For this week’s episode of “Marketing Today,” I spoke with Raja Rajamannar, chief marketing and communications officer and president, healthcare business, at Mastercard. Rajamannar started his career at Asian Paints before moving over to the payments industry, holding numerous positions with Citi as well as two years spent as chairman and CEO of Diners Club of North America. He then spent time in the healthcare industry at Humana and WellPoint before assuming his current role at Mastercard.
Rajamannar and I spent some time discussing the incredible 20-year run and global impact of Mastercard’s “Priceless” campaign, which has cut across cultures, manifesting itself in 58 languages and 110 countries. Most recently, Rajamannar and his team shifted the focus of the campaign with its new iteration, “Start Something Priceless,” which launched at this year’s Grammy Awards.
Rajamannar also talked about the importance of brands being socially aware and standing for something at a time when consumers aren’t looking to simply buy something, but to buy from a brand that shares their values and that they believe in.
“Brands will now start becoming more and more socially aware, socially conscious, and try to do something good for society because that’s an expectation from consumers,” Rajamannar said. “It’s not only because it’s a good thing to do. It’s what consumers are demanding of their brands.”
Highlights from this week’s “Marketing Today” podcast include:
- Rajamannar talks about his background and the career path that led him to Mastercard. (1:47)
- Tracing the creation, evolution, and holistic infusion of Mastercard’s “Priceless” campaign. (5:34)
- Tapping into a new cultural truth: Mastercard’s decision to move from enabling “Priceless” moments to inspiring “Priceless” movements. (12:06)
- Three primary objectives for building a brand. (18:30)
- World Food Programme and Stand Up To Cancer: Rajamannar discusses the philanthropy of Mastercard’s Priceless Causes. (22:16)
- Advice for marketers stepping into a CMO role. (28:50)
- Why marketers need to understand both creativity and analytics. (35:38)