Dhaka, Apr 27 (UNB) – The Bangladesh Brand Forum (BBF) seminar was held in the capital on Saturday with the theme ‘Creating Human Connection in the Age of Digital’.
Presented by Beximco, BBF Seminar 2019 was powered by American International University-Bangladesh (AIUB), and organised in association with Dhaka Bank Limited.
Around 300 corporate professionals attended the seminar at the Grand Ballroom of Hotel Le Méridien.
The day also marked the 12th year anniversary BBF. A grand celebration programme was held, followed by the seminar at the same venue.
“Our future will be anything but what we can imagine or predict. Question is how we can prepare for such a future. BBF’s next phase of journey will be to guide and shape our thinking and skills around that,” its founder and Managing Director Shariful Islam said.
BBF's Director Nazia Andaleeb Preema and Chief Advisor Professor Syed Ferhat Anwar also spoke there.
Starting in 2008, BBF seminar has been sharing global insights among the local business leaders through keynotes, panel discussions, and interactive sessions.
BBF Seminar 2019 consisted of three keynote sessions, five panel discussions, two Insight Sessions, and a Breakout Session.
Twenty-three speakers spoke across different segments of the seminar while each participant a one paperback copy of the book 'The 12 Powers of a Marketing Leader'.
Keynote speakers for the seminar were Associate Prof of Marketing and Academic Director (Executive MBA) National University of Singapore Dr Prem N Shamdasani; former chairman and CCO, Brand and Innovation, Ogilvy and Mather Worldwide, and CCO and founder of Collins (AdAge Design Agency of the year 2019) Brian Collins; and Thomas Barta, dean of McKinsey Leadership Program and columnist for Forbes Marketing Week.
Throughout the panel discussions, issues such as digital transformation of brands whether they should focus on purpose or positioning in order to place themselves in the minds of the consumers, finding the sweetest spot among data, creativity, privacy and value creation, short-term and long-term debate in the era of now momentum and the importance of brands in the sustainability battle.
The discussants of the seminar were Nazmul Karim, executive vice president, Prime Bank Ltd; Prof Syed Saad Andaleeb PhD, former vice chancellor, BRAC University; Reazuddin Al Mamun, managing director, Epyllion Group; Ashraf Bin Taj, president, Marketing Society of Bangladesh; Zakia Zerin, head of Digital Marketing, eCommerce and Customer Engagement, Nestlé Bangladesh Ltd; Yasir Azman, CMO and Deputy CEO, Grameenphone Ltd; Harsh Chhaparia, partner, McKinsey & Company; Khandoker Mahmudur Rahman PhD, Associate Professor and Director BBA Program, United International University; Lutfi Chowdhury, Regional Head, Eskimi South Asia; Mizanur Rashid, Chief Commercial Officer, bKash Ltd; Shahriar Amin, Head of Marketing, Beximco Communications Ltd; Solaiman Alam, Head of Digital, Grameenphone Ltd; Syed Tanzim Rezwan, Marketing Director, Reckitt Benckiser (Bangladesh) Ltd; Tanzeen Ferdous, Marketing Director (Home Care, Foods & Refreshment), Unilever Bangladesh Ltd; Nazim Farhan Choudhury, Managing Director, Adcomm Ltd, Shourav Islam, CEO & Founder, Unifox Digital Media; Chandan Polekar, Country Head, Godrej Consumer Products Ltd; and Adnan Imtiaz Halim, CEO & Co-founder, Sheba.xyz.
The seminar was an initiative of BBF presented by Beximco and powered by AIUB and organised in association with Dhaka Bank Limited; Official Carrier Turkish Airlines; Strategic Partners Marketing Society of Bangladesh and The Daily Star; Event Partner Le Méridien, Dhaka; Digital Partner Applied Business Initiatives; PR Partner Backpage PR and Branding Partner Terracotta.
The Forum, a platform where creative minds meet and share knowledge, is stepping into its 13th year this month.
It promotes knowledge, innovation, and creativity among the industry stakeholders, business leaders, and policymakers through various initiatives.
BBF took bold steps when the idea of promoting brands, creativity, and knowledge was not common.
From recognising creative communication for the first time in the industry to awarding the most loved brands of the country, BBF has been a pioneer in community building initiatives.
When it started Commward, only nine advertisements had received awards. In the 2018 edition of Commward, 85 works were awarded.
Moreover, the signature crest of Best Brand Award is now widely recognised by general consumers throughout the country while BBF’s monthly magazine reaches corporate leaders and provides cutting edge business thinking and insight from Bangladesh and the world over.
The platform has directly engaged over 35,000 professionals and business leaders.
It has awarded the best brands of the country, based on consumer research, for the last 10 years. BBF has helped promote Bangladesh in global platforms through initiatives like “Meet Bangladesh”.
‘Focus on brand leadership’
Prem Shamdasani said sale volume should not be the goal.
“Brand leadership should be focused on in the current world,” he said while delivering his speech in keynote session 1.
He said Country Branding is as important as personal Branding. “To achieve sustainable market growth, market share leadership and brand leadership are much needed,” he added.
He urged the participants to pursue cost leadership and compete strategically.
He emphasised getting strategic focus right and then leverage technology. "Market leadership needs cost leadership, SCM, strategic outsourcing and channel partnership," he said.
“For brand leadership, it’s important to focus on product and business model, design leadership, dominant platform and quality user experience,” he added.
Saying 'servitisation is the future’, he also stressed that customer intimacy is important for success.