Digital marketing and social media marketing is coming to Sri Lanka, and if you fail to embrace these latest technologies as a business, YOU WILL SUFFER. That is the message I got after attending the Digital Dojo organized by Ogilvy. A special thanks to Amitha for kindly inviting me for the event. I have previously talked about social media marketing in Sri Lanka, why businesses should use them more and how businesses can profit from quickly embracing these technologies. My initial thought was that it will take around 3-4 years for social media to really take off in Sri Lanka, but after seeing the numbers shown at the presentation, I’m certain social media sites would become very popular in anther year or two. The numbers are there for everyone to see and already brands like Dialog,Mobitel and Perera and Sons are reaping the benefits.
The event started with speeches from Chairman, CEO etc. I can’t exactly remember who said this, but there was one statement that really got my attention. That is “Social Media is a Language“. Like any language it takes time to learn and master it and you better start now because in few years that is the medium your customers will communicate with you. Next up was a really interesting presentation showing various stats regarding Internet usage in Sri Lanka. It showed the growth of Facebook in Sri Lanka, Internet penetration levels in Sri Lanka and a whole lot more facts, probably only advertising agencies are aware of. The prediction is that by 2014 the Internet penetration levels in Sri Lanka will reach 22%. That is a huge market segment you shouldn’t ignore.
Ogilvy is a global company and these workshops were run parallely across many countries. There was an attempt to connect to one of those regional sessions but it wasn’t that successful and the crowd lost interest very quickly. But they were very interested soon as they heard KPI’s and appraisals and stuff. Ogilvy as a company is embracing the digital media revolution and they are conducting a series of training sessions to educate the staff about these things. And to encourage participation they are factoring training levels in appraisals. Now that is something management always say when they want there employees to follow somethings, but I’m sure that is motivation enough for people to learn them 😉 .
After the presentations Amitha gave a brief introduction about the new technologies available for marketing and advertising agencies. How motion detection and augmented reality can be used to build highly entertaining and engaging products for the end user. Below video shows some of the things that could be done using augmented reality. And if you think this is advanced stuff beyond Sri Lankans there are Sri Lankan companies building these applications.
There were some latest gadgets available in the room as well. I was particularly impressed by the smart TV. The 3D visuals were amazing and no wonder its on many peoples wish list. Just before leaving I had an informal chat with the people involved in initiating this event and I really liked there final objective and future plans. They are hoping to conduct few more workshops like this, so marketing people can get to know the technical people and together develop awesome digital media applications focused towards customers. As a customer I’m very happy to hear that 🙂 . Good luck Ogilvy and thanks for the invitation. If you have question and opinions about the event or about social media usage in Sri Lanka in general, the comment box awaits.