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Experiential Marketing Is The Need Of The Hour: Vipul Mathur, COO, Mufti

In an interview with Businessworld Applause and everythingexperiential.com, Vipul Mathur, COO, Mufti, spoke about the rise of experiential and how Mufti is leveraging it for better customer connect.

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With marketing communications across traditional platforms hitting a plateau of sorts, brands are constantly looking for new ways to connect with customers.

One of the dependable ways in this quest has been experiential marketing. Not only does it provide a more immersive connect, but also a lasting bond between customers and the brand.

In an interview with Businessworld Applause and everythingexperiential.com, Vipul Mathur, COO, Mufti, spoke about the rise of experiential and how Mufti is leveraging it for better customer connect.

Excerpts: 

How significant is the role of experiential in a market like India? 

Mufti has always taken a 360-degree approach across all its strategies, hence at a time when other brands are only focusing on Metros; Mufti has already created its niche/consumer base in Tier 2 and 3 cities. The same approach stands true for its marketing strategy; Mufti structures a sustainable marketing strategy for the year as opposed to a high-impact one carried out for a short period of time. Mufti’s previous year’s marketing campaign were ATL heavy. So, this year we are focusing on BTL and digital, which will bring us closers to our point of sale and in turn closer to our consumer.  With the steady growth of ECOMM industry, advancements in technology and increased digital accessibility, new avenues of marketing have opened up. Mufti plans to include experiential marketing in its strategy which will help its consumers experience the brand. This will heavily contribute towards making an emotional connection with the consumer and deliver a memorable purchase experience, which will invariably enhance customer loyalty. 

When it comes to experiential marketing do you think that it has edge over other marketing strategies? And, how is it working for retail sector in India? 

Experiential marketing is the need of the hour; with consumers becoming increasingly tech-savvy, they have developed a strong understanding of global fashion trends. So, today we are catering to an aware customer base, and we consistently strive to deliver over and above their expectations. We believe in adding the Mufti touch or added value in everything we do. We love to surprise our consumers with more than what they expect and that is what drives the creative team at Mufti. With Mufti adopting a 360-degree approach, experiential marketing will certainly be a part of our campaigns. We will begin with select sectors where the right infrastructure is available to deliver the experience to our consumers. And of course, in time we intend to carry out experiential marketing across the country.  

Technology has enhanced the consumer experience. As one of the leading fashion brands have you been able to capitalize on the tech enabled experiential initiatives to enhance the customer engagement? 

Technology in production, designing and retailing is enabling companies to adjust quickly and to deliver better products/offerings than ever before. The technology for fabric manufacturing being used is the best. We can see how stretch jeans today have become the norm for men and they have evolved to look exactly like authentic denim having the comfort of stretch. Also, technology has helped us improve consistency in manufacturing of our garments. In addition to the manufacturing aspect, the digital advancements are certainly enhancing the brand’s connectivity with the consumers.  Our hyper connected costumers engage with Mufti on a daily basis, on our social media platforms and this allows us to directly engage with the shoppers. Technology has also helped collect, correlate and comprehend consumers’ buying patterns that have contributed towards the brand’s in-depth understanding of their needs and expectations. At the same time, this knowledge helps us deliver a curated and a more personalized experience to our consumers, enhancing the complete shopping experience.  

The Indian e-commerce industry has been regulated with the introduction of the first e-commerce policy this year. How do you think it will impact the growth of retail industry? 

We at Mufti believe that e-commerce is an emerging channel of business that needs to be understood and leveraged in the right manner; it’s certainly not a disruptive channel of business as is widely believed. Just like in the 90’s when organized retailers emerged, the ‘mom and pop’ run stores thought that organized retail was disruptive but on the contrary, it helped the market’s growth. Similarly, in the millennium when exclusive brand outlets started to emerge rapidly, they were perceived as a disruption to existing channels, and now ecommerce is being perceived as a threat to brick and mortar retail. However, we believe that Omni channel is the way forward with ecommerce being one of the many channels of business. .. The thought and idea behind the new e-commerce policy is excellent in terms of benefitting all players in the long run; however, its success is largely dependent on all players adhering to the rules and regulations in place.

However, many players have already found loop holes and ways to evade the system which will hinder the benefits which were meant to increase sales. 

More and more retail brands are foraying into tier 2 and tier 3 cities and making huge investments. How crucial are tier 2 and tier 3 cities as a market for Mufti? 

Mufti has always had a strong market in Tier 2 and 3 cities; with the brand being one of the few to have a stronghold in MBO, EBO and LFS sector-led businesses across India. With an increase in infrastructure and international airport connectivity, even the remote areas of the country have become easily accessible. This has truly enabled massive expansions for various local and global brands. At the same time, the Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities are witnessing rising levels of disposable income especially in the hands of the youth, a demographic that prefers high-fashion apparels, making it prime sectors for our brand. Mufti is an accessible brand and the change or shift in fashion in Tier 2 or 3 cities to more casual wear, makes it apt for us to provide our consumer base just what it needs when it comes to fashion.




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