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MARKETECH APAC’s Top 5 Stories for June: A platform’s top Hari Raya ads list comes out on top

This month’s top stories which were sourced from Google Analytics from the 16th of May to the 15th of June were a combination of local and global stories.

First off, Malaysia is taking the spotlight where two come from the market – a leading agency unveiling new leadership appointments, and also a platform’s rundown of top Hari Raya ads in the country. 

Southeast Asia country Philippines also made it to the top with an esports company and a media giant partnering in the country to change the game in advertising in esports. 

Two global ad tech companies have also joined forces to provide marketers a new way to measure their campaigns, while a global communications agency has also announced new managing directors. 

Together with our exclusive interviews with the brand spokespeople, read on to find out which stories made noise this month.

Top 5: PH’s Tier One ties up with GroupM to open esports advertising to mainstream brands

Tier One and GroupM

Tier One Entertainment, the Philippines-born esports talent agency for Southeast Asia, has partnered with media and communications giant GroupM to achieve a common goal: to bring in more mainstream brands in the advertising landscape in esports.

Advertising in esports remains to be an exclusive arena for endemic brands, and Tier One, which has been in operations for four years now, has always eyed to be an agent in bridging the gap between gaming and mainstream.

In an exclusive conversation with Joanne Llavore, the CCO of Tier One, she shared that as the audience penetration in esports continues to grow, the company has always been cognizant that the time will come when the standardization of media advertising metrics will become a requisite among clients.

GroupM being the leader in the industry, it is but inherent to seek out and forge this partnership as we work together with them to bring esports and gaming in the forefront of media advertising.

Joanne Llavore, CCO, Tier One Entertainment

Llavore adds, “It’s a blue ocean of non-endemic brands out there. And we know the potential is really huge to be able to scale the business.”

Aside from its headquarters, Tier One currently has offices in Myanmar, Japan, and Vietnam and had just opened an office in Malaysia. 

Top 4: dentsu malaysia unveils three key senior hires

dentsu Malaysia

Media and communications network dentsu in Malaysia has announced new leaders within its Media division. Asha Nair will become the new managing director of media investment and platforms, Jing-Wen Foo has been appointed as the new e-commerce director, while Hemanth Jayaraman has been unveiled as the new partner and agency brand lead of DentsuX

Dheeraj Raina, CEO of Media at dentsu malaysia, said that the new hires go under dentsu’s continuous transformation journey which started last year when it was announced that dentsu will now be organized into three main business lines including Media. 

Raina, who himself, has also been recently appointed as the inaugural CEO of Media in January, said that it has been an “intense 6 months”, looking at simplifying internal structures and how they create solutions for clients. It has also been, Raina bared, quite a year of subsequent pitches. 

The new lineup that you’re seeing of the leaders [is] primarily [for] creating capability centers of excellence within the organization so that as the agency partners with our clients, we are in the best position of solving their marketing challenges.

Raina said in a MARKETECH APAC interview

Raina also shared that the division will be more product-focused as an agency, such as into its e-commerce practice, where the vision is to provide clients beyond the performance marketing aspect of it but to be an end-to-end e-commerce service that touches on strategic consulting as well as on-site and off-site optimization, among others. 

“Obviously, it’s been a very, very challenging one and a half year for everybody in terms of forecasting and looking at how the future will be, and therefore, [being] an agency partner for us [means] to be able to then deliver really integrated growth solutions for our clients [which] is going to be very, very critical; and for that, I think, we need to have a very strong product focus, and that’s where I think is we are going to be spending a lot of our time as an organization in the next coming few quarters,” said Raina. 

Raina also remarks, “And obviously, e-commerce is one of the key products that is no more [treated as a] luxury [for brands].”

Top 3: Global communications agency Redhill announces two new MDs

Redhill

Singapore-headquartered global communications agency Redhill has unveiled two new managing directors, Marienelle Castelino and Tavy Cussinel

Both Castelino and Cussinel have been homegrown executives of Redhill, being part of the company for a long time, even during the time it was operating out of its headquarters in Singapore, in an attic-like office with no windows, as CEO and founder Jacob Puthenparambil describes it. 

Puthenparambil, in a MARKETECH APAC interview, shared why it’s important to build and stick with its people for a long time. 

It’s extremely vital for our growth that we have people who stay with us for a very long time because it’s a people-based industry, especially PR. A lot of the company culture is based on the long-term people that we have. You can’t write those things down or learn from a textbook.

Jacob Puthenparambil, CEO and Founder, Redhill

Through their new roles, Marienelle will deepen her focus on brand leadership and corporate mandates in markets across Asia Pacific, specifically Singapore, Indonesia, India, and Cambodia, while Tavy will focus on growing the agency’s education, healthcare, luxury, and lifestyle portfolios.

The communications firm started in 2014 as a boutique agency and in the interview, Puthenparambil shared how at the beginning, they had always been firm in their goal that they wanted to grow into being more than that. 

“We knew from day one that we didn’t want to be a boutique agency. We’re going to fight the big boys,” he said. 

He shared that along the way, they found that a boutique agency’s lifeline is mostly dependent and stuck to how long its founder is active or relevant to the market and that in the end, said agencies aren’t able to hold on to the talent or to the clients. 

“So that’s what pushed us to establish this presence in all these countries, even if it’s one [to three] people; [we] just go plant the flag there and start doing work,” he said.

Redhill currently has a global presence in 17 markets. 

Top 2: InMobi partners with The Trade Desk for a new brand lift solution

InMobi and The Trade Desk

Global marketing cloud InMobi has announced a new partnership with global technology company The Trade Desk to integrate InMobi’s mobile-first consumer intelligence platform – InMobi Pulse – into the latter’s demand-side platform (DSP).

As more and more brands seek to find additional and effective ways to measure their brand campaigns across all digital media, the two ad tech platforms come together to offer in-app brand lift surveys to be delivered programmatically, enabling brands to measure metrics such as brand awareness, favorability, intent to purchase and other metrics that determine campaign effectiveness.

Speaking to MARKETECH APAC, Vasuta Agarwal, managing director of InMobi for the Asia Pacific, said, “This partnership is a first of its kind between InMobi and The Trade Desk, and it provides brands and marketers the ability to deterministically measure the incremental brand impact of their campaigns across digital media by web, desktop, and in-app.” 

It allows them to deliver in-app surveys, both to an exposed group and a controlled group of users which are users who have seen the ad and have not seen the ad, and then measure the difference in the brand lift metrics between these two groups.

Agarwal explaining how the integration works

She adds that the metric is deterministic because brands can use mobile ad identifiers to identify the end-user who’s seen the ad or not seen the ad. 

Agarwal also shared another benefit, “And any advertiser using the [The Trade Desk’s DSP] while running their campaigns, can do a lot of [other] stuff like in-flight optimization, and change in brand messaging, [among others].”

Top 1: YouTube’s top 10 Hari Raya ads in Malaysia

YouTube Malaysia Top Hari Raya ads

Finally concluding the Hari Raya, or the celebration of the end of Ramadan in Malaysia, YouTube, through its ads leaderboard, has rounded up the top 10 ads on the platform that came in celebration of the festivity. This is MARKETECH APAC’s top story for June. 

The list included a mix of international and local brands in Malaysia. Some of the local names on the list are Tenaga Nasional, Petronas, and RHB Group. Meanwhile, Asia retailer Watsons also made it as a top ad, with leading e-commerce platforms Lazada and Shopee also entering YouTube’s picks. 

YouTube’s ads leaderboard is usually based on metrics such as organic and paid views, watch time, and audience retention, but we spoke with Lars Anthonisen, Google’s head of marketing for Malaysia, to give us an insider on what other factors said Malaysian brands were able to hit right to get into audiences’ radar. 

Anthonisen said there are three key themes: brands that stood out stayed in tune with the values of Hari Raya, showed empathy, and took a stand on societal norms. 

More Malaysians, unfortunately, are unable to celebrate with their loved ones. I think ads that stood out were from brands who leaned heavily to the core Hari Raya values [such as] family, compassion, and hope, providing Malaysians the Hari Raya spirit.

Anthonisen on brands showing the values of Hari Raya

With Empathy meanwhile, he said that brands are starting to recognize the importance of acknowledging the struggles people and communities are facing. 

“Brands have realized the need to engage the audience on a deeper level by leveraging real stories and also [to] add [the] human element and build this deeper connection,” he said.  

And finally, Anothisen’s insight on brands challenging societal norms: “It can be daunting, I know, for a lot of brands to take a difficult topic on and turn it into something of value, but I think brands who were there to do it really got the support and the engagement from audiences.” 

And of course, he himself has a favorite from the list, and this is what he had to say, “The one that stood out for me was the one from Petronas. First of all, they used animation to tell the story a bit differently, but I think also the whole campaign centered around how many Malaysians missed home during Hari Raya, and I think that was a really lovely story.”

Watch our live interviews with the newsmaker themselves on the latest episode of MARKETECH APAC Reports, live on our YouTube channel.

This is in collaboration with Malaysia-based media company The Full Frontal.

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Main Feature Marketing APAC

January’s Top 5 stories: Which Southeast Asia brands nabbed the top spots?

After a challenging year for both brands and consumers, the new year has finally ushered in and one thing remains – brands in the Asia Pacific region continue to innovate and amaze, whether that’s through a new creative campaign, a promising collaboration, or a novel tech that no one has seen before.

Southeast Asia brands start with a bang this year, where five out of five stories for the month’s top stories come from the region. One is a last hurrah from Christmas campaigning in the Philippines, while another comes from a used-car platform in Malaysia. Two Singapore brands also joined forces for a tie-up that would benefit travelers, while a top Singaporean marketing executive came with big news that involved new business ventures. Meanwhile, MARKETECH APAC’s Marketech Expert Up Close also continued to hook readers when it featured the founder of a newly launched esports platform in the Philippines. 

Based on Google Analytics from December 16 to January 15, here are the top stories for the month. 

Top 5: Lay’s Philippines’ Christmas ad 

The Christmas spirit is still hanging over at the beginning of the year as famous chips brand Lay’s in the Philippines bags a spot on this month’s top stories with their recent Christmas campaign

With currently 4.5 million views on YouTube, the ad used a tongue-in-cheek marketing strategy, presenting an unexpected combo of endorsers to personify the campaign’s message – ‘Double the Holiday Flavor’ – featuring its Classic and Sour Cream & Onion flavor.

The stars of the ad were the country’s long-time top balladeer Jose Mari Chan and comedic social media personality Nico Bolzico. Using a humorous spin-off of Chan’s classic song ‘Christmas in our hearts’, the two duetted together on a concert-type performance, complete with Black tie and a piano. 

Top 4: myTukar’s AI car detection technology

News hailing from Malaysia hooked readers this month when its locally-developed used-car platform myTukar revealed that it will be releasing a tech that is a first in the industry – an AI Car Defect Detection system and Car Plate Masking. 

The said technology enables the platform to automate and standardize car inspection through analyzing images and videos. Using scalable and deep learning technology, myTukar is able to detect car defects such as dents, scratches and paint deterioration in seconds.

The platform’s Chief Technology Officer David Voo shared to MARKETECH APAC that the inception of the tech came about when a vendor approached the platform with the sample of the AI detection system, where the tech didn’t initially meet its standards, pushing the platform to develop it further to cater to its customers. 

COO Jeffrey Ong said, “It will overall reduce the human error and also to be enhancing our inspection efficiency. So what would happen is we would have a very accurate inspection report. This will definitely overall enhance the whole customer experience.”

Top 3: Esports platform KALARO’s founder Jun Lasco

The launch of Filipino-developed esports platform KALARO was likewise featured in the top stories in October last year, and this time we dive deeper into the man that founded the company behind the platform. 

In the episode of MARKETECH Expert Up Close, we sat down with Jun Lasco, the founder of The-AsiaGroup.com Inc. to learn more about his inspiring corporate and entrepreneurial journey in the world of tech, and later on in esports.

In the episode, Lasco bared his beginnings, which started out as being a tech executive for some of the biggest brands in the Philippines such as San Miguel Corporation, Ayala Group, and Fujitsu, in line with work that included programming and tech analytics. He also revealed the challenges he met in his early attempt in putting up a company, where three had to be eventually shut down in 2016 due to corporate setbacks. 

Now with its rebirth, Jun shared, “Being naive or too naive about business and people is also not good; funding is a must-have during the initial phase of the start-up ventures and friendships sometimes end when there is big money at stake, among many lessons.” 

Top 2: Atome and Agoda’s partnership 

Amid ongoing travel restrictions in the pandemic, two leading Singapore platforms recently tied up to entice travel-loving consumers. In December, a partnership was announced between booking platform Agoda and installment payment platform Atome, giving travelers an additional option to pay for their accommodations. 

Atome, with its famous ‘buy now, pay later’ scheme, continually adds brands and stores on its platform, and the latest partnership enables those planning to travel to have more breathing ground when it comes to financing.

In a conversation with CEO David Chen, he shared that the idea behind the tie-up is that most of the time, people wish to book a certain accommodation but are disheartened at the onset due to higher prices. 

He said, “[Buy now, pay later] is an attitude. It’s an aspiration. People want something that’s of good quality to uplift their fulfillment.”

Top 1: AIA Singapore’s Head of Brand builds own communications practice

Our top story of the month is brimming with brilliance and inspiration as insurance company AIA Singapore’s Head of Brand and Corporate Communications Joanna Ong-Ash exits the company to start her own communications practice, Bravery Communications.

Joanna served the company for a decade, being the communications lead for many of its notable programs such as AIA Vitality in 2013, which was then Singapore’s first comprehensive wellness program, and also launching the insurance company’s first-in-market critical illness plan for those with Type II diabetics and pre-diabetics. 

Taking into account Joanna’s holistic corporate experience – she brings 20 years of marketing expertise with her, working with financial services companies such as American Express and Mastercard, hence also marking her exit from corporate life. 

Of the new communications firm, Joanna shared that she wants to become a reliable partner of brands that may not be as big as others, but have a bold vision and purpose. 

Joann said, “Some of these SMEs do not have the ability to go out to big agencies to afford their expertise. Their purpose is so bold, and a lot of them, when they set up their own companies, they want to help others, they want to contribute to [the] community, and do good.”

“Where I come in, I feel like I am the extended arm of their business. When I work with a client, I’m not just working [with them] because I’m a consultant, I am working with a client because I totally believe in the cause and I want to do good together with them,” she added.

Watch the live report of the top stories for the month on our YouTube channel, where we give you exclusive appearances from the newsmakers themselves.

This is in collaboration with Malaysia-based media company The Full Frontal.

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Main Feature Marketing APAC

Top 5 stories this December: brave marketing stunt from SG-based dog food brand clinches top spot

MARKETECH APAC started five months ago with a vision to provide an ecosystem for all marketing and marketing tech brands in the Asia Pacific region to share their stories of innovation and growth. Since then, we have been monitoring the most viewed stories on the site each month, to recognize those that have delighted and hooked our readers the most, and we can’t believe that we are now down to our last list for the year. 

Last month, stories on Christmas ads have already started to peep in, and this month, it’s about brands doubling down on creativity and insightful ideas. To prove its established value proposition, one brand from Singapore went out of its way to grab its consumers’ attention through a never-before-heard ‘experiment’. Another one, an ASEAN-focused firm, emerged to be on readers’ radar this month for establishing a free program that aims to strengthen brands’ grasp on consumer and marketing insight. 

Of course, marketing leaders never fail to grace the top stories as they bring a face to the inspiring brands and companies we come to love. One is a new appointment from Asia parenting content platform, while another is an in-depth look at an existing creative leader, sharing his marketing journey and great working philosophy in the world of branding. 

Meanwhile, just like last month, one of the stories that entered the list tell of a marketing agency’s expansion within APAC, giving brands more ways to wow their audiences. All this, right here on the list. 

Based on Google Analytics from November 16 to December 15, here are the top 5 for the month. 

Top 5: A Malaysian integrated creative agency sets eyes on grooming 100 SMEs to the next multinational brands

At the start of the month, we have premiered MARKETECH Expert Up Close, our closer lens to the creatives and brains behind brands – and for our pilot episode, we had the founder of Malaysia integrated creative agency DreamsKingdoms, Yens.YenKai Chong

Yens and DreamsKingdoms isn’t your typical creative associate. More than being partners to businesses, they meet them eye to eye – they don’t play, instead, they’re hung up and serious in helping SMEs to grow into the next multinational brands. 

Yens and his creative agency are on a mission, that is, to use the power of branding to spur businesses’ growth, rerouting their SME mindset to become an MNC mindset in the process. 

In the episode, Yens said, “I feel that it’s a responsibility for professional industry practitioners or leaders to share or direct a way to change the perceptions of businessmen’s mindset, that trading without a brand is hard to survive especially when crises hit.”

He added, “It’s not saying that you have a brand and your business can thrive through [a crisis], but if you have a brand, you [will] have a culture and that culture will pull you through difficulties and give you strength [on] why you exist.”

Top 4: Influencer marketing INCA expands to HongKong

In November, GroupM’s international-wide influencer marketing company INCA announced that it has expanded to Hong Kong. Through this, aside from the company’s flagship influencer marketing solutions, brands in Hong Kong are now able to get their hands on INCATech, a platform that allows them to check unique creator and audience insights, workflow tools, as well as content amplification, and detailed campaign reporting dashboards. 

Top 3: Asia parenting content platform theAsianparent appoints new country manager for Indonesia

There’s no wonder that new appointments for brands always come out as one of the top stories, as such brim with a dose of inspiration at the onset – not just for those similarly aspiring individuals but for patrons of the brands themselves –  wherein new leader means fresh direction.

In November, Asia parenting content platform theAsianparent, which offers an ecosystem for mothers to be guided through the parenting journey, has announced a new country manager for its Indonesia platform. 

Rotsen Quispe is the former head of marketing for two leading hospitality brands: the Southeast Asia and Middle East markets of India-origin hotel chain OYO and the international markets of Indonesia-grown airline and hotel booking platform Traveloka. 

In an exclusive conversation with Rotsen, he shared, “From my previous experience in [the] largest startups in the region, I experienced challenges on how to scale a business in a short period of time. I hope my experience across different markets and my approach [in integrating] tools with the rest of marketing channels will actually help me contribute higher ROI for our partners and brands who rely on theAsianparent to drive growth.” 

Top 2: Free consumer data, training package for 10,000 businesses in Malaysia 

Do not believe what you just read? Well, it’s true – ASEAN-focused consumer data & analytics company Dattel Asia joins businesses that have rolled out assistance programs for co-businesses in this pandemic. 

We’ve seen one that offered free SEO services, Dattel Asia on the other hand, with its expertise in consumer analytics, has offered 10,000 businesses a RM 5K or US$1,223-worth package.This includes access to tools that provide actionable insights on the latest consumer behavior as well as exclusive training on how to grow one’s business with data. 

Called UPLIFT Malaysia, Dattel said the program will benefit most those that are in consumer-facing business such as retail, fashion, and F&B as well as fitness, beauty, and health, or snacks.

Through CEO Ashran Dato’ Ghazi’s personal dealings with entrepreneurs, and learning of their struggles in coping with the effects of the pandemic, the UPLIFT program was then birthed. 

Ashran shared to MARKETECH APAC, “Everyone advises businesses [and] SMEs that they gotta pivot, they gotta change, and they gotta move in order to cope with the whole COVID situation, but a lot of people are also wondering, ‘how do I actually do that?’ what business do I need to do and so forth.” 

He further shared, “So when we reflected in terms of what we’ve been doing, in terms of data itself, we sat with the partners, [and we thought], I think we can do something, I think we can kind of give some sense of direction to other businesses, and [we said] ‘let’s do this’, and let’s get other like-minded people to actually come on board with us on this journey.”

Ashran also revealed that adaptation of the UPLIFT program to other markets in Asian is in the works, something that’s definitely worth watching out for. 

Top 1: Top story for the month – a dog food brand’s three-course meal – for humans.

Did you ever wonder if you could actually eat your furry friend’s food? Well, one dog food brand in Singapore imagined it, and yes, even brought it to fruition. 

Our top story for the month – Furry’s Kitchen – markets dog food that is human-grade, one without preservatives and additives where ingredients are said to be sourced from the same suppliers of restaurants in Singapore. Of course, the brand knows it won’t connect to its consumers through mere lip service, which is why it put its products to the ultimate taste and quality test. 

In partnership with Ogilvy, Furry’s Kitchen borrowed the culinary prowess of celebrity chef Justin Quek to prepare a three-course degustation, and be served to some of the most popular food bloggers in Singapore. As expected, the guests loved the meals, not knowing it was dog food.

Speaking to MARKETECH APAC, Furry’s Kitchen’s CEO Stephen Chua shared, “We have briefed Ogilvy to come up with a way to prove that dog food can be of high quality…the great team in Ogilvy contacted Chef Justin Quek, one of the renowned [chefs] in Singapore and also worldwide, and he loved the idea, and he put up the ultimate test using a three-course degustation.” 

Wow, with a risky feat, Furry’s Kitchen surely brought home the message there – who knows what other exciting marketing stunts the brand has in store for us.

Watch the MARKETECH APAC Reports for December on our YouTube channel, where we bring you exclusive appearances from the newsmakers themselves.

This is in collaboration with Malaysia-based media company The Full Frontal.

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Main Feature Marketing APAC

November’s Top 5: Stories that hooked you for the month

Holidays are truly around the corner and Christmas-related news has already peeped in to make its way to the top stories, where a global household production name warms hearts with its latest Christmas ad.

Another year-end special also entered the list for the month, with a rewards platform in Singapore announcing a new face for its brand on the 11.11 sale event. 

Stories from marketing tech platforms also turned heads, where two – a global and an Asia-focused firm – announced recent expansions.

Meanwhile, marketing leaders never fail to entice readers, with a feature on a digital head from a leading integrated marketing communications agency in the Philippines making it to the top 5. 

Based on Google Analytics from 16 October to 15 November, these are the top newsmakers for the month.

Top 5: Disney UK’s global Christmas ad puts Filipino family culture in the spotlight

Disney in the UK has released its latest Christmas ad titled “From our family to yours,” and to much of Filipinos’ surprise, the production studios decided to forefront the Philippines’ family culture and Christmas traditions. 

The ad is about a “lola” or grandmother who misses spending time with her granddaughter who has grown mature and has less time for the family. In the video, Lola and her granddaughter bond over making a “parol” or the colorful Christmas lantern in the Philippines. 

Disney UK said the ad is also part of its celebration of the 40th partnership anniversary with children charity foundation Make A Wish, where a portion of the sales from the digital purchase of the video’s official soundtrack “Love Is A Compass” and a limited edition vintage Mickey Mouse soft doll is donated to the foundation.

Both Filipino and international viewers loved the ad, where the video has currently garnered 2.7 million views on YouTube.

Top 4: ShopBack Singapore taps local comic veteran as first ambassador

The headquarters of rewards and discovery platform ShopBack has announced its very first brand ambassador – comedy veteran Kumar.

Kumar is an Indian Singaporean comedian, television host, and drag queen, who made his name performing in the now-defunct cabaret nightclub Boom Boom Room during the late 1990s.

The partnership between ShopBack and Kumar is set to run for a year, which already began in the 11.11 sale event of the platform, and slated to continue through the year-end and next year.

Speaking to MARKETECH APAC, ShopBack Singapore’s Head of Marketing Imran Mohamad shared what makes Kumar perfect for the brand. 

“We believe that Kumar has the same values as us, he’s all about love, authenticity, [and] inclusivity, and we tend to speak the same language,” he said.

He added, “Together with Kumar, we believe that sky’s the limit, that we could really reach out to Singaporeans young and old, to tell them, you are not left behind, and you can shop smarter, [save] more, [earn] more with ShopBack.” 

Top 3: Executive Director of MullenLowe Treyna’s digital arm on #MARKETECHMondays

Last October, Raffy Bariso, the executive director of Philippine integrated marketing agency MullenLowe Treyna graced the #MARKETECHMondays interview, where he shared some meaningful advice about leadership and his insights on the digital landscape in the pandemic. 

As cliche as it may sound during this time, Raffy said “the pandemic is the biggest disruptor.”

“There’s so much innovation to do, and needed during the pandemic crisis, and I can just imagine how everything sped up in terms of the velocity when the pandemic hit us. I’m already doing a lot in terms of digital marketing, [but] imagine, all of my brands pivoting double time for this season,” he shared. 

As heads of digital arm TAPS or MullenLowe Treyna’s Technology and Platform Services, Raffy spearheads services which is mainly the use of creative technology to answer clients’ marketing challenges, coming up with products that leverage the firm’s expertise in strategic narrative, content and media, PR, activations, and production.

As a leader, he believes in the power of “vision.”

“I had to set [a] vision for my team. [This] sets the tone and direction for everybody, and [from them], I have to sell that vision, [so that] I can build that trust, and they can get behind my goals,” he said.

Top 2: Global experience analytics platform Contentsquare expands to APAC

International-wide experience analytics company Contentsquare has recently announced its APAC expansion; and with new offices in Singapore, Tokyo, Melbourne, and Sydney, it has unveiled two key executives at the helm. 

Former senior head at Microsoft David Bochsler has been appointed as regional managing director for APAC, while former head of CRM Marketing for food delivery platform Deliveroo Frazer Adnam is tapped as country manager for ANZ.

Contentsquare’s platform captures every in-page interaction and micro-gesture to understand and analyze customer behavior. It provides teams a digital experience stack that supports the full cycle of digital improvement with available scores, visualizations, and recommendations. 

Sharing his insight on the state of user experience (UX), David said, “Increasingly, we are seeing a shift to brands wanting to deliver not just more sales, but a better online experience for their visitors, which in many cases is the only experience that the customer has with that brand. So UX is at the top of the priority list in 2020.” 

Meanwhile, new ANZ country manager Frazer said that what he likes about Contentsquare is its ability to locate revenue fast and at scale, and its ability to visualize data. 

“When I first saw the Contentsquare platform, I was just so excited about the technology. I was the decision-maker on the brand side that Contentsquare would have traditionally sold to. I thought, ‘this solves problems that I literally would have needed five people to solve,” he said.

Top 1: Ad-tech Adzymic enters Hong Kong, Thailand, and Japan market

The top story for the month comes from the same field of marketing tech – Asia-focused ad-tech Adzymic’s further expansion to Asia, with new markets in Hong Kong, Thailand, and Japan. 

Prior to the expansion, Adzymic has already been operating in countries Singapore, Malaysia, and Vietnam. Its flagship solution is the Dynamic Creative Management Platform which functions as advertising transformation of physical to digital media, such as banners, carousel ads and social display ads, allowing advertisers to create ads without the need for coding experience. 

Co-founder and executive director Ken Wong shared to MARKETECH APAC what made the company reach out to the new markets. 

“Programmatic media has become increasingly important in these three markets. Before the pandemic, we saw that many Thai and Hong Kong companies have already adapted to the digital and programmatic media platforms, [and] during this pandemic, they have diversified their digital presence even more rapidly. We saw that they already had some quick traction with the local businesses,” he said. 

Meanwhile, Ken said the company entered Japan because it has “always been an appealing market, which is one of the world’s largest advertising markets of the US and China.”

Watch the MARKETECH APAC REPORTS of these top five stories, with exclusive appearance and commentary from the newsmakers themselves.

This is in collaboration with Malaysia-based media company The Full Frontal.

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Main Feature Marketing APAC

MARKETECH APAC’s Top 5 Stories For September

This month, MARKETECH APAC truly lived up to its name. For the top 5 stories this September, we saw a diverse set of newsmakers hailing from around the APAC region.

The top stories were identified based on Google Analytics from August 17 to September 15. In the list, two great brands from Southeast Asia and East Asia flexed their creative prowess to showcase novel brand marketing moves. Marketing leaders also continue to dominate the list; a marketing executive from South Asia recounted her almost two-decade marketing journey, another one, an APAC business director filled us in on a growing buying trend that no one saw coming amid the pandemic, while a significant appointment from ANZ also grabbed people’s attention this month. 

Top 5: Shopee gets fictional character Phua Chu Kang as new face of the brand

Ever since eCommerce platform Shopee was launched, it has only been putting its trust to big, international names to represent its brand – that would be Kpop girl band Blackpink and professional footballer Cristian Ronaldo. During its 9.9 super sale, the brand decided to show what hyper localization really means by getting not just any local personality, but a deeply rooted cultural icon – sitcom character Phua Chu Kang.

Phua Chu Kang, played by actor Gurmit Singh, is the title character of the longest-running sitcom by network Mediacorp, which revolves around the misadventures of the Phu family.

The show ran from 1996-2007, and within that time, Singaporeans grew to love the eccentric, overly confident, and yellow-boots wearing contractor. So what has truly made the Shopee team go for this rather unconventional stint?

Speaking to MARKETECH APAC, Head of Marketing Tiger Wang said, “The [appointment] marks another milestone for us as we continue to build on the hyper-localized approach and deepen our engagement with the local audiences. Phua Chu Kang is a household name and a celebrity, [and] local icon. His ability to resonate with and unite local communities aligns with Shopee’s vision, making him the best choice for us.”

Top 4: Hong Kong-based Towngas cooking academy extends its expertise to YouTube 

Amid in-person limitations during the ongoing pandemic, many brands and businesses alike have turned to the virtual side of things. Take Hong Kong-based cooking school Towngas Cooking Centre as an example. The culinary academy which has flame cooking at the core of its program, has gotten things rolling this September as it forayed to YouTube this month, and it doesn’t stop at that. It has a bunch of high-caliber celebrity chefs to boot, tapped to showcase the school’s virtual sessions.

Healthy Monday, French Wednesday, Culinary Tips4U, and Star Chef Weekend and Sunday Mom & Dad are just some of the quirky-titled lessons that are slated for its YouTube viewers.

General Manager for Retail Marketing & Sales Catherine Wong said that the occurrence of COVID has definitely pushed Hong Kongers to prefer home-cooked meals to dining out, and this is what ultimately brought the brand to make the most out of the situation. 

Top 3: Healthcare marketing maven Jasrita Dhir

Last month, the #MARKETECHMondays episode of Philippines’ Mark De Joya entered the top five list, and this time, another one of the webisode’s guests – India-based marketing leader Jasrita Dhir has been one of the stories that garnered the most views.

Jasrita’s marketing expertise expands almost two decades, where she’s worked with a list of well-known brands such as consumer product giant Procter & Gamble, hospitality brand Oberoi Hotels and Resorts, and television media company NDTV before having focused entirely on brand and marketing for healthcare services. 

Currently, she is the assistant vice president for healthcare provider Fortis Healthcare in India. When we sat down with Jasrita during her #MARKETECHMondays episode, she shared some very helpful advice that could be very well treated as a guiding light to budding marketers. 

“I just have two things to say to [marketers]; the first is, please never forget why you decided to become a marketer. There would be times in your journey when you’re feeling low, but constantly remind yourself [your why], [which is] because you want to be your consumer’s voice inside your organization,” said Jasrita. 

‘The second is keep upgrading; it’s nobody else’s responsibility to upgrade your skills. Because your consumer is going to keep changing; there are new avenues, [mediums], [and] new platforms. You have to have their pulse,” added Jasrita.  

Top 2: Stella Berry’s take on a new phenomenon in shopping amid the pandemic

Have you heard of revenge shopping? We bet not, but we too are sure that it would be a term soon to ring bells. In a nutshell, revenge shopping goes hand in hand with luxury shopping. It is a phenomenon that sees luxury stores opening their doors to shopping-starved consumers looking to avenge their months spent holed up at home during the lockdown.

This month, Regional Business Director of mobile advertising solutions Adludio, Stella Berry dedicated a full thought leadership article on the buying trend.

Stella said that it is a testament to the unique relationship consumers have with luxury. 

“No one could have predicted that after months of lockdown, the need for luxury goods has resulted in long queues outside of boutiques. This phenomenon is the result of brands, really making the effort in continuing to engage with people even during the lockdown,’ shared Stella.

All looking positive for brands and consumers, but Stella also puts out a caution.

“Returning to business as usual at this [rapidly] accelerated pace could bring about a negative impact [on] the environment, and consequences on sustainability. So luxury marketers need to find their balance to ensure the brand continues to remain sustainable, but also well-loved,” said Stella.

Top 1: Cognizant ANZ ropes in former PwC executive Jane Livesey

Our top story for the month comes from Australia and New Zealand, and from global IT firm Cognizant at that. In August, former PwC managing partner Jane Livesey was roped in by the firm to become CEO

Livesey breathes and lives IT. At PwC, she led over 800 IT professionals for the company’s technology consulting practice team in Australia; while for 12 years, she served as tech managing director for Accenture. With a seasoned IT experience under her belt, Livesey has also become an active advocate for women in the field of science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics, or STEAM. 

It hasn’t been very long since Jane settled into the role, and as we checked up on her, she shared with us, “It’s been great to join Cognizant and hit the ground running in Australia and New Zealand. Over the past few weeks, I’ve had conversations with both our clients and our teams. At Cognizant, we are focused on how to enable organizations in ANZ to keep on top of era-defining innovations and drive growth in the face of continuous technological and market changes. As CEO of ANZ, my priority is to provide local enterprises and governments with high-quality, market-leading digital transformation capabilities that enhance the lives of people and support digital-first.”

Watch the MARKETECH APAC REPORTS of these top five stories, with exclusive appearance and commentary from the newsmakers themselves.

If you have interesting stories, thought-leadership pieces, and case studies in the area of marketing, technology, media platforms, and SME, please send us an email at [email protected] Who knows your story could be part of our top 5 next month.