‘Business works only when you are close to the customer. Features don’t sell. At the end of the day the customer is going to ask “What’s in it for me?”- Neeraj Walia, the CEO for Montblanc, is not someone hardwired to preset structures and plans. He believes in understanding the essence of business. He states that applications are experiments depending on the situation.
Walia was leading the Sales and Marketing team of McCain Foods, the Canadian frozen potato specialty firm when he fine-tuned his unconventional approach to business as he helped expand sales operations countrywide. He knew that India is a unique market and various channels would have to be used, if McCain wanted to capture the retail market.
He used several indigenous and innovative methods of product marketing – from endorsing french fries at his relatives’ kitty parties to approaching bakeries and multiplexes equipped with cold storage facilities; Walia has done it all to ensure that the company whose french fries have made McDonald’s famous world over also found a place in the heart of the Indian family.
Walia shared his inspiring story with the Executive MBA cohorts of the Institute of Product Leadership at the CMRIT campus on 2nd February 2019. Here are some of the key takeaways from his session –
Neeraj’s session was particularly important for budding entrepreneurs and marketers, as it talked about out of the box ideas while at the same time staying grounded when it came to the basics.
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