An Interview With Aman Matharu (2015)

1. You have worked with many different big brands, Citroen, LG, Pepsi, Panasonic, what has been your favourite so far?

All of the brands so far have given me great experiences and learning’s as I progress through my career – I’ll never forget Citroen as that’s where I started and I keep a close eye on all of their marketing! At Panasonic, it was my first foray into digital and it’s where I went from being a Webmaster to leading the digital campaigns with the various Product Managers. However, without a doubt, PepsiCo has been my favourite so far – we’re the ultimate challenger brand in Pepsi Max and our digital first approach is making waves in the industry and it’s a credit to the business for allowing us to do it.

2. You've also worked in many different industries; electronics, FMCG, Automotive. What industry have you always wanted to experience?

Having spent 4 years in Automotive and then 5 in electronics, my reason to moving to PepsiCo was the FMCG experience – you hear how some of the world’s best marketers have come from the powerhouses of the FMCG world and it’s refreshing to be involved in always on campaigns as the products are consumed daily so of course, we need to communicate with consumers daily, vs the product launch campaigns of the consumer electronics world to then going quiet up until the Xmas period of the year.

3. Is Digital Marketing something you always knew you wanted to get into since studying business management at university?

Correct, it’s the main media channel I used growing up and can’t imagine a life whereby digital and mobile isn’t part of it now. There are so many stats and research pieces out there highlighting how much time is now spent on a digital device and with wearable tech coming through watches etc, it’s only going to get more important. I started out in digital when Facebook was in it’s infancy and watched it's rise as well as various other platforms, to now Whatsapp and messenger services to the upcoming Internet of Things era.

4. You were ranked number 8 in the The Drum's Social Buzz Top 50, what do you do in order to get that high a ranking?

I guess the ranking is down to the consistent excellence of our creative and media strategy approach. So many great social/digital campaigns have been just that – campaigns, whereas the work we’ve delivered on Pepsi Max, 7UP, Mountain Dew and Lipton Iced Tea have been always on programmes with an over laying test and learn framework directing our future ventures. We also believe in scale – we have big brands that deserve big reaching and scale activities and that’s the only way digital can show up in ROI studies.

5. What exciting things can we expect from Digital Marketing from Pepsi?

Pepsi Max will continue to lead the way in terms of innovation across our beverage brands portfolio and expect more fantastic content as well as test and learn pieces with our food partners. We’re exploring Beacons, Augmented and Virtual Reality and our business believes this is our we can continue to grow penetration and relevance amongst our target audiences/consumers. We’ll also run other tests across the portfolio and if we fail, we fail fast, learn and move on.

6. What do you believe is the most popular and important form of Digital Marketing at the moment?

Video continues to dominate with Facebook’s video offering being up there with YouTube, and Twitter’s video platform is also key to us. However, with a lot of content pollution taking place at the moment, it’s really ensuring relevance through the use of data, targeting and programmatic media buying and delivering excellent creative content to appeal to audiences who are being inundated with “branded content” as well as content that their peers are sharing through the likes of the Lad Bibles of the world and YouTube vloggers.

7. What do you feel are going to be the biggest trends in terms of Digital Marketing this year?

I believe Digital Out of Home screens provide brands with fantastic opportunities to again add scale and reach to their content – so with beacons or selective media buying, can brands deliver relevant content to audiences on the go? It’s like the scene from Minority Report – content that’s targeted to your location.