Growth Con PH: 5 Speakers Shared Their Expertise on Brand Loyalty and Marketing Growth

The success of any business lies in how it is perceived by its customers. This is why five key business personalities shared their knowledge of marketing strategies at Growth Con PH. 

One of the things that businesses aim to achieve is brand loyalty—which pertains to how they’ll be able to retain their customers, no matter how many competitors arise. To achieve this, it is important for businesses to stay consistent with their products and services.

In a survey conducted by Nielsen in 2013, around 80% of internet-savvy Filipinos would buy from familiar brands rather than switch to new brands. And even now, not much has changed, given that Filipinos in general still prefer sticking with the brands they already know. Why? Because of reasons like familiarity, credibility, and effective marketing strategies, among others.

Marketing and brand loyalty go hand in hand, especially since the former is what encourages people to try a product through educational content and endorsements, which builds up brand loyalty through repeat purchases. This can be done through various marketing channels like social media, influencers, traditional advertisements, or just good reviews—just to name a few.

Fostering brand loyalty and effective marketing strategies can be challenging to maintain, but some brands have pulled it off successfully. With that, The Business Manual gathered some business personalities who excel in this matter so they can share their experiences and learnings at the Growth Con PH held at the Ascott Hotel.

From L to R: Nina Ellaine Dizon of Colourette Cosmetics, Jaime Gonzalez Fernandez of Pick-Up Coffee, Carlo Oplen of Unbox Group, Vincent del Rosario of Vivamax, Ed Joson of Tonik Bank, and RJ Ledesma, Editor-in-Chief of The Business Manual. Photo by KLIQ, Inc.

Nina Ellaine Dizon, Founder and CEO of Colourette

Colourette Cosmetics is a Filipina beauty brand that produces multi-use products that are sold at affordable prices. Aside from launching various shades that are made for the Filipino skin tone, they also proudly advertise how their products are inclusive. 

“We’re really connected with our consumers in terms of what products make sense, what products are lacking in the market in terms of formats, formulations, what kind of texture, color, and skin colors are currently not being catered to in terms of the product roster,” Dizon shares.

As for the marketing approach they used that led to their success? “We continue with our strengthened digital marketing by doing TikTok Lives because it’s an entirely different way of selling in comparison to what we do with traditional e-commerce platforms such as Lazada and Shopee. Because in TikTok, we can actually speak with our customers [in] real-time.”

Social media influencer and TikTok pioneer Nina Ellaine Dizon elaborates on how Colourette “wanted to fill the gap in the market in terms of [an] unlimited selection of cosmetic products that are made for Filipinos.” She also shares how they thoroughly considered making products that will last under the Philippine weather without making them too pricey. Photo by KLIQ, Inc.

Jaime Gonzalez Fernandez, CEO of Pick-Up Coffee

After opening in 2022, Pick-Up Coffee has grown in leaps and bounds—boasting a current roster of 60 branches in just a year of operations. Aside from their strategic locations, one reason why they are well-accepted by people includes its affordable price point. More importantly, they also offer a great variety of coffee flavors to match people’s different preferences.

Gonzalez shares that his first time in the Philippines was a coincidence and that his ten-day unplanned stay here in the country left him in awe about the opportunities and the energy that lies here.

“This must have been like the UK during the Industrial Revolution…like the States after the Second World War. This is the place to be,” he shares. “So I did a little frequent Southeast Asia trips and realized that the Philippines—with, you know, Catholic background [and] Spanish heritage—by far, is the best one.”

Given the success that the brand has attained, the CEO himself shares his journey and his advice to other entrepreneurs. “It really depends on your business purpose or what you want to achieve—whether you want something that’s huge or not so big or whether you run a great cash flow business, and so forth and so on,” he opines.

Using his business as an example, he adds: “We thought it was the best way to have lots of supporters and to have a very strong foundation that paved the way to the 100. The premise is different. Every situation is different.”

Asked about how he saw the business opportunity for Pick-Up Coffee in the Philippines, Spanish entrepreneur Jaime Gonzalez Fernandez says, “We saw other regions in Asia, Malaysia, Thailand, and we saw that there were other players [that] were able to provide affordable, accessible, high-quality coffee. And in the Philippines, it hasn’t really started yet. So then we told ourselves, why don’t we do it?” Photo by KLIQ, Inc.

Carlo Ople, Founder and CEO of Unbox Group

Aside from being a YouTube vlogger and an avid collector of shoes and toys, Carlo Ople started Unbox Philippines—a business that empowers entrepreneurs to fill rented cabinets with products they wish to sell. Unbox will then be the one to handle the physical and marketing operations needed to sell the item.

“I wanted to make a living doing what I love because I’ve been stuck in corporate for so long,” he shares, going to add that the reason why he put up Unbox Philippines is because he wanted to empower hobbyists and entrepreneurs to make a living founded on their passions.

What does success mean for him? He says, “Success is no longer just the money in your bank account. Success is waking up at peace in the morning, waking up with a smile—waking up on [a] Monday and not being afraid…More than the money, the car, more than anything else. It’s that peace and joy that you can find in life since life is too short to mess around.” 

“Unbox Greenhills [is] basically a 500 square meter space, which we put up in the middle of the pandemic. There are 200 units [where] you can rent a glass cabinet for PHP 3000 a month, and then we will market and operate it for you,” Carlo Ople on explaining how his company empowers aspiring entrepreneurs to have their own stalls inside malls. Photo by KLIQ, Inc.

Vincent del Rosario, President and COO of Vivamax

Vivamax is a subscription-based app with local and international movies and TV series, as well as a variety of programs. Through its platform, they have enabled several local creators to share their projects with the subscribers of the said app. 

“What we learned sa cable, kasi diba sa cable it’s all niched, diba? You go to a channel, on news, on sports, on HBO on movies. So naisip namin, yung platform sa streaming, baka maganda magconcentrate tayo on one aspect of entertainment ng movies and series, which is yung medyo adult-oriented. But we self-regulate,” says Del Rosario as he explains how they decided on their brand’s niche and focus. 

[Translation: What we learned from cable is that it’s all niched. You go to a channel, on news, sports, HBO, or movies. We thought that streaming as a platform will let us concentrate on one aspect of entertainment—which is adult-oriented movies and series. But we self-regulate.]

As for making sure that no one beats them at the top of their game, Del Rosario shares, “We’re confident that we get some time before others can replicate what we’re doing. And then I think [our] commitment [in the] movie industry in general…patuloy naman kami naglalabas sa sinehan. [We’re continuously releasing movies in the cinema.] We are still the most active movie-producing company.”

“Manage your own artists, [your own employees and talent]—you can’t see [that] anywhere else,” he adds, saying that learning from your competition can even help with your business. “We’re one of the biggest licensors to Amazon to Netflix, so we provide competitors with content for ourselves. Actually, when we provide, it helps, because we learn from them.”

Though it might be hard to compete with streaming giants like Netflix, Disney+, Amazon, and the like, Vincent del Rosario of VivaMax shares that what they like most about being an online streaming platform is that [they] “get instant feedback on what people want. What they want to see [and] what they don’t want to see.” Photo by KLIQ, Inc.

Ed Joson, Chief Product Office of Tonik Bank

Tonik Bank is a digital bank that aims to revolutionize how money works. They also offer several financial products that safeguard the safety of all its clients and at the same time, aim to continuously educate Filipinos about the importance of digital banking and its advantages.

“What we bring to the table is that we’re challenging the norm of what a traditional bank or financial services is,” says Joson. “We want to give or provide financial services that younger people understand and can use.”

As for what he has learned throughout his tenure as an entrepreneur, he says: “For Tonik and in marketing, we learned two things. So one, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) is actually a very big help in establishing trust in the market. So having regulatory compliance on board in your communication [helps.] The second one is cohorts. Basically, we learned that in our community, in our society here, there are experts.”

How do these experts come into play? “It’s hard to teach financial service to just everyone, but you can listen to a friend. You can listen to your dad, you can listen to your mom, you can listen to your brother,” he explains.

“And what happened with us is that we’ve established a cohort of lifehouse keepers, and they’ve taught their friends and families how to use our services.” This, he says, is what businesses can do especially when introducing a new service or business model.

Asked about some of the innovations they bring in digital banking, Ed Joson of Tonik Bank elaborates on their Group Stash service. “We’re family-oriented. We’re very close. So I realized we wanted to bring a way for you to share that account—not a joint account, but a bank account because you can do it with more than one person.” Photo by KLIQ, Inc.

These are just some of the key personalities who shared their marketing strategies and approaches with the attendees of Growth Con PH. Aside from highlighting their respective businesses, these entrepreneurs enlightened everyone about the importance of knowing the core permission of their products and services, keeping customers satisfied, and practicing consistency to achieve brand loyalty.