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Main Feature Marketing APAC

Expert Up Close: Charlotte Ward, founder of Agnes Media

In a conversation with Charlotte Ward, founder of Agnes Media, she shared her entrepreneurial background, which fueled her desire to one day establish her own business. 

Even as a teenager in secondary school, Charlotte was able to demonstrate this character, when she developed her own business plan and launched her own organic soap company. Fast forward to her professional career, she built the Agnes Media we now have today through tremendous effort, starting as a freelancer and taking contract works.

“I always felt that we can do things better ourselves after working in various large agency corporations,” Charlotte adds.

During the conversation with Charlotte, we asked about her philosophy in leadership, by which she shared, “Empathy and transparency are at the core of my leadership style, I think this is [something many leaders missed], without this, you’re really just a business owner or a manager, you’re not a true leader.”

Charlotte emphasized, “Leadership is not something that I developed overnight, definitely, when I started out my career I was not the best manager and it’s something that comes with mentorship and learning and being able to admit to yourself when you’ve made a mistake.”

Listen to the full conversation with Charlotte over on Spotify, where she further discusses her passion for marketing measurement and the challenges she had to face in leading Agnes Media. Hear her insights as well about the biggest marketing challenge that B2B brands face nowadays. You can also view the video highlights of the conversation on our YouTube channel.

If you are a marketing or tech leader who wants to share your industry journey and insights, email us at [email protected]

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Main Feature Marketing APAC

Top Stories for February: Tech-enabled coffee chain bags top spot

This month, we saw how the community is eager to have a better year in marketing, with a slew of our What’s NEXT contributor pieces coming out on the list.

We launched What’s NEXT last December 2021 as a collection of thought leadership by marketers in the region in order to better equip the marketing industry with future-proof strategies for 2022. 

This month, three of our top stories are all marketing leaders who shared their insights on various domains in marketing such as conversions, social advertising, and the metaverse. 

Meanwhile, in the part of Southeast Asia, a tech-forward coffee brand emerges as one of the top for launching its new in-app delivery service in Singapore.

Top 4: What’s NEXT: Top tips for CRO this 2022

What’s NEXT: Top tips for CRO this 2022
What’s NEXT: Top tips for CRO this 2022

Coming out on the list is Charlotte Ward’s insight for What’s NEXT, the director of Agnes media. In her piece, she talks about the various ways brands can have better conversions this 2022. 

In an interview with MARKETECH APAC, Ward shared that the very first step in generating more conversions is analytics. 

“The very first step which is extremely important is for the brand to review the analytics, and really understand their customer journey,” said Ward. 

“What people are engaging with, what are they converting on, what pages are driving the greatest results on-site – really getting a full understanding of the first interaction through the last interaction, and identifying where [are] these drop-offs, or if something’s working really well, “ she further shared. 

Ward said that the next important step is researching and identifying different elements you can test on-site. According to her, these could entail shortening a landing page, changing colours, and testing different ways of communicating their product solution. 

Top 3: What’s NEXT: Why brands must adopt a multi-platform strategy for social advertising

What’s NEXT: Why brands must adopt a multi-platform strategy for social advertising
What’s NEXT: Why brands must adopt a multi-platform strategy for social advertising

One of our top stories for the month is the What’s NEXT article of Stewart Hunter, director for customer success of Smartly.io for APAC, where he shared the number one strategy on social advertising today: a multi-platform strategy.

In an interview, we asked what he thinks are the various ways brands can communicate effectively today, and he shared, that as a status quo, there are many choices now since there are a lot of channels that consumers are going to today for their digital lives, “looking at their phones.” 

“Brand should really follow their consumer, and also adopt a mindset of trying to communicate [with] their consumer in a different way, depending on where they are within their social media, social advertising daily journey,” shared Hunter. 

He said that different platforms will require brands to communicate in a different way

“you have to be across platforms, you have to be multi-platform, and you have to think individually about how you’re delivering advertising, delivering effective content on those individual platforms,” said Hunter. 

This April 6, Hunter will be one of the speakers in our upcoming webinar, ‘Social Advertising Trends in APAC 2022’. David Lim, HappyFresh’s VP of marketing, and Chan May Ling, KFC Malaysia’s CMO, will be joining the panel. 

Top 2: What’s NEXT: How businesses and brands can thrive in metaverse

What’s NEXT: How businesses and brands can thrive in Metaverse
What’s NEXT: How businesses and brands can thrive in Metaverse

What’sNEXT contributors are on a roll in this month’s top stories. Coming out as our top 2 is the insight of Cheelip Ong, chief creative officer of Lion & Lion, who shared his top pieces of advice on how businesses and brands can jump into and eventually thrive in the metaverse.

In an interview with MARKETECH APAC, he explained further one of the insights he imparted in the piece which is urging brands to move from being corporation-first to community-first.

“Most brands and organizations are conglomerates, they have an official brand agenda and brand purpose to push. But for brands to actually navigate the space on the metaverse wisely, they got to understand that metaverse will be a result of communities coming together,” he said. 

Ong further shared that people will gravitate towards their interest points and their passion points and as a result, people in the metaverse will be leading double or triple lives where who you are in reality may not be who you represent in the metaverse because we’re all gonna have our avatars. 

“We need to allow brands to understand that you need to hand the power back to the community, to engage the community so that the community can serve your purpose and they can believe your brand purpose and believe your agenda,” said Ong.

Top 1: Flash Coffee launches new in-app delivery service in SG

Flash-Coffee-SG-new-in-app-delivery
Flash Coffee launches new in-app delivery service in SG

For our Top 1 story for the month, we have coffee chain Flash Coffee which partnered with pandago, foodpanda’s on-demand express delivery service, to launch a new in-app delivery service for its Singapore customers. 

The brand, which describes itself as a tech-enabled coffee chain, shared how it leverages tech for both on the consumer front and on the back end. 

In an interview with Sahil Arora, Flash Coffee’s managing director, he shared, “At the same time that we allow consumers to order coffee for pick-up in 10 minutes, that’s also [a] trickling and [rippling] effect into our back end operations. Our baristas have a little bit more time to prepare drinks when orders are coming in ahead of time.” 

Arora said that as peakiness is one of businesses’ biggest challenges, data it receives from the pick-up functionality allows them to know when orders are coming in the most, and in turn, helps them to inform their strategies. 

“The most important way that tech is enabling our operations is through the wealth of information that we’re collecting, that we’re able to use and analyse to make smarter business decisions. For customers ordering through our app, we can ask and answer questions like, what customers are ordering in different areas of Singapore, what times of day, [and] typically, what drinks they are ordering,” said Arora. 

“Delivery has become a way of life, whether it’s food, groceries, [or] coffee; so I think to be a tech-forward chain, delivery had to be part of the proposition,” he adds.

Rankings‌ ‌are‌ ‌based‌ ‌on‌ ‌Google‌ ‌Analytics‌ ‌from‌ ‌the‌ ‌period‌ ‌of‌ ‌16th‌ ‌January to 16th‌ ‌February.

Watch our exclusive interviews with the brands themselves on the latest episode of MARKETECH APAC Top Stories, now live on our YouTube channel.

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Main Feature Marketing APAC

What’s NEXT: Top tips for CRO this 2022

It’s not just e-commerce businesses that can leverage the power of conversion rate optimisation (CRO). Higher conversions mean more sales, so why wouldn’t you want to invest in optimising your conversion rates? Whether you’re an online retailer, a startup with a valuable B2B product, or an entrepreneur selling your expertise, CRO could be the key to a bigger profit margin in 2022. Here’s how.

What is CRO?

Conversion rate optimisation is all about boosting the number of people who visit your site and end up making a purchase (i.e. a ‘conversion’). That could mean they buy a physical item, sign up for a course you are offering, or anything relative to your business type – essentially, whatever you are ‘selling’ you want them to ‘buy’.

Improving your conversion rates can be done through a range of strategies, and Google Optimize is a great place to start. It’s easy to integrate on a website and will be useful as long as you have enough traffic visiting your site.

We often find brands are great at testing creative or various media tactics but fail to consider how to improve their website experience. Implementing a tool such as Google Optimize – there’s a range of others that can be used as well – allows brands to A/B test to identify ways to improve conversion rates, and ultimately drive a more profitable outcome.

Here are three tips for greater conversions:

1. Test, test, test!

Testing is the beating heart of CRO – namely, A/B testing (or split testing). This provides businesses with an opportunity to test out two or more scenarios to see which are more successful at converting website visitors. For example, if you create bespoke beauty products for a high-end brand, you may find you have more success when using high-quality imagery compared to big, bold ‘50% discount’ images, which may be more appropriate for lower-cost brands.

Whatever you decide, it is recommended you always work within a detailed framework that is specific to your business and product offering.

One great way to do CRO effectively is to build out a testing framework. You can plan ahead of time for certain things to test on-site, such as button colours (i.e. blue vs red), or changing the copy on the homepage to speak to ‘Product Feature and Benefit 1’ vs ‘Product Feature and Benefit 2’. You can then analyse the performance and incorporate the best performing button, copy, image etc. (whatever it may be) on the site whilst you continue to test and improve performance on an ongoing basis. 

2. Promote sales and offers in real-time

One of the most effective ways to convert a potential customer into a buyer is to get them excited about your products. This can be achieved by incentivising purchases through real-time awareness of promos and sales.

Though much-maligned in the early days of the internet, pop-ups on your owned site are now a critical tool for converting customers and expanding your email sign-ups. For example, you can include a pop-up for first-time shoppers that gives them a 10% off code if they enter their email. This can ‘instigate’ further exploration of your product range and incentivise them to make a purchase in a timely manner – especially if the 10% off code is only valid for a short period.

You may also consider publishing real-time sales as they occur. Whenever someone makes a purchase, a small notification will pop up on the screens of everyone else who is visiting your website. This shows your products are popular and can increase the urgency of a sale.

3. Convince potential buyers through testimonials

Especially if a potential customer hasn’t purchased anything from you before, there’s nothing more convincing about your legitimacy than a testimonial. In fact, a whopping 88% of online customers trust reviews just as much as a recommendation from family and friends.

So make sure you gather as many positive testimonials from previous buyers as possible, and then set them front-and-centre when visitors are viewing your products. It creates instant credibility in your brand and may even turn a tentative lead into a conversion.

A continuous strategy

Like most optimisation strategies, CRO isn’t a set-and-forget solution. Instead, it’s important to regularly reflect on your strategy and use analytics to find out whether it’s still working a month, six months or a year later.

Ongoing testing is a great way to continuously drive strong performance on the website whilst learning more about a brand’s audience. It’s not limited to e-commerce businesses and should be a consideration for a range of brands in various categories.

This article is written by Charlotte Ward, director of Agnes Media.

Agnes Media is a measurement-first marketing agency that drives profitable business outcomes through effective and data-based marketing efforts️.

The article is published as part of MARKETECH APAC’s thought leadership series What’s NEXT. This features marketing leaders sharing their marketing insights and predictions for the upcoming year. The series aims to equip marketers with actionable insights to future-ready their marketing strategies.

If you are a marketing leader and have insights that you’d like to share with regards to the upcoming trends and practices in marketing, please reach out to [email protected] for an opportunity to have your thought-leadership published on the platform.

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Marketing Featured ANZ

Agnes Media appoints former Googler Riya Mukherjee as senior performance manager

Sydney, Australia – Digital marketing agency Agnes Media has appointed former Googler Riya Mukherjee as senior performance manager, as the agency continues to experience new client growth.

Having spent almost a decade at Google in India, culminating in her promotion to program manager and support expert, Mukherjee moved to Sydney in 2018 to become performance specialist at Columbus and then senior digital performance marketing manager at Alley.

Mukherjee will lead the performance planning at independent measurement-first agency Agnes Media, working across its diverse and expanding client base.

Agnes Media founder and director, Charlotte Ward said, “We are very excited to have Riya join our team and bring her infectious positive energy and fantastic knowledge, skill-set, and experience along with her.”

Ward added, “Riya will assist with managing our existing client base, overseeing the development of our expanding team while helping us grow as an agency as we build our ever-growing portfolio. The role will see Riya lead the performance planning for our clients, in addition to working alongside me in client service.”

Mukherjee said, “I’m excited to work with an agency that really understands the need to connect media performance with achieving business objectives and tying them together. This is so essential but something many agencies forget about, so I am looking forward to bringing measurement-led solutions to Agnes’ exciting clients as well as the future brands we bring on board. I’m a firm believer of marketing with compassion, and that’s one of the core values at Agnes.”

Agnes Media launched in 2020 with leading global payment and shopping service Klarna as a foundation client, with the agency managing their co-marketing performance activity. They also work with Zolo, Australia’s first profit-for-purpose tech-cycling company, Jace Legal, a commercial law and conveyancing business, and Re-Play UK, a sustainable tableware brand.