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Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

Kopitiam, AAMS’ tech partner Moving Walls tie up to boost food court advertising

Singapore – The island nation of Singapore has long been well-known as a haven for food lovers, with dining out being a large culture among Singaporeans who can choose from a wide variety of food courts. Tapping this large local ‘foodie’ culture is the latest endeavor tackled by the project of cooked food operator Kopitiam and the Association of Advertising and Marketing Singapore (AAMS), alongside its technology partner Moving Walls.

Said project, known as an ‘Industry Standard Measurement Project’, aims to bring accountability to Food Court advertising by deploying Moving Walls’ patented audience measurement to accelerate the adoption of technology on these media assets.

AAMS is currently championing an industry-wide regional Outernet media measurement initiative with Moving Walls. The project, through measuring physical location and people’s movement, powers planning, selling, verification, and re-targeting audiences using location-based Outernet media, has hit the ground running with the launch of its Outernet Marketing Innovation Group (OMIG) initiative.

For Bernard Chan, CEO of AAMS, said initiative is targeted to help open up untapped media segments in this space in response to increased demand for measurable media outside the internet world.

“Kopitiam has one of the largest footprints in various food services formats, and its participation in this project will be a big boost to our efforts. Outernet digitalization is going to be a game changer for the industry,” Chan stated.

Meanwhile, the project will also entail the implementation of a research layer using a synchronous mobile layer to understand the impact of this media, according to Srikanth Ramachandran, founder and group CEO at Moving Walls.

“Our patented solutions analyze these food courts to build a predictive forecasting of total potential views, unique reach, and frequency based on historical data points,” he added.

In terms of commitment, Vivek Kumar, director of strategic marketing and omnichannel monetization at FairPrice Group, their company commitment leans towards data-backed targeting and extended outreach to their partners.

“As part of FairPrice Group Media, the food media network of Kopitiam is an effective medium that not only reaches people like me who are ‘food lovers’, but can also help advertisers reach hyper-local communities to offer relevant products and services,” Kumar stated.

This is also seconded by Pauline Png, head of customer experience and marketing for FairPrice Group Food Services Business, who said that as part of the company’s business transformation journey in the food and beverage industry, it is important that they can understand their customers’ needs and experiences better in various food spaces, be it in mall food courts, coffee shops or hawker centers.

“This project with AAMS’ technology partner Moving Walls is a step in the right direction. I am excited to be able to develop superior experiences, food offerings, and communication that will delight our customers, tenants and partner brands,” Png concluded.

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Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

RICE appoints Raymond Lau as SG account director

Singapore – Strategic communications consultancy RICE has appointed Raymond Lau as the new account director in its Singapore office, where he brings over a decade of journalism, agency and in-house experience, and will be leading key accounts as the firm’s client portfolio continues to grow.

Prior to RICE, he led chemical company Linde’s digital communications function in Asia-Pacific, where he oversaw internal and external communications activities across the region. He previously served as regional public relations manager for consumer electronics company Razer, driving the company’s global and regional communications campaigns.

Lau began his career in journalism, contributing to publications like The Straits Times, Yahoo! News, Hardwarezone and Techgoondu.

Speaking about Lau’s appointment, Mayda Jutahkiti, general manager for Singapore at RICE, commented, “We are thrilled to have Raymond join our team. Having worked across both agency and in-house roles, and with extensive experience in B2B and technology sectors, he brings valuable perspective and depth to the table.”

She added, “We look forward to working with Raymond as we continue to hire consultants across all levels and expand the team.”

RICE also recognizes the promotions of three consultants: Lizzy Li and Eugenia Siah have been promoted to senior account managers and Lydia Lee to account manager.

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Marketing Southeast Asia

iNova Pharmaceuticals partners with The Teeth to launch new regional campaign for ‘Difflam’

Singapore – The multinational pharmaceutical company, iNova Pharmaceuticals, has just launched its latest campaign for one of its brands, ‘Difflam’, in Singapore and Malaysia.

iNova Pharmaceuticals develops and markets a range of over-the-counter and prescription medicines to the Asia Pacific, South Africa, and other markets. Its product portfolio includes weight management, pain management, dermatology, and cardiology, as well as respiratory health, and allergy.

The campaign, which is created in collaboration with creative agency The Teeth, includes a series of films, social media content, and in-store communications. It aims to show that high achievers cannot afford to be hindered by mild illnesses such as a sore throat, positioning its Difflam lozenges as a trusted solution.

Titled, ‘Feel The Relief with Difflam During Your Big Moments’, the brand films capture the functional and emotional benefits of Difflam. With striking imagery designed to stop people in their tracks, it immediately communicates the physical and metaphorical pain produced by an unwelcome sore throat in a way that’s hard to miss.

The films cover different relatable situations such as when attending a Zoom meeting, being at a birthday party, or asking someone for a date, as said scenarios, the brand says, have become even more meaningful in the middle of a pandemic.

Ben Agnew, The Teeth’s co-founder and managing partner, shared, “Last year, Difflam established its pain-relieving credentials by featuring a bride on her wedding day. This year we wanted to go deeper and feature more frequent high-stake moments.”

Meanwhile, Zee Agnew, The Teeth’s founder and business partner, shared that in developing the campaign, they needed a creative idea to make the point that they have the best range of products to treat the two kinds of sore throats that Difflam has solutions for – the dry and itchy, and the painful stabbing ones. 

“The visual language had to be understood across all the markets we had to reach, so we went to great lengths to get it right. The films were produced by Breed and the photography by Colossal, in Singapore. And to create the most realistic blend between the cactus and the neck, we commissioned the visual effects to The Imago in Brazil,” said Agnew.

Jenny Shortall, iNova’s marketing director for Asia, commented, “We are all really impressed and proud of the new brand assets. It’s great to see a clear linkage to our brand strategy, footprint, and past campaigns, and on top have really high-quality material. It was a big effort catering for all the market’s requests.”

The pharmaceutical company also announced that the campaign will be launched in Hong Kong later this year.

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SME Featured Southeast Asia

Singapore’s Keepital becomes a channel partner at Alibaba.com

Singapore – Keepital, the one-stop provider of design, IT, and marketing & advertising services for all industries, has partnered with Alibaba as a global service partner to enhance Keepital’s support for local businesses beyond Singapore. Keepital said its aim is to connect businesses and suppliers in Singapore to the rest of the world.

Alibaba.com is the flagship e-commerce of the Alibaba Group. It owns one of the biggest global marketplaces in the world with its vision ‘Global Buy, Global Sell’, empowering goods to travel globally and for merchants to trade freely. Keepital now as an authorized channel partner will share in the goal of helping small businesses sell their goods around the world. Keepital is one of the only two authorized channel partners of the e-commerce in Singapore, together with e-commerce consultant, Innovative Hub. 

Keepital believes that the partnership will support the next stage for businesses as digitalization becomes a crucial strategy in times of the pandemic. Traditional methods will no longer be enough to sustain and grow the business, most especially for cross-border enterprises. 

Online platforms such as Alibaba.com have become the leading way to easily achieve global reach as well as local and regional. Alibaba.com earlier launched in June an initiative to bring more B2B SMEs in Singapore on board, which is its first such initiative in the Asia-Pacific region outside Greater China.

Aside from Singapore, Keepital also operates in Malaysia and Thailand.

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Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

Singtel’s ad for the Olympics bares athletes’ journey in socially-constrained new normal

Singapore – Singapore’s telecommunications Singtel has released a new ad that illustrates both heritage and personal triumph as it pays tribute to the realization of the Tokyo Olympics, which had to be postponed for a year in 2020 due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

The film features the country’s national players for the Olympics; swimmer Joseph Schooling, shuttler Loh Kean Yew, fencer Kiria Tikanah, and sprinter Shanti Pereira, and how each dealt with the frustration and disappointment of having to come to terms with the Olympics’ cancelation after expectations had been up and training and preparations have been well placed. 

Adding to this, the ad also portrayed how beyond the Olympics, athletes, whether bound for the global competition or not and even those that have sports as a passion or as a source of living, had to struggle with the lockdown, being forced to give up physical activity to obey social distancing.

“I can’t believe it’s been postponed. I’ve trained so hard,” “I can’t go to the court. I can’t do my training,” the players would mutter with scenes where gloom and loneliness loom in a silenced living room or a shut oval. 

The ad portrays, most of all, the value of hope and resilience, still ending on a positive note, where players’ patience and ongoing training for their sports now finally rewarded as the Tokyo Olympics officially resumes. 

The featured players would be sending across inspirational messages such as how a winner never gives up, how failure only becomes such when one stops trying, and how true triumph is dealing straight on with adversity.

“Our athletes’ journey to the Olympics has been nothing short of inspiring. Making it to the games in any given year would be a coup but making it under the current circumstances takes a lot of grit and determination,” commented Aileen Tan, Singtel’s group chief people and sustainability officer. 

The new ad ‘Leading Through Uncertainty’ is part of Singtel’s ongoing branded content campaign, built around stories that reflect the Singtel Group’s values of community, family, diversity, and inclusivity. Last year’s festive film campaign also paid tribute to the Singapore spirit of tenacity and perseverance against the backdrop of the health crisis.

Alongside its tribute to the Olympics, the film is also in celebration of the country’s National Day, remembered every 9 August.

Tan said, “As we mark our second National Day under the cloud of COVID, the film is a way of celebrating the Singapore spirit of resilience that has brought us this far. Like our athletes, we’ve all been fighting the good fight, keeping our spirits up, and moving forward in spite of COVID. Yes, the journey has been fraught with uncertainty, false starts, and U-turns, but we hope the film will inspire us all to press on and keep trying.”

The film, which was conceptualized by the Singtel Brand team, has now been launched across the telecom’s YouTube and Facebook. It will also be airing on Singtel TV from 21 July 2021.

Singtel has been a long-time supporter of Team Singapore, having donated S$2.5m to the Singapore National Olympic Council to help fund the training of athletes since 2012. 

For this year’s global sports event, Singtel customers will be able to catch a broadcast by tuning in to all 14 Mediacorp channels for free on Singtel TV CH 21-34 and Singtel TV GO. It will also be available on Singtel CAST to all consumers, including non-Singtel customers.

The Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 will be held from 23 July to 8 August 2021, where 23 players are slated to represent Singapore.

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Technology Featured Southeast Asia

All-in-one social messaging platform for businesses, SleekFlow, expands to MY, SG

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia – SleekFlow, the Hong Kong start-up that provides an omnichannel social commerce platform to companies, has announced that it will now be expanding its business to SEA markets Malaysia and Singapore. This follows its recent funding that has raised a 7-figure MYR in a Pre-A round investment from Gobi Partners China (Gobi), the investment manager of Alibaba Entrepreneurs Fund (AEF).

SleekFlow helps companies manage communication channels such as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, WeChat, as well as Line and Live Chat, among others, through an all-in-one social messaging platform. It helps streamline sales, customer support, and marketing workflows while integrating with over 2000 tools, including e-commerce platforms and payment gateways, to automate the whole customer journey with ease.

According to Henson Tsai, the founder, and CEO of SleekFlow, there are about 8-10 unicorns in Hong Kong but very few selling SaaS products. Tsai said that SleekFlow aims to be a world-renowned Hong Kong SaaS brand which is why it has decided to first expand to Southeast Asia first and “then to the world.”

“SleekFlow is missioned to realize the full potential of social messaging for business all over the world,” said Tsai.

He adds, “First, I would like to express my gratitude towards the Gobi for believing in SleekFlow. Aiming to scale the height in the Southeast Asia Market, we will set up new teams in Malaysia and Singapore, where people rely heavily on WhatsApp.”

According to the platform, it has, within a year helped users across over 20 countries, with annual recurring revenue of 7-digit USD.

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Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

SG airline Scoot partners with cross-channel marketing platform Insider to boost CX

Singapore – As the pandemic continues to prolong the lifting of travel restrictions, airlines are doing everything they can to offset the heavy drop in demand, developing various initiatives to engage their customers. With this, Scoot, the low-cost subsidiary of Singapore Airlines, has decided to partner with cross-channel marketing platform Insider, to further enhance the experience on its digital channels.

Insider assists enterprise marketers to connect customer data across channels and systems, predict their future behavior with a built-in AI intent engine, and orchestrate individualized customer experiences at scale. Its platform delivers experiences across channels like web, app, web push, and email, as well as SMS, and ads, among others. 

As part of the partnership, Scoot will be utilizing Insider’s AI-powered platform to create personalized, multi-channel experiences for customers on its website. Using The platform, the airline will be releasing travel requirements at different parts of the customer journey, communicating flexibility options on its website quickly, and addressing the fluidity of global travel regulations with agility. 

Furthermore, Insider’s AI-backed segmentation module will be assisting the airline to serve relevant web push messages to users with a high likelihood of booking a flight.

Scoot’s Chief Commercial Officer Calvin Chan commented that the partnership with Insider has been instrumental in how they support the customers in these challenging times, as Scoot’s motto has always been to re-define the customer experience in the low-cost sector, and a large part of the experience is delivered via digital channels.

“Insider has been a valuable partner in improving our overall site engagement and new customer acquisitions with personalized overlays and engagement features. The ease of use of the platform has also enabled us to be operationally agile and so keep our customers abreast of the latest changes in travel regulations,” said Chan.

Meanwhile, Patrick Steinbrenner, Insider’s managing director for APAC, said, “We’re proud to power digital experiences for one of the world’s best low-cost airlines and are happy to have supported them during this pandemic. For the post-COVID recovery phase, we will be stepping up our partnership even further to deliver personalized journeys for Scoot’s customers across the web, mobile web, mobile apps, and ad channels.”

Scoot has also announced that the visitors to its website will benefit from ‘Smart Recommendations’ based on their previous browsing history for a more relevant user experience. The website’s exit surveys will improve its customer experience constantly.

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Platforms Featured Southeast Asia

Caroussell wants to remind that ‘Everybody wins’ on platform with new ads

Singapore – In a bid to position itself as a peer-to-peer platform where every user ‘wins’ off their purchase, classifieds platform Carousell has released a new campaign made of multiple ads, to be shown across Singapore and the Philippines, and is made by creative agency 72andSunny Singapore, which they recently appointed as creative partner recently.

The new works runs across digital and social touchpoints, featuring separately diverse and incredibly human scenarios where Carousell’s community and its products and services come into play. From plumbing emergencies at three in the morning that require home services to growing families bursting out of their apartments looking for properties, the multi-ad campaign cements Carousell as a true multi-vertical offering. 

The new campaign speaks volumes of the continuation of the work between Carousell and 72andSunny Singapore, showing how Carousell has ‘every kinda thing for every kinda person’ so ‘everyone wins’.

Speaking about the campaign, Cassandra Leong, brand lead at Carousell, commented that the work really brought Carousell user pain points to life in a ‘relatable and human way in such a snappy format’.

“It was great to reunite with 72andSunny as a partner at this important stage of our business growth, where we’re continuing to leverage our strength in general goods such as fashion and electronics, but also want to highlight just how comprehensive our offerings are across the board with home services, autos and property,” said Leong.

Meanwhile, Daniel Ko, creative director at 72andSunny Singapore, commented, “Every brief from Carousell reminds us that the work is always a pleasure when there’s partnership between client, agency, production and media. I hope these short (but sweet) spots are a testament to that.”

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Platforms Featured Southeast Asia

Bumble introduces in-app ‘I’m vaccinated badge’ in Singapore

Singapore – Realizing that more consumers are putting more emphasis to their health care in the mid of a pandemic, dating app Bumble has announced its ‘I Am Vaccinated’ badge across its users in Singapore, which shows the users a badge that affirms the user’s participation to their respective vaccination campaigns locally.

The new badge feature starts to roll out in Singapore next week, where users can add the badge to their profile, which will be shown to their potential partners when they use the app.

This feature was added onto the platform as Bumble has seen a steady increase in the number of people who have included the word ‘vaccine’ or ‘vaccinate’ in their profiles after the first COVID-19 vaccines were administered earlier this year.

According to Lucille McCart, director for APAC at Bumble, COVID-19 has significantly changed the way we have formed and strengthened social connections in light of lockdowns and social distancing measures. She added that they know that single individuals are still actively looking to take control of their dating lives as the situation turns for the better.

“Conversations around COVID-related safety remain a priority for our Bumble community, so it is important for us to make it easier for people to feel comfortable and assured while they forge new connections. With the new ‘I’m Vaccinated’ badge and other safety features, people can easily communicate their dating preferences on the Bumble app,” McCart stated.

Bumble has existing COVID-19 related features in their app, which includes the COVID Preferences Center within the app, which allows its community across the globe to indicate what kind of dates they feel comfortable going on — whether purely virtual, socially distanced, or socially distanced with a mask when local restrictions permit.

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Marketing Featured APAC

B2B e-commerce group in China, ZALL, aims for global name with strategic rebrand

Singapore – Chinese B2B e-commerce group, ZALL Smart Commerce Group (ZALL), is eyeing to become the world’s leading global digital trade platform with its new strategic rebrand. The group aims to bring an open and interconnected B2B trading ecosystem between China and ASEAN.

ZALL currently serves around 30 B2B platforms in China, the United States, and Singapore, as well as millions of SMEs worldwide. It has also been investing in the development of next-generation intelligent trading platforms to help empower seamless data exchange across platforms integrating information, logistics, and capital flows across wholesale and commodities, retail trade, and logistics industries in China and Singapore.

The strategic rebranding aims to drive the rapid growth and development of industries and businesses through the use of its new trading methods and advanced technologies across B2B transactions, supply chain services, and digital cloud services. It also seeks to transform industrial value chains across Asia and enable businesses to improve overall efficiency.

Peter Yu, ZALL Smart Commerce’s executive vice president for Singapore, shared that as the world continues to adapt and rise up to the challenges posed by the pandemic, they wanted to focus their efforts on digital innovation, creating an even more resilient and sustainable global trade and supply chain ecosystem.

“This can be done by incorporating data and digital technologies into every part of the industrial value chain, from both the demand to the supply side. With our expertise in Artificial Intelligence, Big Data, and Blockchain, we believe we are well-positioned to help businesses worldwide adopt innovative technologies to succeed in the new digital world order,” said Yu.

Just recently, ZALL announced the launch of ‘Z-Block Gateway’, a blockchain Backend-as-a-Service (BaaS) solution that is both low-code and easy to operate and deploy across various industries and mainstream cloud servers.

The group has also recently partnered with one-stop global trading platform, Commodities Intelligence Centre, to offer ‘Know-Your-Counterparty’ and ‘Credit Info’ services to help SMEs manage their business risks by being able to verify and conduct due diligence on prospective business partners and counterparties before engaging in official dealings.