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Making marketing work in Indonesia with influencers, data analysis and raw talent

When it comes to engaging with customers and getting your brand awareness out there, finding the right influencer who fits with your brand’s DNA may not always be the easiest thing to achieve. Especially in the age of ad fraud and the buying of fake followers, brands need to double up and ensure due diligence is done.

Wendy Hogan, CX and marketing strategy director at Oracle, said during a recent Marketing Interactive round table event in Indonesia, organised in partnership with Oracle, that currently Indonesian marketers rely heavily on influencers for their campaigns. In fact, some marketers at her table said that in Indonesia, it is five times more expensive to hire key opinion leaders when compared with markets such as the Philippines.

“It’s about how you leverage the different levels of influence in the market,” Hogan said.

Also chiming in, Melani Fitri, head of communications at Institute Francais D’Indonesie, explained that if an influencer has a lot of promoted posts with no specific niche, they tend to be viewed as less credible by consumers – especially Millennials.

Another focus for Indonesian marketers when it comes to influencers is the effective tracking of return on investment for influencer marketing campaigns. Pramita Sari, corporate director of communications at Parador Hotels & Resorts, said that for her company, it tends to utilise tools such as link-tracking and relevant social media statistics to keep track of an influencer’s impact on branding.

“Influencers are crucial when it comes to digital marketing. But we need to be selective when it comes to picking the right influencer for the brand because there are so many out there who claim to be an influencer,” she explained.

That being said, influencers tend to be more effective when the target audience for a brand lies mainly in the Millennial segment, said Yasmin Fidianti, director of sales and marketing at Aryaduta Jakarta.

For the case of Aryaduta, the effectiveness of influencers differs in each Indonesia region. In some markets, leveraging on cross-brand partnerships may be more effective for marketers as opposed to influencers.

Data and analytics

Another topic which drew buzz from the attendees was data and analytics. Data needs to drive action in order to be useful, said Kenneth Lai, head of sales for Southeast Asia at Oracle.

“When it comes to understanding customers through data, there is no silver bullet. This is because knowing the customer well is a process, and it’s about leveraging tools such as CRM and business intelligence to come up with the next promotion and more,” he said.

Other struggles for Indonesian marketers also include ensuring the proper practices and strategies are in place to understand data and harness it to better the customer journey. Assumptions also cannot be made about the consumer based on just device and transactional data alone. This is because marketers need to also look towards big data for a more comprehensive view of the customer.

David Bochsler, regional sales director for Oracle Marketing Cloud, ASEAN, added that it was also about understanding what the customer experience journey means, and the point at which people were making decisions on a brand’s products.

Added Soren Beaulieu, publisher at Marketing Interactive: “It’s also about the idea of going beyond multi-channels and becoming omni-channel to be more consistent with the customer at any point of the journey – including re-targeting and automation.”

Talent which speak both data and marketing

Finding the right talent who is able to speak both data and marketing is also a challenge for the market. This also extends to other areas of marketing which is starting to see an influx of the Millennial workforce. As such, organisations need to becoming “learning organisations”, said Celeste Koay, chief marketing officer at Cinemaxx.

“Organisations need to look at finding the right attitude, then work on developing aptitude,” she explained.

Agreeing with her was Rezwana Manjur, regional editor of Marketing Interactive, who explained that other benefits of hiring fresh graduates is being given the opportunity to mould the individual to fill the gaps and needs of the organisation or the team.

Engaging fresh graduates before they leave school is also another strategy to ensure you have the best talent, said Ardi A. Sudarto, chief marketing officer at Indo Lotte Makmur.

This means striking close partnerships with universities to find the right talent so they have an offer waiting for them once they have graduated, he added.