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How Asian Paints Used digital Marketing transformed its business

How Asian Paints Used digital Marketing transformed its business
Asian paints, one of the leading manufacturers in paint and coating has digitally transformed their business in three key areas of their enterprises: customer experience, operational processes and business models. Through this digital transformation, the firm has been able to maintain fast growth and globalize to increase their efficiency while reducing its impact on the environment. Introduction The company started an initiative in 2000s to reduce debt and improve their internal efficiencies. They decided to implement an enterprise-wide ERP and Advanced Supply Chain Management System. This further helped them in creating an enterprise-wide platform that was the basis for further improvements in sales and customer processes. This initiative also liberated working capital that helped fund acquisitions in emerging markets. The organization also linked sub-contractors and suppliers on a B2B portal that helped to further improve their efficiencies. Finally, in 2013, the firm invested in a CRM system. Real Transformation There was another transformation initiated by the firm in 2010. They now centralized their order taking process into a single corporate call centre. This change helped them to improve their operational efficiencies while sustaining their growth. In customer-facing processes, this move also encouraged retailers to place their orders through the call centre where they would now receive a more consistent service level than they could through the firm’s 100 local depots. Moreover, the centralized data process also facilitated delivery of products to large institutional customer job sites, giving their customers a capability, which their competitors couldn’t provide. Result of this transformation One of the biggest changes that was noticed after centralising order taking process was the way in which the sales people interacted with the retailers. The sales team was now liberated from those annoying order collection processes and focussed more on building stronger relationships. Furthermore, in order to ensure a more meaningful interaction between the sales team and the retailer, the company provided the sales people with vital customer data in the field using mobile devices. A rollout of tablet devices, which is currently underway, will further mobile-enable the sales staff. Digital transformation extended to internal production processes Asian paint witnesses a high growth in paint demand, which further creates a need for new manufacturing plants in every three years. Looking at the scale and size of these plants, the firm has now begun to focus on creating highly automated plants. This automation has helped the organization to achieve greater scalability, quality and stronger safety and environmental protections. These new plants are fully integrated from an information management perspective. Data from shop floor systems and automated warehouses are linked seamlessly to the ERP which has helped the firm to sustain the firm’s operational efficiencies. New Service Strategy In India, the company has now started to sell services instead of products. They now offer service of painted wall rather than selling a can of paint. This service strategy has benefitted beyond new revenues. Selling services helps the organization to ensure that their high end products are applied properly, which further helps in improving customer satisfaction. Moreover, selling services also helps the firm to get closer to the end-customer, understand core customer choices and also launch high-end texture finishes. Another advantage of having a contractor in a client’s house helps to yield information for the marketing staff as they can understand the customer preferences as well as potential demands. Gaining better knowledge of end-customer preferences is a high priority for the company, since its business model – operating largely through retailers – means that customer involvement has been traditionally very low. Conclusion Corporate growth as well as new technology demands has increased the challenges of digital governance. Asian Paints is in the first year of a new portfolio planning process. Mr. Manish Choksi, CIO & Chief Strategy shared, “we have enjoyed great equality with the business because we have delivered solutions. But seeing so many projects coming at us, we felt that now we need to establish processes to match expectations and resources whilst taking on innovative projects. The company’s investment in strong IT capabilities, combined with organizational and process changes intended to leverage those investments. This will serve as a foundation upon which the organization can continuously envision and implement new forms of digital transformation.
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