Here are all of the posts tagged ‘asia’.
As part of our on-going look at Social, Digital and Mobile around the world, the folks over at InternationalBusinessGuide.org shared this great infographic with us.
We were particularly interested to note that messaging is the most frequent activity on smartphones, even ahead of checking the time.
Added together, people are checking social media and messaging each other 32 times a day – that’s equivalent to twice every waking hour:
Twitter increases focus on Asia
In an effort to increase global engagement and revenues, the newly-listed social media company has gone on an aggressive hiring spree in Asia. The company has reportedly staffed five key marketing and communications positions in the last two months, and is said to be currently hiring for more than 20 positions in the region.
Possible LinkedIn integration on WeChat
The upcoming WeChat update could possibly come with LinkedIn integration and an Android makeover for the popular messaging and social media app. The following screenshots from a private beta version were released on Pingwest.
LinkedIn currently has more than four million registered users in China. Analysts predict that a Chinese-language version of the professional networking platform could be released soon.
Reverse takeover lands mig33 on the ASX
The Singapore and Indonesia-based mobile social networking company, mig33, is now listed on the Australian Stock Exchange. Australia-listed mining exploration company, Latin Gold, acquired it in a reverse takeover, which allows mig33′s shareholders to become majority owners of the combined group. Latin Gold will also take on mig33′s company name.
Wongnai, Thailand’s Yelp, grows to 1 million users
Thai restaurant review site, Wongnai, revealed that it has reached its goal of 1 million registered users since its establishment in 2010. Available both as a website and mobile app, the review site currently sees approximately 220,000 active users per month. Despite its success thus far, Wongnai has not revealed any plans to expand its services beyond Thailand.
China’s Weibo users decline while WeChat rises
The future of China’s Weibo platforms does not look promising as they have lost 27.8 million users over the past year following the Chinese government’s latest internet crackdown campaign against online rumours. However, as China’s most popular social platforms experience this dramatic fall, the number of users on instant messaging apps such as WeChat has grown by 64.4 million users in 2013 while the total number of mobile Internet users reached 500 million.
WhatsApp users double in less than a year
Private messaging’s popularity does not cease as WhatsApp reports an increase of over 200 million users since April 2013, now standing at 430 million active users as of January 2014. A staggering 50 billion messages are sent and received on the app per day.
The ongoing saga of organic reach on Facebook
Facebook threw another curve-ball this week when it revealed its latest alterations to the newsfeed. They will now show fewer text status updates from Pages, as the latest testing has shown that people are more likely to post on Facebook when they are exposed to plain text status updates from their friends rather than Pages. Facebook have been vague about what brands should do as a result, but they have recommended that when posting links, brands should use ‘link-shares’, as in this example:
Facebook is testing a mobile ad network
Rather than being content to just display ads to it’s own users, Facebook is testing showing ads to users of third party apps. Unlike previous tests, Facebook is working directly with a limited number of advertisers on its own mobile ad network rather than outside ad-serving platforms to display “sponsored content outside of its own properties”.
Watch your b-to-b-back, LinkedIn
Facebook is making room for job and b-to-b marketing as it plans to allow advertisers to start targeting users based on their employment details this March. This is expected to appeal to recruiters, placing Facebook in direct competition with LinkedIn.
Twitter lends a hand to brands and publishers
Twitter has revealed a shiny new dashboard called analytics for Twitter Cards that will allow brands and publishers to monitor how media-filled tweets perform. This dashboard will then provide companies with personalised tips to help them make more strategic decisions. These new set of tools are already being used by the likes of BuzzFeed, NBC News and ESPN.
Pinterest experiments with GIFs
GIFs may no longer appear just as static images on Pinterest, who are experimenting with a new play button that features on the bottom left of embedded animated GIFs.
Ajax helps you wipe away annoying social trolls
Scouring brand Ajax have develop a new social utility tool, ‘Social Wipes’, allowing you wipe your social slate clean. For Facebook, the tool allows you to unlike pages you’ve liked over the years. For Twitter, it scans all of your followers and people you follow for potential spam bots. Only a week old, Ajax has already helped clean up more than 200,000 page likes on Facebook and nearly 20,000 Twitter spam bots from social feeds. Oddly enough, the brand does not maintain a social presence on either social network.
JBL turns tour tweets into music
JBL has created a digital experience which transforms user tweets into a custom track generated by JBL’s Tweet Music algorithm, converting every letter, number and character into a loop of music. The popularity of the campaign is evident: in just one week of the promotion, JBL received 2,600 mentions using the @JBLaudio handle, compared to it’s typical average of 360. They have also accumulated 3,100 new followers with nearly 1,200 songs created so far. The opportunity to win an all-expenses-paid trip to the 2015 Grammy Awards is no doubt having a positive impact.
Thinking of buying a DLSR? Not after this campaign…
This week We Are Social launched the “why DSLR?” campaign for Panasonic, with a series of videos featuring a bodybuilder, an owl and a duel-style shoot-out between two cameras to promote its mirrorless Lumix cameras. We Are Social will also monitor social conversations surrounding DSLR cameras found on internet forums and across social platforms and will respond to questions about DSLRs and mirrorless cameras. Sarah Oliver, Account Director at We Are Social said:
Whichever stage of the purchase journey people are at – researching DSLRs on forums or searching to buy a DSLR on Google, this campaign will surface considerable and credible expert opinion with the power to change their decision.
OnePiece unveils #HackTheSale social campaign
The Norwegian clothing company OnePiece, is inviting customers to share its #HackTheSale campaign on Facebook and Twitter, to communally drive down the price of a onesie jumpsuit. Every time a customer uses the #HackTheSale app to share the campaign on either of the social networks, the price of a Lusekofte Onesie, which starts at £139, will go down.
Microsoft faces a fumble with the FTC
Microsoft didn’t know what they were in for when they signed a content deal with YouTube network Machinima. Machinima recruited YouTube creators to make videos about the Xbox One, however these console enthusiasts didn’t disclose that they were paid to promote the product. As a result, Microsoft has unintentionally disobeyed the FTC’s endorsement disclosure guidelines, which may result in intervention.
Brands’ Grammy Tweet Attempts…
The awards season is truly upon us, beginning with a bang last night with the Grammys. And, of course, that can only mean one thing; social media triumphs and disasters. Antiperspirant brands a plenty tried desperately to jump onto the Grammy conversation, but armpit puns and poor jokes fell on deaf ears. Others, such as Pizza Hut and Fitbit, tried to brazenly join in the conversations, with various jokes, ‘tips’, but alas, failed to win the hearts – or the RT’s – of the Grammy viewers.
However, some brands were right on the money. Pharrell Williams was trending on Twitter that evening, due to his questionable headgear at the awards. Restaurant chain Arby’s, whose logo looks a bit like Pharrell’s hat, was quick off the bat to tweet him just that. The tweet received over 70,000 RT’s, demonstrating the power of social if your timing is right, coupled with a genius comment.
The astonishing growth of all things digital continues to gather pace around the world, as We Are Social’s new Social, Digital & Mobile Worldwide report on the key social, digital and mobile stats from around the world demonstrates.
It should come as little surprise that much of this growth is being fuelled by connected mobile devices, but this year’s data do reveal some interesting trends and anomalies, especially in relation to Japan and Korea.
You’ll find the complete story in the SlideShare deck above, but we’ve pulled out some of the highlights below.
UPDATE: We’d like to thank the lovely folks at GlobalWebIndex for allowing us to use the data in their premium Active Usage: Social Platforms data pack in this report – you can get more info on this by clicking here.
Adding up all the users in individual countries around the world, there appear to be around 2.5 billion global internet users today – roughly 35% of the world’s population:
While this represents around 150 million more users than this time last year, these numbers may still be conservative. Reliable, recent data for some countries remains patchy, but the International Communications Union estimates that there are probably closer to 3 billion global internet users, with most of the difference made up by mobile-only connections.
Users are still not distributed evenly either, with some parts of the world still struggling to reach double-digit internet penetration. In particular, Africa, Central and Southern Asia all report relatively low numbers, although it’s worth highlighting that mobile internet users may contribute a significant – yet uncounted – increase in these areas.
With reference to the continued growth in internet penetration, it seems clear that mobile connections will account for the vast majority of new sign-ups in the coming months. As the chart below highlights, the distribution of mobile penetration matches much more closely to the distribution of the world’s population, meaning most people around the world now have a realistic opportunity to access the internet:
The cost of mobile data clearly remains a barrier in much of the remaining world, but as costs continue to fall, and as the benefits continue to increase, it’s likely we’ll see more and more people in the developing world putting increased importance on reliable internet access.
Social channels continued to show strong growth over the past 12 months, with top social networks adding more than 135 million new users in the course of 2013.
This number is slightly misrepresentative of actual growth though, as we’ve decided to focus solely on monthly active user figures to report social media usage in this year’s report. As a result, some numbers may appear lower than they did this time last year (when we used total registered user numbers for some platforms), while the actual growth in active usage may appear smaller than it really was.
Due to the different usage contexts, associated behaviours and opportunities for brands, we’ve also chosen to treat chat apps such as WhatsApp and WeChat separately to social networks in this year’s report.
However, these platforms continue to capture significant interest from users and marketers alike, a trend reflected in their huge active user bases:
It also appears that social media is now an engrained part of the lives of people across different demographic groups. This increased ubiquity may result in some changes to the specific demographic bases of individual platforms, but even if people’s habits are changing, it appears that people are moving from one social platform to another, rather than deserting social media in its entirety.
Despite this increasing ubiquity, though, social media penetration remains unevenly distributed around the world:
As might be expected, mobile is playing an increasingly important part in the social media landscape. Facebook reports that almost three quarters of its 1.2 billion monthly active users around the world access the platform through mobile, while on any given day, almost half of its users are mobile only.
The importance of mobile is mirrored across other platforms too, with Twitter increasingly a mobile-dominated platform, and platforms like WhatsApp, WeChat and Instagram depending entirely on a mobile ecosystem.
Given the above, most marketers have now accepted that mobile devices are people’s most important devices, but the opportunities they offer continue to evolve at a staggering pace.
Connected mobile devices have already outpaced more traditional means of internet access such as laptops and PCs, while smartphone sales now outnumber those of feature phones around the world too.
The number of mobile subscriptions jumped by 173 million in 2013, and the number of active mobile subscriptions around the world now equates to roughly 93% of the world’s population.
Penetration rates are more healthy all over the world too, with two-thirds of Africa’s population now mobile powered. Meanwhile, many regions – including those in the developing world – have penetration levels far in excess of 100%:
Mobile broadband access has exploded around the world in recent months too, and 1.5 billion people now have access to relatively fast internet from their mobile devices:
A Regional View
While the picture in many Western countries has converged, there are a number of areas around the world that maintain their idiosyncrasies. In particular, China and Eastern Europe continue to prefer local social networks, while Africa, Central and South Asia are considerably under-represented when it comes to internet penetration:
The world’s most populous region saw another strong year of growth across all things digital in 2013.
China’s social media giants continue to post strong growth, whether it’s active users on Qzone, or the incredible growth of Weixin (WeChat).
However, both Japan and South Korea have seen some fragmentation of the social media landscape, with chat apps like LINE and Kakaotalk continuing to gain momentum. Neither company releases monthly active user numbers though, so it’s hard to know exactly how these platforms compare to the more traditional networks like Facebook and Twitter.
Interestingly, however, ‘claimed’ usage of social media in both countries differs dramatically from the picture painted by Facebook’s monthly active user numbers, suggesting that Northeast Asia’s netizens may be harnessing a wider variety of platforms.
Facebook continues to lead Twitter in both countries though, and appears to maintain its top spot almost everywhere.
China and countries in Eastern Europe host the few exceptions to Facebook’s global dominance, with Qzone and VKontakte claiming the top spots in a handful of nations.
However, with more than 1 billion monthly active users, it’s safe to say that Facebook will continue to play a central role in the social media landscape in 2014 too.
The Local Picture
We’ve gone into an extra level of detail in this year’s report too, offering insights into the local digital ecosystem across 24 of the world’s biggest economies:
Alongside offering the key digital indicators, we’ve also collated some key behavioural indicators, including time spent on the internet and on social media, as well as the prevalence of important activities on connected mobile devices.
You’ll find all the facts and figures for each country in the complete 180+ page report on SlideShare (as embedded at the top of this post), but here are the infographics for China as an illustrative example:
Sources for all the above data are listed in the full report.
The final day of the 2013 iMedia Agency Summit packed in a host of useful sessions; here are some of the highlights.
Sunita Kaur, Spotify
Sunita stirred the audience with a glorious statistic: “Family and music are the two things people around the world can’t live without. In Europe, research shows that people value music more than they value sex.”
Ant Hearne, Outbrain
Ant began by asserting that content is the glue that brings the internet together, and shared some of his favourite examples of content marketing, including American Express’s OPEN Forum, General Electric’s collaboration with The Economist, and Red Bull Stratos. He went on to assert that 8 out of 10 people will take action on behalf of brands they admire, noting (with some help from Edelman) that content can play a big part in driving this admiration and connection, especially amongst youth audiences:
However, Ant stressed the need to make sure people understood what was authentic content and what was merely camouflaged ‘brand propaganda’. He added that the brands that will win in a content age will plan around influence, and not interruption. Ant concluded with his 5 pillars of Effective Content Marketing:
- Audience Value
Client Marketer Panel
One of the richest sessions of the day was a panel featuring Laura Ashton, Vice President, Head of Marketing at Philips Lighting; Frederique ‘Freddie’ Covington, CMO Lead, Asia Pacific at Microsoft, Neil Gardner, CMO, APAC at AIG, and hosted by Yean Cheong of IPG Mediabrands.
Laura began by asserting that agencies need to put themselves in their clients’ shoes more often, and spend more time thinking about what will add value to their businesses, not just the agency’s awards submissions. However, she balanced this by saying that it was often difficult for marketers to choose the best route, citing the “tyranny of quarterly results” as one of the toughest parts of the client-side job.
Neil Gardner shared his belief that technology and tools are “eating up” a large part of the media industry’s offering, and that disintermediation appears to be accelerating. Freddie affirmed this, stating that Microsoft is increasingly looking to build agency skillsets in-house, and as a result, the agency’s role needs to evolve into a value-add “creator and curator of opportunities”.
However, all acknowledged that there’s a distinct ‘digital divide’ amongst client-side marketers, separating those who have already embraced all things digital, and those who continue to be scared and skeptical. One way to tackle this is to bring digital into the planning process much earlier so that digital elements can be woven into the broader value offering, rather than continuing to be a last-minute bolt-on [sadly, many of the delegates still feel that this is the way many brands operate, even after 15 years of digital marketing].
Another big step will be to make sure that data plays a more integral part in planning; “Advertising isn’t just about Don Draper anymore,” Freddie said; “we need the Chief Data Officer too. That’s not to say that the creative isn’t vital of course; it’s just that data can help the creativity work a lot harder.” Laura added that Big Ideas are all very well, but agencies must demonstrate how they’re adding to the P&L. “Big Ideas need to be accountable, not just creative,” she concluded.
This means agencies need to hire new kinds of people too: “Agencies can’t rely on the Fine Arts grads anymore,” Laura observed; “you’re going to need tech and data experts too.”
However, the panelists went on to say that staff consistency is key to building enduring client relationships, and agencies are struggling to keep their best digital talent for long enough. Freddie highlighted that part of this may be down to staff review processes: “The ‘annual review’ is totally out of date. Digital pioneers tend to be younger, and they’re hungry and ambitious. They’re not going to wait 12 months for a review; we need to be guiding them and mentoring them at least every 3 months.“
We need more training for senior marketers too. Understanding the tools and the tech is one thing, but Neil also thinks it’s a matter of softer skills. “Young people today don’t think and behave like they did 30 years ago [when most senior marketers were that age].” We need to cater to today’s needs and wants, not to our past dreams.
Freddie also asserted that, when it comes to making better use of digital, we need to stop trying to adapt existing paradigms, formats and approaches: “Stop making analogies to old-school marketing, and focus on today’s ROI and results.“
Vikas Gulati, Vserv
Vikas made the superb point that “many Asians have only ever experienced the web on mobile, so we need to (re)design experiences specifically for them, instead of trying to adapt legacy approaches and structures.” He went on to add that the ’3Rs’ - reason, relevance and richness – are key to engaging with people in mobile, and that brands need to deliver a more wholly integrated experience. He also noted that local language and cultural aspects are critical, especially in emerging markets where fluency in English is often very limited.
Vikas also highlighted that diversity of technology is a critical factor around Asia, with more than 2,000 smartphone models currently on sale in Asia’s emerging markets alone. Because of this, brands need to be platform agnostic; today’s marketers need to think less about native apps, and more about the fluidity offered by technologies such as HTML5.
He concluded by noting that analysing mobile data doesn’t just mean collecting media data; marketers need to get a better understanding of actual usage behaviour too, and find ways to innovate and disrupt for the audience’s benefit. By collaborating with partners across the mobile ecosystem, brands and agencies have a better chance of delivering lasting, meaningful results.
Meera Chopra, Vuclip
Meera noted that in emerging markets, many people are still sharing links to content via SMS. On Her company’s platform, 20% of all video sharing takes place via text message, which has even more significance when combined with the fact that 60% of women in India use their mobile phone as their primary source of entertainment.
Revolutionising The Agency Of Tomorrow
The Summit concluded with two presentations on how agencies can innovate structures and approaches to be better suited to the opportunities of tomorrow.
Mike De Souza of Mobext began by challenging delegates with a stark observation:
— imediasummitasia (@iMediaSummit) August 28, 2013
Mike went on to qualify that the reason the old model is broken is that traditional agencies have become too big; ”we’re huge multinational hierarchies. We’re risk averse, and we’re too focused on content rather than audience utility.“
One reason we’re failing to deliver more utility is that agencies are still too focused on outbound marketing, rather than looking at a more holistic approach to adding value across our clients’ businesses. Mike remarked that ”creativity shouldn’t just be about producing a narrative; it should be about the innovation of systems and value delivery too. We’ve got to move away from the reassuring safety of our traditional templates and formats; we need to stop thinking about making people want things, and shift our approach to making things people really want.“
Mike went on to say that collaboration will be key to future success, whether that involves working with different client teams to create new kinds of value, or it’s about collaboration between specialist agencies that can offer new, distinct value. His advice is to search for “people with similar enthusiasm but diverse skills.“
Mike concluded with a sage piece of advice from Seth Godin:
“As we get more experienced, we get better, more competent, more able to do our thing.
And it’s easy to fall in love with that competence, to appreciate it and protect it. The pitfall? We close ourselves off from possibility.
Possibility, innovation, art–these are endeavors that not only bring the whiff of failure, they also require us to do something we’re not proven to be good at. After all, if we were so good at it that the outcome was assured, there’d be no sense of possibility.
We often stop surprising ourselves (and the market) not because we’re no good anymore, but because we are good. So good that we avoid opportunities that bring possibility.”
Ben Poole of MEC wrapped things up by challenging agencies to rethink the way they structure themselves and their teams. He asserted that ‘big agency bureaucracy’ was the greatest threat to the survival of our industry, and that we desperately need to innovate and disrupt our traditional ways of thinking and doing.
A big part of this, Ben contends, involves rethinking the way we reward people. He questions whether financial incentives are really the best way to motivate creative people, especially when it comes to newer, more innovative disciplines like Creative Technologists.
However, the most important challenge is for agencies to help their clients to change. We’ll need to make marketers more uncomfortable, he says, and find better ways to help them deliver new value. Relationships and trust will still be critical of course, but if we’re to survive as an industry, Ben believes we need to be far more provocative.
I’ll leave you with a great diagram from Mike De Souza that may help to inspire some provocations of your own. Until next year…
Tara took us on a whirlwind journey Asian culture, sharing an incredible wealth of insights in her half-hour slot:
Made For Asia
Asian Consumers want the best of the West and the East. International quality and status but adapted to fit into their national and even regional culture, lifestyle and habits. This translates into a variety of Asia-specific products, with some brands (including Starbucks) even developing offerings specific to individual Asian cities.
Made For Virgins
Asian consumers are more likely to try new products that are made familiar to, similar to or connect to their current cultural habits or lifestyle, than risk trying one they don’t understand. This can be about tweaking flavours to appeal to Asian tastes, creating new consumption rituals around existing products to appeal to Asian lifestyles and cultures, or simply finding ways to tie your brand to the local context.
Asians are looking for ways to celebrate their success as cultural and economic powerhouses through products that express, update, reinvent and allow them to flaunt their rich and diverse cultures. Many homegrown Asian brands are finding success by harnessing cultural heritage, from high fashion inspired by myths and legends to contemporary fashion that blends traditional ethnic styles, and from luxury version of traditional food and drink products, to more risqué foodstuffs that offer a tongue-in-cheek tweak on well-known nibbles.
Asians will snap up devices, apps, interactive sites and games that allow them to celebrate their culture, cuisines, customs, festivals and faith, online and on the go. Asians are increasingly time-poor, and people want to maximise every minute, so they’re embracing whatever helps them do that. Similarly, Asians spend a huge amount of time in queues and in traffic, so brands that can help them make better use of this time are in high demand
Traffic is an issue throughout Asia. Image c/o Trendwatching.
Culture cramming relates to a variety of different activities, whether it’s entertainment on the go (e.g. Changba’s ‘karaoke-meets-Instagram’ app), celebrating festivals (e.g. Alipay’s QR-based e-hóngbāo), finding socially endorsed food experiences (e.g. Burpple), or adding a mobile element to faith (e.g. Lac Hong Vien Cemetery’s online “afterlife gift” purchase).
Very Important Travellers
Asian travel tribes often have their own specific cultural or faith-based needs that will heavily determine the places they travel to, stay in, eat in and even shop in. Brands that cater to travelling Asians can reap special rewards, whether it’s by offering tailored shopping experiences, catering to Asian dietary preferences, or creating guidebooks that cater to Asian needs.
Immigrants: The Asian diaspora number in the millions and are in need of offerings that either are a fusion of East and West like they are themselves, or connect them to their families and home countries via products or services.
Family Values: Asian families need ways to manage multigenerational lifestyles as well as stay connected through busy diverse schedules and even living apart.
Minisumers: Help parents get their kids a head start in life, and prepare them for a competitive and tough future amongst the billions.
Other Highlights From Day 2
The remainder of Day 2 focused on specific company profiles, but here’s a selection of some of the richer insights and soundbites:
Goodstuph‘s Pat Law noted that one of the biggest challenges marketers face in social media is that they don’t own the data about the audiences they build. As a result, they’re effectively ‘held hostage’ by the platforms’ business model. Pat went on to stress that real social media isn’t about buying or earning media space; it’s about driving meaningful talkability. As a result, brands need to rethink their KPIs – for example, turning a complaint into a thank you.
TubeMogul‘s Phu Truong noted that the average media plan takes 77 hours to prepare, but went on to say that TubeMogul’s research showed 75 of these hours are dedicated to process management rather than adding new value. Marketers need to find and use the tools that help them streamline these processes, and focus more of their time on added-value activities that will deliver increased ROI.
Stanley Lim from Innity Corp stressed that brands need to think of digital in terms of brand uplift as well as sales; we need to measure consideration and favorability / intent as well as conversion. We need to think what happens post sale too – how can digital help to keep the relationship alive? Stanley suggested social media has a vital role to play here, but added a caveat in the form of a quote from Barack Obama: “Don’t run a social campaign; make all your campaigns social.” He went on to note that “real engagement is dynamic, so measurement needs to be about more than views, clicks and actions.”
Stuart Spiteri of Brandscreen continued this theme, observing that ”as an industry, we’re fixated on CPM [cost per thousand impressions], but the driver of value is engagement, not price.” He followed up with the insight that far too much of our planning revolves around budgeting cycles rather than audiences needs and behaviour – something he strongly believes needs to change.
Tim Holland of Perform Group shared a host of useful stats about sports and social media, starting with the fact that second screening is very high in Asia. According to his company’s research, 21% of people watching sports on TV in China do so with the help of a second screen (e.g. mobile or tablet), while the figure is 19% in Indonesia. Tim also stressed that sports fans are usually very passionate, and engage with their teams and favourite players across a variety of channels, so brands need to find ways to add distinct value across the ecosystem.
Top image c/o @chrissbell on Instagram.