Infographic: How visual content drives social media growth

Words aren’t enough to keep customers and prospects engaged these days, and visual content has a major role to play in driving traffic to your business.

Dot Com Infoway, an India-based IT company, has put together an infographic on how and why visual content enjoys primacy in social media and the ways in which brands can integrate such content into their online strategy.

The infographic below addresses three main components – why visual content is so important to the survival of brands in the digital age; the significance visual content enjoys in the biggest social media platforms; and online tools and mobile apps that brands can use to make their visual content more appealing in order to attract customers.

Source:; 14 Sep 2015

Click on image to enlarge


Mobil 1 unveils ‘Car-Fu’ in APAC content push

Oil brand Mobil 1 has launched a regional digital campaign where cars engage in a bout of kung-fu in a contest known as ‘Car-Fu’ inspired by the late Bruce Lee.

The campaign, which comprises video, a website and a social push, is designed to associate Mobil 1 with the fluidity and movement Kung-fu is known for.

In a short film, cars act out a classic Kung-fu film fight sequence between a hero, a villain and his posse.

The digital campaign features interviews with stunt drivers who talk about the product benefits of Mobil 1, and video content featuring McLaren – Honda’s Formula 1 driver Fernando Alonso.

Sirapong Phentrakul, ExxonMobil Asia Pacific PVL brand advisor, said the campaign deployed “fun, shareable branded content that not only sparks excitement among our target audience, but also helps to elevate awareness and consideration of our brand.”

Seshadri Sampath, regional business head at BBDO Singapore, the agency behind the work, added: “We borrowed from the popular culture of Bruce Lee that we can all identify with – if you pour water into the cup, it becomes the cup. And if you pour Mobil 1 into the engine, it becomes the engine. We’re pleased that the execution was done in an entertaining and engaging way to relate to the ordinary driver”.

Source:; 05 Oct 2015

How can fuel retailers become the industry disrupters of the future?

Fuel retailers have the opportunity to disrupt the industry with exciting new customer-focused, digitally-enabled innovations. Zahra Bahrololoumi, Managing Director – Energy, Accenture discusses the future of the fuel retail industry.

How innovative is the fuels retail industry today?

The fuels retail industry is very interesting, but the reality is that we’ve seen little change in the types of services in the petrol industry, particularly in the UK.

We’ve seen some exciting developments in the recapture of market share by the independents, fuelled mainly by the major brand divestments and the significance of these for the industry should not be underestimated.

However, petrol stations are simply not innovating at the rate we see in the rest of the retail industry. And this is where the hypermarkets in particular could gain competitive advantage.

How does fuels retail compare to other retail industries?

Let’s take contactless payment for example, particularly in London. All the big chains, shops and retailers have contactless payment as a very convenient way to pay. They’re thinking about the consumer first and knowing that no one wants to stand in a long queue while they’re in a hurry to grab lunch.

But it’s not just about keeping pace. Some retailers are actively making changes by shaking up the industry in shaping consumer expectations.

What can fuel retailers do to keep up – and differentiate?

When we talk about actively shaping consumer expectations, we’re really talking about disruption in the industry. What does disruption in the fuels industry really look like?

Imagine you were a fuel retailer: what if your customer could pay without leaving their car because of the technology available on the forecourt or in their car?

What if your consumer could pre-order their lunch or coffee via their smartphone before they arrived on the forecourt and it would be waiting for them?

What if you were able to deliver fuel directly to your customer while they were sleeping, and perhaps pop their grocery shopping into the back of their car?

And what if your site was the site of choice for driverless cars due to the sensor technology on the forecourt that helped driverless cars navigate through it successfully?

These might sound daunting to a fuel retailer, but these are the types of innovations that are here and set to shake up the industry in the future. There is no doubt there is a need for many fuel retailers and the fuel retail industry to get a handle on their basic operations and associated costs. But really this industry should not lose sight of the opportunity to be a disrupter.

Source: Accenture; Sept 2015

Reaching out to Malaysia’s digitally savvy Gen Z

With a monthly disposable income of 327 million USD, Malaysia’s 9.06 million strong Generation Z is one that is incredibly valuable to brands.

But unlike their Millennial predecessors the group of 13 to 21 year olds has only ever known life with the internet, and has a completely different outlook on connecting not only with each other, but also with brands than previous generations did.

In fact, for many the line between the digital and physical world is a blurry one and Gen Z will actually look to their presence online, rather than human interaction, for validation of their behaviour and consumer choices

The Epinion team recently conducted a study looking at Malaysia’s Gen Z which threw up some very surprising findings, and valuable insight for brands.

One of the more unexpected results was how digitally savvy, yet socially awkward this group of young people is.

Unlike previous generations who yearned for freedom and exciting social experiences, this cohort would rather be cocooned at home connecting with friends online, most going so far as to describe face to face contact as ‘uncomfortable.’

Almost all own a mobile phone, including 79 per cent of those aged 13- 15, and see it as an extension of their person, rather than an accessory – most know where it is at all times.

So if brands want to connect with Malaysia’s Generation Z they must share simple, bite sized messages that can be consumed via mobile, specifically via chat apps which 65 per cent said was the method they felt most comfortable talking to their friends.

But this isn’t an opportunity for lightweight messages; this is a generation that is not only has a high digital intelligence (so unlikely to fall for clickbait or false promises) but is also one that cares about the world around them.

We found 74 per cent of Malaysia’s GenZ said they were concerned about recycling and environment protection, 73 per cent freedom of speech and 71 per cent with education for everyone.

Clearly, if brands want to hold some sway with this socially aware group they must show they support a higher purpose.

For brands to do well here must demonstrate an element of empowerment, responsibility and general social conscious.

However, what might be most importantly to brands is how smart and in the know Gen Z is. For despite being young, their opinions are trusted by their families when it comes to decision-making for household purchases thanks to their knowledge acquiring abilities, ultimately hugely increasing the sum Gen Z has to spend directly and indirectly.

Source:; 18 Aug 2015

How online video helps consumers in the I-want-to-do moment

We no longer go online; we live online. This change has fragmented the consumer decision journey into hundreds of real-time, intent-driven micro-moments. Being constantly connected has increased expectations for immediacy and relevance for consumers. More than ever before, brands have the opportunity to earn loyalty by delivering relevant content to win people over—one micro-moment at a time.

One such moment is the ‘I-want-to-do’ moment, when people need help to get something done. Ten years ago, if you wanted to know how to set up a new printer, bake perfect cookies, learn how to play the violin, or unclog a sink, you might have reached for a manual, combed through a giant recipe book, attended a class, or called your mom and dad for help. These days, you’re far more likely to pick up your smartphone to search for helpful content.

Asia turns to video on smartphones during I-want-to-do moments

Storytellers across the ages have advised showing rather than telling and one of the most powerful ways to show is with video. It should come as no surprise, then, that there are more than 135 million ‘how-to’ videos on YouTube worldwide.

Click here for the full document

Source: / Google APAC; 04 Aug 2015

Debunked: Three Things about Young Malaysians

There have been many misperceptions about the youth. We can talk about it all day. The Gen Y label is hardly flattering especially when that generation is often described as impatient, entitled and rebellious.

But a recently released study, called Youth Perspectives, seeks to debunk some of these common perceptions. The study, conducted via questionnaires and focus groups, focused on three areas: media consumption, purchasing behaviour as well as career and talent.

The study polled over 2,000 Malaysian undergraduates and Form 6 students, mostly aged between 19 to 23 years old, all over Malaysia. This is a project by public relations firm Perspective Strategies along with their sponsors and partners AIA Bhd, Nippon Paint, consulting firm Centre for Strategic Engagement (Cense) and youth development organisation Aiesec.

Here are three key findings that could very well challenge what people thought they knew about the youth (see accompanying infographic below for more details).

1. Parents are still a key influence in youth’s career and purchasing decisions

Young Malaysians may not be as independently-minded as some may think.

Youth Perspectives found that 62.3% of respondents consult their parents before deciding on what career to pursue and parental consent is a key factor. Additionally, 66.8% say they prefer getting a job through referrals.

In his presentation on the survey, Perspective Strategies’ managing director Andy See says that this could be because parents of the Gen Ys are likely to be more opinionated and educated.

Shazmi Ali, Pfizer Malaysia’s director of human resource, has this caution for parents: “If you are giving your child career advice, make sure it’s current. Don’t give them advice that applied 20 years ago”.

Aside from parents, friends and family opinions matter too.

According to the study’s results, about 80.6% ask friends for reviews and 77% consult their families before deciding on a purchase.

Only 35% of respondents say they are influenced by reviews on social media and a mere 16.8% say they have bought something that was endorsed by a celebrity.

2. Young Malaysians spend a lot of time online but they do not trust everything they see

In line with other similar surveys, Youth Perspectives found that one in two youths (53.5%) spend at least five hours a day online. But the Internet for them is nothing more than just a platform for them to stay in touch with friends and get latest updates.

“They are online a lot but they do realise that things on social media are not the gospel truth. They verify and try to ask friends and family for opinions,” says See.

Only 9.2% of the survey’s respondents say they “trust” or are “very trusting” of information posted on social media. Conversely, 72.8% of youths polled gave the highest trust ratings to their parents or relatives.

3. Many soon-to-be graduates surveyed feel that they are ill-equipped for the workforce

At work, Gen Ys have a bad reputation. They have been called spoilt, lazy, impatient and having an inflated sense of their abilities.

Shazmi weighs in on this with a contrarian view. “Whatever the Gen Ys want, we want too. It’s just that they dare to ask. When we started work, if we were offered flexible working hours, a faster career path or input on decision-making, we’d want it too.”

Many of them are entering the workforce with worries weighing on their minds and not an inflated sense of their abilities as some may allege.

The top six career challenges the young respondents cite are: lack of working experience (64.5%); poor English language proficiency (42.5%); poor soft skills (41.2%); poor technical skills (37.7%); not relevant to current degree/major (27.9%) and poor Chinese language proficiency (27.7%).

Interestingly, a whopping 70.4% want to move to another country for work. They are driven mostly by political and social reasons (45.2%); opportunities not available in Malaysia (43.6%) and poor career prospects in the country (42.1%).

At the end of the day, what does this mean for organisations?

Youth Perspectives outlines five messages:

1.       Meet your new employees. Yes, and their parents too!

2.       Salary and benefits attracts talent but what retains them is a compelling corporate culture.

3.       Reputation is more credible when information is conveyed by trusted third parties.

4.       Messages need to be consistent. You have to sing the same song across all platforms.

5.       Activate and engage meaningfully.

Source:; 08 July 2015

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youth-persepctive-Q1 2015

Asia’s Middle Class: 2012 To 2020

An increasingly powerful economic force.

Middle class lifestyles, still out of reach for most people in South and Southeast Asia, are set to become more common over the course of the decade.

Between 2012 and 2020, the middle class will grow by 330 million in India to become 540 million strong, and by 210 million in Southeast Asia to represent 400 million people there, according to estimates from Nielsen.

Nielsen defines the middle class as people with enough money to choose what they buy, equating to at least US$16 in daily disposable income.

Rising affluence means that India’s middle class will account for 39% of the country’s population by 2020, compared with 17% in 2012.

Southeast Asia’s middle class, meanwhile, will represent the majority by 2020 at 55% of the population, compared with 28% in 2012.

Asia’s largest middle class lives in China however, at 800 million people or 61% of the population in 2012. This figure is set to rise to one billion people, or 71% of the population, by 2020.

In total, the size of the middle class in China, India and Southeast Asia will rise from 1.2 billion people in 2012 to almost 2 billion by 2020, a 62% growth rate.

asian middle class -comp

Source:; 23 June 2015

Ramadan: Be a Brand that Wins Hearts and Minds

The holy month of Ramadan is almost upon us. It will be a period of extended fasting, prayers, personal reflection, and celebration for Muslims. So how can brands potentially be a valued partner during this period? We’ll be presenting some online Malaysian consumer habits during Ramadan to help.

Spiritual Education, Great Cooking, Trendy Fashion, and Celebratory Music
Muslims depend heavily on the internet for a variety of Ramadan needs. In July, we see searches increase on both and YouTube for prayers (35% month-on-month), recipes (32% month-on-month), and Malay apparel (28% month-on-month). On YouTube, searches for celebratory Raya music increases 1,133% in July.

Create Content Around These Interests and Promote Them
Brands looking to be loved and valued this Ramadan should create online content around these categories of interests and promote them on mass awareness channels such as:-
1. Display Networks and Video Platforms
2. Search platforms where Muslims are actively looking for content.

To give a sense of what’s important to Malaysians in the year 2015, we’d like to share the top searches around recipes, Raya music, and Malay apparel in 2015 thus far. For example, you might want to consider promoting how-to recipe videos for chicken and cake dishes, because they’re so popular. How-to-wear tutorials for popular apparel such as tudung bawal will surely earn you love as well.

Definitely Promote Yourself on Mobile
Searches for recipes, Raya music, Malay apparel, and prayers have quickly shifted from desktop to mobile. The share of these searches on mobile more than doubled in the past 2 years, from 27% to 67%. Here’s how you can make sure you’re ready for a mobile strategy:-

  1. Make sure your site is mobile-friendly here with the mobile-friendly test:
  2. Spruce up your video creatives with mobile-optimized visuals, such as with YouTube Cards, which provides carousel images enticing viewers to explore multiple offerings:





Source:Google Malaysia; 16 June 2015

5 Factors of Video Viewability

Online video advertising is growing rapidly each year, and as adoption and demand increases, there’s a lot of interest in understanding video ad viewability benchmarks, for YouTube in particular. The good news is that video ads on YouTube are significantly more likely to be seen than video ads on the rest of the web. The infographic below will review 5 factors of video viewability.

Source: Insights by Google Malaysia; 12 May 2015

5 factors of video









Click here to view infographic

BP Australia campaign debuts brand’s new global positioning

A new campaign promoting a partnership between BP Australia and Velocity’s frequent flyer rewards programme is also the first to use BP’s new global brand platform ‘Go your way’.

Client: BP Australia
Market: Australia
Title: ‘Fill up and fly’
Campaign scope: Launched on FTA and Pay TV, the new TVCs are supported by outdoor, digital, radio, and activation.
Details: The two TVCs showcase how customers can ‘fill up and fly’ to destinations around the world. The ads opt to showcase Thailand and Las Vegas.

Press release quotes:

Brendon Guthrie, ECD, Ogilvy Melbourne:
Our brief was simple; to let Australians know about this new partnership, and the benefits it can bring. As such, we needed a clever and engaging creative which would motivate customers to visit BP more often to shop and purchase their fuel, and earn Velocity points in the process. Showcasing the exciting locations they could ‘fill up and fly’ to—like Thailand or Las Vegas—was an integral part of capturing attention.

Rebecca Fyson, B2C marketing manager, BP Australia:

The fuel industry is a highly competitive one that is flooded with loyalty programs, each vying for an increasingly choosy and reward-hunting shopper. Hot on the heels of BP’s global brand repositioning, designed to reorientate the entire business around the needs of the customers, BP decided to partner with a rewards program that gives something back to shoppers for their decision to visit BP—the chance to top up their Velocity Frequent Flyer points.

Source:; 12 May 2015