Bhubaneswar: Leading advertising and PR agency of eastern India, Sanket Communications Saturday organised a webinar on the topic of “MSME: Overcoming the Challenges of Branding”.

The webinar was addressed by Ravindra Nath, Former Chairman & Managing Director, National Small Industries Corporation Ltd. (NSIC) as chief guest of the evening. The other panelists were Dr. Sarat Kumar Sahoo, MD, Ruchi Foodline, Dr. Avinash Tripathi, Professor Xavier Institute of Management, Bhubaneswar and Sambit Mohanty, National Creative Director-South, McCann Worldwide India.

Srikant Rath, CEO, Sanket Communications was the moderator of the webinar. Besides Subhashish Tripathy, Managing Director, Sanket Communications, Prakash Sahu, Director, Sanket Communications, and over 400 MSME entrepreneurs, representatives of various industrial associations like Orissa Small Scale Industries Association and District Small Scale Industries Association (Cuttack), media, educationists and interested students from various universities participated in the webinar.

The evening began with a welcome speech by Subhashish Tripathy, MD Sanket Communications. Reflecting on Sanket’s more than 30 years association with various brands and organisations in Odisha and other parts of India, Tripathy said “Sanket wants to use its rich expertise in the industry to help and handhold the MSMEs in Odisha. This is a beginning of a series of Webinars in that direction”.

Dr. Sahoo said how he built “RUCHI” a name as a brand, that helped his sales, marketing & growth. He also reflected upon the challenges he faced in promoting his brand and how he overcame them. Dr. Sahoo shared his experience of how branding helped him pitch his products against the competition in a much better way and the comparison between RUCHI with similar players in the category. Dr. Sahoo also highlighted how 4Ps -Product, Price, Place and Promotion play a pivotal role to create and sustain a brand in the market. He strongly emphasized that MSME entrepreneurs should consider branding as a long term investment.

Prof. Avinash Tripathi spoke about difference between Commodity & Brand and how brand creates a long-term value while commodity has a short-term benefit only. He also shared insightful knowledge on what is a brand and how to nurture a brand with same care and dedication the way you nurture your own child. He also spoke about a brand’s touch-points and how a strong branding helped to sustain a product in the market. Adding to this he said, investment in brand is investment in business.

Sambit Mohanty spoke about the role of creativity in branding for better consumer perception and the basic creative elements which are hallmark of a good brand. He cited various examples to showcase how investment in branding saw small businesses grow successfully.

Coming to the Question & Answer session the moderator asked Ravindra Nath What apart from cost are challenges of branding before an MSME and what are the possible solutions and is there an innovative way out for the cost issue involving branding? Answering to this he said, “Sustenance of a brand is very crucial. It is aptly said, what is seen is sold. The MSME sector needs a proper handholding to grow in the market. They have to be guided to survive in the market.