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Fresh blood for the advertising industry

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By Claudia Ariton
"There is no economic crisis in Romania, there is just a moral crisis!" This is Catalin Bogdan Popescu's belief. As a general manager of MTD - Communications, he is in charge of a dedicated team in the advertising industry, whose philosophy, as he puts it, has no restrictions. "We capitalize on the creative power, the technology, the media and the community in order to help our clients reach their most ambitious goals in a post-digital world, controlled by consumption," Popescu explained.
Expanding the business is his key objective for 2017, a natural evolution process, he emphasizes. “Any market develops on two major pillars. On the one hand, there are the large companies, which pave the way, and, on the other hand, there are the small and medium-sized enterprises, which create the connections between these two worlds. These SMEs are determined to develop, despite the challenges they face on the way, which makes them perfectly adaptable to the market. Moreover, Romanian companies are local creations, anchored in the context generated by the market. We are such a local start-up company, so basically we are the product of this market,” he told Business Arena in an exclusive interview.
Considering all those aspects, it was easy for him to name his company’s first successful project. “It’s the company itself. MDT - Communications was our first successful project, a company which now has the ingredients of a survivor. No matter the nature of a business, its success, in general, relies on the quality of its products and its people, who make plans that become reality.”
When asked which business segments would see more investment in the future, Catalin Popescu replied promptly: “Communication. Always concerned with the business, we have left the communication segment in second place. In 2017, we will focus on communication and promotion. We will expand our team, by attracting many creative people into our company, capable to change ideas, products and services. We are interested in professionals from the PR, BTL and Social Media sectors.”
The frequent changes that the country has had to go through, have made Romanians more selective and more inclined to ask for professionalism and quality, the general manager said. “We serve a more educated consumer now, who knows that success comes from efficient strategies and that investment in a communication service is measured in practical results. The client is now looking for special integrated projects, a mix between outdoor events and social media events,” Popescu said, referring to the trends in the advertising market. “Our objective is to keep a permanent contact with the consumer, whether it’s an outdoor event or a Facebook event.”
Ensuring the company’s growth and stability in the market has taken hard work and dedication, he confessed. “Being an SME, we have invested a lot according to us, but maybe too little according to others. Our major investments were channeled into our team and collaborators, who will always remain our priority. Our vision has always confirmed that the right people at the right place are the engine of a business. We believe that in 2017 we will maintain the same positive trend as in 2016, counting on our team growth and our services base.”
How he feels about the challenges the market brings and the difficult economic context? The answer comes sharp and fast: “There is no economic crisis in Romania, there is just a moral crisis! There is a famous quote that says: Crises are made so that the smart people can benefit from them. We were neither winners, nor losers. We were survivors.”
The advantages of a local company are based on its flexibility in human interaction, Popescu notes. “People want to communicate clearly and to know that their problems are taken care of, instead of being lost in procedures. The notoriety of an advertising company is of utmost importance for a client looking for communication services. We grow steadily day-by-day. We know exactly where we stand and were we need to go. We think, analyze, study, create and innovate so that the product of our work satisfies the client and ourselves. The companies in our market segment invest a lot in the advertising mix. The originality of a well-structured advertising campaign can generate maximum awareness,” Popescu explained, referring to their projects.
As for the difficulties that the company has to face as a start-up, he prefers a different approach. “I wouldn’t call them difficulties. They become habit, and habit is then replaced with certainty. Everything starts with trust or the lack of it. The beneficiaries of communication services are used to working with international agencies in order to benefit from their notoriety. As for us, we have already started our development plans. We provide strategies and we create concepts even across borders. We intend to open an office in Sofia, Bulgaria, in the next few years.”
Catalin Bogdan Popescu found it difficult to name the company’s biggest success so far. He sees each project that MDT-Communications has ever been involved in as a success, because each added experience and know-how to his team. Even for himself, he has set a goal to perform better and be surrounded by a team of smart and creative young people. “For me MTD - Communications is not just a company. It is a mix of dreams, facts, adrenaline and … lost nights.”

The editorial is also available in our print edition.

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