President of SLIM – Mr. Karthik Elangovan and Project Chairperson - Mr. Lakshitha Wijesinghe
The most awaited awards program among marketers and brand custodians, which reveals the true place of a brand/organization, is mere weeks away.
At the approach of the SLIM – Nielsen People’s Awards, the President of SLIM and the Project Chairperson give us a glimpse into the innovation, influence and inspiration behind one of the most renowned awards in Sri Lanka.
President of SLIM – Mr. Karthik Elangovan
What was the thought behind the initiation of the SLIM – Nielsen People’s Awards?
The idea behind the People’s Awards was to get a non-biased view of a brand’s occupation in the consumers’ minds. There are many panel-judged award ceremonies but none of these check the people’s pulse on their preference through a systematic research process, which will capture the true nature of a brand’s imprint in the minds of the consumers.
Has it achieved the initial objective of creating the award?
It has been more than a decade now and organizations as well as the consumers value the true choice of the people, and it helps the companies to improve their performance as well as get an insight into their brand’s bearing in the market, which helps them in their future strategies.
From a consumer point of view, it helps the general population get an idea of the brands most preferred by the consumers, since association by nature is a key component of a human psyche when making purchase decisions. As we all know, one always tends to buy something when it is referred to us by a friend.
These are the two key objectives, which are imperative for People’s Awards recipients and this has been elevated over the years to greater levels with the commercialization of the awards and the acceptance of both the participating organizations and the consumers.
How has the People’s Awards been able to contribute to the marketing fraternity and the country?
The quality of service is one area where the People’s Awards have contributed most. Products that are placed in the market by organizations need to improve if they are to stand out in the mind of the consumer. So continuous improvements have happened in order to compete for these awards and thus industries have improved areas such as product quality, offerings, channels and communication.
Also, from a marketer’s perspective the awards enable them to understand the consumer’s requirements and strategize accordingly in order to make their brand more appealing to their customers.
Project Chairperson - Mr. Lakshitha Wijesinghe
What makes the SLIM – Nielsen People’s Awards stand apart from the many other industry awards?
The selection of the winners in most awards in Sri Lanka is based on either a selection criterion or the judgment of a panel of judges. People’s Awards is the only award where the winners are selected based on island-wide research. More importantly the Nielsen Company carries out the research, which is one of the largest and most recognized research companies in the world. This greatly improves the credibility of the selection process.
Explain the criteria by which the winners are chosen. How different is it from an evaluation from a panel of judges?
The winners of the People’s Awards are selected based on the Sri Lankan’s top of the mind recall, identified through an island wide research program. The People’s Award tag line, ‘The True Voice of Sri Lanka’, clearly projects the essence of the selection criteria. Therefore, this award evaluates the last mile of the brand effort, whether it has been successful in winning the people’s hearts and minds. There is no better testament for the success of a brand than the endorsement of the general public. In contrast, evaluation by a panel of judges takes in to account the judgment of the panel, which is based on a particular criterion. When it is necessary to scrutinize something in detail that requires in-depth understanding in the respective subject matter, evaluation by a judging panel is suitable.
How important is public opinion for a brand to be successful?
The success of the brand completely depends on how it is perceived by the public, which includes both its current consumers and non-consumers. The public owns this perception, not the brands. A brand custodian might want to project a particular image of their brand, but its success depends on whether or not the public perceives it the same way. Every brand manager wants his or her brand to be more loved by the public than any other brand. The People’s Awards put their brands into a test in this aspect.
What benefits does a brand receive from the SLIM – Nielsen People’s Awards?
Like I mentioned previously, there is no better testament to the success of the brand than the endorsement of the general public. The People’s Awards confirms that the winning brand is the most popular brand in its category among Sri Lankans. Since the research is carried out by the leading research agency Nielsen, an award is valid anywhere in the world. Winning an award will further drive awareness and usage. We humans always love to be associated with the best and the most popular. Further, the popularity of the brand tells the market about the superior quality of the product/service, which improves the consumer’s confidence in the brand, making it easier and faster for the consumer to traverse through the buying process