts and stakeholders, the summit underscored the urgent need for marketers to prioritize sustainable practices to secure a resilient future.

During the event, Emmanuel Oriakhi, Marketing Director of Nigerian Breweries PLC, delivered a keynote address on the significance of sustainable marketing in today's business landscape. Represented by Samson Oloche, Portfolio Manager at Nigerian Breweries PLC, Oriakhi emphasized that sustainability is no longer an option but a necessity for brands aiming for long-term success.

Oriakhi highlighted the growing consumer consciousness regarding environmental impact and the pivotal role of sustainable marketing in addressing these concerns. "As consumers become more environmentally conscious, sustainable marketing becomes increasingly important," he remarked.

L-R: Samson Oloche, Portfolio Manager-Beyond Beer, Nigerian Breweries Plc; Mojisola Coker, Head, Brand & Communications, Access Pensions; Goddie Ofose, Convener/Publisher The Industry Newspaper; Rita Akao, Manager, Brand, Strategy & Communications, Stanbic IBTC Bank and Kayode Olagesin, Managing Director, Towncriers Limited. during The Industry Summit 2024 with the Theme Sustainable Marketing for Growth held in Lagos.

In his address, Oriakhi emphasized the collective responsibility of industry players in addressing economic challenges and driving sustainable growth. He stressed the importance of understanding and meeting diverse consumer expectations by developing products and services that resonate with their specific needs.

"It is crucial to address the challenges faced by each segment of the industry to devise holistic solutions," Oriakhi emphasized. He further emphasized that sustainable marketing entails delivering value to consumers that surpasses their expectations, thereby fostering enduring brand-consumer relationships.

The summit served as a platform for thought-provoking discussions and insights into the role of sustainable marketing in driving business growth and addressing societal needs. Moving forward, industry leaders and marketers are urged to embrace sustainable practices to create value for consumers while ensuring the long-term viability of their brands.

"Sustainability is a journey which has not arrived at its destination but it is up to all of us to find a way to make an impact on the consumers and the environment at large. Social media is playing a huge role in ensuring that every conversation is brought to the fore hence brand managers should take advantage of this to put their brand in front of the people and to control the narratives."  He added..

Also, in her presentation, one of the guest speakers, Omobolanle Victor-Laniyan, Head of Sustainability, Access Holdings, who was represented by Moji Coker, Head of Communication, Access Holdings disclosed that, "Innovative marketing requires that a company innovates by producing new products and services while improving and updating existing ones. This strategy often ensures that companies continuously identify better ways to develop and market products and services."

According to her, "companies adopt innovative methods through new product development, product packaging, positioning strategies, specifications, market segmentation, customer value, delivery of goods and customer satisfaction. Enlightened marketers and sustainable businesses understand how to market new products or enter new markets successfully. They also know that the perfect way to grow and achieve success is always to offer consumers what they want."

Continuing, she pointed out that, "Meeting Customer Priorities: With increasing awareness about environmental and social issues, customers prioritize sustainability when making purchasing decisions. Sustainable products offer long-term value and positive impacts, aligning with customers' desire to support environmentally and socially responsible brands. Studies indicate that a substantial portion of consumers are willing to switch brands if they perceive a lack of sustainability, underscoring the importance of integrating sustainable practices into marketing strategies."

Another guest speaker at the event, Brand, Strategy & Communications Manager, STANBIC IBTC, Rita Akao said, "Build your ideal target audience  biography (clients, employees shareholders, regulators, activists, stakeholders, or the public) Know how and where to communicate with your audience.Listen to what your audience says back to you."

According to her, "plan to integrate a strategic plan to reach the right audience at the right time, to drive the best results. Select the best intervals for your communication. Consider having a specific plan per project also. Be consistent"

"Create milestones and communicate them effectively. Measure success of a programme by how many people it touches (impact). Report your success and impact. Use a good topic around the problem your audience has. You need great engaging content – quality and not just quantity. Be unique, creative, useful and above all, create content your audience needs." She added.

Also, panelists at the event resolved that consumers are key to brand building, therefore, taking consumers into cognizant while developing a sustainable marketing plan for growth is not only important but crucial.

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