Nov 12

Interactive marketing to boost consumer engagement, conversion, and ROI

Attention scarcity is at an all-time high. If you have just 7 seconds, how do you capture your consumer? How do you ensure they go from hooked to purchase? The facts1 show that:

  • Users ignore over 80% of digital ads.
  • Fully engaged customers represent a 23% higher share in profitability, revenue, and relationship growth.
  • 54% of customers think companies need to transform how they engage.
  • 64% of customers expect tailored engagement that is based on past interaction.

The solution to this lies in a combination of hyper-personalised messaging and engaging, digital features. In other words, interactive marketing.

What is interactive marketing?

Interactive marketing is about catching consumers’ attention and triggering a direct response from them through innovative means.

It is a method that takes into account a target audience’s preferences2 and engages them through interactive features that range from simple Instagram polls to complex, immersive video.

How do interactive features drive marketing campaigns?

Image via our campaign for Nutox

Interactive features are adept at garnering consumer interest and engagement.

Why? For these simple reasons:

1. Interactivity makes users feel involved

Interactive features help consumers see themselves in the brand’s experience.3 Whether it is time spent joining a brand’s product development process, or effort used to play a gamified campaign for a discount, these investments give users some skin in the game.

2. Interactive features support the Awareness stage within the marketing funnel

During the Awareness stage, these features differentiate a brand from its competitors and delivers impact during that critical first impression. This first discovery experience leads a customer to further engagement down the road.4

In fact, 75% of marketers agree that offering customers a “sample” of the brand through free, interactive content resulted in a higher degree of lead nurturing.4

3. Interactive content streamlines the purchasing process

Demand Gen Report5 found that interactive content led to 2X more conversions than passive content. This is likely through showcasing the product in an engaging manner and by providing social proof to ease the fear of buyer’s remorse.

Used this way, interactive features become a tool that reduce friction at buyer touchpoints and supports conversion.

Interactive marketing examples

There are numerous types of interactive features marketers and brands can incorporate into their strategy. These features are flexible enough to suit a short-term campaign or become a mainstay of their content marketing strategy. Below is a non-exhaustive list of features brands can incorporate into their marketing.

Simple interactive features

Image via piktochart

1. Animation

Animation in marketing ranges from website features to short videos. It can convey simple messages or break down a complex concept in a visually appealing way.6

2. Infographics

Dynamic infographics take educative content to the next level. Layering an element of engagement with informational content combines expertise with memorability. Users are more likely to remember the brand associated with impactful, valuable content.

Advanced interactive features

Image via Braze

1. Gamified elements

Gamification is a well-known interactive marketing tool that engages users. It is easy to customise to a brand’s needs, be it simple or complex. Popular features range from calculator-like tools to trivia and lottery-style games. AR too is another form of interaction and it’s extremely flexible, used in custom IG and Facebook filters to full-fledged games like PokemonGo.

Though gamification requires some time and effort, it yields great results both for product exposure and increasing user engagement.

Adact7, a gamification company trusted by leading global brands, shows gamification offers:

  • A 16% bounce rate compared to the industry average — between 25.2% and 62.8%
  • Engagement time ranges from 9 minutes to 60 minutes
  • A completion rate of 98%

2. Video

Personalised, otherwise known as dynamic video, turns “just” a video into a piece of content users resonate with. It makes the audience feel like the video is speaking to them and addressing their needs.8

Interactive video

Interactive video is where participants navigate a video through the choices they make. This could be the short surveys YouTube shares before a video loads, toggling left and right within a video, or entering a storyline and making choices like a character.

Compared to other types of video content, 43% of consumers prefer interactive video content because they’re able to decide what information they’re in control of and what they’re viewing.9

Immersive video

Immersive video, otherwise known as 360° Video, records video in all directions at the same time.

These sorts of videos are memorable and impactful. They’re great for creating an ultra-immersive user experience while also allowing the user to frame themselves within the video environment.

Case studies

Here are two examples of how interactive marketing supports different stages of the marketing funnel and can be tailored to a campaign.

1. Shiseido X Watsons: #MyJapaneseBeauty Asia Campaign

Image via our campaign for Shiseido

Shiseido sought to pivot online in the middle of a pandemic to spotlight their brands and products.

To digitally recreate the sensorial experience consumers get at physical events, we designed an interactive microsite to meet Shiseido’s multiple markets and corresponding languages.

Interactive features included:

  • Parallax animation and asymmetrical layouts that pushed the boundaries of traditional web design.
  • Engaging website navigation that led consumers to discover the 6 pillars of Japanese Beauty philosophy and the persona of Shiseido’s brands.
  • Integrated gamification elements that highlighted each brand’s USP, product, and essence.

This direction, supported by our digital strategy, strengthened top of mind awareness for Shiseido and its sub-brands. Results-wise, we gained 25K+ unique page views and drove 18k traffic to Shiseido’s e-commerce partner, Watsons.

2. KSK: YOO8 serviced by Kempinski Interactive Campaign

Image via our campaign for KSK Land

KSK Land sought to promote their upcoming YOO8 branded residences under 8 Conlay.

Due to MCO (Malaysia’s national quarantine measures) constraints upon physical sales galleries, we offered an alternative method to engage with consumers: an interactive digital experience that showed customers “the art of living” with Kempinski at YOO8.

This digital alternative:

  • Took the consumer through YOO8’s hospitality in first-person perspective within a mini movie. As the main character, consumers could make choices to navigate the storyline.
  • Personalised the consumer experience. We offered viewers 6 possible endings to uncover, thus increasing playability and encouraging further discovery.
  • Hosted the mini-movie on a mobile-first microsite with interactive elements to improve user experience.

This campaign was the first of its kind among Malaysian property companies. The campaign raked in 2.8 million social media impressions and close to 28K site visitors.


Staying top of mind is crucial and a strategic interactive campaign could be the tipping point that captures the consumer’s attention amidst the noisy ad landscape.

Interactive marketing has near-endless possibilities and is proven to work. Its highly personalised messaging and impactful, engaging features are the antidote to ad fatigue today.

Want to include interactive marketing in your next campaign? Talk to us today!

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Jul 29

How relevant is Twitter to Beauty?

Beauty brands and eye-catching visuals are always seen together, but that doesn’t discount Twitter’s relevance. Is it counterintuitive to seek engagement on Twitter?

Twitter’s 2020 stats1 for beauty show:

  • 37.6 million Tweets referred to makeup
  • 8.1 million Tweets talked about hair
  • 6.4 million Tweets discussed skincare
  • 1.8 million Tweets involved nails

In short, users are already active on #BeautyTwitter. In fact, Sprinklr and Twitter partnered up to develop The beauty in Twitter2, a report where Sprinklr analysed a whopping 7 million global Tweets. A few patterns emerged:

  • #BeautyTwitter is for everyone. 94% of the beauty community consisted of everyday fans and nano to micro-influencers. The open nature of this space means anyone could reach influencers or brands.
  • #BeautyTwitter is real. The pandemic might not have seen reduced purchases, but user behaviour shifted. A 23% uptick in conversations on embracing one’s natural looks indicates users increasingly sought authenticity rather than perfection.
  • #BeautyTwitter is diverse and inclusive. Patterns showed influencers leaned towards brands that reflected them and their ideals.

These insights show that #BeautyInfluencers and everyday #BeautyFans prefer unpolished dialogue. Key takeaways to leverage Twitter’s casual approach to conversation include2:

  • Relatable content that sparks engagement
  • Staying culturally relevant with the brand’s fanbase
  • Using open-ended questions for feedback
  • Building on-going relationships with Creators involved in cultural movements

For brands looking to build traction, we’ve rounded up a (non-exhaustive) list of further tactics you could use to complement the above.

  • Educational-first content.3
    Twitter drove 50% of skincare start-up Topicals’ sales. Their success comes from going deep on discourse and engaging their consumers with educational, skin-related content.
  • Add to the conversation and don’t be afraid to engage one-on-one.2
    LA makeup brand Colourpop took the playful approach to Twitter, engaging one-on-one and personalising the individual user experience. Their audience-first approach made them the most engaged with brand on Twitter in October 2020.
  • Photos garner 5x more audience engagement on #BeautyTwitter.1
    Due to Twitter’s word-first platform, photos are few and far between. Take advantage of this and supplement great copy with eye-catching visuals.
  • Skip ultra-curated content.
    Though photos attract more engagement, the ideal visual doesn’t overpower consistent, relatable content. Don’t miss out on engaging with your audience for the sake of perfection.
  • Include strategic hashtags.4
    Use hashtags to supplement brand and product recognition, events, campaigns, and trending topics to boost potential virality.
  • Strong copy & brand voice.
    When your writing is in the spotlight, a brand voice that clearly differentiates you complements your engagement efforts.

Bonus: Try repurposing Tweets across social platforms. The injection of casual, witty content onto curated platforms sparks interest and humour. You attract attention and you get more content, win-win.

Twitter is more relevant than ever. By listening and catering to their #BeautyTwitter audiences, brands can establish a memorable presence and build lasting relationships with their consumers. It’s a social strategy worth testing whether as a newbie or a pro.

Looking to up your social media presence? Get in touch with us.


  • 1 Sprinklr: New Twitter Sprinklr Research Shows How Beauty Brands are Building Community
  • 2 Twitter Marketing: The Beauty in Twitter
  • 3 Modern Retail: Why Skin-care Startup Topicals Uses Twitter as a Growth Engine
  • 4 Zoomph: Why the Top Cosmetics Brands are still on Twitter

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Jul 12

The battle between targeted advertising & data privacy

Of late, the tech industry has been at odds over how much data can be collected to enable targeted advertising.

Apple had announced last year that it wanted to introduce the App Tracking Transparency feature in its latest iOS 14.5 update, which was eventually released this April. This feature allows users to decide how apps and websites collect their data.

“Your information is for sale and you have become a product,” said Apple in a promotional video. It made the point that companies have been collecting users’ data and selling it to third parties, who then target users with personalised advertisements or attempt to shape their behaviour.

Naturally, not all the other big tech companies agreed with Apple. Facebook, for one, argued that personalised advertising allows users to see content they care about. It also enables small businesses with small budgets to effectively connect with customers and grow. There are steps one can take to limit data sharing on its platform.

Interestingly, these tech giants are not the only ones that have announced their stance on data collection. In March, Google said it planned to ban third-party cookies on Google Chrome by 2022, a deadline delayed to 2023 recently. This means advertising companies that rely on cookies to track user behaviour across the web cannot do so any more.

In place of third-party cookies, Google has proposed the use of the Federated Learning of Cohorts (FLoC) technology. FLoC will track users’ browsing habits across the internet, put them into cohorts based on those habits, and then allow advertisers to target their ads to the cohorts instead of individual users.

While all these may seem irrelevant to many of us, we should be aware of how the changes will affect us.

It is unsettling to immediately see an ad on Facebook, for instance, about the skincare product you were just talking to your friend about. It can also be difficult to know who has received your data and what they are using it for.

Reuben Ch’ng, head of marketing at LEAD, a tech training institute, finds himself on the side of companies that want to protect user privacy. But he is not doing this without acknowledging their motivations.

“Apple is doing it to appear as a first-market mover, and it ties in well with its products. One of its strongest selling points is that it has privacy-enabled devices. Google has a monopoly, so it doesn’t really need third-party cookies. It already has a lot of first-party data. As for Facebook, it wants to track behaviours beyond its own platform,” says Ch’ng, who teaches digital marketing.

“The whole idea is that if I searched for laptop bags on Google, when I go to Facebook, I will see ads from 10 different advertisers selling laptop bags.”

To a certain extent, Facebook is right that targeted advertising may not be as effective if it does not have the relevant data, says Steven Yap, head of digital and operations at Kingdom Digital, a digital advertising agency.

Businesses with a good understanding of their target audience can craft more effective marketing messages. Consumers, on the other hand, will reap the benefit of seeing only relevant content.

“Personalised experiences have been proven to boost both customer loyalty and also distinguish oneself from competitors. Hence, brands cannot afford to not be personalised in today’s day and age,” says Yap.

But although big companies can leverage their first-party data, small businesses may not have the resources to build their own database. “Many still struggle with fragmentation of data, which will affect the effectiveness of their campaigns as they are unable to capture the right audience pool,” Yap notes.

Who said targeted advertising has to be done this way?

It is really all about how it is done. If companies communicate better with their users and get their consent for the collecting and sharing of data, it could be better all around, say the interviewees.

“Consumers should be given the choice of enabling or disabling the ad tracking on their own terms. However, the current situation makes it very difficult for them to make that choice, as the process is too complicated and sometimes lack transparency,” Yap points out.

He suggests that tech companies make the terms and conditions of data privacy statements easier to understand through educational videos, for instance.

Data collection can also be done without being too intrusive. “It can be based on affinity or interest. You have to first ask for permission from users. People are fine with sharing their data sometimes. What they are not fine with is being shocked by what they see advertised,” says Ch’ng.

Yap has a similar view. Instead of tracking users’ behaviours across apps and websites, tech companies can provide personalised ads based on historical lookalike audiences with similar interests or purchase behaviours.

“Look at Agoda or Airbnb and the way they have successfully leveraged customers’ past booking history to provide personalised offers,” he says.

On the other hand, targeted advertising as it is currently done may not be the only way to do it. Ch’ng, for one, does not think that is the best method of advertising.

“For instance, the reason you buy a pair of Nike shoes or an Apple computer is due to their branding, built over many years. You buy into the story of what they have to sell,” says Ch’ng.

Undeniably, trying to sell a brand to consumers still requires some form of targeted advertising so you are not selling running shoes to the wrong audience. But “instead of targeting ads all the time, businesses should build communities around their products. Like a running club for Nike”, Ch’ng says.

Meanwhile, Kingdom Digital relies on consumer insights from audience research platforms like the Global Web Index to understand consumer behaviour. “These are captured from online surveys based on anonymous consumer groups, which allow us to understand their behaviour without capturing personal data,” says Yap.

Another idea that has come up is to reward users who share their data. Yap is intrigued by this. The Gener8 browser, which allows users to limit companies in tracking their data and earn rewards when they share their data with Gener8, is an example.

Mritunjay Kumar, co-founder of ­marketing technology platform InsightzClub, is implementing this business model in Malaysia. His platform gives financial rewards to users who download the app and allow it to collect data. According to him, this data is anonymised, then analysed on an aggregate level, and the insight is sold to companies.

“We have a real-time dashboard in our app where users can see what data is being shared and how it’s being used. We are trying to bring efficiency to marketers so they have more information and can provide you with better services. For consumers, we’re empowering them to control their own data,” says Mritunjay (see “Insightz Club: Let users monetise their data”).

Of course, before using such services, users have to read the terms and conditions carefully to understand how these third-party platforms are using and sharing their data. They should ensure it is not intrusive or illegal, otherwise they are just giving away their data to another party.


Insightz Club: Let users monetise their data

Mritunjay Kumar, co-founder of marketing technology platform Insightz Club, launched the platform four years ago. He says it now has more than 22,000 users in Malaysia and works with over 40 brands, including Maxis Bhd, CIMB Bank Bhd and L’Oreal.

When users download the platform’s app, they are asked to allow access to individual apps for data collection. If the user allows access to YouTube, for instance, InsightzClub will collect data about how much content the user watched in the last month and how many ads they saw.

Mritunjay says Insightz Club does have some boundaries. For instance, it does not access the users’ contacts or read encrypted messages. At most, it will know how much time the user spends on a messaging app.

“We are a consumer insights company. We collect the data, do our own analysis and work with brands. We always analyse data at an aggregated level,” he says.

Depending on how much data the user shares, they could earn RM15 to RM20 a month, adds Mritunjay. “We make sure the data is not misused by having multi-layer data protection, validation and encryption.”


Deficiencies in privacy laws

Around the world, laws and regulations on data privacy have been passed to protect user privacy, with the European nations taking stricter actions against tech giants.

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) presents a baseline set of standards for companies that handle the data of EU citizens. In Malaysia, similar protection is offered by the Personal Data Protection Act (PDPA) 2010.

Under both regulations, businesses are able to collect, record, store and process consumers’ personal data. Consent has to be provided by the consumers and the processing of personal data cannot be excessive, says Ian Liew, associate at Donovan and Ho.

Basically, users do have certain rights to limit the use of personal data for advertising purposes. The problem is how specifically the regulations address the latest technology developments involving data collection.

“The PDPA does not address targeted advertising directly, but it grants the right to users to object to the processing of their personal data for the purposes of direct marketing, which means the sending of advertising material directed at particular individuals,” says Liew.

The GDPR, meanwhile, addresses this directly. Users have a right to not be subject to a decision based solely on automated processing, which is free from human influence, and profiling, which categorises people based on predictions of their behaviours and interests. Targeted advertising falls under profiling.

Consent is also not clearly defined by the PDPA, Liew observes. But the GDPR defines consent as “being freely given, specific, informed, unambiguous and given by a clear affirmative action”.

Comparing the two, it could be possible for Malaysian businesses to presume that consent is given by consumers unless they actively withdraw consent (opt out), says Liew. “This would not be legal under the GDPR, which requires consumers to take positive action to provide consent, either by signing a form or clicking ‘I consent’ or ‘I agree’.”

Apart from consent, data management is another issue that consumers must be aware of, says Norhisham Abd Bahrin, partner at Azmi & Associates.

“The trouble with targeted advertising is that it is fraught with intrusive data practices. Personalisation requires disclosure of personal data, including preferences, purchase habits, browsing history and demographics,” says Norhisham.

“More often than not, this data is then subject to further analysis, including via machine learning using algorithms, which is at the disposal of the advertisers. On top of that, this data is usually stored, managed and utilised outside of the knowledge and control of users.”

A clear breach occurs when consent is not effectively given by users. However, “it’s difficult to establish privacy breach when our PDPA doesn’t define any minimum standard for consent, doesn’t regulate online privacy and has no provision on e-marketing, cookies or newer tracking and surveillance technology, including geotagging. It is not even applicable to personal data processed outside Malaysia”, says Norhisham.

“So, until our laws on data privacy are brought up to date to deal with the complexities of online digital technology, it’s quite a challenge to define a breach from the regulatory perspective since advertisers can easily find loopholes in the current data protection and management regime for digital platforms.”

How the laws should be updated 

Provisions should be inserted in the PDPA to specifically address the obligations of businesses that conduct targeted advertising, Liew says. Consumers should also be aware of what they are signing up for and make informed decisions regarding their data. “At the minimum, the choices that consumers should get need to be consistent with the rights of consumers and data subjects. This would include the right to withdraw their consent to the processing of their personal data,” says Liew.

On the bright side, the Personal Data Protection Commissioner is considering issuing a data protection guideline that covers digital marketing. Norhisham believes Malaysia can learn from the GDPR.

“The EU’s logic in attempting to regulate targeted advertising more strictly in favour of less intrusive, contextualised forms of advertising that require less user data can certainly be appreciated in this part of the world. The legal framework to regulate these issues must also be practical enough for businesses to comply with,” he says.

Some areas that can be tightened include introducing data breach notification requirements with penalty enforcement for data users, observes Norhisham.

Additionally, the PDPA should be complemented with new privacy provisions on cookies and tracking technologies in simple and user-friendly language. Data transferability abroad and the extraterritorial reach of the PDPA should also be considered, he adds.

Apr 13

Last minute ideas that brands can execute this Raya

Hari Raya is one of the many occasions that gives brands a chance to create a big and lasting impact on its audience. Whether it’s through a short film or holding a contest, brands need to find a way to communicate their Raya message effectively. But what would make your brand’s campaign stand out and be remembered?

With Raya quickly coming up in a month’s time, whether your brand is lagging behind or baffled for fresh ideas, fret not, here are some last-minute ideas that your brand can execute this Raya:

Branded Instagram Augmented Reality (AR) filter

  • IG filters are used on the daily and their uses can range from altering one’s facial features to an entertaining interactive game.
  • At the start of 2020, AR engagements saw a 20% increase along with 90% conversion rates from users who utilised AR filters.1
  • Users spend 4x more time engaging with AR filters, which is an average of 75 seconds in comparison to video content.2
  • By creating an interactive IG AR filter as part of your brand’s Raya campaign, users are able to post their images/videos/results on their IG Story and this will amplify reach by enticing other users to partake in using the filter as well as check out your brand’s IG account.
  • Need some inspiration? Check out the IG AR filter that we created as part of our agency initiative for Chinese New Year, where users can discover their 2021 fortune.

Instagram Story personality quiz

  • IG stories are a quick way to engage with your target market. With a ton of prompts and stickers, it’s no doubt that users will partake in the activities as it is short and simple.
  • A study from Meltwater showed that 86.6% of Instagram users use stories, while almost 80% of brands noticed a large effect on their influencer content from Instagram stories.3
  • A simple way of getting the audience to engage in IG Stories this festive season is by creating a Raya-themed personality quiz. This encourages users to stay till the end of your Instagram Story queue to find out their “personality”. Topics can include, “Which kuih Raya are you?” or “What Hari Raya song you should play while balik kampung?”.

Live sessions with influencers/KOLs

  • Live sessions are a great way to interact with your audience as they are able to comment and give likes in real time. Contests, giveaways, and promotions are some of the activities held during live streams to encourage engagement.
  • According to Facebook, the number of livestream viewers had a significant increase of 50% from February to March 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.4
  • To complement these live sessions, influencers can play a huge role in targeting a specific audience as these individuals are able to impact the decisions of their followers, making them an ideal choice as hosts.
  • A study done by Twitter and Annalect showed that 49% of users depend on advice from influencers while 40% of users said to have purchased products that influencers have used on Instagram and several other social media platforms.5
  • For some inspiration of a successful live campaign, take a look at this Facebook live campaign that we created for Haier last Raya.

User generated content – Complemented by the usage of specific hashtags

  • User generated content is a cost-efficient way to let the public spread the word about your campaign for you.
  • Like word-of-mouth marketing, users are able to post their own content that relates to your campaign, thus this creates buzz among the public.
  • A survey carried out by Stackla found that 79% of people claimed that UGC plays a huge role in influencing their purchases.6
  • In 2020, UGC created a sense of community among social media users, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic, where people are stuck at home by themselves.7
  • Carrying forward into 2021, UGC centric campaigns will be an effective method of getting your target market to interact and connect with your brand.
  • Creating different hashtags, that closely relates to your brand’s purpose, to signify different groups is a way of getting users to post their own content. Search up “#TeamHijau” or “#TeamBiru” on Instagram for real-life interactive content ideas.

Source: Instagram

Personalised content/videos 

  • People crave personalised content because when it is catered to them specifically, they hold a connection to it because it shows that your company cares. This, in turn, increases customer loyalty to the brand.
  • SmarterHQ found that 72% of consumers prefer to only interact with messages that are personalised.8
  • In addition, 66% of consumers stated that they lose interest in purchasing when the brand does not personalise their content.8
  • While personalisation may seem like a daunting task with it requiring a sizeable cost and a lot of resources, it doesn’t have to be. Take a look at how we executed personalised “Thank you” cards for each of our Heroes and brands that we’ve worked with, where we produced 340 custom videos within a week by utilising our Digital Creative Automation delivery system.

Don’t know which direction your brand should head for this Raya? Drop us a message today.

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Thumbnail_01-article Insight
Mar 29

How personalisation helps foster brand loyalty

In this era of instant gratification, consumers are increasingly drawn to brands that they have forged a personal and emotional connection with.

In fact, emotionally connected customers have a 306% higher lifetime value, remain loyal to a brand for an average of 5.1 years and will recommend brands at a much higher rate.1

Brands that can’t meet their customer’s needs and expectations risk losing them to those that do. Personalisation is one of the key elements for building emotional connections which in turn helps build brand loyalty.

Why personalisation drives loyalty

Consumers gravitate towards personalised experiences due to a psychological principle known as the ‘Cocktail Party Effect’. In a noisy environment, our brain separates overlapping conversations into different auditory streams so that it can ignore irrelevant information. One of the key triggers for people to ‘tune in’ is when they hear their name.2

Today, personalisation is far more than just saying “Hi, John” in an email subject line – it’s about anticipating the consumers’ needs at every touchpoint. As each customer is on their own unique journey, the motivation to try, buy, or stay loyal changes depending on the individual.

Increasing customer retention by 5% can increase profits by 25% to 95%.3

By personalising your digital campaigns, your brand will be able to:

  • Build trust
    Through personalised experiences, your customers will get the impression that you have their best interests in mind.
  • Show commitment
    Since you are taking the effort to build a relationship, customers will believe you genuinely value the relationship.
  • Encourage reciprocity
    As you’ve made the effort to get to know your customers, they may return the favour by keeping your brand top-of-mind for future purchases.

Getting personalisation right to nurture strong customer relationships

With brands pivoting and adapting to a new way of operating, there is an increased sense of urgency to leverage insights to better understand consumers’ new needs and expectations.

While brands recognise the power of personalisation and the need to make it a priority in providing consistent, tailored experiences, meeting those personalised expectations require a deep understanding of each customer as an individual and acquiring that kind of insight takes time.

Additionally, when it comes to execution, most brands find it challenging to keep up with producing variations of content and creatives that resonate with different audiences. A study by Adobe revealed that time is the top barrier to personalisation, followed by cost due to insufficient resources.4

On average, it requires 12 days to take a single piece of content to market.4

Brands can no longer rely on the traditional one-size-fits-all generic marketing messages approach to build relationships with consumers, and they need to move away from the manual production workflow to achieve personalisation at scale.

Personalisation made possible with creative automation

Technological innovations today have enabled brands to take personalisation, even hyper-personalisation, to a whole new level. However, the challenge has always been to scale the creative and content assets to a high standard, cost effectively.

Now, it is made possible with Digital Creative Automation (DCA), our proprietary delivery system as a managed service.

DCA speeds up the creative and content adaptation process, allowing for large volumes of personalised digital ads (including video), emails, and creative assets to be produced in the templates of your choice.

With DCA, brands can test multiple variants of messages, languages, visuals, call-to-actions, and ad sizes to determine which drive performance. They can then use these insights to optimise and improve digital campaigns quickly and effectively.

This helps brands to save time and cost, which in turn, offers better ad experiences for your consumers as the content matches their needs. More relevant experiences equal more engaged customers, which leads to greater emotional loyalty for your brand.

Looking to explore personalisation for your digital campaigns? Schedule a demo for DCA today.

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article-raya-2021-thumbnail Insight
Mar 18

#WaterCoolerChat: Raya in the Eyes of #KDHeroes

Insightful opinions on how to brand it right this Raya.

Imagine this: Driving to your hometown for hours with your family and finally arriving at your nenek and atuk’s house. Waiting eagerly for your cousins to arrive to light sparklers. The smell of rendang wafting in the air as you receive your first duit Raya of the night. For some, it’s the memory of getting teary-eyed from watching advertisements that hit close to home. Everyone might have different ways of celebrating Raya, but one thing’s for sure, the idea of unity and togetherness will remain.


Source: Pond5

To get different insights for this occasion, we caught up with a few of our Heroes – Elaine and Mior, who are both in the Strategy Team, Hanie from the Client Servicing Team, and Syakira from the Video Team. Each of them come from different backgrounds and celebrate Raya in their own ways. They were asked about what Raya means to them and what they think brands should do in order to connect with their audience and create a lasting impression. Here’s what they had to say:

1.What does Raya mean to you?

Hanie: Raya is when everyone in the family gets together and spends some quality time, while we do all the cooking and eating.

Mior: Raya is a moment of celebration and togetherness. A moment where family and friends get together. It’s the time to nurture a stronger bond with the people close to us.

Syakira: Raya means victory in the month of Ramadan. This time period is used as a way to physically and spiritually purify oneself in order to bring the faithful closer to Allah.


Source: iProperty

2.What’s your favourite part of the Ramadan-Raya season?

Elaine: My favourite part of the Ramadan-Raya season are the Ramadan bazaars and the mall decorations.

Hanie: Best part would be visiting the Ramadan bazaar and opening fast with the whole family.

Mior: My favourite part of Ramadan-Raya is the food, because it’s the centre of ‘sahur’, ‘buka puasa’, and open houses.

Syakira: Going back to my hometown, cooking for Raya preparations, the smell of ‘kuih Raya’ in the oven, trying on Raya clothes, and singing Raya songs while being stuck in the traffic jam.


Source: Pinterest

3.How was Ramadan different for you last year, given the lockdown?

Elaine: Having to break fast alone at home instead of with my boyfriend.

Hanie: The biggest difference would be not going to bazaars like previous years or going out to open fast. I cook more at home instead.

Mior: ‘Buka puasa’ was totally different before lockdown. Normally, I would ‘buka puasa’ with my family or friends. And we would take this opportunity to reunite and create a stronger bond with each other.

Syakira: I miss going to the mosque and praying ‘tarawikh’. I also miss the Ramadan bazaars.


Source: WiffleGif

4.What are the common misconceptions about Raya and how does these affect brands’ Raya marketing? 

Hanie: Perhaps not the most common misconception, but I do have some friends who are not Malay and think that this is purely a religious celebration. They aren’t aware that it is also very cultural and can be celebrated even if you’re not Muslim.

Mior: Marketers perceive that Ramadan and Raya are similar. In truth, Ramadan is a moment of charity whereas Raya is a moment of forgiveness, celebration, and reunion. I think a brand should create a journey from the first day of ramadan to the end of Raya. Each phase expresses a different kind of emotion and situation.

Syakira: Raya is all about religion, family, relationship, and emotion. Without these elements, the younger generation might not understand the celebration like we do and might misinterpret the meaning of Raya.

5.How can brands connect better with consumers during this season?

Elaine: I believe that brands should consult with Muslims when it comes to ads during this season in order to avoid committing cultural faux pas.

Hanie: Perhaps a rewarding/give back/charity kind of campaign, which in a way can be helpful to those who are in need, or simply make others feel appreciated.

Syakira: I think brands should incorporate a few childhood memories that’s associated with Raya preparations such as ‘bakar lemang’, ironing numerous sets of ‘baju Raya’, and queueing to shower to make the audience feel nostalgia.


Source: Giphy

6.What’s one tip you would offer when it comes to Raya campaigns/marketing?

Elaine: Practice more mindfulness in campaigns/marketing. Most brands love using Raya elements to sell, sell, sell, when Raya is actually all about gratitude and togetherness. There’s no harm in promoting sales during Raya, but I feel like there should also be a balance in giving back.

Mior: I think that brands should consider the factors that are relevant to the Malaysian Muslim community, such as the Malay language and specific culture references and try to incorporate them into the ads.

Syakira: Raya songs are a must and ideas should be close to our hearts. It’s all about missing the hometown memories.


Source: SAYS

7.Aside from films, what other innovative ideas or executions can brands consider implementing to strengthen relationships with its audience?

Elaine: I would love to see more brands talk about Raya culture rather than caricatures as recent ads love to do. Influencer marketing definitely works, but we could look into having Muslim influencers tell real stories and highlight Muslim brands.

Hanie: Interactive and personalised content that are still related to the Raya theme would resonate with the audience better. For example, maybe a social media campaign that uses UGC marketing.This gets people to engage with the brand and get rewarded or be featured in their ads.

Mior: Instead of just doing films that are 3 minutes long, why don’t we split it to 5 or 10 seconds per video? This way, the video can target consumers based on their behaviour online and relevant interests. I really hope to see this kind of campaign for Raya because it rarely happens in Malaysia, as we are too focused on making film-style advertisements.


Source: Giphy

8.Share with us your favourite Raya campaign.

Elaine: I like Grab’s 2020 Raya campaign. Grab gave out 1.5 million GrabRewards Points to users who sent their first three GrabPay e-Duit Raya transfers. Grab also partnered with various charities and non-profit organisations to encourage people to contribute as it’s part of the Muslim tradition of ‘sadaqah’.

Hanie: I personally find humorous and #relatable ads more memorable. For example, last year’s #RayaStyleLain with vivo. I like how they mentioned all the things that most Malay families would do when preparing for Raya, and still connect to the whole pandemic situation. Meanwhile, the USPs of the product/brand image are also captured.

Mior: Have a look at PNB Raya ad from 2000s. I really love dissecting this ad. It’s simple and speaks to the right audience with the right message. Another one of my favourites is the Tesco Raya campaign “Raya Jimat, Raya Selamat”. Tesco also understands their audience by creating deals, like recipes and contests on their platform. One day, I would like to plan a Raya campaign that will knock someone’s ‘songkok’ off.

Syakira: A memorable ad was “Ikhlas” from Pelaburan MARA that was made in 2017. I chose this because the raw emotions and struggles of ‘balik kampung’ during Raya are relatable to all Malaysians who celebrate Hari Raya.

Need help for your upcoming Raya campaign? Get in touch.

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Feb 18

4 tips on marketing to millennials

Millennials aren’t just the biggest group of consumers today; they are also the most connected. This audience segment is more prone to conduct extensive research online before making a purchase which makes content marketing the ideal way to reach this
audience segment.

If you’re looking to target millennials, you will have to align your content strategy with their concerns, interests, and behaviours to resonate with them on a deeper level. Here are 4 tips to help you get started:

Appeal to instant gratification

  • As digital natives, millennials are used to having nearly everything available immediately.
  • Brands can appeal to this need for immediacy by incorporating elements of instant gratification in digital campaigns.

Be authentic

  • Millennials prefer to buy products they believe in; from companies they trust.
  • In the past, it may have been unacceptable to speak out on political stances or social justice in the marketing world, but today, these things can actually help brands connect better with the target audience and strengthen support.

Embrace uniqueness & stand out

  • By creating a product/concept that’s unique and stands out, brands can expect better response from millennials.
  • This will also encourage more likes and shares, offering better campaign mileage.

Get interactive

  • Incorporating interactive experience in digital campaigns can be a great way to grab millennials’ attention.
  • If you can get them engaged, you can expect stronger brand affinity and loyalty in the long run.

Need help reaching millennials for your next digital marketing campaign? Get in touch with us today.

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article-thumbnail Insight
Jan 21

How we embraced opportunities during the pandemic

The pandemic outbreak and stay-home policies not only changed the way businesses operate; it had also caused a shift in consumer behaviour and media consumption.

As a digital agency providing consumer-centric strategy for brands, we needed to adapt to these changes and find alternative ways of working to adequately support our clients during this trying time, as many of them placed renewed emphasis on their digital footprint.

Here are a few ways how we have embraced the opportunities from the pandemic.

Adjusting to the remote working life

Similar to many other agencies and businesses, we instated the work-from-home policy, to comply with the government’s preventive measure and prioritise the safety of our employees.

Being a digital agency, we are fortunate to experience a smooth and less daunting transition to remote work as we are used to working ‘online’ with infrastructure and resources already in place that supported the change.

Virtual pitches take centre stage

As physical meetings couldn’t take place, we leveraged on video conferencing platforms, such as Google Meet and Zoom, to present our creative pitches.

Virtual pitches aren’t a replacement for face-to-face meetings, as connecting with people through a screen requires a lot more preparation and consideration to overcome situations such as technical glitches. But when done right, this form of pitching has proven to be effective as we have secured new business wins during this time.

Shrinking borders across the globe

The pandemic has normalised remote work and altered the perception of needing a physical, local presence to execute work in a different country, especially for our industry.

With digital acceleration leading to more virtual collaborations, great campaigns can still be achieved – without compromising on the quality of the creative outputs and in-depth understanding of the local markets.

Digital executions across markets

As a result, we rose to the challenge and continued producing great work for Malaysian clients as well as brands across different countries in the Southeast Asian market.

Some of our notable 2020 campaigns include:

1) Grab empowers small businesses in Southeast Asia with personalised campaign


What we did: Popular e-hailing brand Grab launched a community initiative during the pandemic to support small businesses by offering free ad space within the app. However, this meant that they needed personalised ads to showcase the thousands of merchants, appeal to the varied audience sets, while taking into consideration local nuances in different countries. We leveraged our Digital Creative Automation (DCA) service and helped Grab to produce over 7K creative assets in just 2 weeks.

Why it worked: To generate multiple digital ads in varied languages, messaging, and creatives at this scale would typically take up to 2 months of production time and require more resources, incurring additional costs. By using DCA, we recorded an 80% reduction in required resources and saved 80% in overall campaign cost.

Learnings: Creative automation is a great way for brands to tackle the challenges in achieving personalisation at scale. By understanding Grab’s challenges and automating their creative process via DCA, the campaign was a great success and drove maximum exposure for the small businesses.

2) Haier hops on video trends to foster the Raya spirit


What we did: With COVID-19 leading to the first-ever social distancing Raya celebration, we helped leading home appliance brand Haier uplift consumers’ spirits while strengthening its brand awareness through our two-pronged campaign via Facebook Live and TikTok branded hashtag challenge.

Why it worked: By leveraging on social platforms that were trending at the time, we effectively reached Haier’s target audience, the millennials, with relatable content. As most people were looking for entertainment and a sense of community in a time of increased isolation, our #AdaHaierAdaRaya executions helped foster the communal spirit of the festive season, virtually.

Learnings: In times of uncertainty, brands should be nimble and rethink their marketing strategies to ensure relevancy. One way to do this is by leveraging on trends and platforms that are suitable for the brand/target audience.

Learn More

3) How Tohtonku brands stayed relevant during the lockdown


What we did: To help personal care company Tohtonku maintain its brands’ relevance and engage with Malaysians during the Movement Control Order (MCO), we executed a series of livestreams under its brands. For Ubermen and Nanowhite Men, we organised live grooming sessions as people were unable to get haircuts at the time. Meanwhile, we partnered with selected influencers to co-host educational Instagram Live sessions under its Nanowhite brand and designed a series of self-healing themed Facebook Live sessions, led by local wellness instructors under its Nutox brand.

Why it worked: Rather than hard selling the products, we angled our strategy toward helping Malaysians cope with the lockdown blues and provided a form of escape from the hard-hitting COVID-19 news.

Learnings: By adapting quickly to the changing environment, brands will be able to subtly inject themselves into trending conversations and strengthen their relevance. A crisis can be turned into an opportunity to stand out and build trust for long-term brand affinity.

See The Media Coverage

While we are still working from home, we’re fully operational and available to support your digital marketing needs. Looking to expand your digital footprint? Get in touch with us.

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Nov 30

How brands can engage consumers with interactive experiences

The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in more people staying indoors and spending time online. As the competition for consumers’ attention intensifies online, it’s now increasingly challenging for brands to engage effectively with consumers and stay ahead of the competition. To overcome this challenge, brands should employ digital innovations in marketing campaigns, which can encourage two-way conversations.

What can brands do?

One of the ways brands can do this is by incorporating immersive experiences or gaming elements into the campaign strategy. By adding the element of interactivity into digital campaigns, brands will be able to capture audiences’ attention and offer experiences that resonate with them.

In fact, 79% of marketers agree that interactivity can enhance brand messaging retention.1

Redefining the customer journey through interactive experiences

Here are some ways we have used interactive web experiences in our campaigns:


Shiseido: #MyUltimuneStrength

Japanese skincare brand Shiseido has an Ultimune product range that fights signs of ageing by strengthening skin barriers from within. To celebrate the launch of its new Ultimune Eye Concentrate, we leveraged on this ‘strength’ unique selling proposition (USP) to produce an interactive video, allowing viewers to discover their inner strength through the story of a blind first date. Taking a cue from Netflix’s ‘Black Mirror: Bandersnatch,’ the video allowed users to decide how the story played out. The choices reflected the strength the participants excelled in and they received Shiseido products catered to these strengths.

This campaign successfully attracted over 7K unique visitors, with more than half of the users watching the entire interactive video. It also recorded a 3-minute, 27-second average session duration – surpassing the average benchmark by 50%.2

Key Takeaway:
When you can get users to interact with your content, they process information that is being shared better, spend more time on your site, and engage with your brand. By using interactive video, we transformed Shiseido’s consumers from passive viewers into active audiences, while allowing them to learn about the product and its USP in a more memorable way – leading to deeper brand affinity.

Try It Out


Nutox: Wheel of Radiance CNY Campaign

Chinese New Year (CNY) is not complete without ang pows and the game of chance. To help skincare brand Nutox stay top of mind during the busy festive season, we combined these insights with digital innovation to create the ‘Wheel of Radiance’ campaign. Hosted on a dedicated microsite, users could create custom digital ang pows with personalised greetings and share them with their loved ones. Users could also spin the digitised wheel for a chance at winning Nutox prizes.

We succeeded in engaging Nutox customers during one of the busiest festive seasons as over 6K customised ang pows were created in just 3 weeks. Moreover, 77% of them had shared their custom packets with their family and friends.

Key Takeaway:
Incorporating audience insights and interactivity in digital campaigns can help brands deliver a more dynamic and personalised experience. This may also change the way users engage with a particular brand and encourage deeper connections.

Spin The Wheel


Kingdom Digital: What The Fatt CNY AR Initiative

Augmented Reality (AR) has been trending around the world – thanks to the popularity of mobile apps such as PokemonGo and the surge of AR filters on social networks. However, these are often app-based and getting users to download an app can be challenging. Realising that convenience is a key factor today, we created an interactive web-based AR game as part of our agency’s CNY initiative to overcome this challenge.

This webAR game, titled ‘What The Fatt’, allowed users to hunt for signature Malaysian Chinese ethnic dishes directly from the convenience of their mobile browsers. This made the game easily accessible without needing to download a mobile app, which contributed to higher interactions.

Key Takeaway:
One of the things brands should do to be more customer-focused is maximising the convenience offered to consumers – especially right now. With interactive experiences such as webAR, brands can create seamless customer experiences and engage them in an innovative manner. When an interactive campaign is hassle-free, it can also encourage users to share it, allowing brands to reach a wider audience segment without relying solely on paid channels.

Experience The Hunt

Check out more of our interactive campaigns here.

As pandemic restrictions continue to be implemented across the globe, consumers are turning to the digital world for a sense of normalcy and to remain connected. For brands to stay relevant, interactive web experiences could be an innovative way to replicate some form of the consumer connection virtually. This would contribute to strong brand loyalty that keeps customers coming back, even after the crisis has passed.

Looking to inject interactivity into your digital campaigns? Get in touch with us.

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