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SG marketers on their top priorities for 2019: Are you aligned?

With 2019 inching around the corner, and uncertainty still looming over many parts of the industry, marketers are now looking to strengthen their position in the company. More and more CMOs, said Forrester’s predictions, will bring brand back as their top priority.

Meanwhile, Dentsu’s Isobar also highlighted several key trends for 2019. These are:

  • The evolving interface – How the intersection between humans and technology is changing.
  • The human algorithm – How data can help us to better understand ourselves and enable better decisions.
  • The fluid vs the collective self – How the digital world enhances personal and collective experiences.
  • The trust paradox – How technology can help – or hinder – our understanding of the increasingly complex world around us.
  • The transformed experience – How Augmented Humanity enables us to feel and experience the world differently and in deeper ways.

So what are leading marketers in Singapore now getting geared up for? We find out.

Lynette Pang, assistant chief executive, marketing group, Singapore Tourism Board

STB launched Passion Made Possible in 2017 to celebrate and share the stories of Singapore and its people with the world. Since then, we have featured close to 200 Singapore personalities from all walks of life in front of and behind the camera in our global campaign. We intend to expand that focus in 2019 and beyond.  We will soon unveil new and exciting content, which not only features home-grown talent but was also co-created with quite a few of them. We will continue to partner the local tourism industry by supporting their innovative marketing ideas through STB’s “Marketing Innovation Programme” and support content creators who want to tell Singapore’s stories through “Fast Forward” . The expanded use of visitor data and in-market research is another must as it will help us to tease out critical consumer insights for marketing campaigns that can best exemplify Singapore as being Passion Made Possible.

Goh Theng Kiat, chief customer officer, Prudential Singapore

Branding and customer experience are the two focus areas in 2019.  As Prudential Singapore shifts its position to help everyone live well, we will be looking at strategies to build Prudential branding in various aspects of wellness – financial, health, relationship and career. Leveraging our recent work on Ready for 100, we will be engaging more consumers with insights and ideas to live well when they prepare for a longer life. We will also be constantly reviewing the experience for our customers at all touchpoints.  We know bringing excellent customer experience is not a one-off exercise, this is a journey we have started two years ago and we are constantly reviewing and improving them.

Megan Yulga, senior marketing manager, Circles.Life

As a brand, Circles.Life revolves around giving power back to the customers. 2019 will be no different as we will be aggressively offering more lifestyle products such as Discover, alongside our other innovative telco products. We will make sure that we continue to empower customers to engage in our services in the most personalised way. AI technology allows us to leverage our vast telco technology to reach customers in the most relevant way. This isn’t just a brand focus, but a customer experience mission to ensure each and every customer feels empowered by our brand in 2019.

Manisha Seewal, chief marketing officer, Carro Singapore

For me, 2019 will be about finding the right balance between digital and traditional media. We will focus on maintaining a steady stream of customers for revenue generation, while we build the brand from the ground up. At Carro, we have a full stack in-house digital marketing team that drives direct customer acquisition in Asia. The challenge will be to complement our digital outreach with just the right amount of traditional media that powers a seamless offline to online customer journey and a consistent brand experience.

Mark Phibbs, vice president of marketing & communications, Cisco Asia Pacific, Japan and Greater China (APJC)

At Cisco, we have always strived to transform the customer experience at every step of their purchasing journey. In 2019, we will continue to do this through data analytics, to better understand their purchasing journey and their personas, and deliver tailored content to them real-time as part of our digital approach to marketing. We are also focused on working with our customers to see how they can use our technology and solutions to open up new growth opportunities and address key challenges facing not just the business but society as a whole. Our new brand campaign called, “The Bridge to Possible”, demonstrates what is possible when innovative technology and imaginative people come together around a common purpose. This very purpose is brought to life in every story told in this campaign; stories of real customers, partners, and employees.

Agatha Soh, head of regional marketing, Shopee Singapore 

Localisation. Shopee’s rapid growth and success is a result of the highly localised strategies that we adopt, and this remains a key focus area not just for 2019, but as we continue to grow our presence in the region. Localisation goes beyond adapting our platform to different languages. It is about going deeper to understand each local landscape and our local audience; from their habits, interests, preferences, and even down to cultural nuances. With strong local teams in each of our seven markets, we strive to explore new ways to build meaningful connections with our users across the region, to establish long-lasting relationships with each of them and continue to deliver unique and memorable Shopee experiences.

Adeline Tiah, head of marketing, Tokio Marine Life Insurance Singapore 

Marketers these days are faced with expanded mandate to not only be a brand steward but also customer champion. Marketers are expected to be a revenue driver too. But at the heart of all these is about the brand. A strong brand builds emotional connection with customers and in the longer term protects the profit margins and builds market share. Consistency is key and a strong brand needs to resonate with consumers through the larger brand purpose and experienced through various consumer touch points. Consistency is important. A good example would be the Coke brand. In the recent Christmas campaign it shows how a Coke bottle that comes with a label can be transformed into a gift ribbon. A delightful experience that connects me with the brand.

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