A panel discussion on how technology helps improve returns on investment at the CEO & CMO Summit held by the MMA Vietnam in HCM City on September 28.

HCM City (VNS/VNA) - With the rapid evolution of technology, enterprises need to find new ways of interacting with customers to thrive in the digital age, experts have said. 

Speaking at the 2018 CEO & CMO Summit Vietnam held recently by the Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) Vietnam in Ho Chi Minh City, Christy Le, country director of Facebook Vietnam, said yesterday and today’s worlds are different in interaction points.

In yesterday’s world, there were advertisements in billboards, magazines or newspapers, stores, word of mouth, and television, while in today’s world, besides these means they also include Twitter, Instagram, trunk show, email, retailers’ communication, blogs, Snapchat, and influencer communication, she said.

Digital media is influencing both online and offline purchases, with mobile being the primary driver, she said.

Since today’s customers tend to interact with businesses through multiple channels, integrating online and offline interaction with customers can help businesses drive awareness, online sales, store visits and offline sales, she said.

To exploit the opportunity to interact with consumers, both online and offline, businesses must depend on their database.

“Data is an invaluable resource in the Fourth Industrial Revolution age, with artificial intelligence and machine learning, their impact is even bigger.”

Vietnamese firms should utilise existing global technologies and data platforms smartly and strategically to create breakthroughs for their businesses, she said. 

Talking about digital opportunities in Vietnam, Konstantin Matthies, a micro-economics expert and engagement manager at AlphaBeta’s Singapore office, said Vietnam has a number of strengths such as a robust app economy, but “there is room for improvement”.

Creating digital talent and guaranteeing a conducive tech investment climate would be key drivers of Vietnam’s success, he said.

“It is the responsibility of companies and industry to engage in open dialogue with policy makers on how to craft progressive policy and how to best leverage this opportunity.”

Imbedding multinationals as anchors by offering the right incentives can boost availability of start-up financing and skills transfers, he said.

“The digital economy provides significant opportunities across a variety of industries and could potentially be a major driver of exports.

“Poorly crafted regulations can undermine the potential benefits of the digital economy.”

Delegates also talked about total audience measurement, how technology help increase return on investment, agile marketing, how to build competitive advantages in the age of disruption, blockchain and its implications to the marketing industry, latest consumer technology products that would impact the environment, and other topics.

According to Sinthu Peatrarut, who helms Nielsen’s media business in Thailand, Myanmar and Vietnam, in today’s fragmented media market, it is no longer effective to think of each advertising platform as a separate unit within a media plan, requiring businesses to have audience measurement in various channels to effectively implement customer interaction campaigns.

Phan Bich Tam, country manager, Mobile Marketing Association in Vietnam, said the CEO & CMO Summit is an annual event being held world-wide.

This is the first time it is being held in Vietnam, and more than 300 leaders and marketers of large enterprises in various industries in Vietnam took part, she said.

The event provided an opportunity to gather, connect and share experiences among businesses from a range of industries that have been using technology to build competitive advantages and sustainable business, she said.-VNS/VNA