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THOSE WERE THE DAYS ...
Rezwana Manjur, Deputy Editor firstname.lastname@example.org Noreen Ismail, Journalist email@example.com Editorial – International Matt Eaton, Editor (Hong Kong) firstname.lastname@example.org Production and Design Shahrom Kamarulzaman, Regional Art Director email@example.com Fauzie Rasid, Senior Designer firstname.lastname@example.org Advertising Sales – Singapore & Malaysia Johnathan Tiang, Sales Manager email@example.com Ee Kai Li, Account Manager firstname.lastname@example.org Grace Goh, Account Manager email@example.com Jocelyn Ma, Account Manager firstname.lastname@example.org Ong Yi Xuan, Advertising Sales Coordinator email@example.com Advertising Sales – International Josi Yan, Sales Director (Hong Kong) firstname.lastname@example.org Events Yeo Wei Qi, Regional Head of Events Services email@example.com Circulation Executive Deborah Quek, Circulations Executive firstname.lastname@example.org Finance Evelyn Wong, Regional Finance Director email@example.com Management Søren Beaulieu, Publisher firstname.lastname@example.org Tony Kelly, Editorial Director email@example.com Justin Randles, Group Managing Director firstname.lastname@example.org
It is perhaps all of the above. The Mad Men era is gone and for the lack of a better term, I call it the “corporatisation” of agencies. The look and feel of an ad agency is no longer the same. And some of their offices could well pass for an accounting firm now. Is it possible to bring the fun back into the agencies? Or is the change irreversible? I may sound like a pessimist here, but those were the days, really. Cut to the present, things are fast-paced, much more organised and definitely techdriven. What will make agencies as fun as they used to be is a tough question to answer, but getting the culture right – amid the current realities – is a top priority for any agency CEO. And talent is one determinant in this quest for perfection. In this edition we explore what a CEOs challenges are - both in creative as well as media agencies. What perceptions are they fighting and how are they building the right culture in their agency? Read on to find out more. Enjoy the edition.
Photography: Stefanus Elliot Lee – www.elliotly.com; Makeup & Hair: Michmakeover using Make Up For Ever & hair using Sebastian Professional – www.michmakeover.com
Editorial Rayana Pandey, Editor email@example.com
Often when talking to industry friends, those who were in advertising in the late 1980s to 1990s, I hear stories of the glory days this profession has seen – I mean ad agencies, and creatives in particular. There was no media agency back then anyway. Stories of the hassled suit heckling with the crazy creative director on one hand, and the client on the other, of the late hours they put in, the rounds made to the client office (remember, there was no internet then) and the intern who was nothing more than a delivery guy. It was stressful, indeed, but there’s a smile on their faces thinking of those days. “It was good fun,” one of them says, reminiscing about the crazy parties which ran late into the night and perhaps even until the wee hours of the morning. While partying hard is still pretty much core to the agency life, it’s just not the same anymore. What was even more remarkable about that era was the camaraderie forged, most of which lasted years or continues to do so now – to the point there are alumni all over the world. Talk to a former Ogilvy or a Publicis employee from that era, and you will know what I mean. “It’s no longer the same,” another says and the rest nod in agreement. And we began to figure out why. Is it because marketing now has become more of a science than an art? Or because the competition has grown and businesses evolved in general, so much so that the client-agency relationship no longer feels personal? Or because the given economic conditions have put so much pressure on marketing ROI that it’s sucked the fun out of advertising? Or is it the need for marketing to be more data-driven and calculative?
Advertising + Marketing Malaysia is published 6 times per year by Lighthouse Independent Media Pte Ltd PP 16093/12/2011 (026708). Printed in Malaysia on CTP process by Percetakan Skyline Sdn Bhd No. 35 & 37 Jalan 12/32B, TSI Business Industrial Park, Batu 61/2 Off Jalan Kepong, 52100 Kuala Lumpur Tel: 03-6257 4846. For subscriptions, contact circulations at +65 6423 0329 or email subscriptions@marketing-interactive. com. COPYRIGHT & REPRINTS: All material printed in Advertising + Marketing Malaysia is protected under the copyright act. All rights reserved. No material may be reproduced in part or in whole without the prior written consent of the publisher and copyright holder. Permission may be requested through the Singapore office. Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in Advertising + Marketing Malaysia are not necessarily the views of the publisher. Singapore: Lighthouse Independent Media Pte Ltd 100C Pasir Panjang Road, #05-01 See Hoy Chan Hub Singapore 118519 Tel: +65 6423 0329 Fax: +65 6423 0117 Hong Kong: Lighthouse Independent Media Ltd Unit A, 7/F, Wah Kit Commercial Building 302 Des Voeux Road Central, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong Tel: +852 2861 1882 Fax: +852 2861 1336 To subscribe to A+M Malaysia magazine, go to: www.marketing-interactive.com ...............................................................................................................
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O C T O B E R 201 5 | a dvert i s i ng + m a r ke t i ng 1
3-4 DECEMBER PULLMAN JAKARTA INDONESIA THAMRIN CBD
RealisE your brand's Digital Potential With the Indonesian consumer becoming more tech savy by the day, brands need to embrace digital marketing or fall further behind. They need to be aware of all the tools available in their digital arsenal - from social, to mobile, to content, to targeted programmatic and digital loyalty practices - and how to fully utilise them for maximum ROI. Enter Digital Marketing Indonesia, the country's one stop shop for marketers wishing to stay up to speed on all the latest trend and opportunities in digital. Covering all core areas of digital marketing relevant to the Indonesian market now, this event is designed to push the industryâ€™s boundaries of creativity and effectiveness.
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4 A MONTH IN NEWS 10 WSJ’S NEW CONTENT STRATEGY AND WHAT BRANDS CAN LEARN FROM IT The Wall Street Journal recently launched its unified global edition. What can brands learn about content marketing from this move? Rayana Pandey writes.
12 CREATIVE VS MEDIA AGENCIES: WHO’S GOT THE TALENT? Are creative agencies getting the cream of the crop vis-à-vis media agencies or is there more to the issue of recruiting fresh grads to the ad industry? Rezwana Manjur asks.
14 VOLKSWAGEN SCANDAL: WHAT ARE THE NEXT STEPS? When a crisis hits, should the CEO’s head always be the first to roll? Rezwana Manjur writes.
18 THE WAR FOR TV AUDIENCE MEASUREMENT As more and more players, including Facebook, get serious about audience measurement, what does this mean for the industry? Noreen Ismail reports. When it comes to attracting talent are creative agencies doing a better job than media agencies? A+M finds out.
20 BUDGET AND CONTENT What does the 2016 Malaysian Budget mean for content creators?
22 HOW SOCIAL MEDIA HAS CHANGED MARKETING Social media and social networking are no longer in their infancy. As these platforms continue to grow rapidly, they become important pieces of the online architecture and experiences that reshape the way brands engage with their consumers. Inti Tam writes.
30 RECYCLING OF IDEAS: IS IT ACCEPTABLE? In an industry where we are forced to come up with ideas every single day, only for some of them to be tossed aside – is it really that big a crime to reuse an old idea for a new client? Rezwana Manjur finds out.
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14 12 What you’ll learn in this issue: >> Finding the right talent. >> Getting content marketing right. >> Social media and its impact on marketing. WWW.M A R K ET I N G - I N T ER A C T I V E.C O M
18 20 O C T O B E R 201 5 | a dvert i s i ng + m a r ke t i ng 3
WANT MORE BREAKING NEWS? SCAN THE CODE TO FIND OUT WHAT’S GOING ON IN THE INDUSTRY.
Drinking responsibly Carlsberg Malaysia pledged its support towards the inaugural Global Beer Responsibility Day on September 18, a global initiative that promoted the responsible enjoyment of beer. Through a two-day activation themed #CheersResponsibly, the brewer engaged with beer consumers on the importance of responsible drinking and the dangers of drink driving. Carlsberg Malaysia is one of the nine Carlsberg Group’s markets globally, and the only brewer in Malaysia that celebrates Global Beer Responsibility Day.
The wonder of Malaysia In celebration of Malaysia Day, Oreo released a heartfelt video entitled “Wonderfilled Malaysia” to celebrate unity with fellow Malaysians on 16 September. With a simple message, “Wonder if Malaysia was a cookie, would it be #Wonderfilled? #WonderfilledMalaysia Happy Malaysia Day!” the Oreo video wanted to spread joy and togetherness regardless of people’s origins. Written and produced for the special occasion, the video posted online garnered more than 150,000 views on YouTube and Facebook.
Launching content Starcom Mediavest Group (SMG) launched CONTENT@SCALE, its marketing solution to scale quality content in real-time. CONTENT@SCALE is a suite of proprietary products that combines technology, publisher partnerships and in-house specialists to enable brands to activate content at the speed of conversation by combining the power of dynamic content creation and curation with scaled distribution in a single solution. Retail excitement Pos Ad Media launched a new media channel set in the retail scene. Called “ShelfAttack”, this new addition features a series of six interconnected screens riding on the shelf that showcase representations of brands through video content. The ShelfAttack is now operational in 50 giant hypermarkets in Peninsular Malaysia showcasing video content of the shield colour powder detergent called Daia.
BMW hunts for media agency BMW launched a media buying and planning pitch in the Malaysia market. Carat is the incumbent on the account. Sashi Ambi, head of corporate communications at BMW Malaysia, confirmed the news to A + M and added the brand was currently in the midst of speaking to several agencies. He explained that this was a standard practice for the brand and such reviews were conducted every three to five years.
4 a d verti s i ng + marketi ng | O C T O B E R 2015
Levi’s partners Deezer Levi’s partnered with global music-streaming service Deezer in Malaysia to introduce its new women’s denim collection for the fall of 2015. In conjunction with the launch, a custom-built Levi’s inapp page was exclusively created via the Deezer platform. This page included a nationwide contest that invited consumers to submit a song that empowers women to its #LadiesInLevisMY collaborative playlist, and to share on their social media. Loving Malaysia For the 2015 Malaysia day, Digi worked with Naga DDB to encourage Malaysians to tell a story about what made them fall in love with the nation. “We discovered that ‘Malaysia’ was the most popular baby name after a country in the USA. So we proposed a story where we tracked down an American named Malaysia, and introduced her to our beautiful nation,” Digi said. Saving customers In an aggressive and timely bid to lure shoppers, GEMFIVE. com, Malaysia’s latest online shopping destination, promised consumers relief from the goods and services tax (GST). While most Malaysians were concerned about the escalating cost of living, shoppers at GEMFIVE. com did not absorb the 6% GST on all items storewide from 16 to 30 September, in its campaign, BYE-BYE 6.
Heineken’s new campaign Heineken launched its latest campaign called “Imagine” to evoke a sense of discovery for the brand. Consumers in Malaysia were treated to a creative showcase as Heineken collaborated with a mix of creative visionaries and transformed the brick-and-steel interior of Slate @ The Row into an intuitive art space called #ImagineKL. Heineken collaborated with a diverse range of emerging artists to create an intuitive space that both stimulated and inspired imagination.
A social appointment Months after appointing PHD as its media agency, Ferrero appointed Done! Asia to handle its social media and digital marketing strategy across Southeast Asia. The agency handles the brands Kinder Joy, Kinder Bueno, Nutella, Tic Tac and Rocher in the region. In addition, the agency will assist in managing event planning, video production, and packaging designs out of its headquarters in Singapore. Hygiene matters Supermarket chain Tesco Malaysia issued an apology on social media for a recent incident involving a pet dog being lugged in one of its trolleys by a customer. The incident was recorded on its CCTV cameras. According to a statement posted on its Facebook page on 5 September, a customer had allegedly brought her pet dog to the store despite the store’s no-pets policy. WWW. MARK E TING-IN TE RAC TI VE . C OM
New dawn Malaysia Airlines ran new campaign on its social media channels called #todayishere. The campaign kicked off on the last day of August, ahead of the launch of its new entity Airlines Berhad (MAB). MAS said on its social media channels that #todayishere is a “proclamation of the joy of travelling.” To mark the event, various MAB staff held a special walkabout at KL International Airport to meet and greet passengers on its flights.
Inking big deals Microsoft Malaysia announced seven new partners as part of the Microsoft Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) program. This was part of the company’s continued commitment to taking customers to the cloud. These partners are Maxis, Shinjiru Technology, SoftwareOne, VADS, Crayon Software Experts Malaysia, Ingram Micro Malaysia and Rhipe Malaysia. These CSP partners directly manage the entire Microsoft Cloud customer lifecycle, utilising dedicated inproduct tools to directly provision, manage and support their customer subscriptions.
Connecting youth Nescafé moved its global and local websites to the Tumblr platform. The initiative was intended to build stronger relationships with young people – for whom sharing their passions on social networks is second nature. Tumblr currently boasts more than 250 million blogs and over 110 billion individual posts. Nescafé will also use Tumblr to take a further lead in consumerfirst communication. WWW.M A R K ET I N G - I N T ER A C T I V E.C O M
Trip down memory lane Maybank Singapore partnered with Singapore-based creative agency noisycrayons to launch “Vault of Memories”, a commemorative digital campaign in celebration of the nation’s golden jubilee. The campaign presented four million Singaporeans with digital visual cards that featured iconic food, activities and landmarks of Singapore’s past that participants had to identify. The engagement incorporated the element of social referrals by having participants make referrals to earn cards. A different Viewpoint WPP’s programmatic media and technology platform Xaxis launched a new offering called Xaxis Viewpoint in Asia Pacific. Xaxis Viewpoint is a programmatic product that guarantees advertisers 100% viewability. Xaxis Viewpoint is available in markets such as Hong Kong, India, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan and Thailand. Xaxis Viewpoint gives advertisers access to a pool of inventory that offers first-look access to the industry’s premium publishers.
Pernod Ricard appoints Socialyse Distilled beverage provider Pernod Ricard appointed Socialyse, Havas’ social media arm, as its new social media agency after a pitch process. A total of three agencies were vying for the account. The pitch was called in June this year. Socialyse will take on and manage four brands under Pernod Ricard’s wings. These are Absolut, Chivas Regal, G.H. Mumm and The Glenlivet.
Making amends Bakery chain BreadTalk entered into a Voluntary Compliance Agreement with the Consumers Association of Singapore (CASE) to commit itself to fair practices. BreadTalk came under fire after a picture of it mis-marketing soya bean milk started circling online. BreadTalk also gave away 50,000 of its pork floss buns over three weekends in an effort to regain consumers’ trust after the chain was caught mislabelling its soya milk.
Stepping out in Asia British shoe brand Clarks is turning the spotlight on Asia with an aggressive growth plan to open 100 stores in the region in the next 12 months. The £1.5 billion business, which is celebrating its 190th anniversary in 2015, operates through retail, wholesale, franchise and online channels and has a presence in 130 markets worldwide. The brand is heavily investing in reinvigorating key existing stores in China, Japan and Singapore.
Tapping on the selfies Jetstar stepped up its marketing game with the launch of a new campaign that taps on the cultural phenomenon of the selfie. Launching a brand refresh campaign, “Because You Can”, the low-cost carrier aims to empower travellers to travel their way. The campaign marks the airline’s first regional campaign specially tailored for the Southeast Asian audience. The campaign has rolled out in seven markets across Southeast Asia.
The journey continues After its high-profile takeover of title sponsorship of the F1 from Singtel last year, Singapore Airlines said it was continuing the partnership until 2017. “As a strong supporter of both sports and tourism, we look forward to further showcasing the race to the world, and helping to strengthen Singapore’s image as a world-class tourism, cultural and sporting event city,” said Singapore Airlines CEO, Goh Choon Phong.
A sponsor-free Colour Run CIMB pulled out its sponsorship of the Colour Run which proceeded without a sponsor. A spokesperson from the event’s organisers, IMG, confirmed the bank’s withdrawal, with the following statement to Marketing: “While CIMB’s withdrawal is regrettable, it will not prevent us from operating a fun, safe and great event of a type and quality equivalent to events we have operated in previous years.” Better Together Five local independent agencies of various marketing specialties joined hands to launch a new collective called Better Together. The group comprises five agencies which offer creative, digital, events, media or public relations services. The new collective is made up of creative agency TMRW, media shop BlackBlue Media Group, brand activation agency I_Possible, PR firm Saffron Communications and music events company Red Spade Entertainment.
O C T O B E R 201 5 | a dvert i s i ng + m a r ke t i ng 5
Alibaba launches data centre Alibaba launched a new data centre in Singapore. This follows two earlier rounds of investment for SingPost by Alibaba, totalling US$456 million. The company has launched a new cloud data centre and a headquarter of international business in Singapore. The centre launched in early September. Alibaba already had a base and some staff in Singapore since it launched a Southeast Asia spinoff of its Taobao marketplace in 2013. Insuring brand awareness Tenet Sompo Insurance launched a campaign which aims to raise greater brand awareness about its offerings among the PMETs through its attention-grabbing visuals. Tenet Sompo took on the execution by using visuals augmented with 3D effect using the “trick art” concept at the Ocean Financial Centre, exclusively marketed by SPHMBO. Audiences were encouraged to pose and take photographs, tag with #TenetSompoInsurance and upload to their Facebook account.
Time's up Cosmopolitan Singapore ceased operations after four years in the Singapore market. The last issue of Cosmopolitan Singapore is its October 2015 edition. A spokesperson from SPH Magazines confirmed the news to Marketing adding that Cosmopolitan Singapore was “launched in a crowded lifestyle market” and “as a business model, the magazine is not sustainable”. All permanent staff members of the magazine will be redeployed within the company.
All lit up Singapore Airlines lit up the night carnival in the lead-up to this year’s Formula 1 Singapore Airlines Singapore Grand Prix. This year’s carnival was held in conjunction with race promoter Singapore GP’s “Rev Up Singapore!” campaign. The “Rev Up Singapore!” initiatives – part of a campaign by Singapore GP to get the local community excited for the Formula 1 night race – were aimed to be more fanfriendly this year.
Multi-million dollar boost The Singapore Tourism Board launched a SG$10 million Experience Step-Up Fund under its Tourism Product Development Scheme. The fund aims to encourage businesses to develop new tourist-targeted initiatives that enhance the overall visitor experience in Singapore. The launch of the new fund will see an open call for proposals for tour development and technology initiatives. Sentosa and Robinsons have already expressed an eagerness to tap on the newly launched funding.
In-flight fun Telecommunications company StarHub launched an in-flight ad campaign by branding the meal tray tables on Tigerair’s Singapore aircraft. In addition to the interior branding, Tigerair’s in-flight crew members distributed free SIM cards to passengers along with a detailed brochure of the telco’s offerings. This campaign was designed to target Singapore inbound traffic from key markets such as India, Indonesia, China and Malaysia.
6 a d verti s i ng + marketi ng | O C T O B E R 2015
Social move Crabtree & Evelyn appointed Mirum Social, the social media arm of Mirum Singapore, its social media duties. Mirum Social now manages Crabtree & Evelyn’s social presence in Singapore, which includes social campaigns and content creation for the brand’s Facebook and Instagram. The account was handed to Mirum following a pitch. This was the brand’s first time appointing a social media agency to handle its accounts.
Circus Social launches platform Circus Social, a Singapore-based digital software company partly owned by WPP, launched social intelligence platform 20/Twenty. 20/Twenty turns social insights and analysis into actionable data for brands and agencies – aiming to be a “Bloomberg terminal” for marketers. This was selected by SPH’s Plug and Play Accelerator Programme. This collaboration is aimed at building a “strong pipeline of high growth, innovation-driven tech start-ups” to address the challenges of the media industry. ZenithOptimedia soars to new heights Singapore Airlines (SIA) appointed ZenithOptimedia to handle its global media planning and buying services. The incumbent on the account was MEC. SIA spokesperson, Nicholas Ionides confirmed the news to Marketing. The contract began on 1 October 2015 and will run until 30 September 2018, with an option to extend for another two years.
Healthy start Publicis Singapore launched a global healthcare brand in Singapore and named Sharon Tan as the general manager of the unit. Publicis Healthcare Singapore is supported by the Publicis Healthcare Communications Group, the world’s largest healthcare agency network with 70 offices in 10 countries. CEO of Publicis Singapore, Lou Dela Pena, said: “Singapore is heading towards being a world-class healthcare hub in terms of R&D and innovation.”
Sponsoring safety Allianz’s sponsorship efforts of the Singapore Grand Prix was centered around the theme of safety. Leveraging their partnership, Allianz produced three royalty-free videos in 2015 featuring Lewis Hamilton as the expert for road safety. The aim was to raise awareness about the devastating impact of traffic deaths on societies worldwide and to increase awareness through local and global initiatives, thus contributing to safer roads and reducing the global death toll.
EDB hires R3 The Singapore Economic Development Board appointed marketing consultant R3 as its long-term global agency management consultant following a tender. Also vying for the account was Roth Observatory International. The appointment is for a period of four years with the option to extend for another two. The contract covers key agency tender management for appointment from April 2016 onwards. WWW. MARK E TING-IN TE RAC TI VE . C OM
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Chris Reed Global CEO and Founder Black Marketing
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Diageo settles pitch Diageo appointed Carat Asia Pacific as its media agency. The pitch covers major SEA markets and cuts across a range of brands, including Guinness, Smirnoff, Johnnie Walker, Baileys, Singleton, Haig, Cîroc and Benmore. According to sources, the review included both digital and traditional media. Marketing first reported in April that Diageo was in the midst of reviewing its media agency roster.
Experiencing Japan TripAdvisor partnered with All Nippon Airways to launch an “Experience Japan” global online campaign and drive inbound travel to Japan. The campaign utilises trending data by TripAdvisor in 14 countries and aims to raise traveller interest in visiting more of Japan’s regional cities. According to a statement from TripAdvisor, this was the first time its trending data was being utilised for an online campaign. Maggi wants love Nestlé’s Maggi launched a new campaign called #WeMissYouToo in India. The emotional ad withheld mentioning the brand name until the very end. The video spot for the ad depicts how the brand brings households and families together. The ad was created by McCann India.
Thai acquisition Grey Group acquired Thai advertising and digital agency nudeJEH. The agency is now called GREYnJ United. The local team is led by Jureeporn Thaidumrong (creative chairwoman), Kanaporn Hutcheson (managing director) and Thor Santisiri (chairman). The agency has a headcount of more than 60 full-time staff. The trio report to area director and CEO of Grey Group Thailand and Grey Group Singapore, Subbaraju Alluri.
McDonald’s says sorry Fast-food giant McDonald’s has admitted to plagiarising a creative work which was copied into an ad campaign for the company. The original work in question was part of a cheeky creative stunt done by photographer Kristina Bakrevski for her friend, writer David Sikorski. The pictorial capture went viral online, and was first picked up by news portal BuzzFeed in mid July.
Hootsuite gets popular Hootsuite saw more than two million installs from its popular app directory in the past four years. The app directory gives customers the ability to integrate Hootsuite with more than 140 solutions, ranging from CRM, customer support, and marketing automation to deep listening and analytics. Recently released apps on the app directory include Dropbox, Google Drive, IBM Silverpop Engage, MailChimp, Reputology and Zendesk.
Kicking goals Digital agency VML Indonesia launched a live stream campaign through Periscope for adidas Indonesia. As part of the brand’s global campaign for a new line of football boots Ace & X, adidas brought football activation to Jakarta, Indonesia, to find talented Indonesian football players. The campaign engaged with hundreds of live viewers and made adidas Indonesia the first adidas market in Southeast Asia and the first sports brand in Indonesia to utilise the Twitter-owned app Periscope.
KEEPING ITS EDGE It has been 11 years since its first c i r c u l a t i o na u d i t ,a n d The Edge Singaporei s s t i l l g oi n gs t r o n g w i t h i t s a u d i t e da p p r o a c hf o r a d v e r t i s e r s . The Edge Singapore w a s l a u n c h e d i nA p r i l 2 0 0 2a n da y e a r l a t e r h a di t s first annual audit, managing director E d w a r dS t a n i s l a u s t o l d Marketing. In a market where few do official audits, Marketing asked him the benefits of having the p u b lic a tio n ’s c irc u la tio n a u d ite d . “ W i t h a na u d i t e dc i r c u l a t i o n ,w e p r o v id e c r e d ib ility .O u r a d v e r tis e r s know exactly how efficiently a n de f f e c t i v e l yt h e i r b u d g e t s a r e d e p l o y e dw h e nt h e yi n v e s t i n The Edge, ” h e s a i d . Do these benefits outweigh the c o s t a n dt r o u b l e o f d o i n gi t ? “ A b s o l u t e l y , ” h e s a i d .T h e c o s t i s a na c c e p t a b l e p a r t o f d oi n gb u s i n e s s a s a r e s p o n s i b l e p u b l i s h e r ,h e a d d e d . “We firmly believe it is our
r e s p o n s i b i l i t yt o u r a d v e r t i s e r s t o p r o v i d e a na u d i t e dc i r c u l a t i o n .T h e benefit is The Edgei s w e l l r e g a r d e d a n d ,h e n c e ,r e a d i l yi n c l u d e di nt h e i r media plans.” T h e l a t e s t a u d i t b yA B C S i n g a p o r e w a s f o r F Y 2 0 1 3w i t ha circulation of 24,047 comprising p r in ta n d ig ita le d itio n s .
8 a d verti s i ng + marketi ng | O C T O B E R 2015
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More media transparency Millennial Media, an independent mobile ad marketplace, is working with Integral Ad Science to launch its 100% viewability guarantee for in-app mobile advertising in Asia Pacific. Integral Ad Science delivers the first-tomarket viewability measurement solution for all MRAID-compliant mobile advertising application integrations. With this new offering, Millennial Media aims to ensure its advertisers with the most trusted source of mobile impressions in the ecosystem.
MTV rebrands Iconic music channel MTV has unveiled a rebrand. Beginning 1 September, MTV channels across Southeast Asia shifted from their popular “I Want My MTV” tag line to a more assertive “I Am My MTV”, signalling the network’s approach in drawing more usergenerated content as part of its latest rebrand. The network celebrates its audience and talent by spotlighting their social media videos between programming onair and across all platforms with #MTVbump. Isentia acquires King Content Isentia acquired content marketing company King Content in a full acquisition. Isentia is acquiring 100% of King Content, of which 60% was paid upfront in cash. The final expected price will be AU$48 million dependent on reaching revenue targets over the next two financial years. The acquisition “further diversifies Isentia’s services across owned and earned media” in one of the fastest growing segments of the communications and marketing industries. WWW.M A R K ET I N G - I N T ER A C T I V E.C O M
Role model girls GapKids partnered with Ellen DeGeneres’ new lifestyle brand ED to launch GapKids x ED, a limited edition apparel collection. The GapKids x ED campaign features six young girls who have excelled at skateboarding, drumming, robotics and entrepreneurialism. Through the campaign, GAP aims to provoke a feeling of strength, empowerment and pure enjoyment and create “an environment of positive social engagement”. Stylish aspirations In the wake of the successful “The Runway” project in 2014, Unilever’s haircare brand TRESemmé, along with Mirum Jakarta, initiated the second leg of the campaign, which featured Indonesia’s first interactive 360-degree virtual runway. Consumers were invited for a behind-the-scene’s 360-degree look and experience of a model’s show preparation that consists of a photo session, wardrobe fitting, make-up and hairstyling which showcases TRESemmé’s products – before finally hitting a virtual runway.
Instagram’s new solution Instagram rolled out a full-funnel advertising solution following up on its plans first announced in June. Instagram enables advertisers of all scales to run ads on the platform in Asia Pacific and globally. The platform offers a new suite of features, including more action-oriented ad formats, landscape images and videos, and the ability to reach the right group, leveraging Facebook’s ad management technology.
Google revamps Google unveiled yet another makeover. Catering to its presence on a growing range of platforms whether it be on desktop, apps or devices, the search giant revamped its logo and introduced an “identity family” for the Google brand. It also rolled out different versions of its logos across its various products to make its tools more user-friendly. New elements such as a colourful Google mic has been integrated into the apps. Merging creatives Havas Worldwide Jakarta is now one fully integrated creative and digital agency under the global Havas Worldwide banner. This was a move initiated by the two CEOs from AdWork and Narendra to combine clout and bring specialist disciplines and expertise under one roof. The merger of the two subsidiaries into one Havas operation in Jakarta marks the next step of collaboration for above-the-line advertising and below the-line promotion.
Komli Media launches RevX RevX, a new company focusing on mobile app re-engagement globally, launched with US$4 million in funding from Komli’s existing investors – Norwest, Nexus, Helion, DFJ, and Peepul Capital. RevX was conceived and incubated by Komli Media, one of APAC’s leading digital media technology companies. The company is headed by CEO Mukesh Agarwal and COO Ruksh Chatterji. RevX helps mobile businesses grow engagement and revenue through its datadriven, predictive advertising software that enables one-to-one marketing.
HOW MUCH DOES THAT COST?
SPREADING THE JOY
O O H M e d i a p r o d u c e da n d e v e l o p e d a new “Joy Truck”. The truck was u s e df o r a C h a n n e l 8s e r i e s – The Joy Truck 3. The exterior of the truck was made up of 3D elements and 2 D d i e - c u t s o f a v a r i e t yo f p r i n t e d candies to represent the simple and joyful pleasures in life. The truck’s
exterior also served as a form of prepublicity for the programme while travelling on the road during filming. T h e s h o w ’ s d e t a i l s s u c ha s i t s premiere date and time were printed on the exterior to attract potential viewers. The ballpark cost of the Joy Truck was SG$80,000.
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WHAT LESSONS CAN YOU LEARN FROM WSJ’S NEW CONTENT STRATEGY
The Wall Street Journal recently launched its unified global edition. What does this mean for its content strategy, and what can brands learn about content marketing from this move? Rayana Pandey asks.
Content evolution: What brands and publishers need to know when it comes to creating great content.
Consolidation in print isn’t anything new to the market. We’ve seen a number of publications do that in recent years, but what’s interesting is the way these established publications are approaching content, given the digital-first strategy. Most recently, The Wall Street Journal intensified its push for international growth with the launch of new, enhanced global print and digital editions in Europe and Asia first announced in June this year. With a broadsheet format mirroring the US edition, the title will see a circulation from Monday through to Friday, expanded in both 10 a d verti s i ng + marketi ng | O C T O B E R 2015
size and scope, and a wider and more diverse selection of the Journal’s peerless reporting, insight and analysis. While the Journal will now be globally consistent in style and sections, regionally relevant content available throughout each day’s paper will be curated for readers in separate Europe and Asia editions. Distribution of the print editions will focus on key cities closely aligned to the Journal’s business-oriented readership, while the revamped digital offerings will offer an improved mobile experience to readers around the world. All content will be available via the
expanded regional iPad and Android editions, also launching today, marking a strengthened global digital presence for the Journal. Now, there are some important lessons in there for brands which are serious about content marketing. Metrics – what to measure At a time when different digital metrics are cropping up, how does WSJ ensure it is looking at the right metrics for its content? What is the objective of the editorial team? Gerard Baker, editor-in-chief of Dow Jones and The Wall Street Journal, said dwell time was perhaps the WWW. MARK E TING-IN TE RAC TI VE . C OM
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most important as it showed how engaged the audience was. “The grubby commercial reality is that if readers spend time, it maximises the exposure ads on our site gets,” he said. However, he added dwell time was not the sole metric WSJ refers to. There are page views, social shares and other metrics. The main website is seeing a majority of the traffic come in through search and social and not the home page. “We are looking at ways to engage the audience through these channels and once they are in our website we need to look at ways to keep them engaged again,” Baker said. In fact, WSJ recently promoted managing editor and Journal veteran Yumiko Ono to the role of Asia audience engagement editor. What this role effectively does is drive subscriber outreach and retention, along with attract new audiences by understanding audience behaviour on the platform. But it’s not always about traffic On an individual reporter basis, there is an art and science to measuring success. A reporter getting a lot of traffic for his/her stories isn’t necessarily better than the others, Paul Beckett, Asia editor of WSJ, explained. “We want traffic to our site for sure, but we want reporters who are best at their beats and that is not dependent on how many clicks your story got, but how many times you beat the competition with correct, factual and objective reporting,” he said. Digital has made news a 24-hour business and news titles are constantly gathering, chasing and sharing news. “We are in world where everyone is reporter. As journalists we are very much a part of that extraordinary amount of action. But we not only have to break news for our subscribers first, but also be factually correct,” Beckett said. Even when we are competing in the digital space – producing videos, tweeting, getting on the news wire more quickly than ever before – we have to get the story right. And here’s how it pays off Now this is not something brands looking into brand journalism genuinely prioritise because selling a product is the end-goal, but how important being objective in your content is, is reflected by what WSJ’s Baker has to say about the difference between news and opinion and the rise of citizen journalism. Baker said it was impossible to be 100% objective, but the editorial team at WSJ was aware and made serious efforts to keep the WWW.M A R K ET I N G - I N T ER A C T I V E.C O M
“We want traffic to our site for sure, but we want reporters who are best at their beats and that is not dependent on how many clicks your story got, but how many times you beat the competition with correct, factual and objective reporting.” Paul Beckett - Asia editor of WSJ
two biases at bay. Reporting bias – where the story is skewed in one direction politically or otherwise – and selection bias in the way it chooses what is interesting. A model unique to WSJ, Baker said, was the strict separation of its news pages and opinion pages. “We do not have the same people making the decisions,” Baker said. “The opinion pages have a very strong ideological outlook, are very conservative, robust and articulate. That’s what makes the Journal stand out.” However, organisationally, the editor for the opinion pages reports directly to the CEO just as Baker does. “That’s a very rare structure, but a testament of the Journal’s desire of achieving the best possible objective reporting in its newspapers.” Likewise, when it comes to citizen journalism, the Journal doesn’t see that as a threat. There is an awareness that every consumer is a source of information in this age of connectivity, but this democratisation of news is good for established brands as it presents an opportunity to cement their brand as the trusted source. “I think the very explosion of sources of news makes the premium value of reliable news that much greater. People see so much information, they almost immediately look for the source they trust,” Baker said. Be the source people trust. If you can position yourself as that, it will help you retain your audience even amidst the informational avalanche. As a news organisation, WSJ relies on the public for tips and leads and encourages people to do so, but it does not see value in totally relying on citizen journalism. “And that is not because we are smarter, but our readers expect our content to be rigorously checked, properly edited and gone through robust testing. Citizen journalism doesn’t go through the same process and readers know that,” he said. Videos, visuals and interactivity The WSJ has a large team in Hong Kong and
other markets of Asia churning out content for this region. “The era of waiting for New York to wake up is gone. Hong Kong is producing material for the region at a time that best suits the audience here,” Beckett said. And it’s not just text. Digital has presented an opportunity to engage the audience in various ways, especially through graphics and videos and other interactive features. “Digital platforms to us now is what colour TV was for radio,” Beckett said. The possibilities are endless. And therefore, innovate One way WSJ is innovating is through 3D and virtual reality, thanks to the ubiquity of smartphones. “We are beginning to use these technologies to make interacting with the WSJ more unique and immersive. These are powerful ways of visualising content or experiencing our events and will be made available globally, soon,” he said. Content wise, everything it does now is optimised for smartphones. It has revamped its apps and is innovating in the way news is presented, interpreting data in a much more meaningful way. Recently, it announced tying up with Apple to provide news-related content for the Apple news app. The app which is expected to launch soon will come preloaded on the company’s new operating system iOS 9. It recently launched WSJ Pro with WSJ Pro Central Banking, the first of what will be a premium suite of industry and subject-specific content services, combining news, data and events in a single membership platform. Proprietary central banking content and tools available to members via the WSJ Pro web portal will draw on the expertise of the Journal’s global team of leading central bank journalists, offering essential news and insight on the Federal Reserve and other global central banks, a wider analysis of global monetary policy and economics, as well as the data that drives policy decisions. “This and many more such innovations are in the pipeline for us,” Baker said. O C T O B E R 201 5 | a dvert i s i ng + m a r ke t i ng 1 1
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CREATIVE VERSUS MEDIA AGENCIES: WHOâ€™S GOT THE TALENT?
Are creative agencies getting the cream of the crop vis-Ă -vis media agencies or is there more to the issue of recruiting fresh grads to the ad industry? Rezwana Manjur asks.
To be continued: The fight for the brightest minds in the industry goes on.
In a conversation I recently had with a CEO of a media agency, we were discussing the difficulties of finding good local talent. Forget top level executives, he was of the view that even on a junior level, finding enthusiastic passionate individuals was close to impossible. And he is not alone in his views. Often the woes of the ad world that are echoed 12 a d verti s i ng + marketi ng | O C T O B E R 2015
throughout the industry are centred around the lack of talent. Furthermore, he added if graduates did in fact look to join the ad industry (#blessed), most of the time, the creative guys would get the first pick. Media agencies were hardly ever on the radar. And this is because of the lack of awareness of what exactly media agencies do. Media
agencies, while brilliant at marketing for their clients, fail to do so when it comes to their own brands. Goh Shu Fen, principal consultant of R3 and president of the Institute of Advertising Singapore (IAS), agreed to the point that media agencies have not been fantastic at branding and defining what value they bring to the WWW. MARK E TING-IN TE RAC TI VE . C OM
table, beyond the simple buying and planning duties. According to recent IAS research, ad agencies locally, as it is, are paying at least 20% less than most industries. This is not even comparing it to higher paying sectors such as finance and banking. Hence, making the industry look attractive is a must if new blood and creativity is to enter the world of advertising. “Relative to more mature markets in the west, the understanding of what marketing means is vague, and hence, the respective domains within the sector even more nebulous. The advertising industry is perceived, rightly so, to be a creative industry and therefore creative agencies tend to be the first port of call for any graduates who may not be considering a career in advertising,” Goh said. From R3’s own consulting experience, Goh added the consulting team had often had to reeducate senior stakeholders for the need for
is not as interesting compared with creative agencies. Giving the example of the recent career fair organised by the IAS which was open to all tertiary institutions, Lim and Goh said most media agencies did not take the opportunity to market themselves. This was despite the event being a targeted platform for media folks to market their agencies and establish a strong share of voice to fresh blood emerging from school each year. While the media agency field today has come a long way with a lot of depth in specialised areas, where it has been lazy is in its push for visibility and recognition. “There is definitely a lack of understanding of what we do and the fact that media agencies are no longer just all about straight-off media planning and buying. Moreover, our offices also tend to look less impressive and we know such factors still do matter to fresh grads,” Lim said. Patricia Goh, managing director of Starcom
“I agree that, generally, traditional creative agencies have had stronger brands than their media counterparts, mostly due to the fact that historically they’ve delivered a tangible output that sometimes has their name attached in mass media.” Chris Willingham - CEO of BBDO Singapore
media agencies to be more strategic partners beyond buying. She said: “Media agencies need to behave more like investment planners than real estate agents. Clients need to take a more strategic view on how they spend and account for over 80% of their marketing budget.” In a separate conversation, Jacqui Lim, managing director of Havas Media, also agreed the fault lies in the industry not coming together to market itself as a whole. “This is very much unlike the creative agency folks who actively know how to beat their own drum and make a name for themselves,” she said. According to Lim, even students who are actually clued into the advertising industry, suffer from a perception issue as to what the media industry does. As for those who did not study media/marketing/advertising in school, a career in the media agency world is not even on their radar or consideration. Despite all their advancements, media agencies are typically perceived as being less creative, more data-driven and reporting-heavy – which could lead fresh grads to think the job WWW.M A R K ET I N G - I N T ER A C T I V E.C O M
Mediavest Group Singapore, said the search for talent was always a struggle and the trick was in getting creative in the types of candidates being hired. The advertising industry today needs critical thinkers, so in addition to looking to marketing schools for talent, SMG heads to scientific disciplines for a more diversified talent pool. “We are somersaulting our way into new talent pools like engineering, financial institutions and the info-communications industry where we hire based on attributes, bypassing direct competition,” she said. Do the creative folks have it easy? The answer coming from creative folks is in the negative, but for reasons that are completely different. What constitutes the creative industry has changed significantly now. Chris Willingham, CEO of BBDO Singapore, said the creative sector now included media agencies who were increasingly offering creative solutions, clients with in-house creative departments and, of course, the many tech businesses and start-ups. “I agree that, generally, traditional creative
agencies have had stronger brands than their media counterparts, mostly due to the fact that historically they’ve delivered a tangible output that sometimes has their name attached in mass media.” However, with the shift in what the world of creative means, there is greater competition than ever for attracting true creative talent. This is making it especially challenging for agencies as a whole to attract the very best, whether they’re creative or media shops. Competition has also intensified as the likes of Google and Facebook claim a chunk of the talent that might have found itself working at creative agencies just a few years ago. Rumki Fernandes, regional director for talent and HR for APAC at Grey Group, added that creative agencies have their own set of challenges as far as recruiting the right talent. Creative agencies, because of the massive takeover of the world of data and digital, today need tech-savvy folks with broad skill sets and out-of-the-box thinking. Like Willingham, she was also of the view that the talent craved by the creative world today overlaps the Silicon Valley type of jobs, tech start-ups, product companies and social media outfits out there. Overcoming the issue – is HR to be blamed? It hardly comes as a surprise the responsibility for attracting fresh talent has to start from the top. However, if the issue of a lack of talent has been around for years, does this mean the HR and talent teams are failing to understand what the industry needs? “If we are truly passionate about what we do and are vested in attracting the best fresh talent for the agency, it is important to invest the time and effort of the senior folks in the agency in the hiring process,” Havas Media’s Lim said. Management teams need to actively craft guidelines on investing in fresh graduates to join the teams, and work hand-in-hand with HR to attract fresh people into the agency. Simply handing the HR teams a guidebook on what is needed in today’s changing media landscape is not enough. SMG’s managing director Goh also added that in the agency it is not the HR department’s KPI to find talent. At every level in the hierarchy, managers, directors and CEOs should have their own customised needs and relationships with talent they would like to hire. “We have all hired or been hired this way. Our policy is it’s not just finding the talent, it’s being the right company for the talent,” she said. O C T O B E R 201 5 | a dvert i s i ng + m a r ke t i ng 1 3
VOLKSWAGEN’S EXHAUST EMISSION SCANDAL: WHAT SHOULD THE NEXT PR STEPS BE? The nature of the globalised world is such that even if a scandal is happening in the US, consumers in Asia and other markets will be just as concerned. Is there a way for Volkswagen to redeem itself? Rezwana Manjur investigates.
Shrouded in misery: What should Volkswagen do to reinstate its reputation?
Volkswagen has been making headlines globally recently, but for all the wrong reasons. The German brand came under fire for its recent pollution scandal and moreover, for knowingly lying to its consumers. Volkswagen admitted it used software that manipulated exhaust emissions during government testing. The news broke after the US Environmental Protection Agency and the California Air Resources Board revealed their findings while testing diesel cars of the Volkswagen Group. Currently, in the US alone, the brand could potentially face criminal charges along with a hefty US$18 billion fine. Martin Winterkorn, then CEO of Volkswagen AG, apologised. In a statement he said: “I personally am deeply sorry that we have broken the trust of our customers and the public. We will co-operate fully with the responsible agencies, with transparency and urgency, to 14 a d verti s i ng + marketi ng | O C T O B E R 2015
clearly, openly, and completely establish all of the facts of this case. Volkswagen has ordered an external investigation of this matter.” In a press statement on its site, the brand also said that to cover the necessary service measures and other efforts to win back the trust of customers, Volkswagen plans to set aside a provision of some 6.5 billion Euro. Nearly 11 million of its cars can appear more environmentally friendly than they are during emissions tests, it said. “Volkswagen does not tolerate any kind of violation of laws whatsoever. It is and remains the top priority of the board of management to win back lost trust and to avert damage to our customers. The group will inform the public on the further progress of the investigations constantly and transparently,” the statement read. According to brand intelligence service YouGov, its BrandIndex perception data states
that in a matter of four days, Volkswagen’s growing scandal brought the car maker to its lowest US consumer perception levels in more than six and a half years. YouGov BrandIndex measured Volkswagen’s consumer perception with its Buzz score, which asks respondents: “If you’ve heard anything about the brand in the last two weeks, through advertising, news or word of mouth, was it positive or negative?” A Buzz score can range from -100 to 100 with a zero score equalling a neutral position. For example, a score of 35 means that 35% more people said they were positive than negative about the brand. For most of September, VW’s Buzz score was in the 10 to 11 range. Following the incident, it plummeted to -2. VW had never gone below a zero Buzz score since January 2009. Meanwhile, according to Meltwater, online chatter showed that in September alone there was, understandably, an increase in negative sentiment compared with the month of August. The results also showed the public backlash was most prominent on the 21st and 22nd of September, which had the biggest spike in negative sentiments. The platforms monitored were blogs, comments, Facebook, reviews and forums, Twitter, Wikipedia and YouTube. So, it is safe to say the brand has a long way to go to recover its ground. According to Lars Voedisch, principal consultant and managing director of PRecious Communications, the mantra in such a crisis situation should be: “Get it fast, get it right, get it out and get it over with.” He explained the brand needed to quickly make it clear to the public, if it was only the US market that was affected or were other markets also implicated. To date it has been released that 11 million cars are affected, but it’s not clear if this extends to other markets. WWW. MARK E TING-IN TE RAC TI VE . C OM
The nature of the globalised world is such that even if a scandal is happening in the US, consumers in Asia and other markets will be just as concerned. However, it is a known fact the risk of legal implications might make it hard for a brand in crisis to release a statement. This is often a tussle PR faces with legal in a crisis communication situation. So should HQ be handling all communication? The directive from HQ now should be to alert all marketing and comms leads across all geographies to only make concrete statements on facts and not leave room for speculation. While this may be criticised by some as being evasive, Voedisch is of the view that when a crisis hits a brand it should try to have as much control over the situation as possible. “Make sure regular updates are given and ensure the information given is 100% accurate to remain in control. This should trickle down to front office staff who are dealing directly with the consumers. Not having an answer is all right, but stick closely to the facts and do not leave room for speculation.” Next step While it is hard to imagine a silver lining in such a situation, Voedisch advises it is the perfect opportunity for the brand to get all of its dirty laundry out now. If more information comes at a later date, it will simply prolong the negative brand sentiment on consumers’ minds. “The issue now is to deal with what is at hand and ensure it never happens again and that is the tricky bit as it requires building trust with the consumer again,” he said. However, if the brand is effectively able to win back consumer trust, it can work towards using this issue to push for an industry wide change. But timing is vital in such a situation. If this is done too early, it may seem as though they are simply sweeping the dust under the carpet, and trying to deflect the situation. Should the CEO have stepped down? Soon after the news of the scandal broke, CEO Martin Winterkorn announced his resignation. Winterkorn in a statement said he was “shocked by the events of the past few days” and “stunned” that misconduct on such a scale was possible in the Volkswagen Group. “As CEO I accept responsibility for the irregularities that have been found in diesel engines and have therefore requested the supervisory board to agree on terminating my function as CEO of the Volkswagen Group. I am doing this in the interests of the company even though I am not aware of any wrongdoing on my part,” read his statement. WWW.M A R K ET I N G - I N T ER A C T I V E.C O M
was of the view the resignation of the CEO was the first and correct step as it demonstrated accountability. He explained that reputation damage in a crisis such as this is often directly proportional to the company’s ability to show authentic leadership. “Clearly in Volkswagen’s case, trust in the company’s leadership was destroyed and a circuit breaker was required to enable the company to take a leadership role in managing its crisis,” West said. However, he added that not always does a CEO’s head need to roll in crisis situations. “In a crisis, people look for transparency and accountability, it does not always have to lead to anyone’s resignation,” he said. “The CEO’s role in a crisis is to mandate action and demand accountability, and to lead. However, in this case the failure is widespread, occurred over a long-time frame or rather on his watch. It is systemic and therefore ultimately led to the CEO’s door.”
By sentiment August
Winterkorn also added that the company needed a fresh start in terms of personnel and he was “clearing the way” with his resignation. He added this was the only way to win back the trust of the public. Voedisch said it was still too early to decide if Winterkorn needed to go to remedy the entire situation. “What is clear is that the advisory board wants to have somebody on top who has not been involved in this scandal,” he said. Sonya Madeira, founder of Rice Communications, however, lauded the move and added it was good it happened so quickly. She said the entire incident was likely to impact the whole automotive industry and give it a wake-up jolt. When asked if the CEO’s head should always be the first to roll in such crisis situations, she explained that if a scandal is knowingly engineered, the buck stops at the top and the CEO’s head needs to roll. “This is needed when the public and shareholders have lost faith in the leadership and someone needs to step in to clean up the problem and repair the image.” Brian West, managing director of reputation management for APAC and global chair crisis management for FleishmanHillard Singapore,
Is there light at the end of the tunnel? While the CEO stepping down may demonstrate the brand moving in the right direction, going back to its glory days will not be a cakewalk for the brand. But this is not to say it is impossible. West suggests the next step for the company is for its leadership team to establish a guiding light strategy (GLS), which is bold, clear and aspirational. This should be a clear statement on what Volkswagen wants to stand and be known for. “The GLS gives the company a real chance of emerging from a crisis stronger than before,” West said. “Having a GLS facilitates clarity on the big picture, the long-term strategy of Volkswagen and the desired reputation the company wants to project and protect by aligning the company’s management of the current crisis with that longterm vision, mission and reputation.” Often, having a GLS unifies the management team to head in the same direction and reassures it there is light at the end of the tunnel. It also allows it to focus on the things it has control over, and to take control. “This is where the company moves from reacting to proposing, from following to leading, from defensive to assertive – they are, in fact, reaffirming what the company stands for, bringing its values to life in a crisis via its actions. The GLS takes management from managing a crisis to leadership during a crisis,” West said. Voedisch reiterated this was the perfect opportunity for the brand to get all of its dirty laundry out. If more information comes at a later date, it will simply prolong the negative brand sentiment on consumers’ minds. O C T O B E R 201 5 | a dvert i s i ng + m a r ke t i ng 1 5
CAN YOU IGNORE THE VALUE SMALL AGENCIES ADD? Smaller agencies may just be more committed to helping you achieve your marketing goals.
Bigger is not always better: There are many reasons why marketers should consider smaller agencies.
Letâ€™s consider a common situation. You are a top marketing professional in a top multinational organisation of global repute. You are a decision-maker or significant influencer in your firmâ€™s choice of vendor for either advertising, media, branding, PR or market research agencies. Numerous agencies across any of the above domains have been in touch with you, 1 6 M A R K ET I N G N OV EM B ER 201 5
but you only work with the very best in each field. So you work with the largest and most famous names in whichever field you are in. They are as big and as reputable as your own organisation and you are assured that you get the best that is possible. So, when representatives from smaller agencies try to contact you, you politely decline them, citing reasons of travel or a busy schedule
(which is often true) or worse, ignore them. But smart marketers are increasingly realising the value that smaller agencies bring. If you have been reluctant to try them out because they lack history or heritage, there is a possibility you may be doing yourself a disservice. Let me explain what advantages a small agency might bring compared with their more established counterparts. WWW. MARK E TING-IN TE RAC TI VE . C OM
Flexibility Consider your own massive organisation. To take a step in a new direction, think of the layers of decision-makers who have to validate the idea and how often new ideas get squashed because not everyone up the ladder is aligned to them. Large vendors often face the same. They have very strong processes and structures in place which deliver consistent results and have made them credible over time. However, the same processes are rigid and complex and can rarely be tweaked to accommodate a client’s need. As Jeff Rosenblum, founder of Questus, pointed out: “For large agencies, flexibility is antithetical. It conflicts with their legacy business model.” On the other hand, smaller agencies are quick and flexible and can adapt to your needs without significant legacy burdens. In a nutshell, smaller agencies are expected to listen to their clients to understand their needs, and thereby decide on the deliverables, rather than suggesting to the client what their tested and established methodologies have proven as deliverables over time. Subject matter expertise Now this can always be questioned, but in general the choice comes between a “Jack of all trades” or a “Master of a few”. Large firms are present everywhere, across every industry and they are capable of doing good work in almost everything you throw at them. Smaller agencies, on the other hand, have relatively limited resources and fewer domains of expertise, but they go far deeper and far richer in those specific domains. While a large firm may be a safe bet for doing “good” work in 40 different areas, a small firm will be able to provide “better” work in five of those areas, which is their key strength. Access to the think tank For larger agencies, in most cases, a client will have a multi-layered interface starting from the assistant to the manager to the director to the CEO of a division to higher layers that may even be out of the horizon. While every large firm is expected to have competent professionals, layers do exist for a reason. Many top firms are the brainchild of one genius, who has since moved on, but who has left a legacy for the firm to carry on. Over the years, there will be many top professionals involved, but few will match that founder’s genius. On the other hand, smaller companies will WWW.M A R K ET I N G - I N T ER A C T I V E.C O M
“For smaller firms, it is a ‘quest for reputation’ rather than reputation itself. A matter of life or death with every project and there is no room for being relaxed or complacent.” Amitabha Das — director – Asia, Relevance Marketing
mostly give you the opportunity to work directly with the main brain, allowing you to get the best out of a budding, hungry entity. You might end up working with the next David Ogilvy, if you are lucky. Fresh ideas The larger firms are reputable and wellestablished for a good reason. They have done quality work consistently over years (or decades) earning themselves credibility. However, what made them stand out in the first place was not that consistency. They stole the light by bringing in fresh ideas that were rare at that point in time. Once their ideas were successful, they developed the consistency model and made it standardised. With that, they ensured those once groundbreaking ideas are replicated steadily and uniformly. But in a fast paced and ever-evolving world of marketing, that is also tantamount to being undeviating and unchanging, which often stifles fresh idea generation. A smaller firm, on the contrary, thrives on fresh ideas. This is what gives birth to them and is what keeps them from becoming dead meat. Reputation There is no doubt that larger established firms have a much stronger reputation. Reputation was not built over a day and often takes decades to build. But once a certain reputation has been built, because of the sizeable growth that necessarily follows, it is not an easy task to conform to the same values that led to that reputation. For smaller firms, it is a “quest for reputation” rather than reputation itself. A matter of life or death with every project and there is no room for being relaxed or complacent. That makes them hungrier and eager to take that extra step to make sure the client is satisfied. With a large agency, you generally get what you asked for, or even what they promised to deliver. With a small agency, you generally get more than what you asked for because their urge to give you more is what keeps them running. In short, smaller agencies have far higher stakes and therefore their effort and commitment levels are higher, and their desire to make things right is noticeably stronger.
Competitive advantage This one probably applies more to the domains of branding or market research than to the more creative areas. But everybody would have noticed it at some point although most would have accepted it as the industry norm. The big guys have very similar offerings! They compete with each other globally and tend to use similar tools and techniques to outsmart each other. When you place three reports from the top three firms, you will see a large part of them either the same or similar. Which effectively means all your competitors have exactly the same reports and similar insights. How would you outplay your competitor when both of you are using the same weapon? If you desire to be ahead of them, you have to try something they might not have tried yet. That solution may be in the boutique agency that puts you ahead of time and ahead of your competition. Some closing thoughts It is true that there are too many small and big agencies around and it is not an easy task to pay individual attention to all of them. Most top professionals also realise the need to “play it safe” at certain points in their career and a large well-reputed agency is a politically safe bet without any doubt. It should also be mentioned that many large agencies provide top quality work without some of the limitations that have been mentioned. Likewise, not every small agency comes without these limitations and not every small firm provides top quality work. However, by depriving the smaller agencies a chance, you may actually be depriving yourself of a major breakthrough. Indeed, they may not have been there yesterday, but if you do the same as you did yesterday, you’ll get the same results as yesterday. Big or small, the final decision needs to be made on the value they bring on board. But the next time an unknown boutique agency shows eagerness to connect, do yourself a favour, spare them a slot and hear them out. That might actually turn out to be your best decision! The writer is Amitabha Das, director – Asia, Relevance Marketing. NOVE MB E R 2 015 MA RKE TI N G 1 7
WHO WINS IN THE RACE FOR AUDIENCE MEASUREMENT? How will Facebook’s slate of new ad tools and StarHub launching audience measurement tools affect TV ad dollars? Noreen Ismail and Rayana Pandey explore.
Facing a new way of doing things: Will Facebook’s TRP for video ads end up being a game-changer?
Facebook has unveiled a slate of new advertising tools to lure more advertisers onto its platform. Leveraging its strengths on mobile, Facebook is encouraging marketers to boost TV campaigns with Facebook video ads via TRP buying which provides a way for advertisers to plan, buy and measure Facebook video ads using TRP as the metric. According to Facebook, marketers can plan a campaign across TV and Facebook with a total TRP target in mind, and buying a share of those TRPs directly with Facebook. Working with Nielsen’s digital ad ratings (DAR) measurement system, DAR can verify Facebook’s in-target TRP delivery while Nielsen’s total ad ratings system can verify the TRP delivery for Facebook and television combined. According to the social media giant, it has 1 8 M AR K ET I N G N OV EM B ER 201 5
seen a 25% growth in the number of active advertisers on Facebook since February. Boasting 2.5 million advertisers actively engaging and utilising on its platform, Facebook’s new ad tools are set to change the way marketers spend their ad dollars, presumably shifting more TV ad dollars onto the social media platform. In a Facebook-commissioned study conducted by Nielsen across 42 US campaigns, advertisers saw a 19% increase in targeted reach when TV and Facebook tools were combined versus TV alone. This incremental reach increased to 37% when Millennials were the target audience, Facebook claimed. Making a case for the efficiency of its ad tools, the study said Facebook impressions were twice more likely to hit their target audience than TV impressions, signalling lower ad spend by advertisers to reach their target audiences.
These impressive statistics only serve to prove the reality of TV’s declining popularity. Ivan Wong, managing partner at Mindshare Singapore, said the move to “steal” TV ad dollars was not unique in the market. “Google is doing something similar with its YouTube inventory, positioning it as another viable option to traditional TV.” Still, there is a strong desire and demand to have a single measurement currency across screens.As such, Facebook’s reach and frequency (R&F) capabilities across devices could potentially make the switch from TV to social media easier for advertisers who may be used to TV measurement metrics, Wong explained. “In some ways, this emphasis on traditional R&F and TRP metrics alludes to the still fairly dominant position of TV in the marketplace and recognition by the top tech companies that ‘if WWW. MARK E TING-IN TE RAC TI VE . C OM
you can’t beat them, join them’,” he said. Facebook’s new ad tools will also provide advertisers with an additional avenue to consider aside from Google’s YouTube, Eileen Ooi, general manager of Maxus Malaysia, said. Given today’s advertising dollars are already shifting from TV to online videos, with YouTube primarily dominating the platform, Ooi said Facebook’s strong base in Malaysia made it a serious contender for advertisers to begin rolling out campaigns on its platform. “Allowing options for the gross rating buying format is definitely a game changer in the industry. As such, broadcasters need to be quick in their reactions and come up with a strategy to generate video content to bring consumers back,” Ooi said. StarHub next to join in Shortly after Facebook announced its TVlike ratings, i.e, video ads via TRP buying, pay TV operator StarHub partnered with Nielsen to launch StarHub SmarTAM, a TV audience measurement system using return path data (RPD) technology. StarHub has also commissioned Nielsen to support the subscription and sales of SmarTAM data. Harvesting RPD from StarHub’s two-way digital set-top boxes in 545,000 homes and applying Nielsen’s proprietary research for TV viewership measurement, StarHub SmarTAM claims to offer advertisers, media buyers and content providers granular insight into what StarHub’s TV households and individuals are watching. The TV audience measurement system tracks both real-time and time-shift viewing of TV content and advertising spots across more than 200 StarHub TV channels. Around 5,000 StarHub TV homes have been selected to be statistically representative of the StarHub TV households in Singapore. The move, although not the first in the market, comes at a time the fight for TV ad dollars is intensifying. (It is worth noting that although digital ad spend is growing exponentially, TV still commands a lion’s share in most Asian markets.) In January this year, Singtel Advertising and Kantar Media announced a similar deal introducing RPD technology in Singapore as part of SingTel mio TV’s new television audience measurement platform. RPD is captured for the entire Singtel mio TV customer base to ensure that all audience segments and niche channels are represented. Not only that, in June this year, Singtel Advertising inked a deal with Appier, an AIempowered cross-screen technology company, WWW.M A R K ET I N G - I N T ER A C T I V E.C O M
A smart move: StarHub’s SmarTAM has been lauded by many media agencies in the industry.
to introduce the first programmatic TV solution in Singapore, enabling advertisers to more effectively reach Singapore’s substantial, but fragmented TV-watching population. Throw Facebook into the mix and the war for ad dollars becomes even more brutal. What does this mean for the industry? In Singapore, historically, media planners have had to make do with V diary for cable TV measurement, which is an archaic anachronism from the 1990s. And while media agencies laud StarHub’s move, saying the robust sample of 5,000 lends credibility to this measure of cable ratings and improves accountability, there are a few points to note. “One will have to factor in additional complexity later in the second quarter of 2016, where we will have an additional ratings system commissioned by MDA. We could potentially end up with three different ratings systems (GfK, TNS and Nielsen) for measuring TV in Singapore leading to a scenario of more confusion on which metric is ‘the right metric’,” said Helen Lee, managing director of ZenithOptimedia, Singapore. With potentially three measurement systems by year end, Lee believes media companies such as MediaCorp and StarHub will leverage on the system that will give them the strongest position. “Multi-screens viewing is very prevalent now, therefore, it actually makes sense to look at ratings from the unified measurement system that MDA is championing,” she said. For advertisers and media agencies, the unified measurement system will be the one to potentially provide a neutral perspective. “We are also very eager to see whether the data will confirm some of the hypothesis,” she said. Echoing the sentiment is James Campbell, head of planning at Mindshare, who said with
its additional data sets, StarHub has taken a big jump to the front of the field when it comes to audience measurement. “While we see this as a very positive move on StarHub’s part, it will undoubtedly create another challenge for the industry – lack of a single source panel – at a time when advertisers and agencies are looking for a common measurement currency,” he said. Currently, FTA and Singtel are measured by Kantar, and StarHub now by Nielsen, while the digital media owners are looking at a host of different solutions. “As GfK put their own system in place following the MDA tender, and as this develops further to fulfil the original ambition, questions will need to be answered about which measurement systems should be adopted by the industry as a whole,” he said. Lauding the move, Nick Seckold, CEO of Mindshare Singapore, said while StarHub has always had great content, the lack of cable ratings data has discouraged many advertisers from investing more due to the pressures of delivering ROI back to their businesses. “Given their relationship with their customers across a number of areas, I’m pleased to see them start to use some of the data assets to validate the quality of their content,” he said. “We also see SmarTAM allowing brands to drill deeper at the planning stage to target specific audiences/households based on behavioural trends. “If StarHub can deliver on the ambition, it will most certainly create a step change in how TV advertising is planned and measured.” But only time will tell if this has an effect on the FTA operators given the level of comfort the market has with traditional ratings methodology. “If nothing else, it will force the industry as a whole move to forward to innovate at a time many brands are shifting a greater percentage of their investment online.” NOVE MB E R 2 015 MA RKE TI N G 1 9
WHAT THE 2016 MALAYSIAN BUDGET MEANS FOR CONTENT CREATORS
Looking forward: Key takeaways for the content indsutry from the budget.
The 2016 Malaysian Budget underlined some positive measures that the government will take in the ‘year of commercialisation’ to ensure the enhancement of infrastructure, as well as productivity in the effort to support continued growth in the GDP. While Ideate Media welcomes the allocation of RM250 million for the national broadcasting digitalisation project outlined in the Budget, we hope that the government will continue to support the creative content industry as a sustainable catalyst for the nation’s growth. It remains a priority to address the fundamental challenges, with a greater call to examine how the existing fund is utilised. As we move forward, the industry needs to better optimise the support by creating meaningful, original content that can be owned and linked to commercial outcomes. Focus on origination of intellectual properties Over the years, companies have been 2 0 a d verti s i ng + marketi ng | O C T O B E R 2015
capitalising on government-led initiatives with investments heavily focused on content production. The results have been phenomenal with production of several internationally acclaimed films tapping on our local resources. Malaysia is well-positioned to move from the existing production-led state towards an industry that approaches every step of creative content development in a cohesive manner – from ideation to production and commercialisation. We need to encourage the incubation and ownership of local intellectual properties (IP), and move beyond being an outsourcing production hub. This will not only provide greater opportunities for local players, but also increase the ability to broaden the export of Malaysian-made content and drive a sustained funding environment. Developing content with commercial returns There needs to be a closer link between development and commercialisation in the
process of content creation. It is one of the most overlooked areas, yet today’s content is largely created without a monetisation plan. Producers need to embrace a mindset where content must be produced with a buyer or a commercial interest in mind at the early stages. To drive this shift, industry funding programmes should measure success of the product by ROI. It will then provide an assurance that every development comes with returns, which can be channelled back into the ecosystem to fuel the growth of content creation and up skill our local talents. As we aim to develop, produce and commercialise high-quality content for international audiences, we are encouraged by the 2016 Budget allocations with hope that it continues to bring us a thriving and lucrative creative content industry. The writer is Zainir Aminullah, chief executive officer of Ideate Media. WWW. MARK E TING-IN TE RAC TI VE . C OM
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HOW SOCIAL MEDIA HAS CHANGED MARKETING
Social media and social networking are no longer in their infancy. As these platforms continue to grow rapidly, they become important pieces of the online architecture and experience that reshape the way brands engage with their consumers. Inti Tam writes.
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But just how wide and far reaching have the changes been? Here’s a closer look at how exactly social media has changed marketing and how more and more marketing and advertising campaigns are integrating social as a key component. The two-way communication The handkerchiefs and toilet paper brand Tempo first welcomed social media with open arms by setting up its Facebook page in 2011, when there were only 300 fans. But today, it has amassed almost 60,000 supporters. Almost one out of every 120 Hong Kong citizens has “liked” the page. Aileen Ho, marketing director of Tempo, thinks one of the important features of social networks is their interactive character. “It provides a two-way communication,” Ho says. Unlike traditional marketing methods, which are only able to offer a one-way channel of communication, now consumers have a voice. Whenever a brand shares any posts, marketers are able to receive feedback about their products or strategies almost immediately. “Our teams monitor the activities on Facebook every one hour,” she reveals. Traditionally, when companies think of marketing and communications, visions of press releases and announcements dance in their heads. However, Ho thinks on cyberspace, brands cannot feed customers with boring content anymore. The brand creates a persona for its Facebook page to reach people effectively. “Just like a normal friend on your friend list,” the marketing director shares. This “humanised” net friend also speaks your language, sometimes in colloquial Cantonese, or even inserts a smile in the conversation. Co-creating content Now that customers’ voices can be heard, Tempo sources its ideas from its social community to develop its new packaging, which changes the way of bringing new products to market. Last year, Tempo collaborated with local designer Prudence Mak, creator of Chocolate Rain, for its new cartoon tissue packaging, as what customers voted for on Facebook. “All these creative comments on our Facebook are genuine UGC content,” she says. “Indeed, we are co-creating ideas to help foster in-depth engagement.” To promote the newly launched peachscented tissue paper, the brand ran a contest 2 4 a d verti s i ng + marketi ng | O C T O B E R 2015
Ho says one of the challenges is Facebook constantly changes “game rules”, for example, cutting the organic reach of brands to 1% after the algorithm changes. Since organic reach has been reduced to 1% to 2% of a page’s total number of followers, she doesn’t see a big difference when a brand is amassing a 70,000 or 80,000 fan base on Facebook. “There’s no certain formula allowing you to be the king of social media.” But still, the brand leverages social media as a glue to hold together a wider push that includes traditional elements such as TVC, print and advertisements on buses, which takes up to 80% of its marketing budget.
Tempo’s latest product - fuzzy peach tissue.
on Facebook that users could enter and win a gift box to create more loyalty. Handling reviews – the good and the bad A lot of companies see social media as a double-edged sword: the advantage is connecting and building relationships with consumers; and the disadvantage is handling negative remarks. When it comes to sharing, not all posts or comments will be positive, and when most businesses see angry customer comments, their common reaction would be to delete the comment or not respond to it at all. But Ho thinks removing bad comments is not the way out, “that user can post the comment over and over again or air his or her views on other platforms, even complain to their friends”. In the world of Facebook, speed is crucial; even more in times of a social media disaster. She thinks it is crucial to reconnect with the specific people writing the bad reviews – immediately. “We would reply to them directly in the thread and ask if we could send them a private message for further discussion.” Even if we are living in a hyper social media-infused environment, some company CMOs, Ho reveals, however, are still hesitant to establish social channels because they are afraid of dealing with negative comments. Game-changing rules Facebook is a powerful tool; however, there are some hurdles for brands.
Digital revolution According to a report from the Interactive Advertising Bureau, revenue from mobile advertising hit US$11.6 billion in Asia Pacific last year. On the other hand, during the second quarter of this year, Facebook revealed 76% of its advertising revenue came from mobile. Similarly, Twitter credited mobile with 88% of its advertising revenue. It’s believed that conventional advertising channels have experienced a major setback, and Ho comments: “The way consumers receive information has changed, brands should evolve at the same time.” “Just like the film manufacturer Kodak”, when digital technology reversed photography dramatically, “people simply abandoned film cameras for digital ones”. While we’re reading fewer newspapers and magazines than the generations before us, she thinks it’s not that we have stopped reading. “The truth is people still read news, but they just go digitally.” The evolving role of the CMO As marketing becomes social, the role of the CMO, inevitably, has changed drastically. Priscilla Ng, the former country marketing director of Citibank, now promoted to the head of customer franchise of Citibank Global Consumer Banking, says her current role is more than to spearhead marketing and branding strategies. In her new role, she oversees marketing, digital banking, client experience, decision management, and business learning and development functions for the bank. While customer engagement and experience are crucial aspects for the banking world, she is responsible for managing all these functions to grow the franchise by developing WWW. MARK E TING-IN TE RAC TI VE . C OM
customer management strategies for different segments, and creating client experiences at different touch-points and channels based on different client profiles. The newly created position in the region is to echo the restructure of the US headquarters – and highlight CMOs taking digital, customer experience and marketing duties together. Meanwhile, Citibank’s Singapore office has also created the same position, head of customer franchise, equivalent to the CMO, to oversee the company’s various marketingrelated activities. In the wealth management industry, it’s vital to get in touch with customers in person. To push businesses forward, the bank utilises social media channels to make a personal connection with clients. Fuelling campaigns During the World Cup in Brazil last year, Citibank rolled out a social media campaign “Soccer Mania” to boost viral marketing. The campaign asked participants to take a photo at the giant soccer shoe installation at one of its soccer-themed branches. After that, participants could upload the photo on Instagram and hashtag a buzzword to enter the contest to win a prize. Ng thinks the most critical area for social media is to bring online and offline synergy, since these online campaigns drove traffic from online to offline platforms – attracting people to visit the soccer-themed branches to take pictures, and in the meantime, branches drove traffic back to the online platform by asking them to tag the photos. By launching different kinds of social media campaigns, the bank has built a reward mechanism that fosters viral marketing. This year, the bank partnered with NMG Plus, of New Media Group, launching an online game named “Citibank x NMG Plus teaches you skills in mind reading”. Facebook users could play the game by clicking on the advertisement showing up on their newsfeeds. By answering three multiple-choice questions, participants could learn how to interpret body language in order not to be misunderstood in their daily lives. They could also understand how Citibank handled loan cases in the game. After finishing the game, customers left personal information; and they could visit a branch to redeem a coffee coupon as the reward. Apart from gaining brand exposure, it also boosted sales. Ng sees customer engagement WWW.M A R K ET I N G - I N T ER A C T I V E.C O M
“THERE’S NO CERTAIN FORMULA ALLOWING YOU TO BE THE KING OF S OCI A L ME DI A .”
Citibank has launched several mini online games to boost viral marketing.
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According to a report from the Interactive Advertising Bureau, revenue from mobile advertising in Asia Pacific hit
Facebook revealed 76% of its advertising revenue came from mobile
Similarly, Twitter credited mobile with 88% of its advertising revenue.
Tommy Hilfiger’s 30 th anniversary fashion show in Beijing.
in branches as an opportunity for front line staff to talk to clients face-to-face and start a business conversation with them. Ng says compared to conventional marketing channels, social networks are a costeffective marketing medium enabling the bank to create a viral effect. She also finds the technology helpful in terms of re-targeting customers and to put a focus on delivering the message to the 2 6 a d verti s i ng + marketi ng | O C T O B E R 2015
most relevant people – something traditional marketing tools cannot do. The age of active listening In Ng’s eyes, social media serves four purposes: acquiring new customers, client engagement, customer care and social listening. Back in the day when a brand wanted to get customers’ feedback or opinions, it had to conduct focus groups or surveys, Ng says.
But in the digital era, social is not only a communications tool, but also an important listening tool. Anytime your business is mentioned, anywhere on the web, you will hear about it instantly, showing social media has flipped the interaction between consumers and brands. “The communication on social media is real-time,” Ng says. “So we have to think of how to carry on a meaningful and relevant conversation with the customers in the highly technological realm.” To enlarge the bank’s digital footprint, Ng reveals the company has redirected 50% of its marketing budget to digital in 2015 (it was only 20% in 2012). The greater portion of investment on online communications reflects the bank’s aim to have direct interaction with the public. After observing for two years, the bank has decided to launch its official Hong Kong Facebook page by the first quarter of 2016. Social media marketing in China In China, where Facebook’s presence is not yet officially available, Weibo and WeChat have taken advantage to become the most popular social media platforms and also important marketing tools in China. Some international fashion labels such as Tommy Hilfiger and Burberry have already established their own presence on these platforms to penetrate the Chinese market. Tommy Hilfiger employs a dedicated social media team and specialists in China to capitalise on interest around its big events, such as its 30th anniversary fashion show in Beijing in May. The US fashion brand even enlisted the Chinese supermodel Shu Pei Qin to take over the brand’s Weibo account during and after the show – from Qin’s street style to a glimpse backstage to front-row coverage – in order to engage with its global audience. Content around that event led to a 2,000% increase in visits to the Tommy Hilfiger Weibo page, which raised engagement by 1,900%. Similarly, British luxury brand Burberry partnered with WeChat last year to create its own WeChat app providing fashion show recaps for its fans. One feature included the ability to experience the show live from the perspective of the first row, which included Hong Kong-based model Angelababy, who provided audio commentary. One thing is certain: social media communication is here to stay and the companies that stay on top of the social media marketing revolution are the ones that will thrive in the changing marketplace. WWW. MARK E TING-IN TE RAC TI VE . C OM
RAJAN PURSUES BOLD NEW VISION FOR CNN Matt Eaton speaks to Sunita Rajan about how she is driving the next wave of growth for CNN in Asia. Earlier this year Sunita Rajan, a 17-year veteran of the BBC in Asia, announced she was making the move to CNN, a network that for years the British broadcaster has fought tooth and nail against for ratings dominance – often coming out second best. As vice-president and head of advertising sales for CNN International, she took charge of an extensive client portfolio and teams in five offices across Asia from Hong Kong to Singapore, Tokyo, Delhi and Mumbai. While her move may have been viewed as a surprising one, speaking to Rajan, it is clear she has big plans to fast-track CNN’s next wave of digital growth and amplify the network’s push into content verticals, particularly for a younger, more affluent audience. “I have an ambitious digital vision for CNN,” she tells me from her new office overlooking Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbour. Earlier this year we had a glimpse of what that strategy might look like with the launch of CNN Style, a standalone fashion and design vertical, tailored for mobile audiences and social sharing. It is verticals such as this and even CNN Travel or CNN Money, which she says is helping to drive engagement across multiple platforms. They are also helping to satisfy what she calls “passion points” or types of content which can offer deeper engagement beyond breaking news. “There is a hunger and appetite for that type of content and we will do more of it.” The difference with CNN Style, she says, is the content is curated by people from within the creative industry, giving it a clearer point of difference. “Products with an edge – that’s what our audience expects,” she says. “Everything is shaped and tailored for a global audience. We live in a connected world and our products are put together for a connected reader.” Within this new world of mobile-first media, conversations with advertisers are also starting to shift to content and digital. “There is still a market and a need for ad 2 8 a d verti s i ng + marketi ng | O C T O B E R 2015
Looking forward: Key takeaways for the content indsutry from the budget.
buys. Content is very much the start of the conversation, but the campaign around the content is what makes it different,” she says. “The power behind the content and what we can do with it is what brands are looking for.” On a more personal level, she says she is genuinely excited by the challenges ahead. “The opportunities for me personally are
exciting for a variety of reasons, but to work for the number one news brand in the world is an honour. “This is a tremendous opportunity to build further growth for the global news leader across its extensive portfolio of TV and digital products in a region as exciting and dynamic as Asia Pacific.” WWW. MARK E TING-IN TE RAC TI VE . C OM
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RECYCLING OF IDEAS: IS IT ACCEPTABLE? In an industry where we are forced to come up with ideas every single day, only for some of them to be tossed aside is it really that big a crime to reuse an old idea for a new client? Rezwana Manjur finds out.
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Take a look at these two ads on these pages. The similarity in this instance is pretty obvious. Both these ads were launched during the haze period and while they might have been for different markets, the idea was fairly similar and both were created by the same agency, Yellow Mango Communications, for different clients. This is not a case in isolation, but it prompted me to ask this question – is recycling ideas by agencies acceptable? When questioned by Marketing on the similarities, Yellow Mango Communications’ lead Alvin Kok explains that while the Malaysia and Singapore team consist of very different individuals, being a collective team, there are similar ideas that pop up from time to time. He says the post on the Manhattan Fish Market for the Singapore market went up first and in the case of the Carrie ad in Malaysia, the agency simply executed the ad under the client’s orders. “The client conceptualised it and I am certain they could have seen it somewhere else. The ads were using the same tone and manner, but were not exactly the same,” defends Kok explaining that one was for food delivery, while the other was for a hygiene product. He, however, assures Marketing that the agency actively takes on different brand strategies for different clients, but what can’t be avoided is the similar thought process that runs through the spine of the agency. “If the entire idea is re-pitched, then I don’t think it is quite right. Nonetheless, these ideas belong to the agency until they have been used,” he says. Recycling of ideas: Should you do it? With so many ideas being generated every day, let’s be honest, there are bound to be idea overlaps and working on the agency side, churning out ideas day in and day out, is no cakewalk either. Surely, when a spark of brilliance happens and you come up with the perfect idea for a campaign, only to be shot down by your clients moments later, it would hurt. What then do you do with those amazing concepts? Do you simply chuck them in the bin and wait for your next moment of genius? Or do you keep them in the back of your mind to pitch to a braver client? Pat Law, founder of local creative agency GOODSTUPH, says in instances where both ads are running for different clients, “the agency should be shot in the head for having a misaligned moral compass and given an award for being so mercenary at the same time”. She says that unless you’re an agency that 3 2 a d verti s i ng + marketi ng | O C T O B E R 2015
“Very seldom do we dip into the rejected ideas graveyard to bring an idea back to life. But I have to admit, there have been times where we felt very strongly for an idea, and refused to bury it just because one client didn’t get it.” Pat Law – founder of local creative agency GOODSTUPH
churns out final artworks adapted from global agencies on a daily basis, agencies owe it to a client to develop ideas based on the brief on hand. For a creative agency, adds Law, the most interesting bit of work lies in the conceptualisation process. “So very seldom do we dip into the rejected ideas graveyard to bring an idea back to life. But I have to admit, there have been times where we felt very strongly for an idea, and refused to bury it just because one client didn’t get it,” she says. What then does Law and her team at GOODSTUPH do with it? “For ideas we refuse to bury, we’d keep them in the storeroom and perhaps even run it on our own,” she says. Patrick Low, founder and creative director
for Goodfellas, however, is of the view it is “perfectly fine” if one client’s rejected ideas fits another client’s brand and proposition – and is then used by the latter. Much like Kok, he is of the view that an idea is the creative agency’s product and it has every right to sell its product to whoever it wishes. “Imagine you are a boutique owner and you have chosen a dress for a customer, but for some reason she decided not to buy it. Should you sell it to another suitable customer or throw it away?” he asks. Clients speak up The concept of recycling an idea is not new to Singapore. At a debate last year held by Pitchmark, an organisation aiming to protect creators’ intellectual property during pitches WWW. MARK E TING-IN TE RAC TI VE . C OM
agencies the company works with on a project basis, if the agency reuses an idea pitched initially to Eu Yan Sang (which was subsequently rejected) for another client, it wouldn’t be too big a headache for her and her team. However, for agencies in long-term contracts with the company, the expectations are higher. This is because these long-term agencies are ideally seen as long-term partners where they are often privy to business insights that give wings to an idea. Moreover, because of the long-term nature of the relationship, an idea rejected for one campaign now doesn’t mean it will not be picked up for a later one. “We usually establish a mutual understanding with our long-term partners that the rejected idea should be kept for future use,” Koh says. “If that level of trust is breached, then as with all relationships, it will be impossible to continue.” She emphasises that should an insightdriven idea be recycled for another brand, it becomes an integrity issue and the company would not be comfortable extending the relationship with the agency.
“Imagine you are a boutique owner and you have chosen a dress for a customer, but for some reason she decided not to buy it. Should you sell it to another suitable customer or throw it away?” Patrick Low – founder and creative director for Goodfellas
by promoting paying pitch fees in Singapore, Nader Tadros, partner sales director for APAC at Microsoft, said pitch fees in Singapore would probably not work simply because agencies tended to recycle ideas. Hence, clients would simply be paying for ideas that have already been sitting in the storeroom. “If we are to pay a pitch fee, what is the assurance that the idea created is solely for our organisation and will not be reused or resold to a competitor if we are to reject the idea at that point?” Tadros asked. This was met with a response from Stephanie Lee, manager of original productions and content development at Singtel, who says the idea theft issue is simply the “nature of the business”. This is a common phenomenon and even WWW.M A R K ET I N G - I N T ER A C T I V E.C O M
for an agency, ideas are generated based on “inspiration” from another avenue. With an abundance of images and information readily available, it is often difficult to claim that an idea is completely original, she adds. However, she is quick to clarify that while the recycling of ideas may be the nature of the business, she is neither in support nor accepting of it. While some advertising and marketing friends remain split on whether or not recycling ideas is a big no-no in the advertising business, there are several marketers we spoke to who seem a little more eco-friendly when it comes to reusing old rejected ideas. Corrinne Koh, marketing lead at Eu Yan Sang, says the standards vary for retainer agencies and project-based agencies. For
What if you are pitched a ‘once rejected’ idea? If the tables are turned and a brand rejects an idea which fits perfectly with Eu Yan Sang’s DNA and achieves its marketing objectives, explains Koh, then there will be no reason for her to say no. She adds this is provided the brand, who it was initially pitched to, is willing to share it and that all parties must be kept in the loop. Gale Choong, head of marketing at Unilever, echoed Koh’s sentiments. “As long as the campaign proposed answers the brief and is within the proposed budget and the key is to deliver intended objectives of the campaign, whether or not the idea was rejected by another, we should still evaluate it objectively. Maybe it’s just because the other client failed to see a gem,” she says. According to Choong, if an idea is rejected due to the failure of answering the brief and the quality of the idea as a whole, then there is no reason why the agency cannot re-propose the idea to another client, with whom it may sit better with. However, if the idea is re-hatched for a direct competitor, it will most definitely not reflect well on the agency’s integrity. For Choong, however, when reusing a rehashed idea, caution must be practised. Where she would draw the line is if an agency re-pitches an idea that has been rejected by one client for another repeatedly – especially if the clients are direct competitors. O C T O B E R 201 5 | a dvert i s i ng + m a r ke t i ng 3 3
CREATIVE HEADS SPEAK UP After hearing what clients and agencies really thought of re-hashing old ideas, we had a quick conversation with some of the creative directors in Singapore. We asked them what really is the worth of a good idea and should an agency try to keep it alive if a client rejects it. Here’s what they had to say: “The whole originality debate has been and will always rage on. Today I don’t think there is truly an original thought because everything is inspired, formed and shaped from your experiences and the environment in which you live. Therefore, it is entirely possible that someone else has had the same idea independently from you because ideas exist in the ether. Creative minds are constantly pulling from various sources and what’s important is where those inputs come from and how you remix those inputs to create fresh outputs. Recycling ideas only becomes an issue when it’s the easy way out, when you’ve got an idea and you stick it to a problem regardless. Shamelessly copying someone else’s idea is also unacceptable. But ultimately, ideas are nothing until they have lived and if an idea hasn’t been brought to life, it should then be given every chance to live.” Grant Hunter – regional creative director for APAC at iris Worldwide
“Creatives recycle ideas all the time. But it’s in how you do it, isn’t it? Recycling can’t be your first instinct. You shouldn’t propose an idea that you’ve already executed for another client. And if it’s been presented to one client before, perhaps you shouldn’t sell it to another, lock, stock and barrel. Otherwise, as they said in Game of Thrones, ‘Shame!’ Timothy Chan – creative director for GOVT
“We may all have different interpretations of what ‘recycling ideas’ means. ‘Recycling’ is fine if it is your own idea and hasn’t been executed before. So what if a client had rejected it previously? It is only ‘recycled’ to the agency that conceived it, but will be new, fresh and, perhaps, brilliant to the next client you are presenting it to. We’ve all seen that happen. Ideas reside in the mind until we give life to them in our work. If we find them worthy to be ‘recycled’, then they must be good ideas. And if they’re good ideas that haven’t seen the light of day, they deserve another chance and usually have to be reworked to fit the brief and product anyway. These days, clients are expecting more in a shorter space of time and, often, at a lower cost. Agencies do their level best to satisfy on all counts. So ‘recycling ideas’ is one recourse, but let’s not talk about it like it’s a new concept that did not exist before. Ng Khee Jin – founder and creative director for Wild Advertising & Marketing
“A creative idea which has been presented to a client, but not sold is still considered the property of the agency. It is wise to represent it to another client if the solution meets the brief. It is as simple as that. No agency should feel ashamed to do so. After all, you spent hours conceiving the idea and, hence, it is solely yours until you find a suitable buyer. I won’t call it recycling. It’s a wrong term to use. It is just smart thinking.” Terrence Tan – founder for Ice Inc
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RIDICULOUS THINGS CLIENTS IN SINGAPORE SAY Pat Law of Goodstuph shares with Marketing some of the frivolous things clients say.
Not again: The list of ridiculous things agency folks hear from clients is nice and long.
Pat Law, the outspoken founder of creative agency GOODSTUPH, shares with Marketing some of the wildest things heard in the agency world.
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“Can you change the font? ‘Ill’ in ‘illuminate’ looks like three joss sticks.” “Can you spell out ‘plus’? The plus sign looks religious leh.” “Can we create a festive campaign that can be used for Christmas, New Year and Chinese New Year?” “Is ‘Red is the new Black’ racist?” “If I sign off to a 12-month retainer, can you give me two more months for free?” “Eh, the website needs to be IE compatible please. Top management uses IE.” “Please book that Clear Channel bus shelter space outside our office. Our CEO drives past there every morning.”
3 6 a d verti s i ng + marketi ng | O C T O B E R 2015
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“We need to target Singaporeans and non-Singaporeans” (by the way, this was in an actual brief found on Gebiz by a government body). “We need to talk about the prevention of HIV following the principles of ‘ABCD’. ‘A’ stands for ‘abstinence’.” “We cannot run ads next month. It’s seventh month.” “We need a SG50 campaign. Because it is SG50.” “You need to pay an admin fee of $200 to submit your pitch proposal to us.” “Can we use Pan-Asians? They look more wealthy than Chinese.” “The birds above my property cannot be black. Turn them white.” “Red packet for volunteers? But they are volunteering right?” “Can we buy the goodie bag from Taobao?”
Hilarious right? Share with us some wild demands you have heard from clients. Write to email@example.com. WWW. MARK E TING-IN TE RAC TI VE . C OM
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