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Marketing in 2019

Marketers in the UAE face some major shifts in the challenges they face as 2019 gets into full swing. Marketing is a profession in constant flux and there no cookie cutter approach or Holy Grail to market a product or service. What we are good at, has a very short shelf life. Future proofing yourself by upskilling with the latest trends and best practices helps you to get ahead of the curve.

Some of the key trends in 2019 as we see it


In 2019, omnichannel marketing will be of increasing importance as marketers look to build fully integrated customer experiences, and nurture better relationships with their audience. E-commerce growth is set to add more money into advertising, so there is a huge opportunity for platform growth and new ways for brands to build and integrate digital and print.


Companies need to break down the traditional silos and get sales teams and marketing specialists to take a more integrated approach to reaching customers. Companies are looking at how social platforms can be used to create ecosystems of marketing, social and e-commerce into one.

SVOD (Streaming Video on Demand)

Netflix has been at the forefront of colonising global living rooms and the competition will heat up with advertising funded video on demand .This means the ability for marketers for pinpoint targeting. This will create many new channels to engage on a one to one basis and greater potential to deliver a greater experience.

The rise of social ecommerce

Instagram will drive more user growth based on far more engagement .The engagement levels on Instagram are far higher due to the quality of engagement with smaller communities. So now we can book a holiday by simply clicking on the photo or use stories to reach your customer.

Marketing effectiveness

Marketers are now more accountable for communication spend and this means ensuring developing meaningful dashboards which reflect not only the efficiency side, but also the effectiveness side. ROI is not an indicator of effectiveness, but efficiency. Marketers need to build brand equity and this will contribute to the overall health and far higher ROI.

Ultimately, your success is derived from your ability be confident, flexible and bold. It’s about absorbing new ideas that may come from differing stakeholders and being brave in trying them out. If you are able foster these values you will thrive in a VUCA (volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous) world.

Ensure you're ahead of the newest marketing developments in 2019 and sign up to start your CIM @ PwC’s Academy and gain access to the latest insight and content. 

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Failan Saleem

Failan has pioneered the launch of the Chartered Institute of Marketing qualifications, designed and delivered training programmes in marketing planning, brand planning, digital, marketing metrics, market leadership planning  and managing corporate reputation and customer service in the  Gulf region.

Prior to joining PwC’s Academy, Failan served as a Director of Marketing/Qualifications for the market leader for the CIPD qualifications in the Gulf with specific  responsibility for the design, development and delivery of all level 4, 6 and 7 qualifications offered by the CIM. He  championed the launch of the level 7 qualifications for the first time in the UAE and was passionately involved in the development of the CIM brand name in the UAE.

Failan is also a hybrid professional having worked as the General Manager for a large Telco and Director/General Manager for Samsung mobile . Concurrently prior to moving to UAE he was the founder of “The Knowledge Factory” a market leader for CIM education in Sri Lanka for 10 years. Failan has also worked as a Brand Manager and Sales Manager for Smith Kline Beecham Glaxo and as a  Professional representative for Pfizer.

Failan also served as a panel member for the ICTA/world bank grant projects, member of boutique hotels and villas evaluation committee for the Tourism Development Authority and the IIFA film awards Think Tank.