Free Press Journal

INDCOM 2017: A call to communicators

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Kumar Ketkar, ex-chief editor, Dainik Divya and Radhakrishnan Pillai, author of ‘Corporate Chanakya’, during the inaugurals.

Mumbai: A two-day event— INDCOM 2017 which is jointly organised by The Public Relation Society of India (PRSI), Mumbai chapter and Goldman Communications, was attended by the stalwarts of the industry. Popular names like Kumar Ketkar, ex-chief editor of Dainik Divya Marathi and Radhakrishnan Pillai, author of the bestselling management book ‘Corporate Chanakya’, inaugurated the Indian Communication Summit at Nehru Centre.

In his inaugural address, Pillai iterated the importance of communication being ‘short, crisp and clear’. Citing examples, such as, “India almost reaching 100 per cent literacy and India conducting fair electronic elections to 55 countries including the US”, Pillai said are today not registered in public mind. “Bolne se pehle karo, aur karne ke baad bolo, par bolo”, was his message to the communicators. Repetition of messages is equally important, he said, so that the audience can grasp most of it.

Ketkar in his key note address gave an overview of how communication and media have undergone a sea change in the past just three decades and emphasised the ‘shrinking information in a world of information explosion.’ He also emphasised on micro identities that emerge sporadically like “koi nahin bolta hum bharatiya hain jab tak India-Pakistan ka match ya war na ho”. Stating that the traditional medium of newspapers for news is fast diminishing in the age of ‘post – truth’ – news that one sees only on social media but have not occurred in reality – promoted by social media. The news now is less credible because the news houses are more interested in sensationalism rather than getting into the facts. The role of communicators or public relations persons in this environment is to keep in to uh with media and to ensure that news are credible.


Nandini Chatterjee of PwC spoke about the need and importance of data analytics and artificial intelligence in building the right communication strategy. Neeraj Jha, HDFC Bank stressed on communicating in one voice – be it marketing or customer Relations or public relations. Chitaranjan Ghosh of TCS said that it is very important to provide the best customer experience to the stakeholders whereas Shalini Singh of Tata Power emphasised being innovative with ideas to be effective. The session by Gayatri Sharma of PepsiCo was about storytelling trends and she made it very interesting by showing videos that told an emotional story unconnected to the product and still making a mark on the target audience. Daivata Patil of Mumbai University underlined the disconnect between the corporate world and research and urged corporates to use academia more effectively in their deliverables. The day ended with a panel discussion on embracing technology: deploying technology tools to measure communication campaign performance.

Earlier, Alpana Killawala, chairperson, PRSI-Mumbai chapter introduced the audience to the agenda of the summit which is aimed at providing a platform to share the changing dynamics of communication. The summit also aims to bring together the industry and provide a better understanding of how the industry works acting as a bridge between the organisation and its audience, she said.

The Summit concluded with the first ever ‘PRतिष्ठा Awards’ given to private and public sector company’s communicators.