Irina Shafranskaya: ‘Marketing is Becoming More about Informatics and Less about Creativity’
One of the largest international academic conferences on marketing, Global Marketing, recently took place in Singapore. Irina Shafranskaya, Dean of the Faculty of Management at the HSE campus in Perm, and Dmitry Leontiev, a fourth-year student, presented a joint study that investigates the specifics of online and offline consumption of films. Irina Shafranskaya shared her impressions of the trip.
— Did you achieve the goals you set before going to the Global Marketing conference?
— Our main task in participating in the conference was to get feedback, understand whether our work is in demand, and what future it has. We spoke at a session called Marketing in Russia, which primarily included our colleagues from the HSE campus in Moscow. The session was chaired by Olga Tretyak, Doctor of Economics and HSE Professor. It was certainly nice to see that a separate session was dedicated to Russia. This means that our studies in marketing are worth paying attention to. As for the results, several projects had similar research methods and topics, so it seems to me that we’ve found an interesting new idea.
— What idea? And what was your joint study with Dmitry Leontiev about?
— We analyzed whether downloading films from torrents serves as a replacement to the cinema. Does demand for cinemas fall if a film appears immediately on the internet? If so, cinemas will have to create additional incentives to attract viewers. Since films have budgets in the millions, producers also have to understand whether they will pay for themselves. After our presentation we received some feedback about how producers see the problem. We came to the conclusion that downloading films on the internet are an addition to visiting the cinema rather than a replacement. In many cases it comes after a recommendation, i.e., people download a film after friends who saw it in the cinema tell them about it. We believe that our work is useful for the industry as a whole. At the same time, we investigated the damage and benefits brought by torrent networks. This information can also be useful for business development.
— Did you get any new ideas for research after attending the conference?
— Today, it would be very interesting to carry out an interdisciplinary research project that combines marketing and business informatics. Recently, many studies on using social networks for business promotion have been conducted. We want to understand whether this is effective, but in order to do so, we will have to learn to ‘pump’ information out of social networks. I think that together with our colleagues and students from the Faculty of Business Informatics we will discuss the possibility of obtaining data samples from Twitter, for example. I believe that such information will also be useful for the business community.