Main Feature Marketing APAC

What’s NEXT 2023 Conference: Carousell Media Group’s managing director sheds light on what’s next in retail media this 2023

Singapore – As the pandemic thrust consumers to rely more on digital consumption, brands had to recalibrate their presence and leverage online channels to ensure they continued to reach their target consumers. This pandemic-induced reality is what gave way to the third wave of Digital Advertising — prompted by Retail Media. 

In the recently concluded conference ‘What’s NEXT 2023: Marketing in Asia Pacific’ by MARKETECH APAC, JJ Eastwood, managing director at Carousell Media Group, dug deeper into retail media and how it became the way to activate digital advertising’s now ‘third big wave’.

Watch the full presentation of Carousell Media Group’s JJ Eastwood here.

If we’re now in the third, where can we date back the earlier ripples? The study by Interactive Advertising Bureau Southeast Asia and India (IAB SEA+India) and Carousell Media Group revealed that the first wave, in fact, started with the search era in the 2000s and then followed by the social era in the 2010s when social media networks took part in digital advertising. Fast forward to 2020 — retail media networks finally took over. 

Retail media networks are classified into digital marketplaces, mass merchant retailers, and commerce intermediaries or delivery providers. To name a few, some known retail media networks are Amazon and Walmart in the US and in Asia, there are Carousell, Grab ads and panda ads.

In his presentation, Eastwood emphasised that five factors are driving the growth of retail media. This includes first-party data, which enables retail media networks to serve customers with relevant advertisements; closed-loop attribution, which helps in better understanding of ads; contextually relevant ads to the consumer; ability to reach relevant audiences at scale; and capability to run full-funnel campaigns. 

However, in particular, the growth of retail media was propelled by sponsored search ads which make up almost 80% of retail media networks’ revenue. 

Eastwood explained, “Those sponsored search ads are as relevant as organic search listings. This is what is at the core of every retail media network, what delivers results and meaningful insights for brands.”

The existence of retail media fills the needs of the brands since there has been a decline in television advertisements and the loss of third-party identifiers, whilst the stores are starting to shift into the digital world.

With this, Eastwood emphasised the retail media trends that emerged, particularly in Asia, where 99% of the brands and agencies plan to increase their retail media spending over the next 12 months. Moreover, according to Eastwood, 70% of advertisers are seeing an improvement in performance from retail media networks over other channels, whilst brands say that they will advertise on a retail media network despite not listing products in that marketplace.

Marketers face many challenges when advertising, such as measuring marketing outcomes, optimising cross-channel campaigns, and removing third-party identifiers, particularly cookies. Eastwood shared how retail media can solve these challenges. 

What’s next for retail media in Asia? Concluding his presentation, Eastwood said, “I think what is gonna happen for the next six to 12 months, particularly in Asia, are more data collaborations. Retailers and brands can come together and enrich each other’s data upon what they know about certain consumer profiles.”

He added, “Through the use of DSPs, Retail media is moving up the funnel into video and digital out-of-home formats. However, through the likes of shoppable videos, retail media will blur the lines between traditional branding campaigns and direct response.”

What’s NEXT 2023: Marketing in Asia Pacific is the inaugural 2-day hybrid industry conference of MARKETECH APAC which was launched last February 28 and March 1 as a culminating event under What’s NEXT 2023. 

More than 200 in-person participants and more than 100 virtual attendees participated in the conference to know more about what’s next in the different marketing disciplines including growth marketing, marketing and technology, retail media, public relations, travel marketing, influencer marketing, customer experience, and many more.

In the virtual conference held on the second day, Eastwood was joined by other marketing leaders from panda ads, Boost, CARSOME, and Hubilo, PrimeCredit Limited and Rentokil Initial amongst others, who also shared their insights about various marketing facets.

Carousell Media Group, the speaker for the keynote presentation, is a proud bronze sponsor of What’s NEXT 2023: Marketing in Asia Pacific. Carousell Media Group is the advertising arm of Carousell Group, which helps brands across Southeast Asia and Hong Kong acquire new customers and increase sales. With tens of millions of active shoppers and hundreds of millions of product searches on its marketplaces every month, brands can connect with consumers through full-funnel campaigns, drive conversions and gain valuable marketing insights.

Marketing Featured ANZ

Initiative retains media account of distillery company Pernod Ricard

Sydney, Australia After a competitive pitch, media agency Initiative has retained its media remit for distillery company Pernod Ricard to work across the entire brand portfolio including all Pernod’s wine, spirit, whiskey, champagne, RTD and ‘new to world’ brands, focusing on Australia and New Zealand market.

Since its sealed partnership in 2019, Initiative has helped the company to propel into culture, with notable highlights including challenging gender bias through The Glenlivet Break The Rules campaign, tackling regional inequality through Absolut Pride Relay, and launching major brands like Malfy Gin and Altos Tequila into market. 

Jo McAlister, managing director at Initiative, said that the agency is excited for another 3 years of partnership with the company to continue its journey in leading ANZ’s competitive alcohol beverage markets across all brand categories.

“This is phenomenal news and we are so proud to continue our partnership. For the past three years we have grown together as brands, collaborating via a truly open and transparent relationship and enjoying an agency/client bond that I’ve rarely seen in market,” McAlister added.

Eric Thomson, CMO at Pernod Ricard Winemakers, added, “The chemistry between Initiative’s team and ours was evident from the start of our relationship three years ago and it has not waned. We are delighted to continue our partnership as we both push forward to produce effective and creative work that connects and engages our customers in an increasingly complex market.”

In January, Initiative also retained its media business remit for energy networks owner Jemena Limited, extending its 10-year relationship with the brand. 

Marketing Featured Global

Ex-McCann Emily Chang joins Wunderman Thompson as CEO of West Coast region

New York – To strengthen its status as one of the few significant agencies on the West Coast, marketing communications agency Wunderman Thompson has appointed Emily Chang as its chief executive officer for West Coast region to lead its offices in LA, Seattle, as well as the Swift boutique agency in Portland.

Chang’s remit also includes overseeing the region’s growing client portfolio including technology companies Microsoft, T-Mobile, Qualcomm, Venmo, Snap, and major automotive brands and DTC companies whilst leveraging Swift boutique agency’s creative and social media expertise.

Prior to joining Wunderman Thompson, Chang also held the CEO position at McCann Worldgroup in China where she restructured the leadership team and developed new strategic and digital capabilities to grow its revenue. 

On the brand side, Chang served as CMO at Starbucks China, chief commercial officer at InterContinental Hotels Group, and was the first executive in China for Apple Retail.

Audrey Melofchik, CEO at Wunderman Thompson North America describes Chang as a powerhouse leader who will bring people together to deliver inspiring brand stories along with her expertise across the marketing ecosystem.

Chang added, “I’ve watched Wunderman Thompson’s build its reputation as the authority on inspiration and look forward to tapping into this insight and adding inspiration of my own when it comes to our clients and culture.”

This month, Wunderman Thompson has also appointed Raji Ramaswamy as chief growth officer and Joy Chauhan as chief client officer for South Asia. 

Marketing Featured ANZ

Host/Havas promotes Anthony Moore to managing director role

Australia Creative agency Host/Havas has announced the promotion of Anthony Moore as its managing director to continue being hands-on with the agency’s clients including Reckitt, Tourism Fiji, and the Australian Federal Police, whilst expanding his responsibilities more broadly for the agency.

In 2015, Moore joined the agency as its managing partner. He became an integral part of its projects including the creation of Australia’s second most popular podcast for the Australian Federal Police. He also contributed to the win of the hotly contested Tourism Fiji pitch and helped Air New Zealand become Australia’s most trusted brand five years in a row.

James Wright, chief executive officer at Havas Creative Network, said that Moore has been a crucial player in the agency’s success, from developing strong client relationships, supporting the delivery of their iconic campaigns, and building a fun culture. 

Meanwhile, Moore said, “I’m really proud of everything we have achieved together, particularly over the past few years and the culture we continue to build at Host/Havas. The team here are incredibly talented and certainly make my job easier every day.”

Host/Havas specialises in blending creativity and technology to solve real business problems, from brand thinking and design to innovation, CX, tech consulting, and digital development.

Marketing Featured ANZ

Tug Sydney expands remit with tourist attraction operator Merlin Entertainments

Sydney, Australia In addition to its existing remit in Australia, digital marketing agency Tug agency has expanded its partnership with entertainment company and tourist attraction operator Merlin Entertainment to increase the share of voice and audience traffic for all Merlin Entertainments attractions in Australia and New Zealand through free, organic, editorial and natural search results. 

Merlin Entertainments, which is a home for tourist attractions, appointed the agency in July last year to manage the search engine optimisation for SEA LIFE Sydney. In the expanded role, the agency will now work on all four SEA LIFE locations in Australia and New Zealand and other attractions including WILDLIFE Sydney Zoo, LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Melbourne, Illawarra Fly Treetop Adventure and Otway Fly Treetop Adventure, Madame Tussauds and Sydney Tower Eye.

Matt Newman, head of e-commerce at Merlin Entertainments for APAC said that Tug agency has been consistently delivering strong performance so they are delighted to expand the agency’s remit for their operations in Australia and New Zealand.

“Merlin Entertainments offers something for everyone and we look forward to engaging more visitors at our attractions and creating more magical experiences for our guests with the help of Tug’s digital marketing expertise,” Newman added.

Charlie Bacon, managing director at Tug Sydney, commented, “Following a successful trial, we welcome the opportunity to extend our specialist search capabilities for all of Merlin Entertainments venues. They operate some of the most unique and memorable visitor attractions and the team is ready to ensure that the business continues to enjoy customer growth.”

Tug agency specialises in performance media, using data, media, content and technology with offices in Sydney, Singapore, London, Toronto and Berlin.

Marketing Featured East Asia

Japan telecom KDDI unveils metaverse platform brand ‘Alpha-U’ via Geometry Ogilvy Japan

Tokyo, Japan Japan’s leading telecommunications firm KDDI, in partnership with marketing communications agency Geometry Ogilvy Japan, creates a virtually produced film to showcase aU (Alpha–U), its new web3 metaverse platform brand.

In partnership with its parent company WPP, the agency crafts a 30-second clip which showcases four artistic illustrations made by GenZ artist Mayu Yukishita which were used as building blocks connected using AI midjourney and stable diffusion to generate interpolated animation of the platform brand.

The clip was also associated with visual effects to assemble the scenes, mixed with music and narration using japanese language.

Yasushi Arikawa, executive creative director of Geometry Ogilvy Japan, said that this AI-generated creative expression was inevitable for KDDI’s new brand αU that offers services that focus on Web3 and the metaverse.

“This film, in which AI and a virtual singer tell a story about the concept of “Already, one world” that blends the real and virtual worlds, takes us beyond the “uncanny valley” to an emotionally charged story,” Arikawa added.

Geometry Ogilvy supports all the creative direction for the new Alpha U collaboration, including all branding, communication design, events, and press conferences.

The launching was also done in partnership with Sydney-based production house Alt.vfx, and their subsidiary global creative studio T&DA, along with design agency New Holland Creative and THINKR.

Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

Oat-based milk brand Oatbedient sees mascot ‘Oatdit’ reminding benefits of plant-based products

Singapore – With its vision to provide oat-based products that are good for its consumers and environment, Oat-based milk brand Oatbedient, in collaboration with independent creative agency GOVT Singapore, has launched a new brand film that sees its mascot – the bubbly little oat ‘Oatdit’ – reminding consumers of the health benefits they’ll gain from choosing plant-based products. 

Titled ‘Oat My Goodness’, the 30-second clip is associated with uplifting music and colorful illustrations to present the series of plant-based Oatbedient products that are authentically healthy with no nasty ingredients, junk, or fillers.

The campaign also aims to show that Oatbedient brings ‘goodness’ to life whilst reminding that being healthy can also be delightful.

Elaine Teo, Co-founder of Oatbedient said that consumers are often exposed to a variety of products that have low or no nutritional value. Therefore, their vision for Oatbedient is to create delicious clean labelled products that can feed families.

Meanwhile, Jimmy Neo, group creative director of agency GOVT Singapore, added, “Oatbedient is a fun and quirky brand that is already likable. So our job was to make sure we help paint the journey of Oatdit introducing the products in an entertaining way.”

All works from the campaign will run across multiple channels including social media and digital.

Marketing Featured ANZ

Enigma expands remit with manufacturer New Holland to handle strategy, creative mandate for ANZ

Sydney, Australia – In addition to its existing media remit in Australia, independent creative, design, and media agency Enigma expands its partnership with global equipment manufacturer New Holland after winning the strategy & creative business remit for both Australia and New Zealand markets.

The agency’s new mandate will focus on all strategy, creative and production services and executions for Australia and New Zealand. This is all the while being responsible for media buying across all Australian national and local broadcast media, extending to print, outdoor, radio, cinema, digital, search, and social.

Jack Mason, managing director at Enigma, said that he’s delighted with the expansion of agency’s remit which allows New Holland to benefit from a full-service agency collaboration. 

“New Holland is a fantastic business with so much creative potential. Potential that will be easier to achieve by having strategy, creative and media working together within one agency. It makes collaboration easier, encourages exciting new perspectives and ultimately helps us produce best in class work for this iconic brand,” he added.

Meanwhile, Ross Purdy, head of marketing and communications at CNH Industrial in Australia & New Zealand, said that they’re pleased to expand the relationship with Enigma as their creative agency partner.

“Enigma has demonstrated a strong understanding of our audience from construction to agricultural. Through the pitch process we’ve been really impressed with their strategic perspective and a very exciting creative approach with the customer at the centre,” Purdy added.

Enigma focuses on creative, media, brand strategy and design, with offices in Sydney, Newcastle, and Brisbane.

Marketing Featured Global

WiredCo. bags creative remit of FMCG Edgewell, to launch its new brand

Global – After a three-way pitch process, Australia-based advertising agency WiredCo. has been appointed by global FMCG giant Edgewell to craft a campaign for its new brand launch. The remit extends across media, creative, social, earned media, digital and influencer marketing.

The creative campaign, which is set to launch in April, aims to raise the mass awareness and consideration towards the parent brand, which is home to some leading personal care brands, such as Wilkinson Sword, Banana Boat, Bulldog, Schick and WetOnes.

In line with this, the new brand launch will also see the group moving up to the leading category in supermarkets.

David Kennedy-Cosgrove, managing partner at WiredCo., said that the new brand aims to break norms in the FMCG category that has never had a competitor successfully challenge its mundanity.

Another managing partner at WiredCo. Michelle Hampton, added that they came up with an idea that is very ‘campaignable’ and they’re now capable of executing it across all leading channels including earned media.

Meanwhile, Ivan Nuich, managing director of Edgewell at Oceania, said, “What really stood out about the team at WiredCo. was their demonstrated ability to come up with a bigger overarching campaign idea that was clearly backed up by data and marketing science, and the technical specialism to show where it needs to live in market for maximum impact.” 

Works from the campaign will be executed for six months with a social media focus across TikTok and Pinterest.

WiredCo.’s portfolio of brands include Pizza Hut, R.M.Williams, Red Bull, Assembly Label, Indeed, Maurie & Eve, and Georg Jensen.

Marketing Featured South Asia

Wunderman Thompson appoints new chief growth officer, chief client officer for South Asia

India – With its commitment to maintaining growth and maximising business outcomes for clients, marketing communications agency Wunderman Thompson South Asia has promoted Raji Ramaswamy as its chief growth officer and Joy Chauhan as its chief client officer. They will report to Shams Jasani, chief executive officer at Wunderman Thompson South Asia. 

Ramaswamy will retain her CEO role at Contract India, Wunderman Thompson India’s group company and Chauhan will simultaneously work as a managing partner of Wunderman Thompson in Delhi.

In their new role, Ramaswamy and Chauhan will lead strategic growth for the group, focusing on new business and key clients across the region. They will also oversee client retention and business development, nurture teams of talent and drive strategic growth initiatives including the development of new client services and capabilities.

Ramaswamy brings with her over 25 years of experience in marketing and brand management. During her stint in Contract India, she maintained its vision to create the most integrated agency model for the future with a seamless multi-dimensional structure. 

Meanwhile, Chauhan brings with him experience in managing people across multiple business units. In his stint at Wunderman Thompson Delhi, he was responsible for driving the growth of the agency’s brands, people and business.

CEO Jasani said that Ramaswamy and Chauhan’s appointments come at a perfect timing when the agency can drive good impact for clients and business whilst delivering transformational work that builds Wunderman’s capabilities in creative, data, tech, and commerce.

“With India as one of our fastest growing markets and being uniquely poised to provide integrated solutions to our clients, we are on an ambitious growth trajectory with Raji and Joy as enablers to chart the best course for the next growth phase,” Jasani added.

This month, Wunderman Thompson also elevated Gavin Bain as its chief executive officer for Australia.