Intel will be launching its first digital hub, based in Singapore and functioning for the Asia Pacific and Japan (APJ) region.The centre will be fully operational by the end of May, said Jamshed Wadia, head of digital marketing and media, Asia Pacific and Japan, Intel."The APJ Digital Hub will operate in real time, combining insights and creativity, integrating the power of paid, earned and owned media in order to amplify conversations and inspire search around the Intel brand and its products, giving new impact and efficiencies to our marketing organisation," said Wadia, who is leading the move for Intel.The hub is aimed at giving the firm the capacity to measure all its digital activations; optimise content and media for reach; drive higher engagement and cost efficiency, all in real time. This will also allow the company to produce content at a higher capacity. The digital hub will pull in conversational insights and behavioral measures that will be combined with Intel's research data to bring in valuable longer term insights for product marketing and strategy, he said.The hub will function in these four areas: overall web monitoring; predictive conversational analysis; owned metrics and advocacy tracking.Overall web monitoring: The hub will serve to measuring Intel's share of voice, popular content themes and sentiment analysis across Intel as brand and business segments like PCs, 2in1, smartphones, tablets and new businesses like IOT and wearables. This will also include measuring Intel led campaigns, industry events and Intel owned events.Predictive conversational analysis: "Web monitoring in general gives us real time info on what has happened and predictive web monitoring is an additional layer of analysis that is based on historical trends and algorithms that can provide predictive emerging conversations in the next 48 to 72 hours. This will give Intel a window of opportunity to figure out a conversation or content strategy around that theme," said Wadia.Owned metrics: This will also offer real time analysis on the impact of its owned web and social assets. The impact will be measured in terms of reach, engagement, leads generated, cost of media, content effectiveness and community strength.Advocacy tracking: The center can identify in real time online influencers that are influencing the conversations that matter to allow Intel to engage with them via a formal engagement program that builds a long term relationships, said Wadia.With Intel taking digital capabilities into its own hands, will this affect its current agency partnerships?Increasingly, companies building their own digital capabilities in-house has been on the rise. A recent study suggested that in-housing of digital efforts is a major challenge to agencies with 27% of companies claiming to work with no agencies, more than double the figure from 2014. Clients that continue to work with agencies are also cutting back on their rosters – just 12% of brands had four or more digital agencies this year, down from 21% in 2014, said the study. (Read also: Should agencies worry when clients build in-house digital capabilities?) Is this the case for Intel? Wadia said the answer is no. Intel currently works with agencies for three areas of marketing: We Are Social works on its content; Zeno on its community management and Omnicom's Resolution Media for media buying. The latter relationship runs globally and regionally. This only means the agencies will have more data to help their strategies for Intel, said Wadia.The company also declined to divulge its investment on the project.Jayant Murthy, director brand strategy, Integrated and Partner Marketing at Intel said that the company has been building its followers on social across Asia for the past two years, with numbers now reaching 8.5 million followers on social across all its properties, and this move was meant to leverage that and properly drive conversations at scale.Examples of other firms in the region who have built in-house digital capabilities are the likes of Lenovo, who earlier built a social media centre of excellence; Philips, which built its own content marketing facility or OCBC, which built its own analytics function in-house.
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