Cheil India bets big on design as brands move towards customer-centric strategies

Cheil India bets big on design as brands move towards customer-centric strategy

With more consumers becoming empowered by technology, the imperative on brands to be customer-focused and tech savvy is stronger than ever.

For the past few years, brands like Pepsi Co have been increasingly vocal about the importance of design-thinking on creating products and experiences for future customers.

This has driven Cheil India to launch its newest venture Cheil Design, which will help the agency bring in more design expertise to its brand strategy offering.

The news comes after the agency was signed by UC News as its integrated communications agency. With more integrated briefs on the table, the agency is hoping the new venture will add more value to its clients.

The new venture will be headed up by Prerna Mehra, head of design at Cheil India.

Speaking to The Drum about the launch, Mehra said the emphasis on screens was changing the way brands look at strategy, "The growth of new age media, where the interaction with the customer is mostly through screens, is of utmost importance for brands today and they need to create customer centric designs and strategy more than ever."

On Cheil Design

"Today brands are looking at improving their business outcomes and thus design is fast becoming an essential component of an effective brand strategy. Cheil Design comes at the right time. The ethos is to produce effective and captivating design solutions, underpinned by conceptual thinking, meticulous attention to detail and innovative production," said Prerna.

"The truly integrated approach will help developing highly impactful solutions to best service the clients and offer an added value," she added.

Customer engagement

From their products to campaigns, do brands really look at customer engagement? According to a recent survey by Gartner, technology gimmicks and R&D efforts pale into insignificance for customers compared to the impact of design-thinking.

"All our services, like building brand identity and strategy, corporate identity, brand language, packaging design, interactive design and below the line projects are intended towards enhancing consumer engagement with the brand. These innovative solutions are intended to create impactful and immersive brand experiences for the customers," said Prerna.

Is technology a focus for the agency?

According to Prerna, "Integration of technology and creativity is at Cheil’s core and that helps us develop distinctive approach for our clients, making them the preferred brand for consumers. We will continue to imbibe this in every aspect of our work."

On whether brands in India are discussing this trend towards design thinking and customer-centric design and strategy, she said, "The world is thinking design let alone brands in India. Design has evolved from being mere looks and aesthetics, to being integrated into the development of product and its communication."

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Taruka Srivastav

I march to the Indian beat of The Drum.

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