IO, Yogyakarta– During the Covid-19 pandemic, many SMEs and larger en- terprises have resorted to doing business online. Increase familiarity by the public with online shopping, the ease and safety of transactions, and a potentially wider market are factors that drive more SMEs to open online stores today.
The use of e-commerce platforms and social media has been on the rise during the pandemic. For instance, streaming entertainment service Net- flix recorded an increase of 15.8 mil- lion customers. This shows a funda- mental shift in lifestyle and the way people communicate and conduct their economic activities.
Web-hosting service provider Ni- agahoster sees this “go online” phe- nomenon as both an opportunity and a challenge. Considering the intense competition in the online realm, it is simply not enough for businesses and SMEs to open up shop in cyberspace.
This motivates Niagahoster to hold a virtual conference titled Brand Mar- keting Con. by Niagahoster. It is the first and largest online conference in Indonesia to discuss branding and dig- ital marketing trends.
In collaboration with various brands, Niagahoster aims to provide a broader and applicable perspective for business owners, SMEs, IT activists, communication and branding activists, and the public on how to build a strong brand in the minds of customers and promote it in cyberspace.
According to data from the Coordi- nating Ministry for Economic Affairs, there are currently around 300,000 Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) opened up online during the pandemic. Niagahoster also noted the increase in its business, with its active client numbers growing by 7.79% in the second quarter, compared to the first quarter.
The “sudden” phenomenon of SMEs going online should be heeded by the government and business players. Building a “long-lasting” business is a continuous process that involves a combination of the right strategy, plan- ning and execution.
Niagahoster Head of Brand & Rep- utation Management Ayunda Zikrina said that digital branding and pro- motion is a double-pronged strategy that can be achieved by individuals, business players, and companies to grab customers’ attention and posi- tion themselves in the market. But unfortunately, many business players have yet to maximize their potential.
Niagahoster found that 24.38% of business players were forced to close their digital channels because their business was not running smoothly. This may be due to a combination of several factors – incomplete product development, problems with produc- tion, financial planning, and lack of appropriate promotions on digital channels.
“The digital branding and promo- tion process is often overlooked in building a business. As a result, prod- uct innovation is hampered. People just sell without paying attention to feedback or input from the market. This is the reason why many busi- nesses have gone down,” said Ayunda Zikrina at the press conference to promote the event (24/9).
With more businesses and SMEs going online, Ayunda emphasized that businesses must start building their branding and digital marketing strate- gies to promote themselves. This aligns with data from Forbes showing that keeping branding consistent across platforms can increase profits by 23%.
Go online for success
Currently, 67.4% of website own- ers in Niagahoster have created digital channels to grow their business. In order to achieve success online, indi- viduals and business owners are en- couraged to build their branding and pursue digital promotion planning from early on.
“The business development process doesn’t stop at owning a website or social media. Branding and marketing activi- ties go hand in hand, and through online media they can be achieved simultane- ously,” pointed out Tarrence K. Palar, Brand Communication Manager of Kom- pas Daily at the press conference (24/9). Tarrence noted that going online is just the beginning of a business develop- ment process. Shops, portfolios and pag- es in cyberspace also need regular and continuous maintenance. The branding and marketing process should not stop at logo or visualization, but must also re- flect how the product is known and used
by many people.
In the Brand Marketing Con, Ni- agahoster will invite 14 speakers to discuss 12 topics on brand building, content marketing, social media utili- zation, and more. The conference will be conducted via live streaming from 29-30 September 2020.