Discussion Topic: The Consumer Decision Making Process

Empowered, savvy, well-informed, discerning, and other similar words are used for the consumers of the 21st century. The traditional funnel concept has changed to the consumer decision journey, which is less linear and more complicated than the funnel. What does the change mean for marketers? Does this have implications for Pakistani consumers living in big cities and marketers as well?

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Tantrums of a Foreign Minister

It was Friday, October 26, 2012, just a day before Eid-ul-Azha, when I was sitting comfortably getting my eyebrows groomed at Nina G salon in DHA, Lahore. Before this day, I had a good opinion of the salon and the service they provide to their customers. I was only five minutes away from getting done so I called my husband to come get me. The young receptionist at Nina G walked up, with a sense of urgency, to the girl who was meticulously grooming my eyebrows at the time. The receptionist spoke the following words to the girl in a loud voice (not very characteristic of her), “You are still doing this, while I asked you to get ready to do a manicure”.

Continue reading Tantrums of a Foreign Minister

Discussion Topic: Is Malala Yousafzai a Meaningful Brand?

As per the video featuring Umair Haque accessible at http://blogs.hbr.org/haque/2011/02/rethinking_the_idea_of_the_bra.html, meaningful brands are different from other types of brands.  Continue reading Discussion Topic: Is Malala Yousafzai a Meaningful Brand?

My Blog Post on The Express Tribune Blog

An abridged version of my blog post titled “Riding the Mythical Happy Wave of Facebook” (http://symaahmed.com/2012/riding-the-mythical-happy-wave-of-facebook/) was published on the Express Tribune Blog in August 2012 by the title “Riding the roller coaster of happiness that is Facebook”.  It can be accessed at Continue reading My Blog Post on The Express Tribune Blog

Discussion Topic: The New Era of Customer Engagement

According to French, T., LaBerge, L. & Magill, P. (2011), “For the past decade, marketers have been adjusting to a new era of deep customer engagement. They’ve tacked on new functions, such as social-media management; altered processes to better integrate advertising campaigns online, on television, and in print; and added staff with Web expertise to manage the explosion of digital customer data. Yet in our experience, that’s not enough. To truly engage customers for whom “push” advertising is increasingly irrelevant Continue reading Discussion Topic: The New Era of Customer Engagement

Discussion Topic: What is the role that brands play in your life?

The following passage, about a baby’s first brands, is from a famous book by Martin Lindstrom titled “Brandwashed: Tricks Companies Use to Manipulate Our Minds and Persuade Us to Buy”. According to Lindstrom:

“As a kid growing up in Denmark, by the time I was five I was already preoccupied with a handful of Continue reading Discussion Topic: What is the role that brands play in your life?

Riding the Mythical Happy Wave of Facebook

Facebook UpsetsFacebook is not just a social network, it is a phenomenon that has changed our lives in significant ways. At the turn of the century, Google had already begun to fundamentally change the way we searched for information, people, places etc. Google as a brand has won over the hearts and minds of students, critics, academics, professionals, and about anyone who is aware of the Internet. In 2006, a research study conducted in the UK by me, determined that Google enjoyed high brand equity with positive brand associations, high brand awareness and loyalty, and overall brand equity in comparison to its competitors in the search engine product category (Ahmed, 2006). The brand did not have any negative things associated with it. Enter, Facebook! No matter how real it seems, with the familiar and much loved faces of our friends and family, at the end of the day it is a virtual, make-belief world, which lacks reality. For most of us, life has become too busy. The rate race coupled with our relentless pursuit of growth and finding happiness in some distant part of the world has resulted in us being more disconnected with our close ones. It is not surprising that about a billion people are active on Facebook. Continue reading Riding the Mythical Happy Wave of Facebook