Digital Primer: The Power of Mobile-First Approach with Cecilia Marino

Cecilia Marino

Join host Ibarra Villaseran for an insightful discussion on the Digital Primer podcast episode with Cecilia Marino, the General Manager of Lionsgate Play Philippines. With over 25 years of expertise in telecommunication and fast-paced consumer industries, Cecille offers a unique perspective on the transformative power of mobile-first strategies in today’s rapidly evolving market.

Cecilia Marino’s Early Marketing Career

Cecilia Marino began her marketing career in fast-moving consumer goods and telecommunications, transitioning to various roles over the past decade, now focusing on business development roles for content companies, notably with Lionsgate.

Her journey started with CFC, which merged into URC, where she managed the Great Taste Coffee brand and later moved on to Gillette handling razors. She also ventured into the telco industry, initially with PLDT managing landlines and value-added services, followed by consulting and a tenure with Globe.

Marino also gained international experience with CSL in Hong Kong before returning to the Philippines to spearhead business development for KidZania, an educational entertainment park for children.

Amid the pandemic, she pivoted to Lionsgate Play, leveraging the surge in demand for video streaming services during stay-at-home measures, aligning with Lionsgate’s renowned film studio, known for producing blockbuster franchises like John Wick, Hunger Games, and Twilight.

First-Time Encounter with Digital

Marino reminisced about her initial encounter with the digital landscape, highlighting how her career coincided with the advent of computers in the workplace. “When I started working, we had computers already,” she recalled, noting the transition from WordStar and Lotus 123 to modern software like Word and Excel.

As she delved into the realm of digital advertising, Marino noted its gradual emergence in the Philippines during the early 2000s. “I don’t recall that we did digital ads in the ’90s,” she remarked, emphasizing the significance of platforms like emails and newspapers as early channels for online advertising.

Reflecting on the allocation of marketing budgets during this period, Marino described a time when digital initiatives were relegated to the periphery. “Back then, the budgets were normally ATL, BTL—above the line, below the line,” she explained, with digital advertising often lumped under the “others” category.

The pivotal moment came with the launch of the iPhone, which Marino described as a game-changer in the digital landscape. “iPhone revolutionized everything… It made it easy to access the internet,” she remarked, highlighting its seamless integration with network services.

With the rise of smartphones and improved internet accessibility, digital marketing gradually gained prominence. Marino recalled the shift in marketing strategies, with organizations increasingly prioritizing digital platforms. “Now it’s a reverse… everything that you do, you start with digital,” she observed.

An online customer reading in her laptop

In discussing the demographic nuances of digital consumption, Marino underscored the importance of understanding consumer behavior. “How we consume digital is also different for demographics,” she noted, emphasizing the need for tailored approaches across age groups.

Despite the complexities of the digital landscape, Marino expressed optimism about its potential for engagement and growth. “It’s a challenge in how to use it… but it’s also easier to monitor,” she remarked, acknowledging the dynamic nature of digital marketing.

Importance of Mobile-First Environment

The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic drastically transformed consumer behavior, catalyzing the accelerated adoption of digital platforms, particularly in the realm of video streaming. Cecile emphasized, “The pandemic changed the behavior of people. It certainly accelerated the adoption of video streaming because everyone’s at home. So your attention is limited, and accessing the internet and consuming content became the norm.”

In the wake of these changes, consumer expectations have undergone a profound shift. Cecile noted, “There’s always this expectation to have more frequent drops, unlike before when it was more linear. Consumers can be demanding in terms of content variety and quality, presenting a myriad of challenges for providers and marketers.”

Moreover, with the abundance of content available on various platforms, the challenge lies in curating personalized experiences for users “It’s hard to predict what content will resonate with the audience. Despite advancements in analytics, the sheer volume of available content makes it difficult to sift through,” she said.

The ubiquity of mobile devices further underscores the importance of optimizing user experiences. Cecile elaborated, “Majority of users access content via mobile phones, making it essential to ensure seamless experiences. Feedback mechanisms play a crucial role in identifying areas for improvement, benefiting both consumers and service providers.”

person using phone

Furthermore, Cecile emphasizes the need for agility in responding to consumer feedback. “Reaction to feedback must be agile and actionable. It’s not just about collecting data; it’s about understanding what is actionable and leveraging it to drive meaningful outcomes,” she stated.

Ultimately, the ability to translate insights into meaningful action sets exceptional marketers apart from the rest. “There’s so much data but if you don’t know how that data will be used, then it’s a waste of time and energy. And I think that’s what separates a good marketer with you know, maybe a mediocre one,” she added.

Frustrations and Expectations With Digital Marketing in the Philippines

Cecilia highlighted cybersecurity as a major concern in the digital sphere. “You’re so empowered, you can do so many things, but at the same time, there are risks,” she stated. “Scamming, phishing, hacking, identity theft are real threats that affect not just individuals but entire communities.”

She emphasized the need for greater accountability in addressing cybersecurity breaches, citing instances where perpetrators evade consequences. “It’s concerning because largely these people get away with it. You hardly hear anyone going to jail, or being penalized. Hardly,” she lamented.

Furthermore, Cecilia shed light on the digital divide prevalent in Philippine society. While urban areas thrive on digital access and connectivity, rural communities are left behind. “The digital divide is real. Many communities lack access to essential digital resources, exacerbating existing disparities,” she remarked.

Despite these challenges, Cecilia remains optimistic about the transformative potential of digital technology, particularly in education. “Digital can solve many of the problems we face today,” she affirmed. “AI-enabled learning platforms can personalize education, empower teachers, and enhance learning outcomes.”

Cecilia highlighted the role of technology in bridging educational gaps and improving accessibility. “Better teachers, better students, better Philippines – that’s the promise of digital innovation,” she asserted.

However, Cecilia acknowledged the slow adoption of technology in certain sectors, hindering its widespread impact. “While the technology is available, adoption remains limited, especially in rural areas,” she noted. “But there’s immense potential to revolutionize education and empower communities.”

As digital marketing continues to evolve, Cecilia calls for concerted efforts to address cybersecurity challenges and bridge the digital divide. “We must harness the full potential of technology to create a more inclusive and resilient society,” she added.

Tip to Organizations Diving Deeper into Digital Marketing

digital marketing planing

With years of experience and expertise, Cecile’s insights provide a roadmap for success in this dynamic arena.

Cecile emphasized the significance of clarity in objectives, stating, “Understanding what you want to achieve is paramount. Define your goals and purpose for utilizing digital tools.” In a world inundated with data and options, having a clear vision helps streamline efforts and maximize outcomes.

Furthermore, Cecile highlighted the necessity of continuous learning and development. “Digital technology evolves rapidly,” she remarked. “Investing in training equips teams with the skills needed to leverage these tools effectively.” From mastering basic software functionalities to staying abreast of cutting-edge advancements like AI, ongoing education is key.

From combatting misinformation to fostering a culture of respect online, Cecile underscored the importance of digital ethics “But the most important, is always, at least for me, like, inculcate or practice what they call digital ethics. Digital ethics is important. You need to be responsible in how to use digital, considering their impact on society and individuals.”

In conclusion, Cecile’s insights serve as a guiding light for organizations navigating the complexities of digital marketing. By prioritizing clarity, education, and ethical considerations, businesses can harness the full potential of digital tools while upholding principles of integrity and responsibility.

The Digital Primer Podcast continues to provide valuable insights and practical strategies for marketers and digital enthusiasts. Listeners can gain inspiration and actionable advice from industry leaders like Patrick Marcelo. To access the full episode and learn more about his digital marketing journey, tune in and subscribe.

About Cecilia Marino

Cecilia Marino is a seasoned professional with a wealth of experience in marketing, product management, and business development across diverse industries. Currently serving as the General Manager of Lionsgate Play Philippines, Cecilia has been at the forefront of the entertainment industry since August 2021, spearheading initiatives to drive growth and enhance the company’s presence in the market.

Before her role at Lionsgate Play Philippines, Cecilia held various key positions that have shaped her versatile skill set. She served as a Volunteer and Part-Time Consultant at the Knowledge Channel Foundation, Inc., demonstrating her commitment to philanthropy and education. Before that, she spent over seven years at Play Innovations, progressively advancing from Industry Partners Director to Integrated Sales Director, showcasing her leadership and strategic acumen.

Cecilia’s journey also includes impactful roles at esteemed organizations such as Hong Kong CSL Limited, Globe Telecom, Broadband Philippines, PLDT, Gillette Philippines, and Universal Robina Corporation. At Globe Telecom, she played a pivotal role in driving business expansion. She served as Segment Head for Aspirational DE Marketing before taking on the challenge of International Business Development Head for North America & Australia.

With a career spanning over two decades, Cecilia has consistently delivered results and exceeded expectations. Her proficiency in brand management, market segmentation, and product development has been instrumental in her success.

Similar Posts