Sandhya Sadanand Gupta started her career in Public Relations which saw her head Brand Public Relations for Marico and later started her digital communications agency – one of the first in India.
For those of us in the communications industry, primarily public relations, the emergence of social media and the opportunities it presented was in its initial years, circa 2007, an exciting new avenue, especially since it now gave us an opportunity to directly engage with the consumer.
When we started our social media agency back in 2008, the market was non-existent and we entered in knowing that one of our biggest challenges would be market education and development.
Companies and agencies were still viewing social media with skepticism and a sense of wariness, especially in India, as unlike traditional media, this was a completely new beast and so many aspects didn't exist including set matrices to measure performance.
The rules of the game, including the platforms for social media, were evolving on a daily basis and it was a constant challenge to keep abreast with these changes.
However, knowing that it had worked in the western markets with case studies to back up the claims, we knew it was a matter of time before it would explode, and explode it did, so much so that in a little over a decade, digital communications has now become a key factor to a brand's success.
When we started our agency, Twitter had about 500 people from India; however, platforms like Orkut, Facebook and avenues like blogs were seeing increasing traction and that strengthened our belief that when the consumer moved to these platforms, brands would have to follow and would need communication specialists to ease their journey into this new world.
No successful campaign is complete without digital today and there are many brands who have solely built their reputation and sales using digital communications.
The evolution of the industry has also been propelled by the understanding that content is king and many outfits have mushroomed that solely exist to meet the increasing demands of the digital world which a traditional agency might not be necessarily equipped to handle.
One of the most fascinating aspects of this industry, and which holds true since its nascent stage, is the ever-changing nature of it. It is constantly changing and marketeers need to be able to adapt quickly to meet the constant changes.