Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

Singaporean consumers don’t want to be treated as a ‘Millennial’ or ‘Gen Z’

Singapore – A recent interesting research from creative and design platform Adobe shows that Singaporean consumers who come from the Millennial and Gen Z cohort don’t want to be treated as such–but simply for ‘who they are’. 

The said report has identified that majority, or 88%, of these groups of consumers in Singapore want to be interacted with as an individual with unique interests and preferences rather than someone coming from a particular generation. Furthermore, we see the flip side of this if brands fail to unhinge from age-based stereotypes: 65% of Singaporean consumers say they feel negatively towards brands that interact with them based on broad assumptions and labels. 

At large, the survey analysed 5000 consumers in APAC, specifically from the markets of Australia, India, and Singapore. According to data, three times as many APAC consumers actually feel closer to people who share their passions and interests (62%) rather than those of a similar demographic (19%). In a period where brands are more strongly associated with a certain persona, this might be the reason why consumers would also feel ‘warm’ towards brands that ‘understand’ them regardless of whether they are hitting right on age-based cultural nuances

Speaking of ‘friendliness’, the report further affirms that positive and likeable gestures by brands do not simply go to waste. Regular and frequent efforts to engage consumers with bespoke offers related to their current interests are of the highest importance, said the report. More than four times as many people want frequent, thoughtful gestures (70%) over bigger one-off moments (15%). 

Duncan Egan, VP of marketing for Adobe APAC & Japan, said, “Across Asia Pacific, customers are calling on brands to demonstrate that they know them, show them, and [ensure that they] will help them in the moments that matter – not once, but all the time.”

Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

This is how Singaporean Gen Zs are manifesting their travel bug post-pandemic

Singapore – ‘Revenge’, by all means, is a belligerent word that doesn’t necessarily carry a positive connotation. But when the world saw the pandemic easing down through this year, the term is being used loosely, together with a spark of hope and rejuvenation. That is–we’re referring to the ‘revenge’ of travel.

After years of being shackled by social distancing, we are now coming back with a deeper bite by the travel bug together with a beefed-up buying power. We’re wondering then, how are individuals from different countries faring when it comes to wanderlust? A new YouGov study recently finds this out amongst Singaporeans–in particular–the Gen Z cohort in the country.

In a macro view, the April 2022 study reveals that 45% of Singaporean Gen Zs are planning to travel in the next 12 months. The younger generation though is becoming more conscious of their spending habits, where 43% of this demographic in Singapore cite ‘overall value for money’ as the top factor for their choice of destination.

Infographic from YouGov

In addition, amongst the Singaporean Gen Zs that stated they’re eyeing to travel, international holiday has slightly been more preferred (22%) than a domestic holiday (18%).

The current report by YouGov also probed into the cohort’s consumer journey when it comes to making this holiday trips a reality. 37% of Singaporean Gen Zs opt for travel website aggregators such as and Traveloka when securing their itineraries, while 40% would go for online accommodation websites such as Airbnb. Meanwhile, a more muted 25% say they’d choose booking directly on the official hotel website.

Infographic from YouGov

When it comes to discovering ‘products’ and ‘experiences’ to jump into, Gen Z travellers from Singapore get their information the most from online random searches (46%), followed by information from friends and family (43%), while info from travel blogs (37%) come at the latter of their choices.

Most importantly, the report found the exact destination Singaporean Gen Zs would love to go to at this point – and that is none other than Japan. Specifically, how do youngsters from the Lion City plan to spend their holidays away? YouGov says it’s through combined relaxing and sightseeing and/or activity holidays (41%), going on a shopping holiday(35%), and visiting friends and family (29%).

Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

Vietnamese students called to craft their own campaigns for road safety NPO

Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam – AIP Foundation, a nonprofit organisation dedicated to helping achieve zero road injuries and fatalities in Asia and Africa, has launched a youth-focused campaign in Vietnam called ‘HeadsUp!’. The campaign stresses the importance of the most fundamental safety measure on the road: Wearing helmets.

The campaign, which has also been rolled out in Cambodia, Thailand, and the Philippines, is in fact a video-making competition for students in the said countries, calling them out to create innovative public awareness campaigns for road safety.

“Young people on motorbikes have become an icon of Southeast Asian streets. Scenes of students riding on scooters in the mornings as they make their way to schools depict a region that’s striving to move forward towards a better future,” said AIP Foundation. 

Implemented by AIP Foundation with support from FIA Road Safety Grant Programme, FIA Region II, and FIA Foundation, HeadsUp! will have students from renowned universities create video narratives that reflect the importance of quality helmet use among youth.

“With motorbikes becoming increasingly popular as a major mode of transportation for the young, promoting the use of helmets has become a necessary mission of AIP Foundation,” added the NPO.

Through the competition, the region will see creative campaigns made by and tailored for the “drivers of the future.” The winner of HeadsUp! will receive USD 1,000 and support to develop its video into a full-fledged campaign as part of the global launch.

Deadline for the submission of the videos will be on 31 March 2022, 5 pm ICT. More details can be found on the HeadsUp! website.

Main Feature Marketing APAC

What’s NEXT: How brands can connect with Asia’s next generation of culture shapers

As countries across the Asia Pacific learn to live with Covid, Asia’s youth are reemerging from two years of restrictions and lockdowns with significantly altered perspectives that are set to redefine culture in the post-pandemic world.

Today’s youth are not sitting around doing nothing, waiting for the pandemic to pass. Instead, they are rewriting the rules and with it, the next chapter of culture. What is clear is that we are not going back to normal and for brands and marketers, this means a major rethink on how to best connect with this cohort.

Across Asia Pacific, Gen Z and millennials are reevaluating their relationships, careers and mental health as a result of the Covid crisis. They are making significant changes to how they live, socialise, and consume, reshaping a world that will be living with the virus for a long time to come. 

According to the study by VICE Media Group, ‘The Next Chapter – Re-Emergence’, which was conducted among 1,740 Gen Z and Millenials from the different markets in Asia Pacific, seven in ten say the pandemic has changed their perspective on what’s important in their lives, with more than nine in ten making lifestyle changes they plan on maintaining.

Meanwhile, almost sixty per cent say the way they work will be the most lasting societal change, with half reporting that looking after their health has transformed forever. These are fundamental shifts with significant implications on how brands should be marketing to them.

Media – from consumption to contribution 

One area of particular concern for young people in APAC is their relationships with the media. Both online and across social media, attitudes have changed markedly over the course of the last two years.

While the pandemic has dominated coverage across traditional media channels, other issues such as those around social justice, climate change, and misinformation that have been running alongside it, overwhelming young people and making them aware of their overconsumption of online content. One in three say the media and news have caused them the most fear and anxiety during the pandemic, with just four per cent trusting the media more since COVID-19 started. 

As one millennial respondent in Indonesia from the said study commented, “I change the way I view media. I used to believe what the media said. But now, I realised media is such a fear-mongering outlet and that’s how they make money, causing panic in public. I really hate the media now and I don’t want to listen/read/watch news ever again.’’

As an escape, they have sought solace in entertainment. According to the study, six in ten have sought out more entertainment content since the start of Covid-19 and 65 per cent say entertainment helps them take their mind off everything else.

In Southeast Asia, 41 per cent have subscribed to a new streaming service and 36 per cent have downloaded a new social media app, with 30 per cent attending a virtual content or event, demonstrating the continued growth and pivoting to alternative communication and entertainment channels. 

Reimagining brand content beyond passive consumption

Young people no longer want to mindlessly consume media. They are seeking content that provides truth, allows for respite and builds resilience. Almost seven in ten want content that provides information based on facts and uncover stories that others aren’t telling them. About 68 per cent want content that makes them laugh and helps them escape, while just almost two-thirds want content and information that inspires self-growth, gives them hope and will enable them to make a positive impact on the world.

Brands need to reimagine content that allows the region’s youth to go beyond simple consumption. There is a clear desire for content and information that is both based on truth and can enable them to make informed decisions to help create a world that reflects their hopes and aspirations. The successful brands will create safe experiences and spaces for young people to connect with them in a meaningful way, providing a sense of belonging and connection. 

As they re-emerge from the pandemic, the region’s youth have changed and their intentions are plain and are here to stay. We have known for some time now that brands are no longer just competing for attention with other brands. They need to look for a visible and valued role that is based inside culture, rather than looking at ways to interrupt it. The after-effects of the pandemic on Asia’s culture shapers is only set to accelerate this further.

This article is written by Lesley John, managing director at Virtue for APAC.

The article is published as part of MARKETECH APAC’s thought leadership series What’s NEXT. This features marketing leaders sharing their marketing insights and predictions for the upcoming year. The series aims to equip marketers with actionable insights to future-ready their marketing strategies.

If you are a marketing leader and have insights that you’d like to share with regards to the upcoming trends and practices in marketing, please reach out to [email protected] for an opportunity to have your thought-leadership published on the platform.