Building brand awareness through integration
Interview with head of Delta Electronics Japan marketing management Mr. Sakaguchi Tomohide

Text by: BMO

In Brand People of the previous issues, we have subsequently interviewed marketing heads of Southeast Asia, USA and EMEA. In this edition, we have invited Mr. Sakaguchi Tomohide, the marketing head of Delta Electronics Japan (DEJ). Mr. Sakaguchi-san shares his experiences and knowledge in Delta for more than ten years and how he has promoted the brand and developed key businesses in the Northeast Asia region. 

Flexibility in adjusting the organization, professionally dividing the work. 
Looking back at the establishment of DEJ marketing team long before the success, it all started from joining exhibitions bit by bit. At the same time, Mr. Sakaguchi-san had received support from the General Manager Mr. Jing-Xing Ko (Ko-san) of Japan Branch. The team gradually recruited new members, expanded its scope and was responsible for the brand promotion in the Northeast region. The current team members consist of a total of six people from Taiwan and Japan, including Sakaguchi-san. The team is responsible for product marketing, brand promotion, PR campaigns, digital marketing, exhibition planning and legal affairs. Everyone adopts the work model of flexible coordination and self-discipline, and works with other business units to promote the brand and sales.  

Join hands with business units to formulate diverse strategies for collaborative working. 
DEJ marketing team collaborates with individual business unit to exert synergy. Due to the severe impacts of COVID-19 in Japan this year, the team flexibly adjusts the strategies to using online platforms and continues to promote the brand. Sakaguchi-san pointed out that: “The pandemic accelerates the application of digital tools. Recently, we have modified the official website, developed the landing page, and organized webinars and learning courses for specific customers. All these efforts allows us to break through the limits of distance and help business partners to understand the products. Currently, the team has been working with the Photovoltaic Inverter Business Unit (PVIBU) and is actively extending the collaboration pattern to other business units.”

Other than the activities held on the digital platform, Sakaguchi-san also shared the successful case of EV charging station in Yokohama, Japan, in which they worked with EISBG. Through collaboration with the local marketing colleagues of EISBG to promote basic energy infrastructure, Delta and the Showa Shell Sekiyu team were able to carry out all the planning, renovation and operations on their own. 

DEJ marketing team worked with business units for attending Techno Frontier 2019. DEJ general manager Mr. Jing-Xing Ko(L5), Delta chief brand officer Mrs. Shan-shan Guo(L6) and DEJ marketing manager Mr. Sakaguchi Tomohide(R1)

Build an integrated business model to increase Delta brand awareness.
Delta and Japan’s second largest oil and gas company Idemitsu Kosan joined hands to renovate the traditional gas station to a demo compound EV charging station. It has received widespread reporting by Japan’s media, and has been specified by the Yokohama City Government as a partner disaster emergency response base. Furthermore, the world’s first Innergie CAFÉ under Delta’s sub-brand Innergie is also opened at this charging station. It has not only developed a new business model for EV charging station but has also successfully promoted the brand synergy. Sakaguchi-san humbly expressed that much efforts come from the business units in this collaboration project, the team mainly worked on realizing the integrated physical retail store. The idea of the store actually came from the exhibition booth of a compound electric vehicle charging station at Computex Taipei two years ago, where Delta combined functions of energy management and recreational shopping. There were constant communications and coordination with various business units during the implementation process. At the same time, Ko-san’s support was also a key factor that enabled smooth execution of such a huge project. In the future, it is very well possible that the model can be applied to other industries. 

DEJ marketing team collaborated with business units to build up a demo compound EV charging station.

Uninterrupted by the pandemic, steadily promoting the brand growth. 
In face of the COVID-19 pandemic, many exhibitions around the world are either postponed or cancelled. One of the major international sports events – the 2020 Tokyo Olympics was also postponed to 2021. To DEJ, it has not only changed the original plan, but also challenged its ability of handling emergency situations. “Japan is affected by the pandemic, besides grasping opportunities for exposure during physical activities, we hope to obtain more resources and opportunities to increase online brand exposure and publicity. Due to the pandemic, we have made adjustment to our marketing strategies. Delta is the only 8K projector provider of the live broadcast plan for sports events. When the broadcast takes place, we will turn to the internet to carry out a series of promotion activities. Although there are many uncertainties of the coronavirus outbreak, we will co-plan with the video conferencing unit to be prepared to kick the status quo.”

Unlike the brand promotion strategies of other business units, in the 8K projector channel marketing plan, DEJ has not only worked out promotion strategies for the product channel but also has devised brand strategies for 8K related industries, such as movie theaters, art museums, museums, film production companies, media and so on. Sakaguchi-san mentioned that: “In terms of brand promotion, DEJ marketing team extends the core marketing concept of the brand management department and adjusts our language to local audiences for brand communications. This adjustment deepens Delta’s brand image in Northeast Asia. Over the past two years, we have placed focus on sales promotion of 8K projector and worked hard to create a business eco-system for 8K projector.”

Next year, there will be 8K live broadcast of the Tokyo Olympic sports events in Japan. Furthermore, coinciding with the 30th anniversary of DEJ, the team will roll out a series of marketing campaign to increase the public’s understanding of the Delta brand. 

Encourage communications and willingness to take on responsibilities, blending the europe, USA and Japan system.
Having joined Delta for more than ten years, Sakaguchi-san shares his work experiences and knowledge: “DEJ is different from other Japanese companies and their inflexible systems. It was able to gain a balance between operating cultures of the Europe, USA and Japan companies. Its organizational flexibility makes room for effective vertical communications. One will feel more energetic and have a sense of achievement in their work.” 

Sakaguchi-san further mentioned: “I am very thankful to Ko-san’s support. Actually, I also followed Ko-san’s work values when I interact with my team– to allow failure, encourage the willingness to bravely take on the responsibilities, and provide colleagues with sufficient space to apply their expertise.”

The management philosophy of respect and openness at DEJ has nourished Sakaguchi-san and encouraged the marketing team to develop their endless possibilities. One can expect more successes and achievements in the next ten years. 

“Allow failure and encourage the willingness to bravely take on the responsibilities” is not only Sakaguchi-san’s work value but also the management philosophy at DEJ.