Technology Featured Global

Oracle launches new solution that automates lead generation, qualification

Singapore – Global technology computer corporation Oracle has launched a new solution called the ‘Oracle Fusion Marketing’, a part of its ‘Oracle Advertising and CX’ suite that enables marketers to automate lead generation and qualification from campaigns that span traditional marketing and advertising channels.

Fusion Marketing uses artificial intelligence (AI) as well to automatically score leads at the account level, predict when consumers are ready to talk to a salesperson, and generate a qualified sales opportunity in any customer relationship management (CRM) system.

For the company, CRM has become the system that both sellers and marketers love to hate, due to disconnected workflows, too much manual administration, and siloed data often preventing sales and marketing teams from working with each other to engage customers and drive revenue. They also added that because of this, the experience for most salespeople is that their CRM system doesn’t help them sell – and this disconnect between sales and marketing teams is a growing challenge as the B2B buying process becomes more complex. 

“Customers and prospects are now interacting with organizations across an increasingly broad range of digital channels, buyer expectations are growing, and the need to access information at any time means much of the purchasing decision is now made before a salesperson is engaged,” Oracle said in a press statement.

Meanwhile, for Rob Tarkoff, executive vice president and general manager at Oracle Advertising and Customer Experience, said that this newly-launched solution lines up with their vision of making this time that the industry needs to think differently about marketing and sales automation so that they can transform CRM into a system that actually works for both the marketer and the salesperson.

He also added that this is not about forecasts and rollups or a reporting tool to see how the sales force is performing, but instead about turning CRM into a system that helps sellers sell.

“A huge part of that change is bringing marketing and sales teams together and eliminating the low-value, time-consuming tasks that distract from building customer relationships and closing deals. That’s why we have invested so much time engineering a system that will help marketers fully automate lead generation and qualification and get highly qualified leads to the sales team faster,” Tarkoff stated.

Fusion Marketing aims to simplify and accelerate the creation and execution of marketing campaigns by automating the end-to-end process of lead generation and qualification. With Fusion Marketing, marketers can build and run campaigns with consistent messages across advertising and email channels, all in a matter of minutes. This helps marketers improve the performance of campaigns by increasing the output of highly qualified sales opportunities.

Part of the solution’s campaign execution features includes building the target audience of known contacts, audience expansion, customer reference identification, simplifying campaign configuration, campaign launch, and results monitoring. Then, Fusion Marketing works by doing the automation of the lead generation, including personalized campaign microsites, AI-powered lead qualification, and delivering qualified opportunities to CRM systems.

As part of Oracle Fusion Cloud Applications Suite, Oracle Advertising and CX connects data across advertising, marketing, sales, and service to make every customer interaction matter. Going beyond traditional CRM, Oracle Advertising and CX helps business leaders create, manage, serve, and nurture lasting customer relationships.

Marketing Featured Global

Rakuten Advertising publishes blueprint for affiliate marketing

Singapore – Affiliate marketing service provider Rakuten Advertising has recently published a new blueprint called ‘A 5-Stage Blueprint for High-Performance Affiliate Marketing’, which aims to educate and inform both advertisers and publishers about the strategic role that the affiliate channel is now playing in marketing strategies.

Said blueprint is based on input from members of the Rakuten Advertising International Collective (RAIC), comprising affiliate marketing specialists from leading advertisers and publishers around the globe including Asia, Australia, Europe, the US, and Latin America.

For advertisers, the blueprint demonstrates how different affiliate models can be combined to enable them to find and influence new customers throughout the customer journey, from discovery to conversion. For publishers, the blueprint offers guidance on how they can enhance, extend and further monetize their offering, building deeper relationships with existing advertisers and attracting new brand partners.

“The affiliate channel has transformed over recent years, and our goal in creating RAIC was to bring together some of the leading thinkers in the affiliate industry to unlock the insights and best practices that are driving innovation in this space,” said Stuart McLennan, senior vice president for Asia-Pacific at Rakuten Advertising.

He added, “The open and willing sharing of their direct experiences and strategies as advertisers and publishers has formed the basis of this blueprint, and highlights how unique the affiliate channel is in driving collaborative partnerships to meet respective commercial objectives.”

The blueprint can be summarized in these points: aligning affiliate KPIs to business objectives, making the best use of the available data, aligning affiliate strategies to the customer journey and brand positioning, integrating existing and emerging affiliate models, and analyzing, learning, testing, optimizing and proving their marketing strategies.

Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

SEA marketers need ‘stronger boost’ on campaigns for upcoming festive season: survey

Singapore – With concerns surrounding festive season marketing due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting inflation of products, marketers in the Southeast Asia region say that they need a stronger boost with their current and upcoming marketing strategies as the holidays are fast approaching, data from the latest survey conducted by digital experience management software Sitecore shows.

According to their survey, 69% of marketers reported a decline in sales so far this year, and nearly 40% of marketers said festive season sales represents the bulk of annual sales: which is particularly true for businesses with less than 500 employees.

Meanwhile, around 96% of marketers are concerned about the impact of inflation on the Christmas shopping season

Furthermore, 97% are concerned that changing local health conditions could result in the need for fast marketing pivots. However, despite the uncertainty, marketers feel better prepared than last year to deal with product availability, balancing online and offline demand, and their customer profiling and personalization programs.

The survey also notes that last year has made significant changes on their supply chain endeavors, and that this year they expect that digital brands ‘will win more’ during the festive season, evident with the fact marketers have started their promotional campaigns earlier than ever.

“Most marketers expect digital brands will win the holiday season, and are planning to offer in-person and online experiences, including virtual give-aways, wish lists, and special festive experiences. The offerings most likely to be delivered in digital form are free gifts or product samples attached to online orders, personal shopping services, and a festive season wishlist to share with loved ones,” the company said in a press statement.

Meanwhile, Steve Hawkes, chief operating officer for Sitecore Asia-Pacific and Japan at Sitecore, commented, “We are seeing many consumer marketers increasingly relying on digital initiatives to capture the needed increase in sales this Christmas shopping season. We know there are rising concerns about the health status of communities across Southeast Asia.”

He added, “Retailers and other consumer companies will need to be nimble and act swiftly in the face of a volatile economic landscape.”

Platforms Featured Global

Emplifi’s latest platform to offer industry-first social commerce capabilities for marketers

Singapore – Customer experience platform Emplifi has announced the launch of their latest platform Emplifi Social Commerce Cloud, which offers a multitude of marketers social commerce capabilities who are often charged with driving high conversion rates and increased revenue across social platforms.

The platform delivers a full suite of solutions to enable the social shopping experience by synchronizing social commerce activities across platforms, providing automated and live assistance during the shopping experience, and giving brands a single, holistic view of their social commerce efforts, along with advanced analytics.

One of those tools is Shop Sync™, which enables e-commerce teams to provide an omni-shop synchronization across social platforms without relying on heavy IT involvement. The API integration with Facebook Shops and Instagram Shops eliminates any long and laborious tech efforts, helping brands rapidly scale online shopping experiences. The tool also tracks inventory across all social shops so that e-commerce and product managers gain a full view of product availability and performance across all platforms. 

In addition, Emplifi’s AI-powered Shop Clerk™ bot tool delivers a personalized shopping experience through sophisticated conversational commerce capabilities, guiding shoppers from discovery to purchase. The bot can answer product questions, complete transactions, offer in-store pick-up information, recommend additional product add-ons, seamlessly hand over to care agents and deliver quick surveys via Emplifi’s Natural Language Processing and proprietary Intent Engine abilities that go far beyond the standard, limited Bot FAQ offerings.

Other tools included are the ‘360 Shop Dashboard™’ which was designed to offer the industry’s most comprehensive view of product performance and inventory status across all social media shops, and Emplfi’s Social Care, the consumer engagement tool that brings together marketing and operations to help service customers, while measuring the success of their entire customer journey.

“Social commerce is the next frontier for cutting-edge B2C brands that wish to connect, convert and monetize today’s shoppers. Social media shops are rapidly becoming the new shopping malls. We’re excited to release Emplifi Social Commerce to the market to enable our customers to revolutionize the shopping experience, win unprecedented conversion rates and drive revenue gains,” said Mark Zablan, CEO at Emplifi.

Emplifi Social Commerce Cloud is the first major platform announcement from Emplifi since the company’s rebranding earlier this year. With the goal of unifying marketing, commerce, and customer care through AI-powered CX solutions, Emplifi was born from the combined technology of the customer experience platform Astute Inc. and the social media marketing platform Socialbakers.

Main Feature Technology APAC

Why marketers will prioritize gametech

For generations, gaming has been a cherished pastime across cultures and geographies. It took on a new life with the advent of the console and the internet, becoming more accessible and affordable. We’re now experiencing the next surge in gaming with the industry nearly doubling over the last five years, largely due to a combination of increasing internet access and speed, the proliferation of 5G, and increasing sophistication in hardware and mobile devices. 

As the industry has grown, the technology underpinning gaming has become more powerful. The opportunity has evolved beyond the console, bringing many once fantasy science fiction stories to life, creating a flourishing gaming ecosystem. So as the pandemic forced everyone to stay indoors and find new ways to connect and stay entertained, the growth of gaming has accelerated exponentially beyond prediction.

Convergence of gaming and marketing

Fuelled by the maturity and innovation in marketing and advertising technology, coupled with advancements in machine learning, artificial intelligence, smart devices, and cloud computing, we are now witness to the convergence of gaming and marketing as an opportunity to the current market value of $175B USD this year. The landscape has changed and brands and marketers are looking for new and innovative ways to capitalize on the 3 billion global daily users. 

But the technology ecosystem hasn’t fully kept up with the exponential growth in gaming, nor has expertise evolved to provide clear, strategic entry points for brands to authentically connect in this new interactive universe. Leading MarTech and AdTech companies are now looking at the gaming universe, seeking to understand how they can capture and grow their piece of the virtual pie and get in on the next big wave of marketing and entertainment. 

The next generation of marketers and technologists are building a new landscape for gaming technology, so-called Gametech. New infographics reminiscent of the familiar Lumascape are now in circulation, highlighting the emergence of new businesses with relevant gaming technology dedicated to PC, console, or mobile devices. 

Overcoming gaming marketing hesitancy 

It has been referenced that brands and marketers are hesitant to invest their budgets in this arena. Claims range from tenuous means to measure campaign effectiveness, to not enough understanding about the medium, to let’s just throw some of my traditional media budget into a streaming platform and see what happens as a strategy. 

This stems from a knowledge gap for both marketers and their agencies, and that trusted advisors and genuine gaming specialists are a small group. Beyond the upskilling and education, there also remains a gap in the connection to audience and inventory marketplaces. 

Marketers, publishers, and their agencies must be able to access and activate through their DSP and/or SSP of choice. The challenge for some of these platforms is they currently lack the right integrations to support features unique to gaming behaviors and buying methods. The technology must adapt to the intricacies and adopt features like new buying types in order to tap into the market and scale with programmatic. 

Combined forces driving game technology 

Modern marketing and advertising are powered by machine learning and real-time access to audience segments, creative and inventory via private or public marketplaces. For gaming, the way to gain traction and scale is by leveraging the maturity and speed of these existing technologies combined with dedicated operational support for the new interactive ecosystem. 

What the industry needs are businesses that aren’t focused on building the game itself, but genuinely understand how audiences engage with interactive formats and create opportunities that are true to the playing field without disruption. That means campaigns suited to the universe – or metaverse – in which the players reside, as well as in the form of ad monetization, measurement, and analytics to market analysis with a deeply rooted understanding of creativity fuelled growth. 

Gametech providers must support marketers to understand how best to approach gaming, supported by research and insights. Data solutions must be available to activate through leading data marketplaces, DSPs, and SSPs. The right strategy and access are not complete without real-time measurement tools to inform in-flight performance and campaign effectiveness. 

Industry legends from programmatic to traditional sports are combining learnings and the best of breed technology built for the fourth industrial revolution into the digital age. Platforms that can provide some or all of these solutions will carry brands into the next phase of Gametech and gaming marketing. 

Double down on the future of Gametech

Brands, publishers, agencies, and platforms should be paying attention to the opportunity powered by Gametech. Gaming is ingrained in our modern-day culture, across geographies, demographics, economics, psychographics, etc. – all you need is internet access or a mobile phone.

But with great access and power comes responsibility – and children are a part of the gaming community. Innovation in Gametech has brought to light increased safety measures. In-game advertising enables marketers to choose what they define as brand-safe environments, empowering parents to feel secure in the activities their children engage with online. 

Leveraging the power of data and insights combined with programmatic media buying methodologies, Gametech solutions enable addressability and harness the benefits of an increasingly sophisticated use of machine learning, smart software, and technology. 

With the gaming market nearly doubling over the last five years and forecasted to grow to $217.9 billion by 2023, more of the marketing pie is going to shift into gaming. And the gaming universe is just getting ramped up, with more opportunity to be uncovered at the convergence of gaming and commerce. Fashion companies, sports icons, and music stars alike are bursting into the metaverse offering everything from live concerts, runway fashion shows, merchandise and apparel, and more. 

Together, this presents a greenfield for creative innovation to connect the right brands and services to the right metaverse, game, or stream, with the right strategy, at the right time. 

Only Gametech expertise can take you there. Are you ready? 

This article is written by Indy Khabra, Co-Founder and CEO of Livewire.

SME Featured Southeast Asia

This campaign lets brick-and-mortar SMEs in SG offer digital vouchers–all marketing costs covered

Singapore – SKALE, an all-in-one marketing tool, is launching a one-of-its-kind campaign for SMEs in Singapore that aims to help businesses bounce back from the impact of the pandemic. 

In a nutshell, the campaign will be allowing up to 2,000 brick-and-mortar SMEs to offer deals and promotions to shoppers nationwide via hyper-local digital vouchers, where all marketing costs will be covered. 

Called, ‘ Voucher Fest 2021’, the campaign aims to increase physical stores’ customer footfall and drive higher sales. As part of the initiative, SKALE will be funding all marketing investments and will be providing full marketing support utilizing SKALE’s very own Digital Voucher solution as well as its solutions for geo-fencing ads and gamification to bring customers back to stores.

The campaign is done in collaboration with The FinLab, the innovation accelerator powered by UOB and SGInnovate. The campaign will be running for three months long, from the period of 17 September 2021 to 20 December 2021.

According to SKALE’s website, the voucher fest is open to all physical stores that are restaurants, fashion stores, spas, or those in entertainment, among others. The campaign is open to brick & mortar businesses that are in need of free marketing support, and SMEs that would like to digitize for free. 

SKALE’s CEO Yuet Whey Siah said that the period of the pandemic has been highly crucial for many SME retailers, especially offline retailers. 

“In the past 15 months, SKALE has worked with many offline retailers to help them recapture lost sales and to rebound from the impact of the 2020 Circuit Breaker. However, the latest tightening of measures presents them with a new reality – that there is an increased importance to digitize and leverage technology to sustain business growth,” said Yuet Whey Siah.

For interested small- to medium-sized physical businesses, SKALE is already live in offering an event brief that would explain the specifics of the campaign and what the program has in store for businesses. By registering on its website, SME owners can pick their convenient schedule for the briefing.

SKALE revealed some of the brands that are already participating which include Four Seasons Durian, Edith Patisserie, Big Fish Small Fish, and also Trehaus.

Main Feature Marketing APAC

How to integrate sport into your marketing in an authentic and inclusive way

For the past two weeks, sports fans around the world have been glued to their TVs cheering for their country at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020. With the action continuing on 24 August with the Paralympic Games, the opportunity for businesses to remain connected with their customers on a topic that resonates with so many — sport — should remain front-of-mind.

Whichever industry you’re in, the feelings of celebration and togetherness the Olympics and Paralympics evoke are common themes which unite and engage communities and customers the world over, and this sentiment doesn’t end with the closing ceremony.

According to the latest iStock Visual GPS research, 75% of people in ANZ stated they want to develop daily wellness and exercise routines. Search data across iStock by Getty Images, a leading ecommerce platform providing premium visual content to SMBs, SMEs, creatives and students around the world, shows that terms such as ‘outdoor fitness’ and ‘exercise at home’ have increased by 1225% and 760% respectively over the past twelve months.

Based on the insights, here are the four things businesses can do to effectively use sport in their marketing campaigns to drive greater engagement among their customers.

  1. Ensure your visuals are relatable 

Not everyone can be Ariarne Titmus or Peter Bol. About 68% of people in ANZ want companies to celebrate diversity of all kinds, and yet 62% still do not feel represented in media and advertising. So remember to be inclusive in your visual choices and avoid relying on visuals of toned, young athletes. Ensure you are also including intersectional identities such as body shapes, types, sizes, abilities, age and gender. 

How to integrate sport into your marketing in an authentic and inclusive way

Around 18% of Aussies and 24% of Kiwis live with some form of disability, and 27% of the ANZ population are aged 55+, so think about the range of exercise and fitness on offer, from wheelchair basketball, to senior yoga and running buggy groups. Sport and exercise can be both an individual and group activity, so it’s important to consider visuals of both.

  1. Celebrate togetherness

Sporting events such as the Olympics, Paralympics, The Ashes and Australian Open bring people together – virtually or in person – to celebrate, enjoy each other’s company and cheer on their favourite athletes. The Visual GPS research shows that 84% of people in ANZ look for ways to celebrate the good things in their life. This could be as simple as showing how we are celebrating having a meal or drinks together at home with our family, partners or housemates.

How to integrate sport into your marketing in an authentic and inclusive way
Photo: Trade

Consider visualizing the ways in which people are connecting virtually and celebrating sporting successes with loved ones from afar. The same research highlights that this is incredibly important to people, with 82% of people across ANZ finding that technology helps them feel connected to others. 

  1. Consider fitness more holistically

In Australia, the priority most valued during the pandemic was personal health and wellbeing, followed closely by the health and wellbeing of family. Attitudes to ‘wellness’ have changed, with 94% of people in ANZ believing it is equally important to take care of themselves emotionally as well as physically. When thinking about fitness, consider it holistically and include the benefits it can have on people’s emotional wellbeing. Use visuals which show the emotional rewards people get from sport and exercise and encourage physical health in the making, rather than the results of exercise on physical appearance. 

How to integrate sport into your marketing in an authentic and inclusive way

Connect authentically with supportive depictions of mental health, and include visuals which represent a broad spectrum of proactive self‑care moments, from a video yoga class at home, to a walk on the beach, to a Zoom call with friends, or sharing a healthy meal with family.

  1. Get back to nature

International travel bans and limits on time allowed outside the home have meant Aussies are exploring their own backyard. Searches on iStock for ‘outdoor living’ and ‘Australian nature’ have both increased by 144%, reflecting how people are reconnecting with nature and finding inspiration and restfulness in the outdoors.

How to integrate sport into your marketing in an authentic and inclusive way
Photo: View Productions

When selecting your visual content, consider the different ways in which people are embracing the outdoors and moving freely through landscapes and uncrowded spaces. Visualizing the mindful ways in which people are engaging in outdoor activities will resonate well with your customers of all ages.

With the continued impact of the pandemic, sports present an opportunity for businesses, regardless of industry, to connect and celebrate with their customers. 

This article was written by Kate Rourke, head of creative insights for Asia Pacific at Getty Images and iStock.
Technology Featured APAC

AppsFlyer welcomes new APAC senior director for marketing

Singapore – Marketing analytics company AppsFlyer welcomes strategic technology marketing veteran Sam Chiu as the new senior director for marketing for Asia-Pacific, where he will be responsible for spearheading AppsFlyer’s brand awareness, strategic marketing strategies, and demand generation for the company in the region.

Currently based out of Hong Kong, Sam will relocate to AppsFlyer’s SEAPAC hub in Bangkok, where he will play a critical role in driving AppsFlyer’s go-to-market strategy for over 22 markets across ASEAN, South Asia (including India and Pakistan), Japan, Korea, and ANZ.

Sam brings an extensive amount of experience with close to twenty years of digital transformation and omni-channel strategy implementation to AppsFlyer’s Southeast Asia-Pacific (SEAPAC) team. His full stack marketing tech career spans Boston, New York City and Hong Kong across agencies like iProspect, publishers and ad networks such as Microsoft and Yahoo, as well as B2C & B2B advertisers, with deep experience driving campaign results for various Fortune 500 firms.

Speaking about his appointment, Chiu said, “AppsFlyer is experiencing phenomenal growth, not only in APAC but globally, and I am honored to work alongside talented individuals in the team to further advance our marketing efforts and assert AppsFlyer’s dominance in the region. AppsFlyer is well-positioned to help marketers transform their businesses, and the mobile marketing industry continues to expand with the use of mobile apps wildly increasing day by day. I am excited about what lies ahead.”

Chiu will report to Ronen Mense, president and managing director for APAC at AppsFlyer.

“Throughout the last twelve months we have continued to focus on growing AppsFlyer, not only in APAC, but globally. In a crucial time of AppsFlyer’s expansion, Sam brings in a wide range of experience, having worked at an array of established players in the industry. His role will drive key business goals in the region,” Mense added.

Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

Real estate firm Colliers appoints new PH head of marketing & comms

Manila, Philippines – Professional services and investment management firm Colliers has recently appointed Rodel Ambas as the new head of marketing and communications for Colliers Philippines, effective immediately. 

Ambas will continue to implement Colliers’ brand guidelines to ensure that all of the firm’s marketing and communications efforts are consistent and well aligned with their core values and vision, collaborating with stakeholders to drive exceptional results.

Prior to his new role, he was with consulting firm Pinnacle Consulting as the head of marketing, where he was responsible for the property listings and customer service teams to ensure that the company’s branding, communications and performance marketing initiatives are well aligned and executed.

Before joining Colliers, he also had experience with companies like real estate marketplaces ZipMatch and Lamudi, and has provided consulting for various companies to help boost their content and public relations strategies to earn PR mileage through events and regular seeding of press releases.

Speaking about the recent appointment, Richard Raymundo, managing director for Philippines at Colliers, said, “I am confident that Rodel will contribute to leading our industry into the future given his enterprising and collaborative spirit. This will further strengthen Colliers’ branding and positioning in Philippine real estate.”

Meanwhile, Michelle Doyle-Jones, director of marketing and communications for Asia at Colliers, commented, “We are excited to have Rodel join our team to lead and further strengthen the Colliers brand in the Philippines. His relevant experience in real estate will certainly help us to drive exceptional results to accelerate the success of our clients and our people.”

Marketing Featured ANZ

Activation agency Traffik to now aid brands in sponsorship strategy via new practice

Melbourne, Australia – Following its recent brand repositioning to cater to the theme of ‘Everything Activation’, activation agency Traffik has announced the roll out of its new sponsorship offering, which offers marketing and creative expertise to client businesses.

As part of the sponsorship offering roll out, it has appointed Mark Edney as Traffik’s head of sponsorship.

Through the offering, Traffik will be working in tandem with the wide expertise of the Clemenger Group to offer business, marketing and creative services to clients, which includes sponsorship strategy, portfolio evaluation, contract negotiation and servicing.

For Edney, there has been an evident lack of transparency in sponsorship consultancy that is blurring the motivation around recommendations. He added that the aspect of sponsorship is one of the biggest and most powerful decisions the modern-day marketer has to navigate.

“Unlike other areas of marketing, sponsorship decisions at times lack strategic rigour and are disconnected from the broader business and marketing objectives. We are a proud, brand-side only sponsorship consultancy product which provides clients with objective, commercial and strategic support, without rights-holder biases,” he stated.

Meanwhile, James Neale, CEO at Traffik, commented, “We know that there’s been a real need for a change in the sponsorship industry that is more transparent, more focused on commercial outcomes and ultimately, tied in with recommendations around how to activate that sponsorship across the full gamut of channels, which is what Mark and his team have created. We’re thrilled to see it come to life and the positive impact it’s having with clients already.”