From left: SLIM Events Vice President Suranjith Swaris, Judging Panel Head Dinesh Nalliah, SLIM President Elangovan Karthik and SLIM Brand Excellence Project Chairman Nuwan Gamage
By Zahara Zuhair
More prominence will be given to the Small and Medium enterprises (SME) sector and online brands at the 16th Sri Lanka Institute of Marketing (SLIM) Brand Excellence awards, themed, ‘Exhibit your masterpiece’ to be held in November.
“This time we have given more prominence to the SME category. As you know, our country at the moment has a trade deficit of almost close to about of US$3.3 billion. We need more export-driven brands. It is not about the getting bulk products out like the traditional tea and rubber. We need a more entrepreneurial mindset and entrepreneurial thinking,” SLIM President Elangovan Karthik said.
As the country is going through a transitional period, we as the national body of marketing SLIM have an important role in nation building, he said. “Forums like this also play a pivotal role in nurturing and developing our marketing fraternity, enabling them to better contribute to the country’s growth,” he said.
He said that as there is a huge potential in online brands and marketing, through the competition they are looking forward to uplift and promote online marketing in Sri Lanka. It was said that compared to physical marketing, online marketing haisn’t much evolved in Sri Lanka so far, but it is progressing.
“Among consumers, still there are apprehensions such as the security of payment and more. Trust must be built and recognition must be given to take the industry forward,” the
They believe that through an event like this some sort of motivation could be given for the growth of online marketing. As in terms of online retail, Sri Lanka’s transaction value stands around US$40 million at the moment, and is projected to go up to US$1.5 billion by 2020.
SLIM said that they will look to keep increasing categories for online category in the coming years.
“Brands that operate on mobile platform also could apply under this. For example, a brand that has a cab service that operates under a mobile platform can apply,” Judging Panel Head, Dinesh Nalliah said.
“One key thing is a minimum of 80 percent of the brands’ turnover should come from its online transactions,”
The other categories of the competition will be; product brand of the year, service brand of the year, innovative brand of the year, turn-a-round brand of the year, local brand of the year, best new entrant of the year, export brand of the year, B2B brand of the year, International brand of the year, CSR brand of the year, SME brand of the year and regional brand
It was noted that a company can apply under more than one category as long as it meets the relevant criteria.