Clear goal and focused approach are crucial for genuine success

Ananth A V, director Oman & India, LuLu Group International says that the company was able to tide through challenges due to its strong fundamentals 

What is cause-related marketing? What are the factors that led to Oman Avenues Mall's award win in this category?

Cause-related marketing in my view is a conscientious non-profit project run by a corporate for the betterment of the community. It’s an entity’s way to convey that it cares for its people and would like to contribute in their wellbeing and development of the community it interacts with.

For any project to be a genuine success, I believe a clear goal and a focused approach is crucial. Our aim on the children’s garden project was established from day one, which was to engage the senses of the young generation on understanding today’s pressing environmental issues. The challenge was to create a journey interesting enough for these kids to enjoy and learn at the same time.

The experiential nature of the campaign where in kids were given fun animated lectures, then a chance to physically play and enjoy the garden and harvest it with love, was the key emotional hook that lead to the success of the programme.

How was business in 2016 and 2017, and what are your expectations for 2018?

Retail business in Oman was discernable with varied challenges across a board spectrum of functions however with strong fundamentals, we could tide through these challenges effectively.

We expect consumer sentiments to pick up in 2018 including optimism levels of consumers which would lead an increased level of activity in our sphere of operations. 

What are the ways in which Oman Avenues Mall is driving cause related marketing trends in the region?

Being one of the largest malls in Oman, our customers have expectations from us and we shoulder the responsibility to make sure that we are up to their expectations. Understanding community needs and then coming up with relevant initiatives that caters to this need is what we are good at. We look at each project strategically and then embark on it with planning, research, workshops and community insights. Our flexible management style has given us the privilege to form strategic alliances with other companies and corporates to come up with bigger better cause-related programmes. I believe we are also very strong on the marketing front, and our campaigns are well integrated which gives us the edge on what is massive exposure to the masses.

One main key to the success of our marketing campaign has been the right channel execution and bespoke marketing activities for each type of campaign among which our main focus has always been cause-related marketing due to its non-profit nature.

Anant

Ananth A V Director, LuLu Group International, Oman & India,

What are the factors that make Oman Avenues Mall the leading mall development in Oman and in the region?

Oman Avenues Mall has been conceived and developed as a mall which offers everything under one roof, with great entertainment and F&B offering as well as lifestyle choices like the first international health club to open in the Sultanate of Oman, the mall caters to a wide Orion of customers including locals and tourists.

The mall, being home to around 180 shops, is also a key employment generator adding value to the economy, with close to 5000 staff being employed within the property directly and more than 3000 indirect employment opportunities. Indeed, the mall is a strong contributor to the local economy.

What are the latest attractions added to the mall in 2017, and what are the plans for 2018?

We are currently in the process of developing the blue prints for a larger expansion for the mall, which includes enhancing the entertainment offering. We shall publish the details of this soon.

Are there plans to open similar retail spaces in Oman and in the region? Please elaborate.

We are not currently planning to open projects the scale of Oman Avenues Mall however we shall be soon announcing a series of mid-sized malls under a different brand, the new brand would be community level projects primarily driven by Hypermarket, entertainment and leisure elements. 

Clear goal and focused approach are crucial for genuine success
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