The day started with rain, but it hardly had any impact among the enthusiastic public relations (PR) and brand communications practitioners. Around two hundred new and seasoned PR professionals met together, on one platform, to discuss about various aspects of public communications and brand marketing.
On October 26, 2019, a very insightful programme titled 'PR & Brand Comms Summit 2019' was held at the Krishibid Institution Complex in Dhaka. Communication firm Ra'dia Inc organised the event in association with Dream Deviser and ShobdoKolpoDrum.
Dr Atiur Rahman, former governor of Bangladesh Bank, inaugurated the summit as the chief guest of the event. He urged the young PR professionals to be prepared to face the challenges of digital transformation of services and processes. He put emphasis on becoming loyal and reasonable to act as a PR practitioner. Former general manager of Bangladesh Bank and director, Public Affairs, Benchmark AFM Asaduzzaman chaired the inaugural session of the summit.
This event provided new insights into the latest trends, technologies, innovation and strategies for public communications, press management and digital marketing ecosystem. It was an insightful experience for the all the participants because not only it provided great networking opportunities among PR professionals, but also helped them to learn various key techniques to use in their PR activities.
This distinctive initiative also played a pivotal role in the public affairs, corporate and development communications and advertising industry by bringing creative communicators, domain experts and real-life educators under one roof to share knowledge and experiences. The entire day was filled with a variety of activities, sessions, discussions, questions and answer sessions all of which focused on public affairs, corporate and development communications.
The first panel discussion session was held focusing on crisis management and on-demand tools for effective PR. Sariful Islam, national communications officer of International Organisation for Migration (IOM) moderated the session. FM Asaduzzaman, former general manager of PR of Bangladesh Bank and currently Benchmark PR director, Moniruzzaman Tipu, head of corporate affairs and PR director of Prime Bank and general secretary of Bangladesh Public Relation Association (BPRA), Mehedi Shamim, CSR (corporate social responsibility), business development and media professional of BMB Group, Md Abdul Quayyum, head of communication of UNDP and Firoj Alam, deputy executive director, PR, Media and Branding of Walton group took part in the panel discussion. They also answered the questions from the participants regarding present and changing trends of public relations and brand communications.
GK Kamrul Hassan, group CEO of IGLOO Ice Cream, Food and Dairy Limited discussed 'Importance of distribution and sales for brand penetration'. Barrister Shameem Haider Patwary, member of parliament and chairman, Board of Trustee of Daffodil International Universality took the stage to discuss about public communications. Furthermore, Junaid Masroor, deputy managing director and chief operating officer of Trust Bank Ltd talk about about brand building and leadership.
Then the most important topic of changing world tilted, "Digital marketing transformation" was discussed by a group of panelists. Tajdin Hassan, head of marketing of the Daily Star moderated the session while Ovick Alom, co-founder of Webable Digital, Javed Sultan Pias, head of Digital Business of Prothom Alo, Ishtiaq Husain, group team leader of Masthead PR, Siraj Siddiquey, head of digital banking and e-commerce at BRAC Bank Limited took part in the discussion.
The final session was a panel discussion moderated by Aftab Mahmud Khurshid, a renowned brand catalyst. The core focus was on scaling of return of investments on brand communications issues. Tariq Zaman, chief operating officer of Danish Multi Purposes Farm Limited, Mahbub Rahman, executive director of Sanmar, Hasina Parveen Deepa, head of area operations of bdproperty.com, Rayhan Kawsar, brand communications professional and Rezwan Habib, manager of brand communications of DBL group took part in the panel discussion to discuss various important points.
Chowdhury Monjur Liakot, managing director of Union Capital Limited was present at the concluding ceremony of summit as special guest while Neelima Akter, director general of Prime Minister's Office, was the guest of honor.
Summit coordinator and Ra'dia CEO Syed Rabius Shams said they would host the summit every year from now. The initiative was an ideal opportunity for mid-level and young professionals, entrepreneurs, freshers, students, PR and digital marketing enthusiasts.
The writer is a public relations (PR) professional, currently working in an international development organisation, He can be reached at email@example.com