The emergence and subsequent revolution of digital marketing in Bangladesh happened due to some key factors coinciding within a very short window – the rapid rise in internet accessibility via both broadband and mobile network, the emergence of Facebook, and a booming smartphone industry which is continuing still today. Luckily one other incident happened around the same period – Analyzen came up to try a bunch of crazy marketing stunts on an emerging platform just for the kicks! And before you would know, Bangladesh saw its first commercial campaign on social media in form of a Selfie Contest as well as birthed a new species of contents in the form of Online Video Commercials. An industry that started off as a fad, gimmick, and cool thing to do gradually became an industry of core strategic importance. Evolution from First-Ever Digital Agency of Bangladesh to a Multinational Digital-First 360 Creative and Technology Company, this is the story of the last 12 years for Analyzen.
Digital Marketing – A Creative Chaos
Analyzers (as people working in Analyzen is called) take pride in introducing themselves as pioneers in many digital marketing trends. They started selfie contests, made the first viral OVC campaigns, introduced pre-booking campaigns, took over homepages with rich banner ads, launched the first digital campaigns targeted to NRBs, then they flew our agency itself to another country and so many more! It was not just the agency that grew, it was the industry too. Analyzen was able to position themselves at the vanguard of the revolution.
In the beginning, digital marketing was all about new ideas and catchy content just like traditional marketing. Except you would need to know how the platform worked. But today over a decade later, it’s not just about the big idea or quality content. It involves recent trends, cross platforms, and even a bit of fringe media in the mix, like AR and VR. Digital marketing in today’s Bangladesh is simply creative chaos. It’s what’s keeping the marketers awake at night and sort of encroaching the space of other older media on a national scale.
It has to do with the audience of course. Today’s users of social media did not exist even ten years back. The exponential evolution of technology has taken people of all ages to an ever-shifting process of adaptation to online content and activities. New platforms have emerged, which has brought newer forms of content, which in turn are changing the consumption behavior of the audience. What it creates for the marketers is a constant gap in the track that they have to race up day in day out. In a way, staying proactive as a digital marketer is incredibly harder than it was even a couple of years back. Only the most informed and agile agencies are creating successful campaigns for their brands in 2020.
And then there is the pandemic which has irrevocably changed our way of life. While there is no doubt it will push people to embrace the online lifestyle out of necessity, but no amount of prediction can give us absolute clarity about what it means for the future of digital marketing. However, as long as there is a running economy, it is likely the industry will keep churning out impactful campaigns.
Crack the Communication Code
The ecosystem mostly differs in content preferences and consumption behavior. For example, while an audience from Singapore is more likely to receive a certain brand communication for its functional value in their personal life, an audience from Myanmar would judge the communication by its appeal to human emotions or novelty in their proposition.
Every economy has its own composition of digital audiences with several such preferences and consumption impulses. What varies or dictates the overarching traits are decided by the majority trends. At the end of the day, the principles are the same for the marketers to figure out how a certain market works and how they should crack a communication approach to best suite their desired outcome.
A Strong Winning Streak
With a total of 150+ national & international awards in the last 12 years, Analyzen has undoubtedly proven themselves to be pioneers and trendsetters. Their first recognition came in the Commward 2014 when they won the Grand Prix in Video for Web category for the REXposed series that they did for Samsung Mobile Bangladesh. It was a phenomenal success for many reasons. It was the first viral campaign and a trendsetter for OVCs in the Bangladesh market. Also, they did it with zero media expenditure.
Talking about OVCs, the agency has had a wonderful streak of the highest shared video content on Facebook in the last few years. Across Miles for Samsung, Spirit of Ramadan for Unilever, and Mother’s Day campaign for Omera LPG are some of the few successful campaigns which broke all previous records of highest organic shares on Facebook in Bangladesh. Not to mention, all of these campaigns won multiple awards in their respective years.
They have bagged a few international awards as well, like The Golden Globe Tigers Summit Award in 2015, Campaign Asia Agency of the Year (Silver) in Rest of the Asia category, and Socialbakers Smart Storyteller award in 2017.
But their big break came when they became the agency winning the highest number of awards in the Digital Marketing Awards in consecutive years of 2018 and 2019. There have been a number of remarkable campaigns during this period.
There were 5 Grand Prix winning campaigns in 2018 with 18 total awards – bKash App Campaign (for Best App Marketing), Lux Super Star (for Best Integrated Digital Campaign), Aarong Eid Campaign (for Best Use of Facebook), Omera Mother’s Day Campaign (for Best Video) and Sunsilk Hijab Launch (for Best Content Marketing).
The next year, in 2019, they won 16 awards with 3 Golds – bKash Remittance Campaign (for Best Video), bKash Year Long App Campaign (for Best App Marketing), and Lever Ayush Launch (for Best Use of Facebook).
Another shining moment last year was when they won three Champion trophies in three different categories for the only three submissions that they made to the National ICT Awards 2019. Those are for Analyzen’s three original products, two of which are specifically designed tools for digital marketing – Listenyzen, an integrated SaaS platform for social media customer service and insight generation, and Commzen, an AI-powered conversational commerce solution to generate sales for f-commerce and other businesses present on social media.
The 4 core values: Passion, Resilience, Delivery & Teamwork
These past few months have been challenging at its best and downright scary for certain businesses to say the least. Analyzen is coping with the limitations of the working conditions as well as adjusting with the new normal lifestyle as the days go by. The agency has wholeheartedly embraced the work-from-home culture since the beginning of the crisis in the country and stayed uncompromising when it comes to the safety of each of their employees’ and their families’ health and safety.
Surprisingly, all these challenges did not put a dent in their working values or team morale. They have stayed passionate as ever in delivering the best for their clients. In fact, the overall productivity of the Analyzers has increased in the past few months! They have stayed vigilant and resilient to the tasks at hand with their usual professionalism. Time was better utilized and optimized for timely deliveries. And all of these are possible for the unparalleled teamwork that they were able to maintain despite the distances between one another.
They are, in the truest sense, a twenty-first-century digital marketing agency working end-to-end on digital platforms with an indomitable resolution to face the uncertainties of the future together as a team.
Morphing Platforms and Creative Alternatives
In the beginning, Analyzen had to educate the clients about the basic principles of these social platforms and their potential as effective marketing tools. However, their outlandish ideas were sportingly received by most of their clients and they did agree to work some out of the box angles in the hope of some surprise. The agency’s initial triumphs helped build their credibility in the market.
Soon a new generation of brand practitioners emerged who were well acquainted with the nooks and crannies of social media. Therefore, agencies enjoyed a more accepting market where they could flex their creativity even more within their ideas. But this time, the client had an active part in most cases to keep the execution plans grounded in the brand identity. So it was a co-creation and industry witnessed some exemplary brand communications on digital platforms.
Nowadays, the industry is past the elementary stages of digital marketing. Every client is as much informed as their agency counterpart and starting from the brief till final execution everyone involved speaks the same language. The target and achievements are measured in specific metrics and there is little space for creative argument. However, new technology and constant morphing of the platforms themselves allow the agencies to come up with new ideas and creative alternatives.
The biggest transformation due to social media in the field of brand communication is its two-way nature. Unlike any other brand communication modes, social media enables the customer to provide instant and public feedback to the brand. It not only creates a direct information flow from the client to brand, it also brings multiple clients in the same parallel and lets them interact. Brands are now blessed with a new virtual environment to study and influence their client base. This simple phenomenon is practically a game-changer in the history of marketing.
Social media is essentially an open ground for the public to have unrestricted conversation about anything. So moderation of these conversations to avoid a negative feedback loop within the audiences rose as a need in the market. Analyzen has been catering these needs with a two-pronged approach consisting of a readily equipped query management team and sometimes a group of Digital Brand Ambassadors (DBA). The concept of DBAs was first introduced by Analyzen back in 2016 and was greatly effective for many campaigns to date.
If you are young and enthusiastic about marketing, you should already be convinced about the fact that ‘digital’ has changed the ‘marketing’ forever. Now if you want to tread this path as your career and pursue success, the rules are the same for any other hurdle. First, study the market trends and then pick the one discipline you want to master. Because there are many and you must start with one. And once you set your goal, there is no alternative to hard work and experience. Like every other skill or expertise, this requires continuous enrichment and a certain knack. So, persevere intelligently.
In the world of digital marketing, there are many locks and keys en route to success. Information is the first key, which unlocks insights. Technology is another, it opens doors to new alternatives. Content is the final key, which unlocks the heart of our audience. All these elements are at the dead center of a memorable brand experience.