#MarketingExcellenceAwards MY 2020 spills: Yoodo's ambitions to build a cheeky and dynamic brand


Malaysia's telco scene is an intensely competitive one. As a challenger brand, Yoodo had to go up against rivals such as Maxis and Digi. Despite the challenges, it still managed to build a strong, loyal community within a year. This initiatives led it to bag gold for Excellence in Sports/eSports Marketing, and silver for Excellence in Brand Awareness and Excellence in Influencer Marketing at A+M's Marketing Excellence Awards Malaysia 2020. 

With Malaysia ramping up its vaccination efforts to have all adults fully vaccinated by the end of October, Yoodo also sees this as an opportunity for it to continue engaging consumers digitally and via on-ground events. Speaking to A+M, head of Yoodo, Chow Tuck Mun (pictured), shares its marketing plans for the year and the expectations consumers have for Yoodo.

This interview is done as part of A+M’s winners and finalists’ interview series. To find out more about the awards, click here.

A+M: What are some of the expectations your consumers now have for your brand?

Chow: The modern consumer likes personalisation, seamless customer experience and a brand that continually innovates. This customer is also getting more digital, finding ways to do things on the app and web. With Yoodo’s fully customisable plans, we allow the user to choose from over two million combinations as they select their choice of data, voice minutes and SMS, plus an ever-growing list of add-ons (data buckets for specific apps).

Customers are impressed by the combination options especially the ability to choose data for their preferred social, entertainment and gaming apps. They continue to look out for and suggest apps that we should work with. They also expect even more possibilities such that when we launched the Unlimited data plans, we found ways to make it customisable such as providing options for data speed and also hotspot quota.

Yoodo has been able to provide a good customer experience throughout the digital customer journey. However, what may be a "wow" moment now becomes a norm after a while and we have to continue simplifying the customer journey and also innovating on new products. For example, while we have separate products such as boosters (data, voice and SMS top-ups in the midst of your billing cycle) and add ons (which can only be purchased at the beginning of the cycle), we decided to combine the best of both worlds by having add on boosters which allows customers to buy add ons at any time.

Yoodo is all about giving our users what they want, whether in terms of product innovations, promotions, or even activities. This year we launched #WhatYooWant - a campaign that focuses on going the extra mile to listen to our users and accommodate their needs as much as possible.

A+M: With the vaccine now being available globally, and markets slowly opening up, what do you think will be the biggest advantage for you?

Chow: When markets open up, the world will be more digital than prior to when the pandemic started. This will benefit us as our customer journey is digital and thus suited for the post-new normal. People would be even more comfortable doing things on their mobile phones, thus making our digital telco proposition even more attractive.

Also, while our core business is fully digital, we still do on-ground marketing initiatives. We believe that people still want the physical touch especially in the lifestyle segments that we focus on such as esports, K-pop, music and entertainment. Yoodo has a strong community who help each other on our forum pages and social channels and once in a while, we like to meet up with them. This means that we will start to be able to organise events to engage with our customer base.

Besides that, we are also a brand that supports various active sports. One example is the Malaysia Premier Futsal League which we have been involved with since 2019. Unfortunately, this year’s edition had to be postponed due to the pandemic so we are looking forward to the day where we can start growing to the stadiums to enjoy the matches with the fans and as such, our potential customer base.

A+M: Tell us a little bit about your marketing plans this year?

Chow: This year, we are focused on three areas - growing our brand awareness, expanding our lifestyle segment approach (esports, K-pop, music and entertainment and active Sports) and increasing our Sim availability touchpoints.

We will continue building a brand that is cheeky and dynamic, a brand that is relevant to Gen Y and Z. This means engaging them in the language that they speak and also using channels that the eyeballs are, for example, TikTok. We will reach out to the potential customers mainly via digital means while at the same time, not forgetting that it’s important to build brand trust via non-digital means.

It’s been exciting and rewarding reaching out to our customers via the lifestyle segments and we will continue to do so. There will be a more community-based approach to these lifestyle segments and we intend to be on-ground when the pandemic situation gets better.

Our customers have also told us that they do not just want to wait for the sim cards to be delivered to them. As such, we are expanding our channels where our potential customers can find and buy our sim cards. Now, customers can purchase a Yoodo SIM card at BHPetromart and Petronas Mesra outlets in Klang Valley and by 15 July, customers across Peninsular Malaysia.

A+M: What are some of the marketing trends you are most excited about?

Chow: Gen Y and Z are generations that like things that reflect their individual personality. They like to be treated for who they are. They have lifestyle preferences and are passionate about what they like. This is why as a brand, we build on the customisation and personalisation aspects. We also engage with our audience through the various lifestyle segments mentioned previously.

It is interesting to note that today, these lifestyle segments are also converging. Such as esports and K-pop. Recently, popular K-pop band BLACKPINK was featured in PUBG Mobile, where not only did they participated in a fun match but also offer special in-game items. On top of that, we can also see active sports now immersing themselves in eSports. More international football teams including Manchester United, Paris Saint-Germain and Bayern Munich have now set up their esports team. 

The rise of TikTok has been incredible. It’s become this giant medium generating social media trends of every category you can think of – music, dance, food and its one of the most engaging ways to reach consumers. We’re definitely planning on leveraging this to create a closer bond with our audience in the future.