May Lalloo
Digital Marketing Manager
Nestlé South Africa

Could you tell us more specifically what opportunities you see emerging with digital transformation?

The biggest opportunity will be personalisation and the ability for customers to choose what they want to see – on demand. It makes an advertiser’s job even more difficult. Relevance is key. Artificial Intelligence is another big opportunity within the medical field. Technology will enhance people’s lives. Robotics and medical wearables will allow people to self- diagnose health problems in the comfort of their homes. AI will also disrupt the internet of things and allow us to lead more connected lives.

Has the rise of the digital phenomenon changed your customers’ habits?

Yes, it has, with technology such as ad Blocking and customers demanding more relevant content this has changed user habits. Platform owners such as Facebook have responded by changing their algorithm to tailor content more towards friends and families. It will be harder to adopt a blanket approach with regards to media and creative planning. Accuracy and personalising data to inform all decision making will become even more important.

How is Nestlé taking advantage of these opportunities?

We are undergoing a data consolidation project (websites, mobile data from in-store activities, call centre contacts, etc) we are using technology to profile this data so that we create more accurate customers segments and profiles for each of our brands. This will allow us to tailor more appropriate and relevant communication for these customers.

Has the traditional marketing mix been transformed by the emergence of digital tools?

Yes it has. We used to focus on the 4 P’s, we now have to focus more greatly on the 5th P which is People. There are new tools being released daily, the trick is to be true to what you want to achieve and keep the customer at the heart of everything you do. Find a tool that helps you achieve those objectives. Use data intelligently and ensure your marketing teams are equipped to compete in a data driven world. Don’t get side tracked by the number of tools – find what works for you and stick to it.

What are the main successes of your digital strategy?
1. Having a strategy that supports every single stream within the business (sales, Supply Chain, HR and marketing) ensures that digital is not driven using a silo approach. It becomes an organisational strategy that is jointly owned and driven
2. Clear and timed objectives helps drive business support and accountability
3. Building a strong and reliable team to help execute and drive the strategy across the organisation is important
4. On-going capability building helps keep everyone abreast of technological advancements that could impact business and drives up digital investment.