Don't underestimate TV: Unilever's Malantic

Jopa Malantic, regional brand director of Dove, Cream Silk, Lifebuoy, Vaseline and Hair SEAA at Unilever, says Dove and other brands in Unilever's portfolio have seen digital play a huge role in the media mix.

And while its role is growing, he says it is not in any way taking away the power of TV.

"Don't underestimate the power of TV," he says, adding leveraging digital and more specifically, mobile or social media is great for brands.

"It (digital) creates a lot of assets of the brand and makes way for a two-way conversation with consumers and generates content, but keeping intact the fundamentals of above-the-line advertising is essential," he says.

Unilever as a company is embracing digital and mobile extensively, but getting the fundamentals right is the first step.

"As a marketer that's always the first rule, your six Ps, your communication, your creative are all very important."

And while digital's growth has been phenomenal, as an industry on the whole, Malantic feels there is still a way to go for it to become as longstanding as TV.

"It's not about getting excited over an idea which is not sustainable over a period of time. I'm a big fan of digital, but as an industry we need to do more. It's not solely about going digital. It's always a holistic package.Therefore, it's essential to get the communication right."

And digital, together with the unprecedented growth of multi-national firms, has not only changed the way marketing is done, it has also effected a change on the role of brand marketing directors.

While in the past there used to be one brand marketing director per market, the structure has evolved to be far more complex with a brand marketing director now working on categories across markets, handling a myriad media channels.

"Our job scope has become bigger and all the more complex due to different channels, different iterations of the brand and the consumer becoming more and more sophisticated," he says.

"But the basics of marketing will never change. Knowing your consumer inside out will never change."

For the full profile interview with Malantic, read Marketing Magazine Singapore's November issue.