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Technology Featured Global

HubSpot announces platform-wide enhancements in its INBOUND 2022 event

United States – Global customer relationship management (CRM) platform HubSpot has announced new features and updates to help businesses create deeper, more meaningful connections with their customers in its annual INBOUND event.

HubSpot said that fundamental shifts in buyer behaviours have made it increasingly challenging for organisations to create meaningful connections with their customers. In fact, research from Gartner found that when considering a purchase, B2B buyers spend only 17% of that time actually meeting with the potential suppliers. A major driver of that disconnection is the proliferation of new software and technology, making it hard for companies to connect with their data and systems, as well as with each other. HubSpot’s latest releases are a response to this current crisis of disconnection.

Yamini Rangan, CEO of HubSpot, noted that they believe the businesses that will win in the future are the ones that focus on customer connection, not customer management, and they are committed to helping their customers grow in this new world by providing strategies, technology, and communities that foster deeper connections. 

“I’m excited about the product developments we announced today at INBOUND because they empower our customers to do even more to solve this crisis with HubSpot’s connected CRM platform,” said Rangan. 

According to HubSpot, when looking to connect with customers, companies need to look beyond the software, and focus on what customers actually want – ownership, flexible buying experiences and deeper connections with companies and one another. As a CRM platform, HubSpot addresses this need by enabling merchants to connect with their own customers when and where they want. 

With newly launched payment schedules, HubSpot merchants can customise their payments through a collection of dates and amounts. Additionally, HubSpot’s quote-to-cash solutions help teams save time through the quoting, billing and contracting process. Targeting operational efficiencies, these enhancements create a fast, seamless experience for customers.

Moreover, HubSpot also released new data management enhancements to provide customers with transparent and timely data insights through import error handling and enhanced automation. The newest data import experience flags and resolves data errors before they are ever published. Data quality automation recommendations also eliminate the manual burden of fixing data errors. Using the power of HubSpot AI assistance, customers can now set up automation to resolve issues as they surface. As a result, teams can now spend less time on manual work and reactive problem-solving, giving customers more time and confidence to level up their impact.

Additionally, having a comprehensive view of the entire customer journey is a key part of fostering customer connections, which is why HubSpot announced the upcoming launch of customer journey analytics at INBOUND. The new feature, available in public beta later this year, will provide marketers with detailed visualisations that make it easier to identify moments in the customer journey that can be optimised for better conversion and deeper insights into customer behaviours. HubSpot also announced enhancements to campaigns to provide marketers with a consolidated view of all initiatives together.

HubSpot also announced new features to help customer service teams create more connected experiences. Teams using Service Hub can now interact with their customers through a fully connected service desk, complete with a helpdesk, channels, and automation. Through the new WhatsApp integration, currently available through public beta, teams can connect a WhatsApp business account to their shared inbox to communicate with prospects and customers without leaving the HubSpot platform. With the introduction of inbound calling, customers can make and receive calls right from HubSpot without exposing their personal phone numbers.

The platform also addresses the need for connected customer data for sales organisations through new data quality features to keep customer data connected, clean, and secure. With the custom object builder, teams can now craft customised data models without code, and enforce consistent data entry with property validations. Prioritising data hygiene is easier than ever with HubSpot’s data quality command centre, where teams can get insights on the health of all data in one place.

Kat Warboys, HubSpot’s marketing director for APAC, said, “Creating meaningful, lasting connections is the future. HubSpot is on a mission to create a powerful and easy-to-use product that gives you the insights you need to drive growth in this changing landscape. At INBOUND, we announced a wide range of innovations all to this end – tools to identify and connect with your customers, and insights to drive growth.”

In addition to new product updates, HubSpot also announced the launch of connect.com, a newly connected community for growth professionals that helps them build strong relationships with their peers and community.

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Platforms Featured Southeast Asia

Consumer analytics firm Milieu Insight launches new features for mobile app

Singapore – Southeast Asia research and analytics firm Milieu Insight has unveiled the new update of its mobile survey app, Milieu Surveys, which provides flexibility and convenience of gaining insights into localized trending topics.

Milieu’s opinion-sharing community is made up of an extensive representative panel across all ages, and segment groups, enabling quality consumer research results at quicker turnaround times. Milieu Survey’s innovative survey technology allows respondents to take surveys, polls, and quizzes, as well as learn, and earn at the same time.

The new app update builds on its previous version, focusing on offering a superior user experience with a host of new gamification features. By utilizing highly visual gamification elements, language localization features and engaging, interactive content, the new app experience encourages active participation and delivery of high-quality data.

The new key features include ‘play’, which allows users to earn points from participating in surveys, taking daily quizzes or ‘Hot Topic’ polls, and also earn booster points from time to time. It also includes ‘track’, which enables users to view their status tier and track how many points they have earned, surveys completed, and activity history. And lastly, the ‘spend’ feature, which allows users to redeem their reward points for attractive items such as shopping vouchers or donations to charity.

Gerald Ang, Milieu Insight’s founder and CEO, shared that they started Milieu Insight to make market research accessible to everyone – consumers and businesses alike.

“We are excited to have reached a new milestone with our Milieu Surveys mobile app, as we continue to innovate and find new ways to transform the market research landscape, empowering our clients to move beyond legacy ways of conducting consumer research,” said Ang.

Meanwhile, Stephen Tracy, Milieu Insight’s COO, commented that the success of their data collection app, Milieu Surveys, was built on their unwavering commitment to user-centricity.

“Our latest app upgrade doubles down on our commitment to offering our users a great experience, while adding exciting new features and ways to collect new types of data that are opt-in and permission-based,” said Tracy.

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Platforms Featured Southeast Asia

Shopee launches new live stream in-app features for sellers to boost sales

Manila, Philippines – In line with the upcoming 8.8 Mega Flash Sale, Shopee has launched the new ‘Livestream Flash Sale’ and ‘In-app Business Insights’, features that aim to help sellers gain more viewers and boost their sales during streaming sessions on Shopee Live, the e-commerce’s dedicated in-app live streaming feature where merchants promote their shops and products directly to shoppers.

For the consumers, the new ‘Livestream Flash Sale’ in-app feature enables bargain hunters to land more deals and real-time discounts offered by shoppers online. On the seller side, they can now easily view their live stream data to acquire useful insights to help them strategize and further enhance their live streams. 

In addition, the new ‘In-app Business Insights’ feature allows live streamers to view their live stream data to acquire useful insights to help them strategize and further enhance their live streams. It also lets streamers gauge what their viewers like and what the best-selling products are, so sellers can cater their product selection to viewers’ preferences and achieve better sales.

Shopee Philippines’ Director, Martin Yu, was quoted “We will continue to support them by providing the necessary tools to help them engage with their customers more. Shopee will continue to offer Filipinos a fun and interactive experience.” 

Shopee said that the newly launched features are just two of the many things users can look forward to the nearing 8.8 Mega Flash Sale. Until 8 August, users can also get free shipping vouchers, enjoy daily flash promos, and exclusive deals when checking out using in-app e-wallet ShopeePay.

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Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

AnyMind Group extends AnyTag beyond ad, pr agencies, unveils new features

Singapore – Marketing technology solutions provider AnyMind Group has recently announced that it is opening up its influencer marketing platform, AnyTag, to talent management agencies, influencer agencies, and multi-channel networks.

The AnyTag platform, which is already being used by marketing and public relations agencies across Asia, has a feature for influencer companies that enables deeper social media and channel analytics of their own influencers, identification of brand collaboration opportunities, and real-time campaign reporting. It also provides influencer companies with a single platform to better understand their talent and keep track of brand collaborations that their talents are working on.

Furthermore, influencer companies can also tap on AnyMind Group’s offerings in the direct-to-consumer space, including cloud manufacturing, e-commerce, and logistics, to enable their talents to create their own brands and sell their own branded products.

Following this endeavor, the company has also announced new features for marketers including lookalike modeling of influencers through natural language processing (NLP) where they can easily identify influencers who are similar to high-performing influencers from previous campaigns and easier identification of brands an influencer has worked with before which can also aid in decision-making when selecting influencers for a campaign.

Both initiatives aim to make influencer marketing more collaborative, addressable, and accurate.

AnyMind Group’s Chief Operating Officer Rohit Sharma said that they now have the technology and business infrastructure to drive greater industry advancement across Asia and beyond.

He further shared that over the years, they have built a highly robust platform not just with a keen focus on functionality, but also one where they help marketers unlock opportunities for big data utilization in influencer marketing – from understanding user conversions and conversations to predictions, recommendations, among others. 

“We will continue innovating and pushing boundaries in the technological aspect of influencer marketing and drive the next stage of evolution,” said Sharma.

Most recently, AnyMind Group announced the launch of the new features on its publisher platform, AnyManager, to help mobile and web publishers to tap on the continued growth of mobile usage. The company also announced a strategic partnership with Japan-based multi-channel network (MCN) UUUM to mutually utilize UUUM’s resources and AnyMind Group’s technology and data for influencer marketing and direct-to-consumer (D2C) offerings.

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Platforms Featured Southeast Asia

Grab Indonesia unveils major boost to green campaign #LangkahHijau come Earth Day

Jakarta, Indonesia – To commemorate this year’s World Earth Day, super-app Grab has partnered with Indonesian government officials, strategic business partners, and the private sector, to take #LangkahHijau campaign to the next level.

The #LangkahHijau (‘green steps’) is a campaign first introduced in 2019 by the ride-hailing app in order to supercharge its sustainability efforts. Its mission is to commit to a cleaner and greener Indonesia by introducing three efforts, which are Carbon Offsetting, Electric Vehicle Provision, and Recycling efforts with GrabExpress Recycle.

First off, the new carbon offset feature to reduce emissions allows consumers to carbon offset their Grab rides at a price of IDR200 for two-wheeled vehicles and IDR500 for four-wheeled vehicles. Through Grab’s partnership with Benihbaik.com and EcoMatcher, this contribution will go directly to tree planting in Central Java which is managed by the Bumi Hijau Lestari Foundation, a non-profit organization that focuses on renewing the environment and empowering local communities through reforestation and education. Consumers can participate in this initiative in the Grab application features through the Tree Planting Fund (Plant Tree Fund) starting 20 April.

In terms of its electric fleet, Grab will start piloting the GrabBike Electric Protect vehicle fleet in Jakarta, Bali, and Yogyakarta starting 22 April. Grab said that lessons learned from this trial will form the basis for further expansion of the use of electric vehicles for direct consumers to reduce carbon emissions.

Meanwhile, in terms of its recycling efforts, the super-app shared that it will be adding up to 50 waste bank points in the Jadetabek area and continue to expand to 40 delivery points in Bandung in order to make the activity of recycling easier and more accessible for consumers.

Ridzki Kramadibrata, the president of Grab Indonesia, stated that the company believes that realizing a reduction in carbon footprint and environmental impact also goes hand in hand with creating economic opportunities for local communities. 

“We are constantly looking for ways to reduce our carbon footprint and enhance our environmental sustainability initiatives through various partnerships. Our latest carbon offset program in collaboration with Ecomatcher and Yayasan Bumi Hijau Lestari will provide an opportunity for us to minimize the impact of our business on Indonesia’s environment,” said Kramadibrata.

In addition to the new initiatives, the super-app has also released a virtual exhibition of #LangkahHijau, which can be accessed by the public starting 22 April on the GrabForGood Step Hijau website. The virtual exhibition aims to raise awareness of the small steps consumers can take to protect the environment.

Neneng Goenadi, the country managing director of Grab Indonesia, commented, “We are very grateful for the support that has been given from the government, state-owned companies, private sector partners, and leading EV industry players. We will add a fleet of 1,500 electric vehicles so that more driver and delivery partners have access to electric vehicles on our platform.”

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Platforms Featured Global

Spotify goes global with inclusion of over 30 languages in platform

Stockholm, Sweden – Music streaming platform Spotify has announced that it will be rolling around 36 language support in its platform following its announcement last February 22 on the livestreaming announcement “Stream On”.

The new update makes the total languages on the platform to 62, and is part of the company’s update to make Spotify more accessible for speakers of these additional languages worldwide, and goes hand in hand with the company’s commitment to building a “borderless audio ecosystem.”

Some languages include those from Asia Pacific namely Bengali, Bhojpuri, Simplified Chinese, Filipino, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Malayalam, Marathi, Nepali, Odia, Eastern and Western Punjabi, as well as Tamil, Telugu, and Urdu.

Other global languages include Afrikaans, Amharic, Azerbaijani, Bulgarian, Croatian, Danish, Estonian, Icelandic, Latvian, Lithuanian, Norwegian, Persian, Portuguese for Portugal, Romanian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovenian, Swahili, Ukrainian, and Zulu.

“These market and language expansions allow us to engage with more listeners, in more places, in more languages. By reaching more people, we are giving millions of new creators the opportunity to build a career, while connecting existing creators with new audiences,” Spotify said in a press statement.

Spotify has lately expanded its growth globally, adding over 80 markets that Spotify will serve, ranging from countries in Africa to the Carribean.

To date, Spotify’s library contains more than 70 million tracks, 4.5 billion playlists, and more than two million podcasts, made by over eight million creators.

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Platforms Featured Southeast Asia

Lazada’s LazMall refreshes brand look, unveils four new features to platform

Singapore – Ahead of its 9.9 shopping festival and in conjunction with LazMall’s second anniversary celebration, Lazada has unveiled a refreshed look for its brand and has introduced as well four new features to its platform. 

LazMall’s signature hues of red and black have been accentuated for the revamped look. In addition to fresh visuals, the company said that it will be offering brands increased visibility and traffic as well as improved quality of consumer leads. 

LazMall is the in-app virtual mall of eCommerce platform Lazada which was launched in 2018.  

Today, the company adds four new features: Beat the Price, Brands for You, a brand directory, and a new follow button. 

With Beat the Price, deal-seekers can discover market-beating prices on a daily assortment of top-selling products. Brands for You, on the other hand, is the platform’s customization of recommended brands based off user interest and recent interactions with the LazMall channel.

Meanwhile, Lazmall will now offer a comprehensive directory of all brands. The channel also now comes with a ‘follow’ button, where users can follow their favorite brands and sellers to get access to the latest updates on deals and offers.

“LazMall plays a key role in Lazada’s overall business strategy as local and international brands look to advance their presence and growth through an omnichannel approach in Southeast Asia. By strengthening the consumer online commerce journey, we provide brands with more avenues to diversify and increase their consumer touchpoints,” said Jessica Liu, co-president, and regional head of commercial at Lazada Group.