Ogilvy estimates that just under a 3rd of the world’s online population or a staggering 456 million users in Asia are actively consuming social media, which is becoming endemic in internet culture.

Asia e-Marketing intend to accentuate Ogilvy’s very interesting brochure by spread their knowledge and information in this issue.

Here is an excerpt of it that maybe quickens to read the complete report which you can download from their Website: http://www.the-open-room.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/01/ogilvyone_brands-sociallife_2008.pdf
Covering 12 countries in Asia, Ogilvy hopes you’ll find the insights useful in helping to gain a better understanding of how to benefit from interacting with customers through social media. Besides what is presented in the following their brochure provides useful tips for success in social media as well as case studies and how to start best. Here are three interesting chapters of the brochure:

What is Social Media and how can it be measured?

Social Media is the combination of channels, platforms, communities, content1 and tools that power the phenomenon of peer to peer communication or ‘word of mouth’.

This breaks down into 6 areas [see Figure 1]:

  1. Social Networking Platforms
  2. Social Bookmarking Platforms
  3. Content, Applications & Media
  4. Blogging Platforms
  5. Social Gaming
  6. Social Connectivity Tools

Let’s describe these briefly in turn.

Figure 1

Social Networking Platforms

Sites that connect friends and their peer networks together spurred by user generated content of all forms. These networks are growing by the day to become habitual platforms for people to stay in touch. Often thought of as ‘interactive address books’, big players in Asia include Cyworld, Hi-5, Mixi, Friendster, Orkut, Facebook, Bebo and My Space.

Social Bookmarking Platforms

This is an emerging area in the region riding on the back of the power of aggregation. These sites aggregate and promote content on the web through indexing, user-collaboration and voting mechanisms to save time. Examples of this include del.icio.us, digg, Yahoo! Answers and Wikipedia.

Content, Applications & Media

There are a number of sites that are considered the forefathers of ‘Web2.0’, by making it easy to create, store and share content by putting that power in the user’s hands. These entities essentially host and store proprietary content of all forms, and because of their richness are becoming destinations in their own right. They also become the source of a lot of the content that users are publishing back into their social networks and include FlickR, You Tube and application developers such as slide.com.

Blogging Platforms

Blogs and Bulletin Board Systems (BBS) continue to be a major source of social media providing platforms for communities to come together, opinions to be voiced (often anonymous) and discussion on a range of topics. These have evolved from the modern day form of a ‘public diary’ to a ‘broadcast platform’ for individuals to share their news and connect. The personal nature of blogs continues to remain popular particularly for entertainment and educational purposes as well as for citizen journalism. Today bloggers have credibility as public informers and as a result of RSS and micro-blogs, are highly inter-connected and collaborative. Key enablement platforms include blogger, blogspot, typepad, twitter and wordpress.

Social Gaming

Asia would not be complete without the mention of social gaming and it will be interesting to see how this phenomena will spread. The internet has made it possible for users to connect and escape into gaming worlds where teams can compete and participate realtime against other gamers. These specialist sites include World of Warcraft and Ragnarok, and have a tribal following.

Social Connectivity Tools

All of the above entities would not be able to operate if it wasn’t for the connectivity tools that power them – email, SMS, RSS feeds, instant messenger and live chat. Each of them fuel the dialogue and connectivity that make it the place to flirt, debate, game, share, exchange, vent. Platforms for deeper connections.

How do we measure Social Media?

Many marketers fall into the trap of measuring social media success based on generic measures such as the number of hits, number of referrals and level of engagement. Though they may be relevant, success should really be measured in the context of the task in hand - the ability to reach, identify and convert influencers as well as the effectiveness of the ‘influencer’ to spread the word to the desired consumers. The Media™ Measurement Framework , seeks to structure these objectives in three sequential areas:

  1. Influencer Reach: the ability to target, engage and convert the right influencers for the brand. For example, if you identify 20 influencers, what percentage of those influencers were willing to engage with you and talk about your brand. This can be measured through cold calls, email responses, conversations and development of an influencer database.
  2. Influencer Activity: the ability of influencers to generate positive word of mouth for your brand. This sets out to measure the quality and volume of the buzz and tries to draw a link back to the influencers. This also helps in identifying which influencers to focus the effort on moving forward.
  3. Brand Impact: ability to move the dial on the brand’s social media objectives. This includes the business metrics that digital marketers have set e.g. incremental revenue, acquisition, engagement and loyalty.

Asia Market Analysis: The size of the pie

What’s most important to understand is the vast differences in adoption and use of social media. In Japan and Korea who arguably lead the world in terms of sophistication, it’s all about ubiquitous access (mobile and PC internet) and rich functional engagement through intimate social networking, open blogging and gaming. China, on the other hand has its social media roots in discussion, information gathering and sharing through public bulletin boards and blogging with broadcast entertainment on the rise, and this pattern is being fast followed by Taiwan from a much smaller base.

Other markets in the region vary significantly. In Hong Kong and Singapore which have high digital penetration and rich broadband, the role of social media is catching on but splits acutely between English and Chinese speaking dialects who are consuming the medium in different ways to augment their personal and professional networks.

India too has evolved its very own type of social media centering on personal and professional networking. Matrimonial sites are hot platforms for socially engaging, and LinkedIn finds its highest demographics are Indians both at home and abroad. The opportunity for entertainment from the home of Bollywood needs no reminding as broadband penetration slowly increases.

The Philippines, Vietnam and Malaysia have a thriving social media scene which cannot be ignored by brands. Social networking and blogging are the key platforms for expression extending from the leading portals. Entertainment is on the rise but still secondary. Even the likes of Indonesia and Thailand have embraced social media by providing a platform for netizens to collaborate with each other and to reach out and learn from public blogs in ways they couldn’t through traditional media. What is most important is that their high use of mobile has already seen internet-enabled SMS services being offered in these markets to see mobile start to go social.

Source: Ogilvy One