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Platforms Featured Southeast Asia

Global report reveals Filipinos clock most hours in consuming vlog content, playing video games

Philippines – With most of our attention now veered towards digital content, a new global report reveals the average number of hours each audience in a country spends in navigating social media. The said data, which was gathered via a partnership between social media intel Meltwater and creative agency We Are Social, revealed that it’s the Filipino internauts that are the most invested when it comes to vlog content and video game consumption.

The annual report on social media and digital trends uncovered that the Philippines ranked first in terms of the average time allotted for watching vlogs and playing video games. Particularly, 95.8% of internet users in the country play video games on any device, and this cohort is found to spend an average of 1 hour and 29 minutes on gaming each day. This is a few minutes more than the global average of 1 hour and 14 minutes. 

Meanwhile, 55.6% of the country’s digital consumers – those aged 16 to 64 – stated that they watch vlogs each week, and in terms of consumption, the market also bested all markets, ahead of the global benchmark of 25.5%. 

In the same report last year, Philippines also emerged on top with the highest count of users that watch vlogs each week with 60.4%, and likewise topping the global charts with the highest percentage of consumers that play video games on any device (96.4%). 

Overall, from the current year’s data, the country landed in fourth place in general social media consumption, with consumers spending an average of 3 hours and 43 minutes for such activity.

Alexandra Saab Bjertnæs, chief strategy officer at Meltwater said that competitive brands should stay ahead of trends to understand their impact on any industry. She also highlighted that as consumers invest more time on social media, it will affect the decision-making process in their customer journey.

Bjertnæs added, “With more than 5 billion internet users today, it’s becoming more crucial than ever that brands deliver relevant, impactful, and purposeful content to capture attention and create value across digital channels.”

Nathan McDonald, group CEO and co-founder at We Are Social said that social media’s influence affects people’s lifestyles and it continues to grow. McDonald also expressed that users consider the discernment in internet usage, making sure that it’s a time well spent.

However, McDonald also had thoughts for marketers. He added, “Marketers and creators will have to work even harder to attract and retain people’s attention in 2023 – it’s never been more important to understand online culture in order to reach people in a relevant way.”

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Platforms Featured Southeast Asia

Disney+ coming to the Philippines on November 17

Manila, Philippines – Disney+, the subscription video on-demand over-the-top streaming service under The Walt Disney Company, is finally coming to the Philippines on November 17.

Disney+ coming to the Philippines comes after a year of the platform announcing its added expansion in the Asia-Pacific region.

The platform first appeared in APAC through its ANZ launch in November 2019, followed by the Indian launch in April 2020 through Disney Star’s Indian SOV Hotstar. It then launched in Japan via a deal with NTT Docomo in June 2020, in Indonesia in September 2020.

In 2021, Disney+ launched in Singapore (February 2021), Malaysia and Thailand (June 2021), as well as the countries of South Korea, Hong Kong, and Taiwan in November 2021. Meanwhile, launch in Vietnam is slated for early 2023.

The Philippine launch also comes months after Disney+ has announced an adtech deal with The Trade Desk in its move to offer ad-supported plans for its subscriptions in the future.

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Platforms Featured Southeast Asia

Citibank, Yahoo team up to enhance public literacy on personal finance

Singapore – Global financial services company Citibank and Yahoo have announced a partnership to create a dedicated personal finance hub geared towards diverse audiences, providing fresh perspectives on money and equipping them for their financial journey across different life stages.

Hosted on Yahoo Finance in Singapore, the hub–called ‘Life and Money; will see Citibank share expert insights and tips on personal finance with readers.

‘Life and Money’ will feature a specially curated selection of original content contributed by and jointly with Citibank, as well as relevant aggregated content from Yahoo Finance. With insightful explainers accessible in various multimedia formats such as articles, videos, and podcasts, the hub will cover a wide range of topics around personal finance and lifestyle. 

Some of the content topics will include saving, investing, advancing careers, achieving work-life balance, sustainable living, parenting, and other personal finance and lifestyle interests.

In addition, the content will address misconceptions, inspire new lifestyle habits, and provide actionable recommendations for readers of different life stages. Among them are first jobbers seeking financial independence, starter families purchasing their dream homes, mid-career professionals progressing through milestones, and seasoned achievers planning their ideal retirement.

Carol Tay, senior director sales for Southeast Asia at Yahoo, said, “As a leading source for finance news, Yahoo is focused on providing news and information that will help give our readers the confidence to make smart financial decisions. We are thrilled to partner with Citibank and build empowering content on personal finance, and help drive meaningful connections with audiences seeking rich insights that will help them achieve financial empowerment and lead their desired lifestyles.”

Meanwhile, Mylene Ong, head of digital sales and marketing at Citibank Singapore, commented, “Our partnership will give readers the opportunity to access Citibank’s latest personal finance insights and tips, as well as better serve our clients with an additional source of trusted finance-related content. We hope to provide a fresh and reliable financial perspective to those navigating life’s milestones, leveraging Yahoo’s strong editorial expertise and sizeable organic database.”

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Marketing Featured APAC

Why content production in APAC needs more agility

The last two years have changed the way consumers interact with brands. Apart from speeding up digital consumption, consumer behaviour continually shifted, even as brands press on and prepare for a more digital future. Increasing mobile internet penetration to 52 per cent by 2025 (up from 42 per cent at the end of 2020) is also resulting in more technologically savvy citizens; driving digital consumption on various platforms, with Southeast Asian consumers reportedly spending 414 billion hours online in 2021.

This increased consumption has also fuelled digital content production, especially in the advertising space. In Asia Pacific, the digital advertising market is expected to grow by 13.25 per cent annually, with a totally addressable market capitalisation of USD 2.9 billion from 2022 to 2031. Another global advertising forecast by MAGNA also suggests the same rampant growth, predicting digital and mobile campaigns to drive APAC advertising revenue to an 11.2 per cent increase and be worth USD 235 billion this year. 

All these factors are contributing to the thriving digital economy in Asia Pacific, and it is up to brands and marketers to adapt to newer marketing strategies to capitalise on the shift. Today, many are already delivering personalised content across omnichannel platforms and creating successful mobile experiences that convert. With 8 out of 10 consumers surveyed by Forrester perceiving their world as ‘all digital’, brands have to question if their current content production process can meet these expectations. 

Across every industry, major brands are becoming more reliant on technology to deliver engaging content and nurture new leads for higher revenue. In fact, up to 79 per cent of Asia Pacific marketers admitted to investing in marketing technology. This should not come as a surprise, since 80 per cent of consumers use digital platforms to discover and evaluate products and services online before actual purchase. 

For companies to stay nimble and be able to continually wow customers, content production needs to become an increasingly important part of marketing strategy. The way it is produced is just as important as what is produced. In today’s lightning-paced environment where content could become immediately obsolete, the agility in content production requires brands to be agile-minded in their processes.

What does agile content development look like?

Firstly, an agile content development process utilises data science and an iterative approach to content optimisation and delivery. This enables the business to create solution-focused content and present its brand as an industry thought leader.

Three things to look out for in agile content development

To foster an agile content development process, brands must implement a strategy to create a full-stack solution. Here are the actions to create one:

  1. Increase efficiencies, manage costs, and establish better processes.

Day-to-day oversight of the content production process across brands, agencies, vendors and countries helps stakeholders identify cost inefficiencies, and spot new trending opportunities quicker. 

  1. A centralised concierge to manage every aspect of content production.

Having all production data in one place, helps stakeholders access and manage all production activities more efficiently. From assessing production readiness, or Request For Proposal (RFP) programmes, this concierge enables greater transparency when it comes to timelines and costs. With the flexibility to produce content with the right selected partners, brands can mitigate risks – especially when it comes to media rights and getting sufficient production insurance. 

  1. Syncing your brand with the right strategy and ecosystem.

With marketing content being generated across a wide range of sources, in various markets and locations, stakeholders from agencies, in-house teams and media partners need to take a step back and assess their current capacity, processes and investments. Sometimes deviating from the norm can provide the brand with the best results, but many brands are tied with existing production partners, which can often frustrate processes. Hence, an aerial view of the business gives more options to the brand. 

The future of content production is agile

As consumer behaviour continues to sporadically transform, brands that are aiming to ride the wave of market relevance need a strategy that can help the business pivot faster and stay nimble. The ability to engage and capture attention will keep business booming, and it is important for brands to stay ahead 

of competitors. For profits to keep flowing, the business needs to be adaptable, and traditional approaches constrain that.

A new standard has arrived, and it is time to embrace something better and faster or choose to hold on and stagnate. The decision is yours. 

This article is written by Jonathan Parker, managing director of Advertising Production Resources for EMEA & APAC.

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Marketing Featured APAC

In a brave new world, trust is the most precious commodity in advertising

Pandemics, war, political dogfights and soaring inflation. You’re not imagining it – we’re being put through the wringer currently.

The recent instability we’ve experienced has only been exacerbated by the massive amounts of information being thrown at us every day. We’re being inundated – and when we’re trying to understand what our new future looks like, it’s important to have information we can rely on.

This is a major reason why news websites have seen surges in audience numbers lately. People need reliable and accurate information to understand the changing world around them.

There is no more room for misinformation. Not when we’ve all seen how dangerous it can be. Being able to trust the content we’re consuming is now one of the biggest differentiators in choosing which online platforms we frequent.

Trust has always been essential to advertisers, but it’s now more important, and difficult to achieve than ever. And with so many online media platforms competing for attention, it’s no wonder why customers are feeling a bit suspicious of the ads they’re seeing.

A recent global study by Outbrain and Savanta looked into the changing nature of trust, recommendations and advertising online. The research discovered that news sites are some of the most trusted online spaces, with 75% of respondents saying they trust the information they find there. That’s compared to just 54% who trust social media sites.

So while trust is harder to win, it can still be won with robust and accurate information. The more likely a website is to offer unreliable information, the more likely it will lose its audience. The said study found that 21% of people are planning to spend less time on social media in the next six months. Of that group, 36% are planning to spend that time visiting websites with editorial content.

This movement means it’s increasingly important that advertisers and marketers think more deeply about where brands appear online. Advertising needs to foster trust for both the page and the brand alike – it’s not just about ensuring the ad aligns with the general theme of the page anymore.

We can already see the effects of this shift in some major internet companies. Take Netflix and Facebook. Netflix had a widely publicised fall in subscribers for the first time in the first quarter of this year, and Facebook reported a drop in Daily Average Users in the last quarter of 2021.

These are both stalwarts of the digital space, and both are battling a content problem. Their trust exchanges are failing as their audiences no longer believe their attention (and in Netflix’s case – money) is being rewarded adequately. The situations aren’t unrelated.

In the new world, customers expect that in exchange for the attention they pay to your brand, they’ll be rewarded with helpful information they can actually use in their lives. Audiences cannot be taken for granted anymore. Any value your brand can provide needs to be established before they can expect to move customers through the purchase journey. 

So in the battle to win trust in the online arena, there are a few ways brands can ensure they’re targeting customers in the most effective and engaging way possible.

Native advertising is considered the least intrusive ad type, with only 20% of people considering it intrusive and 64% placing their trust in it. This is compared to 29% of respondents who say social feed ads are the most intrusive. People are either going online to escape or to find specific information – don’t disrupt that experience with a jarring ad.

Headlines and personalisation are also key ways to ensure you’re targeting customers in the most unobtrusive way. Most customers now prefer to see their recommendations personalised with headlines. Specifically, the research by Outbrain found that household decision-makers are significantly more likely to prefer personalised recommendations (59%) and headlines (58%) than non-decision makers.

These headlines need to be short, sharp and snappy – much like a news headline would be. They’re most effective for grabbing attention and pulling customers in to learn more about the topic.

Personalisation is also one of the best ways to achieve trust and provide a helpful experience online for younger age groups. These demographics resoundingly prefer an evolving experience unique to their preferences, with 53% of 18-24 year olds and 48% of 25-34 year olds choosing this option. To reach these groups, update your creative to highlight the products or services they’re interested in. Be smart about optimising your messaging to reflect where your customers are in their purchasing journey – if you get that wrong, you risk isolating them for good.

It may feel as if it’s all doom and gloom at the moment. But in a time of uncertainty, being trusted by your customer is invaluable – and can be the difference between your brand and your competitors.

This article is written by Ben Steel, general manager of Outbrain for SEA.

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Platforms Featured APAC

The ‘everyday creator’: Let’s talk about the creator economy

Who said you can’t earn money from following your passion? Thanks to today’s digital world, it’s now possible for anybody to monetise their hobbies and passions – not just full-time professionals – such as influencers and content creators. 

From purchase reviews to how-to videos to self-help discussions, digital platforms make it easier than ever for people to enter the creator economy and earn revenue through the content they create around their interests. Nearly any topic or subject has monetisation potential, providing equal opportunities for everyone to access and create alternative income streams. 

The advent of the ‘everyday creator’

Technological advances, evolving definitions of work and our transition to a digital-first world have led to the rise of the creator economy – an inclusive, accessible ecosystem where independent creatives can earn revenue from their creations.

With devices such as mobile phones becoming increasingly sophisticated, as well as the prevalence and accessibility of feature-rich social media platforms, people no longer need a sophisticated setup or professional production team to produce content in their spare time.

Such ‘everyday creators’ can spend as much (or as little) time and effort as they want to create content, often with just a smartphone in hand. This provides them with a significant amount of flexibility and freedom in creating – particularly with regards to monetisation opportunities and content genres. 

Monetisation opportunities for all

Previously, traditional monetisation channels mainly allowed digital content creators to earn money through ad revenues and brand sponsorships. However, this required them to have amassed a significant following or achieving partner status on digital platforms – a difficult task for casual creators to undertake without significant effort. 

Today, however, there are many levels of monetisation for all levels of content creators – especially earning revenue directly from the audience. For instance, the creation of cash-convertible in-app currencies on apps allows audiences to support creators through virtual gifting.

Instead of having to chase a minimum number of postings or followers, content creators are now free to create and post their content as they like, while generating income. This means that they do not have to constantly source for corporate sponsorships or post excessively to maintain their partner status; both of which could dilute content quality and require an outsized amount of effort. 

Additionally, if their content gains popularity over time, creators can make the seamless transition from a hobby that occasionally earns money to a full-time career providing a main income stream.

Built-in support facilitates passionate creation

Monetisation aside, the tell-tale sign of a successful content creator is their ability to engage with audiences and build a following around their content. Half of this battle is already won due to the multitude of supporting mechanisms present within content platforms. 

For instance, through community detection algorithms that are based on commonalities among audiences such as their interests or location, creators can identify, segment and reach their intended viewers automatically. Furthermore, the real-time nature of content such as livestreaming enables impactful and personalised social interactivity between creator and consumer, further building their following. 

For the ‘everyday creator’, these systems are key to achieving greater discoverability and reachability. It means that they only have to focus on creating the content they want instead of basing their creative efforts on content that will attract the most eyeballs.

This means that there are now endless varieties of content and themes that creators can choose to make and monetise. For instance, while a significant amount of content is entertainment-based, such as funny videos or trend responses, many creators may also choose to create educational and helpful content. These may revolve around issues and subjects that they have some expertise or experience in, such as in fields like parenting, self-help, cooking and wellness.

Social media provides a platform for and amplifies relevant content based on audience interests and needs, enabling the content to reach the people who need it. This is further enhanced by the creator’s natural charisma and relatability, as well as the social community that forms around the creator as a result of the content produced. Aside from the audience’s interest in the content, creators’ inherent charisma and relatability can further gel the community. 

Platforms like Instagram, Whatsapp and even Bigo Live have recently launched features that enable creators to build communities to connect users of similar interests and act as a cradle for the sharing of ideas. These virtual communities foster a sense of belonging while motivating creators to actively produce content.

The future of content is inclusive

Inclusive growth has been the model of economic development in modern times, and the creator economy has evolved into a sterling example of inclusivity and accessibility. It has removed the high time and effort investment barrier that previously separated revenue-generating creators from pure hobbyists, allowing everyone to translate their passions into monetary benefits.

Anybody with access to the internet can participate in this burgeoning economy; the only prerequisite is their love of producing content. With content platforms now enabling round-the-clock monetisation and engagement, it is also more feasible and seamless than ever for an ‘everyday creator’ to go full-time if they wish. Given this freedom and flexibility, we look forward to seeing the creator economy expand and flourish even more in the future – for everyone.

This article is written by Mike Ong, VP of BIGO Technology.

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Platforms Featured Southeast Asia

Telekom Malaysia takes after tech giants, unveils new insights hub

Malaysia – Malaysian telecom company Telekom Malaysia is making an interesting stride in content marketing with its newest insights hub – its Official TM Blog. The content destination will be providing direct access to thoughts and insights from the group’s top leaders and subject matter experts in the telco and technology sector.

Following the footsteps of some of the world’s biggest tech firms, the blog intends to become a one-stop information centre for key decision-makers, analysts as well as the media, allowing them to get the latest industry happenings, new ideas, analyses as well as trends in digital technologies and transformation, sustainability, organisational culture and various other exciting topics.

Written to engage and inspire an informed global audience, the articles are clustered into four segments namely Ideas, Trends, Achievements, and Insights.

The Official TM Blog is updated monthly, and is accessible from the main page of its corporate website.

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Platforms Featured Global

Riot Games announces equity investment in ‘Arcane’ animation studio Fortiche Production

Paris, France – Video game developer Riot Games, known for its online game ‘League of Legends’ has announced an equity investment to animation studio Fortiche Production, who animated the animated series ‘Arcane’, which is based on the lore of League of Legends.

Through the equity investment, Riot Games now holds a significant non-controlling stake in Fortiche. Brian Wright, chief content officer at Riot Games and Brendan Mulligan, director of corporate development at Riot Games have also joined Fortiche’s board of directors.

Riot Games and Fortiche have long worked together in creating media projects, the first one being for the music video of ‘Get Jinxed’ to promote the character Jinx on League of Legends. Other collaborations included music videos ‘WARRIORS’ and ‘Enemy’, both of which are sung by American band Imagine Dragons. Furthermore, the two companies have also worked together in music videos for ‘Seconds’, ‘RISE’, and ‘POP/STARS’, which is performed by their virtual band K/DA.

Nicolo Laurent, CEO of Riot Games, said, “Fortiche has been an integral partner for a long time, but this agreement ensures we’ll be working closely for decades to come. We hold a high bar for everyone we work with and insist they understand players deeply and focus on them relentlessly, and from day one, Fortiche has exemplified player experience first.” 

He added, “In working with Fortiche, we collaborate to push the boundaries of what’s possible and raise expectations for how games can be represented in the media. As proud as we are of Arcane, we know the best is yet to come.”

Meanwhile, Pascal Charrue, Jérôme Combe, and Arnaud Delord, co-founders of Fortiche, commented, “The various collaborations with Riot Games, and especially Arcane, have made Fortiche Production a new major player on the international animation scene. Riot Games, by trusting us, has given us the means to achieve our common ambitions and has shown that it is possible to offer new content that can reach a large audience. In 2023, we will celebrate ten years of collaboration: there is no better way to symbolise the trust and ambitions of our two companies than this association.”

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Platforms Featured Southeast Asia

OTT consumption in Indonesia highest across SEA

Jakarta, Indonesia – As we enter the third year of the pandemic, we see how the popularity of over-the-top (OTT) streaming increases further as the content consumption of choice. In Southeast Asia, Indonesia currently leads the region in OTT consumption, with a 40% year-over-year rise, according to research by The Trade Desk. 

Based on the report, one-third of Indonesians now view OTT content, with 3.5 billion hours of OTT video consumed each month. Furthermore, Indonesia emerged as Southeast Asia’s most ad-tolerant market. For each hour of free material, 42% of Indonesians are willing to watch four or more advertisements. As Indonesians’ appetite for on-demand material rose, ad-supported viewership increased, ad-supported OTT is used by more than 50 million Indonesian viewers in comparison to the previous year which marks a 25% increase in ad-supported viewership. 

The data also showed that Indonesian users prefer to watch their favourite shows on OTT rather than on regular TV. The difference in viewing favourite shows between OTT and traditional TV was only 13%, but has already widened to 22%. With a large margin of 27%, Gen Zs in Indonesia led the pack, showing the growing aversion to traditional television among younger generations. The report notes that advertisers prize these age groups because they are at a stage in their lives where they are forming long-term brand loyalty and are looked to asare trendsetters for all ages.

In terms of the type of content, Korean content is undoubtedly the most popular OTT genre in Indonesia. While 57% of OTT users identified Korean as one of the top two genres, its attractiveness to female viewers is apparent. Korean content is preferred by three-quarters of respondents (75 percent). Meanwhile, the number of OTT viewers who viewed Western programming declined by 9 percentage points from the previous year. On the other hand, male Gen Z and young Millennial viewers in Indonesia prefer comedy, action, and Japanese anime to Korean drama, which remains the most popular genre among female Gen Z and young Millennial viewers. Young male Millennials are also big fans of live sports.

Florencia Eka, country manager at The Trade Desk Indonesia, shared, “consumers are aggressively moving towards a new model of content consumption, and this means marketers will have to develop new strategies for reaching them. OTT allows brands to reach their audience with more precision and accuracy because data can be applied to OTT campaigns in a way that’s not possible with linear TV. This incremental reach is an important element of a comprehensive TV ad campaign.”

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Platforms Featured APAC

Fandom appoints Yamini Joshi as managing director for sales in APAC

San Francisco, USA – Fandom, a global fan platform, has appointed Yamini Joshi as its newest managing director for sales in APAC. She is currently based in Singapore and will report to Ken Shapiro, chief revenue officer at Fandom.

Through his new role, Joshi will be responsible for growing Fandom’s business in the APAC region, including the development and execution of revenue growth and monetization strategies and creating scalable, client-centric category solutions that utilise the full power of Fandom’s portfolio.

She brings into Fandom 20 years of experience in the media and digital industry. She has a keen understanding of media platforms in Asia across broadcast, digital and print, having worked with corporations like Fox, RTB House and Financial Express.

Prior to joining Fandom, she was previously the SVP for sales for APAC and Middle East at Fox Networks, where she built a multi-million dollar business driven through key partnerships with clients like Unilever, P&G, Samsung, L’oreal, Toyota, Canon amongst others.

Speaking about Joshi’s appointment, Shapiro said, “Fandom is in a period of explosive growth and our advertising organisation has seen increased market demand internationally – and specifically in our APAC territory. I’m pleased to bring in a strong leader like Yamini to take Fandom’s brand to new levels.”

He added, “Her impressive tenure in the media and entertainment industry will allow us to grow opportunities with our ad partners and build out our international business across multiple verticals in TV, streaming, gaming and film.”