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Redberry shares “Sound That You Can See”

Package announced at Thank You Night 

How to hack customers like a Russian spy

Influencing American consumers better than top advertisers in the world 

The game that stops the world for a month has finally come to an end with a spectacular match between Netherlands and Spain. For almost an entire month, the Carlsberg Football Tour has taken the beautiful game to fans around the country, entertaining and cheering on football fans wherever they go.

The last stop for Carlsberg was the Street Party at Telawi Street 3, Bangsar, and a fitting end to a World Cup full of surprises. Carlsberg Management team led by Soren Ravn, managing director of Carlsberg Malaysia was part of the entourage that injected the streets of Bangsar with super high-energy party spirit. The Carlsberg crew of cheerleaders, percussionists and dancers gave football fans a great warm-up to the big match with superb performances.

Soren Ravn told ADOI, “Carlsberg has always been part of premium football, and this electric atmosphere is the reason why we’ll continue to be a big part of football come 2012 with our sponsorship of the UEFA EURO 2012.”

It is the first UEFA EURO ever to be hosted in Eastern Europe. The UEFA European Championship is considered the most successful marketing activity for the Carlsberg brand and Carlsberg has been part of UEFA EURO for almost a quarter of a century and the 2012 tournament will be the seventh consecutive tournament with Carlsberg as the official partner.

”Now that the World Cup is over, we will begin to focus our attention to the next big thing, the EURO 2012,” added Soren. “We can hardly wait!”

Carlsberg became a sponsor for the UEFA European Championship back in 1988, and since 1992 Keld Strudahl, International Marketing Director and head of Carlsberg Breweries’ sponsorship activities, has been responsible for maximising the potential benefit of the UEFA EURO.

Carlsberg and UEFA are currently developing plans for fan activation up to and during EURO 2012. However Carlsberg has already obtained all rights to the very popular concept ‘ Man of the match’.

Carlsberg is an official sponsor for a record seven consecutive tournaments since 1988, thereby being a committed sponsor during almost a quarter of a century. Carlsberg is official sponsor during EURO 2012 with beer and cider exclusivity. The commercial rights cover, among others, sole and exclusive promotions including Man of the Match, branding at stadia, exclusive pouring rights at all stadia and in Fan parks, tickets and hospitality.

Alice Chong has retired as Executive Assistant to the CEO of McCann Erickson Malaysia, but prior to that she assisted Peter Yap -  MD of Momentum and served a long list of Creative Directors as their Secretary: Dean Johns, John Lane, Bill McCure, Rick Laupus, Walt Chipperfield, Bruce Bendry , Jerry Gentemann, Paul Grezoux and Bere Mitchell.

The author had the privilege of working with her too. Then was the days of the electronic typewriter, telex machines and there was no Copy and Paste. We had to make multiple copies of everything for presentations. Through it all, Alice kept her cool and composure which is a rarity in these times - having 32 years of service at a single company is a great achievement and milestone.

She has been with the company through the tenure of 7 other individuals who headed this company : David Wethey, Peter Campbell, David Bell, Noel Derby, Ray Dempsey, Daniel Binns and Matthew Gorrick.

Alice wanted to retire some years back and expressed a desire to leave earlier in the year to spend more time with her husband. But stayed when the company requested her to extend her services. In the words of McCann KL chief Tony Savarimuthu, " She is a true McCann-nite!"

ASTRO took home an award in the Investment in People category at the prestigious Asia Responsible Entrepreneurship Awards (AREA) 2010 for its outstanding commitment to corporate responsibility and personal development of its people at an event held yesterday.

Dato’ Rohana Rozhan, Chief Executive Officer of ASTRO said, “At Astro we aspire to enrich the lives of Malaysians. We aim to go beyond to delight our customers and improve lives in communities that we serve. As a present and contributing corporate citizen, Astro encourages its employees to lend their time, expertise and concern for the benefit of the community via various corporate responsibility activities, through Astro Kasih, an employee volunteer programme.”

Since its inception in August 2009, employees from all over the country have contributed more than 11,000 hours via 210 Astro Kasih’s community outreach initiatives including educational, environmental conservation, poverty alleviation and occupational safety programmes.

“We are both humbled and pleased that Astro Kasih’s and our employees’ efforts have been recognized via this Asia Responsible Entrepreneurship Awards (AREA) 2010. Astro will remain steadfast in encouraging employee volunteerism to empower Astro employees with a sense of ownership, belonging and personal responsibility,” added Dato’ Rohana Rozhan.

Organized by Enterprise Asia, AREA honours programs that demonstrate leadership, sincerity and on-going commitment in corporate responsibility, community engagement and transparency. Companies are evaluated based on corporate best practices in their involvement and engagement in communities as well as the protection of the environment.

The winners of AREA were decided by an international advisory panel on both quantitative and qualitative criteria of the enterprise. The enterprises must demonstrate evidence of sustained business growth, as well as emphasis on their belief and action in supporting responsible entrepreneurship and the initiatives taken to promote compassionate and responsible entrepreneurship.

Catalyst Asia has secured a contract with GAB Sdn Bhd in Malaysia to provide itsPowerTable analysis for Tiger Beer’s Tiger FC website. PowerTable is a proprietary tool which uses a wide range of data and statistics to provide in-depth analysis of the English Premier League (EPL).

Rod Strother, Catalyst Asia’s General Manager, told ADOI, “Tiger Beer has done a fantastic job in building its association with the EPL over a number of years. Tiger FC has obviously been a big part of that growth. For Catalyst to now play a part in helping to continue that growth is very rewarding. The PowerTable in particular will provide visitors to the site with some genuine insights into what’s happening in each of the games in the EPL – along with how their team is performing. And we’ll be doing that for all 380 games over the season”.

Sean Koh, Marketing Manager – Mainstream for Tiger Beer said, “We’ve always aimed to provide the best football experience for our drinkers – like our Tiger FC viewing parties for instance – and now we want to be able to deliver the best insights and analytics on the English Premier League. Catalyst’s PowerTable has a proven track record of consistently delivering quality analytics for matches in the EPL”.

Strother added, “With the new season coming up fast on the 14th of August we’ll also be providing all visitors to the Tiger FC site a Pre-Season report on what we think 2010/11 will bring in the EPL. We’ll be giving not only an overview on how we think the season will shape up but also a full breakdown on all 20 clubs and where we think they will finish in May 2011. You’ll be able to find all of that at TigerFC.com.my prior to the season kick off”
BBDO/Proximity Malaysia has made two key senior hires and promoted a senior staff member, in order to meet the changing business needs of an agency that has been winning a variety of new businesses. Collectively, the three senior personnel have amassed years of valuable experience in delivering communication solutions across all media channels for a variety of brands.

VJ Anand has been promoted to Associate Creative Director of Proximity Malaysia to further strengthen Proximity’s footprint in the Malaysian digital landscape. VJ first joined Proximity Malaysia a year ago as Creative Group Head and was tasked with elevating Proximity’s creative standards and in order to do that, he had to assemble a formidable creative team. He has since built a creative force to be reckoned with.

Additionally, Faizah Marzuki, has been appointed Group Account Director with immediate effect. Fay will be at the helm of a newly assembled team tasked to address the needs of BBDO/Proximity’s growing business and that of its clients. A graduate of Boston University, Fay is no stranger to the advertising industry. She first began at Foote, Cone & Belding, working on the major Telco brand TMTOUCH and launched the brand’s first prepaid card within her first month. During her tenure there, she worked on multiple brands ranging from Standard Chartered Bank, to Yellow Pages, to Samsung. She also worked on a regional Samsung project in Singapore for nine markets.

Also joining Fay is Adrian Sng, who has been appointed Group Account Director with immediate effect. Sng has almost two decades of experience in the advertising and customer relationship management industry. He started his career at Ogilvy as a fledgling account executive before joining Wunderman, followed by Ogilvy One. Prior to this, Sng was with BBDO/Proximity Malaysia for more than four years, working on the KFC business. He has returned to BBDO to support the agency’s new business developments. He comes with a wealth of experience, having had the privilege of working on various categories such as finance, Fast-Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG), Fast Food, Tobacco, Automotive, Electronics and Paints.
Publicis Group, owner of Starcom MediaVest, Leo Burnett and Saatchi & Saatchi, has said that profit for the first half of the year leapt by 27.5% to €213m (£178m) and that it is upbeat about growth in the next two years.

ESPN STAR Sports (ESS) has announced the successful acquisition of exclusive Pay-TV rights for the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Asian Cup Qatar 2011, the continent’s top football event, across its footprint covering 24 countries in Asia.

Through this deal, managed by World Sport Group (WSG), the AFC’s exclusive marketing and media partner, fans will enjoy a comprehensive and engaging experience on ESPN STAR Sports with the AFC Asian Cup 2011 available live on multiple platforms for the very first time. ESPN STAR Sports has a strong tradition in showcasing top-class sports properties on its networks and this win reaffirms its commitment to bring the best of Asian football to fans.

In addition, leading up to the event, ESPN STAR Sports will broadcast the 16-episode programme, “Road to Doha”, highlighting the teams and their preparation as they gear up to compete in Doha, Qatar from 7 to 29 January 2011 for the most coveted trophy in Asia.

Said Craig Dobbs, Executive Vice-President, Programming and Production, ESPN STAR Sports: “We are delighted to continue our longstanding partnership with the AFC. With our focused approach and commitment to build Asian Football over the years, the property today has a high level of traction and immense appeal across our broadcast footprint with devoted fans across the region following their favourite teams and players. The region’s appetite for Asian football has been showing definite signs of growth, and our plans to enhance the broadcast and interactivity of the matches underline our commitment to football fans, which will provide coverage like they have never seen before.”

“These are very exciting times for Asian Football. For the first time in the tournament’s history the fans can watch the Action in high definition quality,” says AFC President Mohammad Bin Hammam. “I am very excited about our partnership with ESPN and STAR Sports and believe that this will take the experience of the Asian Cup to new heights. I am especially pleased about all the various ways the technology allows us to take the game to the fans”, added Bin Hammam.

“Our partnership with ESPN STAR Sports provides us with greater opportunities to enhance the fans’ experience and reach the widest possible audience across the region.  With extensive coverage across multiple media platforms, fans can access the very best of Asian football action in virtually every part of Asia at any time of the day.  This will also provide AFC Asian Cup™ 2011 partners opportunities to extend their reach to larger audiences of potential customers,” said James Clarke, Senior Vice-President, Content, World Sport Group.

The acquisition augments ESPN STAR Sports’ Asian football offering, and reinforces its reputation as the home of football. All 32 matches will be broadcast on television across ESPN and STAR Sports networks, and for the first time fans can watch the high-definition broadcast of the AFC Asian Cup Qatar 2011™ on ESPN HD. The event will also be available online live and on-demand on ESPN Player - ESPN STAR Sports’ revolutionary broadband network that offers anytime, anywhere access to live world-class sports content, and a fully online interactive experience for users to enjoy their viewing experience with other sport fans. In addition, football fans on the move can catch daily news and goals from the event on mobileESPN.

The AFC Asian Cup Qatar 2011 features the top 16 teams in the region, including defending champions Iraq and the four Asian contenders in the recent FIFA World Cup – Korea Republic, Japan, Australia, and DPR Korea.  Favourites China, a regional powerhouse and India which aims to become a significant player on the world stage have also qualified for the competition.

Advertising expenditure (adex) in Malaysia surged 22% in the first half of this year compared to the corresponding period last year on the back of a resurgent economy and the FIFA World Cup.

The Malaysian economy performed much better than expected in the first quarter of the year, with real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth accelerating to 10.1% and nominal GDP surging 17.0% from first quarter 2009.

“The recession is past and advertising is once again growing as quickly as it did before the downturn,” said Mr. Gerald Miranda, chief executive officer of Zenith Media Malaysia, one of the country’s leading media services agencies, to ADOI today.

“Some of the upswing in spending was also due to the FIFA World Cup. We estimate that local broadcast sponsors of the World Cup would have spent at least RM50 million on the event.”

The final match, broadcast live at 2.30 a.m. on a Monday morning, had an audience of 1.5 million, not including out-of-home viewers. Some of the more popular matches at 10.00 p.m., like the Argentina versus Germany quarter-final, pulled in a whopping 2.5 million viewers.

Free to air television benefited most from the spending increase in the first half of the year, registering a 29% growth, followed by online (+55%), point of sale (+27%), radio (+18%) and newspapers (+18%). Magazines and outdoor increased 6% and 8% respectively and cinema dropped 8%.

Online advertising dramatically increased during the World Cup by nearly doubling the revenue it pulled in the second quarter compared to last year.

Zenith estimates that online advertising spending this Q2 will be about 80-90% higher than Q2 2009, mainly on account of the extra money that came from the World Cup.

Higher spending from telcos, the automotive sector, government, transportation and tourism also fueled the strong overall second quarter adex growth.

“The high first quarter GDP number was to a large extent also due to the low base effect in first quarter 2009 and it will be unrealistic to expect this growth rate to continue

“So, economic growth is expected to moderate as the year progresses. The announcement of the second half of the New Economic Model in the second half of this year will also help to provide some clarity in this respect.”

The International Monetary Fund says developing economies in Asia will expand 9.2% this year, compared with 2.6% for advanced countries.

Despite the expected moderation in economic growth going forward, Mr. Miranda was confident that advertising spending will still end 2010 with strong double-digit gains for the full year.

According to its latest global advertising expenditure forecasts, the agency expects spending in Asia Pacific, excluding Japan, to grow 10.6% this year.

And Malaysia is one of seven countries in the region that is expected to post double-digit growth this year, the others being China, India, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam.

The agency has also upgraded its forecasts for global advertising expenditure growth in 2010 to 3.5%, up from the 2.2% it forecast at the beginning of April. This is the third upgrade in a row, after six consecutive downgrades.

Most of the upgrade is in North America and Western Europe, where advertising spending was stronger than expected in the first half of the year, but these regions are still growing much more slowly than most developing markets.

Overall it forecasts 1.3% growth from developed markets (which it defines here as North America, Western Europe and Japan) in 2010, compared to 8.6% growth from developing markets (everywhere else).

The gap will narrow slightly in 2011, but growth in developed markets will remain modest:  it forecasts developed markets to grow by 2.4% in 2011 and 2.9% in 2012, while developing markets grow by 9.1% and 9.8% respectively.

It expects developing markets to drive most of the growth in global advertising expenditure over the next few years, contributing US$39 billion of the extra US$60 billion it expects to see added to the world advertising market between 2009 and 2012.

Zenith Media Malaysia is a member of ZenithOptimedia Worldwide, which is one of the world’s leading media services agencies with 218 offices in 72 countries.

Ciba Vision, a Novartis company, has appointed Tribal DDB as its integrated marketing agency-of-record for its complete range of contact lenses.  

This is the first time in the company’s history where a non-traditional ATL agency has been tasked to provide a suite of services including but not limited to activation, promotions and branding.

According to Kim Ng, General Manager of Novartis Consumer Health, the decision to appoint a digital agency as its lead brand building agency was based on digital’s growing importance in connecting businesses with its consumers.

She also said that “Tribal DDB has demonstrated leadership and tactical know-how in the digital sphere by helping its brands gain awareness and preference through innovative consumer engagement programs on and off line.”

Delighted with the appointment, Nik Lim, Chief Operating Officer of Tribal DDB said that with this win, he hopes to position digital’s role as a viable and alternative brand building tool believing that few digital agencies have taken the lead in this area.

Ms Ng said that “Tribal’s most current remit for Ciba Vision’s FreshLook Illuminate was to sample 30,000 pairs of contact lenses on-line within a two-month period. The agency however delivered beyond booklet measures by sampling over 30,000 pairs of lenses within a month, and additional 10,000 pairs of lenses by the second month.”
“Understanding gender-specific differences in Web usage is valuable to any digital stakeholder looking to successfully reach and engage both women and men in the online environment,” said Linda Boland Abraham, comScore chief marketing officer and executive vice president for global development. “We have seen that women across the globe share some similar usage patterns online, such as strong engagement with social networking sites, but it’s also important to understand gender differences on a regional, country and local level, where cultural differences are continually shaping online usage and content consumption.”
Japan’s Panasonic Corp plans to buy the shares it does not already own in Sanyo Electric and another unit, four sources said, in a deal that could top US$10 billion (RM32 billion) and strengthen its push into greener businesses.
Saatchi CEO for Singapore Malaysia Dean Taylor has resigned his position and is returning to New Zealand due to personal reasons. During his time Saatchi’s won the regional business for Mercke pharmaceuticals & Nippon Paint.

Patrick Brett, South East Asia CEO commented “We are very sad to see Dean go but respect his wishes. We’ll miss his energy & passion for the business. He’s done a fantastic job & we wish both him & Bridget well.”

Dean took on the role running the Singapore & Malaysia offices at the start of 2009 previous to this he was Managing Director of Saatchi’s New Zealand. Whilst a successor is being found, Patrick Brett will take over both offices as acting CEO.
The House of Lords Communications Committee is to hold an inquiry into the regulation of television advertising, and has issued a call for written evidence on issues such as CRR and product placement.
Latest Nielsen Release on Consumer Confidence 2nd Quarter 2010.

Key findings:
  • Consumer Confidence inched up to 99 index points in Q2’2010
  • 78% of Malaysian consumers have changed their spending habits to cope in this economy
  • Biggest casualties remain new clothes and out-of-home entertainment
  • Shopper become more conscious about dined out and spending on new technologies
Click here to download the full PDF.
This year the Australian Effects & Animation Festival (AEAF) received over 270 entries from around the world. This reflects the increasing number of young artists taking advantage of the range of digital media technologies, HD cameras, multiple core processors, and the latest software for editing, animation and special effects, to create high quality work. And Malaysian production  house MFX has earned 3 Finalists this year! i

You can view their work here:

MOH, Diabetes Phase 2 - Moon VFX (Commercial Animation)

Product: MOH

Title : Diabetes Phase 2

Client - Ministry Of Health – United Arab Emirates

Agency – Polkadot ae.

Creative Director: Pia Abou Jaoudeh

Post Executive Producer: Geoff Millichamp

Director: Lau Kim San

Animators: Wee Aik Yuen, Yong Suk Theng, Gan Hao Zhi, Azarul Aznan Mustapha, Tan Ching Hung

Editors: Ng Soo Siung

Advertising Agency Polkadot ae. were tasked with producing a TVC to create awareness of the diabetes problem.

Agency creative director Pia Abou Jaoudeh worked with the design and animation team at MFX, headed by animation director Kim San, to develop an unusual animated spot that highlights how a certain lifestyle can contribute to the danger of diabetes.

The animation was executed using an interesting “cutout” style. Animation sequences were done using a combination of traditional hand drawn & flash animation. These sequences were imported into After Effects and manipulated in 3d space to give a sense of a single camera move. Total production time was around 6 weeks, from initial story board to finished product.

Madhya Pradesh Tourism, Dekha (Visual Effects)

Brand: Madhya Pradesh Tourism

Title: Dekha

Client: Madhya Pradesh State Tourism Development Corporation Ltd.

Agency: Ogilvy & Mather India

Creatives: Shekhar Jha,  Mahesh Gharat

Servicing: Ajay Menon

Films: Porus Khareghat

Production & Post Production: MFX

Director: Chan Moon Kien

DOP: Zainan Sulong

Animation Director: Lau Kim San

Post Producer: Belinda Teoh/ Chan Moon Kien

3D Supervisor: Tan Lee Chia

3D Animators/lighter:  Alvin Pang, Chensy Chan

2D Animator: Azarul Aznan, Lim Wei Choon

VFX Supervisor/ Compositor: Chan Moon Choong

Online support: Sandy Ng

Editor: Ng Soo Siung

Matte Painter: Ken Wong

The journey of the eyes became the basis for the promotional campaign known as “Dekha”. The film was recently completed for Madhya Pradesh State Tourism Development Corporation Ltd., marking a successful collaboration of idea and creativity between the team in Ogilvy & Mather, Mumbai and MFX.  Keeping the focus on just a pair of eyes, the creative challenge was to have the eyes move to music and lyrics, reacting and mimicking to the myriad varied and rich travel experiences through Madhya Pradesh. The list include the ever elusive tiger, the rare swamp deer Barasingha, the white marble hills at Bedaghat, the prehistoric cave paintings at Bhimbetka, the erotic sculptures in the land of Khajuraho, the melting pot of Buddhism, Hinduism, mosques, minarets, majestic forts, palaces and so forth. The attempt was to keep the eye movements as natural as possible and keep the transition between the real and CG movements seamless.  The spot requires a definite combination of live shoot and CG interception but keeping to the same innate and finesse of the subject matter. 

When MFX first got the verbal brief, the execution began quickly on tests to identify possible visual directions. Ideas bounced between both teams.  Among those deliberated upon were digital face projections, CG objects with stills and CG replacement over live shots.  Eye actions were carefully plotted to the script and a quick eye animation was done for study and reference purpose. With various execution methods in line, the team puts together results and issues and studied the production pipeline to allow us to achieve client requirements. 

The eyes remain the strongest visual backbone; it was inevitable that the search for the pair of “eyes” was most arduous.  The team filtered through databases of talents as well as various groups of Indian classical dancers, targeting on the skill and flexibility of the talent moving their eyes.  That was how MFX finally zeroed down to Shree Jeilachmee Appadorai, a Malaysia based South Indian model who has learnt Bharatnatyam and other Indian classical dances. Her natural brown eyes together with her ability to express through eye movements made her the perfect choice for the spot and also allowed us to revisit our execution.  With her selected, we were able to remove all concerns with regards to not having the right talent in such a short period of time.

Pre production took up two weeks while the shoot was completed in one day. The technical aspects of the spot entail a large scope of detailed compositing work.  It begins with stabilizing the shots, keeping the objects central in the frame and then matching shots from one to the other.  Subtle morphing techniques were implemented to smoothen out the transitions, and computer generated camera movements were added to the otherwise still base plates. The ‘Barasingha’ eyebrows were created with matte painting and warping effects were injected on it for the transformation act. At certain portions of the film, the irises and pupils were replaced with 2D animated ones (for example when the song speaks about the journey in a train, the pupil of the model become the wheel of the train) which were carefully blended back into the base plate to ensure a seamless tapestry.  As the camera travels into the iris, multi layering in 3D space takes action concocting the intricacies of the Sanchi Stupa. Coming towards the final Buddha piece, the face make-up made the base for the glistening Buddha face, however, much of the final look, shine, and shades were finished digitally.

Though it is largely a technical piece, MFX adhered to keeping aesthetics a priority. The concept of keeping the film piece minimal and emphasizing much on the eyes was a constant reminder to the team – thus steering the digital solutions within this scope. The team indeed tried to give the eyes greater animated movements; however, there was always a concern of how much and how little, also how unreal it may eventually become. MFX resolute to not cross the “excessive CG” border and opted for a simplistic seamless blend with live shots, which is also the core of what the creatives wanted at O&M. 

CI Asia, Investigation (Titles Idents & Stings)

Product:Crime & Investigation Network

Title: Investigation

Client: AETN

Executive Post Producer: Gilliane Tai / Tan Kee Tat

Designers: Resi Mahendra Gautama, Kaern Chua

The highly innovative Crime and Investigation idents were a collaborative effort of MFX and a New York based client. After much discussion and negotiations, the MFX design team conceived the idea of using household objects and the iconic red symbol as the concept for the Crime and Investigation ident. With approval from the client, a shoot was organized and executed in Full High Definition, shot on a Red Cam and performed in the vicinity of an enclosed room. Post editing, the footage was then touched up and colour corrected in Shake and passed on to the Design team once again for motion graphics and finishing, all done in After Effects. The outcome is a combination of them all, a short and clever ident that highlights the little details of a case which may seem irrelevant at first, but are the keys to unlocking a perfectly committed crime.

The AEAF Awards finalists will be screened 11 August at Hoyts,  The Entertainment Quarter Moore Park,  Sydney
Akamai Technologies, Inc., a leading provider of cloud optimization services, has announced the release of its 1st Quarter, 2010 State of the Internet report available for download at www.akamai.com/stateoftheinternet. Leveraging information gathered from its global server network, the Akamai report provides insight into key Internet statistics such as broadband adoption, mobile connectivity, and attack traffic, as well as trends over time.  New to the report this quarter is expanded information about mobile networks, as well as a review of average maximum connection speeds.

“Asia leads in the average Internet speeds with South Korea in the lead, followed by Hong Kong and Japan. Malaysia’s ranking moved up two from the last quarter. This shows some improvement in the Malaysian Internet landscape. Malaysia is growing and it remains among Akamai’s top 3 key target markets in South Asia. We are already working with some of the biggest names in the local aviation industry to empower their online presence, and we are looking to work with more companies in Malaysia, to give them a faster, and more resilient Internet experience,” said Bruno R. Goveas, Head of Product Management, Asia Pacific.

100 Fastest Cities Worldwide
Akamai once again examined the average measured connection speed of cities around the world.  After applying ‘city size’ (at least 50,000 unique IP addresses connecting to Akamai) and ‘academic network’ filters to the data, last quarter’s top three cities – Berkeley, California; Chapel Hill, North Carolina; and Stanford, California – each disappeared from the top 100 list, with the prior quarter’s fourth-place city, Masan, South Korea, moving into the top spot.  Reviewing the top 100 fastest cities around the world in the first quarter of 2010 reveals the following:

•    Asia dominates the list, with over half (59) of the top cities in Japan
•    Only 12 U.S. cities made the list, with more than half (7) of such cities being in California
•    Umea, Sweden is the fastest city in Europe, ranking #18 out of 100

Global Average Maximum Connection Speeds
New to the State of the Internet report this quarter is a review of average maximum connection speeds.*  In contrast to the average measured connection speed, the average maximum connection speed metric is more representative of the capability of many end-user Internet connections.  In the first quarter of 2010, Akamai calculated an average maximum connection speed of 33 Mbps in South Korea, almost 3X the average connection speed within the country that has historically posted the globe’s highest speeds.  Asia continues to lead this metric as well, with South Korea, Hong Kong, and Japan taking the first three slots in the top 10 list. European countries took six of the remaining slots, all with average maximum connection speeds over 15 Mbps, while the U.S. placed eighth with an average maximum connection speed of 16 Mbps.

Also new to the State of the Internet report this quarter is a review of average maximum measured connection speeds at a city level.  Asia also dominates this list, although more than a quarter of the cities in the top 100 are in the U.S.

Global Average Connection Speeds
Average speed increases among the top 10 countries were minor, with Hong Kong and Denmark remaining essentially flat, and Japan, the Netherlands, and Switzerland improving from last quarter by 3.5 percent or less.  Over the long term, year-over-year trends are generally positive, with seven of the top 10 countries having higher average connection speeds than during the same period a year ago. The U.S. ranked 16th globally.

During the first quarter, 96 countries had average connection speeds below 1 Mbps, a level consistent with the prior quarter.  Akamai measured average connection speeds below 100 Kbps in five countries in the first quarter – up from three in the fourth quarter of 2009.  The lowest average connection speed was once again in Mayotte, at 40 Kbps, even with the prior quarter.

Internet Connectivity
In the first quarter of 2010, over 487 million unique IP addresses from 233 countries/regions connected to the Akamai network – 7.2 percent more unique IP addresses than in the fourth quarter of 2009, and 16 percent more than in the same quarter a year ago.  While the yearly change was roughly consistent with the level seen in the fourth quarter of 2009, the quarterly change was nearly 75 percent higher than that seen in the fourth quarter, possibly indicating accelerated growth in Internet penetration levels.

Continuing the ongoing trend, the U.S. and China accounted for nearly 40 percent of the observed IP addresses.  In looking at the “long tail,” there were 184 countries/regions with fewer than one million unique IP addresses connecting to Akamai in the first quarter of 2010.

In terms of year-over-year increases in the number of unique IP addresses seen by Akamai, China is growing fastest, with a 30 percent increase—more than double the growth seen in the U.S.

Mobile Connectivity
Average maximum connection speeds on mobile networks around the world were fairly strong, with 83 of the 109 mobile providers achieving maximum measured speeds greater than the 2 Mbps broadband threshold; 33 achieving maximum measured speeds greater than the 5 Mbps high broadband threshold; and six achieving maximum measured speeds greater than 10 Mbps. Average measured connection speeds ranged from 7.2 Mbps down to 105 Kbps.  Coincidentally, both extremes were observed on mobile providers in Slovakia.

Attack Traffic
During the first quarter of 2010, Akamai observed attack traffic originating from 198 unique countries/regions.  For the third consecutive quarter, Russia held the top spot originating 12 percent of observed attack traffic.  The U.S. remained in second place at 10 percent, and China held steady in third place at 9.1 percent, followed by Taiwan, Brazil and Italy, respectively.

To download the figures from the Q1 2010 State of the Internet, visit:

Demand to push the entry deadline has lead to LIA extending its final deadline for work released through the 31st July 2010. This work will be accepted until the 6th August. However, all entrants must be registered by the end of the day Friday 30th July.
This year, for the first time in its 25-year history, LIA will also be honouring “The Best Network, Agency, Design Company and Production Company of the Year.” 

"LIA on-site judging at Wynn Las Vegas in 2009 was so successful that we will be returning to the Wynn for 2010 judging," revealed Barbara Levy, President of LIA.  “We had rave reviews about the entire judging process and the overall experience from the 2009 Jury.  All jury members on each respective jury panel will vote on every entry. The only exception, jury members are not allowed to vote on their own work.”

The 2010 list of Jury Presidents reads like a Who’s Who in the world of Advertising, Digital and Design:

David Nobay of Droga5, Australia - Integrated and Television/Cinema/Online Film
Marcello Serpa of AlmapBBDO, Brasil  - Non-Traditional, Print, Poster and Billboard                                                                                                   
Rei Inamoto of AKQA - Digital 
Faris Yakob of MDC Partners, New York - The NEW Category
Garrick Hamm of Williams Murray Hamm, London - Design and Package Design
Terry O’Reilly of Pirate, Toronto - Radio
Rocky Morton of MJZ, Los Angeles  - Television/Cinema/Online Film Technique
Josh Rabinowitz of Grey Group, New York  - Music

A few other globally recognisable names like Jureeporn Thaidumrong of JEH United, Jagdish Ramakrishnan of Ogilvy & Mather Asia/Pacific, Prasoon Joshi of McCann Erickson, Ralph van Dijk of Eardrum Sydney, Paul Swann of Naked Sydney, Kentaro Kimura of HAKUHODO Kettle Tokyo, Steve Rogers of Revolver Films Sydney and Naoki Ito of Wieden & Kennedy Tokyo have graciously accepted the invitation to become a member of the 2010 Jury panel.

The Winners will be revealed at the LIA 25th Anniversary Gala, to be held on Monday 8th November at Troxy London.

Showcasing of the Winners and Finalists will not end on the 8th November. Immediately commencing after the Awards Gala LIA will take the winning work on a global tour.

Each year LIA prints 6,000 copies of their full-colour Awards Annual featuring the work and creative credits of all Winners and Finalists. All entrants will receive a copy of the 2010 Annual a few months after the announcement of the Winners.  “We feel that our entrants and potential entrants should know that their winning work is not only printed in a hardbound Annual, but that their peers around the world get a chance to see it for years to come. This is our way of honouring the winning work beyond just awarding a Statue. It is also our wish to inspire creativity and the exchange of ideas.  And in a small way give back to the creative community,” said Barbara Levy.


Last week, the noisiest Jury at ADFEST was the Jury overseen by Ted Lim, Jury President of the Press Lotus and Poster Lotus categories. For three days, the most raucous laughter, discussions and clapping all took place inside the Press & Poster judging room, even though it was the tiniest room of all the Juries.

Why all the noise? We asked Ted to explain…

What were you looking for as a judge at ADFEST this year?

First of all, the ad has to stand out so it gets your attention. Typically when you read a newspaper, you’ll be looking for news about the economy, politics, natural disasters, football news – people don’t actually buy newspapers to read ads. So our job is to make those jobs stand out and get attention. I actually did a test at a conference where I asked 200 odd participants if they read the paper that morning. I asked them, ‘Can you recall five ads?’ There was silence in the room. If you can’t even recall five ads, then a lot of money is going down the drain.

At ADFEST, for an ad to stand out and get the attention of a bunch of people who live and breathe advertising, the idea has to be fresh – it can’t be something you’ve seen year in and year out again and again. It has to be an original idea executed in a cut-through, break-through manner.

What was the consensus amongst the Press & Poster Jury this year?
Around 10% of the work (maybe a little less) impressed us.

ADFEST was postponed a couple of times this year. Why do the results still matter?
I told the other Press & poster Jurists last week, ‘Look, Cannes is over. People might think this makes ADFEST a non-event because the results are posted after Cannes. But I think differently’.

The Cannes Jury, as hard as they try, they don’t pick up everything. Sometimes really, really good work doesn’t make it in Cannes. Then there is this second consideration, which is quite critical as well. We have in Asia quite small agencies comprising of 10 to 50 people, agencies that do not have the funds to enter their work in big shows like Cannes and D&AD. ADFEST plays an important role here, because to enter your work in ADFEST is comparatively affordable. These agencies could be producing Cannes material, so this is a good place for the work to be spotted.

Did you nominate many agencies for the Lotus Root category this year?
We stopped a dozen times to ask: is this saying something in your country that a Western educated juror may not get? For us, it really doesn’t matter whether the great work revolves around Western thinking or Eastern thinking, however there are some thoughts in the Eastern world that cannot be expressed in Western terms. I think it works both ways.

Last year, a lot more awards were given out in Press & Poster. Why was this year’s Jury so tough?
This year we’ve tried to only award the best pieces, so if you win something this year, it’s valuable. Less is more.

How do you define Gold, Silver and Bronze?

Gold is really brilliant, outstanding work. Silver is intelligent and engaging, and crafted in such a way that will turn you green with envy. With Bronze, we were a bit more generous. It is definitely very good work, it’s not your everyday kind of ad, it rises above the average, it’s definitely not commonplace. It will get noticed and get your attention.”

Why did you give Best of Poster to Creative Juice\Bangkok (TBWA)?
Their campaign for 3M protective wrapping is not an uncommon brief: you use the wrapping to protect your precious fragile stuff. Here, their challenge was asking, ‘How do we get the message across in a fresh, never-been-done-before, kick me in the ass way?’

The guys behind this campaign – they’ve managed to put a big smile on your face. It’s really, really fresh. I’ve never seen protective wrapping done this way before.

Why did JWT RMG India win Gold in both the Press and Poster Lotus categories?

Their campaign for Fujifilm promotes face detection technology, so the moment you smile the camera takes your picture. Again, it’s not a very complicated proposition, but how do you get it across in a way that people will talk about and remember? The creatives chose situations where people are caught smiling where they shouldn’t be. It’s a fresh, inventive way to capture your attention.

The Best of Press Lotus went to a copy-driven campaign for Vespa, by Ace Saatchi & Saatchi in Malaysia. Why was it voted best overall?
If you look at what’s happening in Asia Pacific, there’s a lot of spectacular craft and execution. But here the proposition is expressed in a very tongue-in-cheek, funny way: ‘She hated everything, but she hugged me all the way home’. It’s really, really charming and from a guy’s point of view, even if I’m a born loser, I want a Vespa. It’s fresh because it stands out from the rest of the stuff that’s won, and for that reason we felt that it deserved Best of Show.

There seemed to be a lot of laughter coming out of the Press & Poster Juries’ room last week. Why were you having so much fun?
I suppose it’s because we genuinely enjoyed the last couple of days in Tokyo. We enjoyed the work. We had intelligent debates. Also I think it’s part of my job to keep people awake.

How would you sum up your week in Tokyo?
I’ve judged awards in America, in the UK, and in Asian cities, I think what’s really nice about the environment here is we were judging on the premises of possibly the most successful single agency in the world, Dentsu Inc. And of course, the Japanese food is incredible.”

27 July 2010

With the British General Elections this May ending on a cliff-hanger, with the incumbent Labour Government coming in second, and the pre-poll favourites the Conservatives failing to clinch a decisive majority, there is plenty of fodder for brand theorists. Indeed, if one were to regard the parties and their leaders as analogous to brands, there is much insight to be gained, and old truths have been reiterated. What’s more, the developed state of the internet marketing in Britain has provided added complexity, and paradoxically highlighted the importance of old world communication as well.

27 July 2010

While the online masses are deciding whether or not Facebook’s sudden changes to its privacy policies in its haughty quest to be the semantic “social graph” for the Internet are going to destroy the brave new world they are all helplessly addicted to, and many eyes are on the hundreds of thousands of dollars being quickly – and loudly – raised for “open” competitors to be built, the true effect of this burning need for all to be connected has yet to be realized. That’s because it has nothing to do with the infrastructure of the network or the service, but rather of the device that connects to it.

27 July 2010

If I was to ask for a quick show of hands for those who go to the same hair salon or the same dentist again and again, for years, I am very sure I would see at least 70-80% of hands in the air. But have we ever asked ourselves why?

27 July 2010
My first impression of these guys was that they had style, a sleek office and fancy ideas. Period. But a good study of their work and one would realise these guys bring simple ideas to life with genuine ingenuity. How do they do it?
What is the role of TV in the new media environment? Most brands continue to see TV as a one-way broadcast medium -- a platform by which we can deliver marketing messages that consumers should simply absorb and remember. In this world view, digital is an add-on -- a means of overlaying an interactive element onto what is primarily an old-school sledgehammer-to-consumer-skull effort. Little more than checking a box. You know the drill. Or perhaps I should say mallet. The brand blasts away a nice "strategic ad" over the airwaves, but spends 7 percent of the budget pushing some "viral" or "social" effort that essentially asks consumers to spit back the broadcast message.

London creative Steve Henry traveled to Tokyo last week as Grand Jury President at ADFEST from 20th -23rd July. ADOI caught up with him to ask why he believes the last generation of up-start agencies nearly killed the entire industry by focusing on profits, not creativity…

What are your impressions of Asian creativity after judging ADFEST last week?

It’s been a difficult time for creativity generally for various reasons, certainly in London there seems to be low morale at the moment. But here in Asia it feels better, there seems to be more confidence and experimentation. There’s some real innovation, some great fresh thinking going on.

You told the ADFEST Jury that the most valuable thing creatives do for their clients is curate ideas. What did you mean?

Curating ideas – as opposed to just coming up with them – is a trend we’re going to see more of. We already have crowdsourcing, and I think selecting and editing ideas is going to become a much more valuable skill set.

This raises another issue, a very thorny issue, which is analyzing why agencies seem to have lost a lot of the power in making decisions. I heard Frank Lowe speaking recently talking about the early days of Collett Dickenson Pearce, which was the best agency that ever existed in London. CDP charged very high fees and Frank Lowe felt that what their clients deserved in return was the agency taking responsibility for picking the right work.

Why don’t clients trust agencies with decision-making anymore?

These days, marketing is seen as much, much more important than it was back in the ’80s, when nobody really understood how potentially crucial having the right marketing is. Ironically, one of the results of this is that clients have lost confidence in their agency’s ability to make decisions for them, so they’re either making the decision themselves and/or using research.

What’s wrong with research?

I don’t think research has ever been the right way to choose creative work. Research will always lead to average ideas: 6 out of 10 ideas, 5 out of 10 ideas. Research is not the answer.

How did research companies become more influential than agencies?

It’s a hypothesis, but I believe clients lost their faith in advertising agencies primarily because traditional agencies didn’t come to grips with the digital age quickly enough. So when clients were asking, ‘What do we do online?’ agencies were saying, ‘I don’t know.’

So clients said, ‘Well, shit – I’m going to have to look after this myself’. Therefore, the decision-making crept back across to clients.

Is there a solution?

I think it will become apparent in the next 2 or 3 years that the current system we have doesn’t produce the best creative work. So I think we’ll see lots of smaller shops opening up that are focused on creativity and have high creative standards: shops like Droga5, Mother and Crispin – they have those standards.

I think we’ve gone through a generation where the creative focus has dissipated, and it’s almost been the death of advertising as an industry. In London, we’ve had 10 years of people starting agencies really to make money, not to be creative, and that’s damaged our industry beyond repair.

HHCL was Campaign’s Agency of the Decade in 2000. What was your vision when you launched the agency in 1987?

We just decided to break the rules whenever we could. The essence of creativity is to understand how your competitors do it, and then break the right rules. In order to do that you essentially need two skill sets: first, the courage to break the rules, and secondly, clearly it requires a certain amount of intelligence to break the right rules and not the wrong rules. That was our vision and it was very successful for about 15 years.

Why did the agency you founded in 1987, HHCL, close down?

The partners fell out and were fighting amongst ourselves, which is always the first sign of trouble. We also sold the agency, which is always a bad idea because it puts money ahead of creativity. I think to really be a true creative agency you’ve got to be able to part ways with clients if it’s not working. We sold to a PR group, but then the PR group sold us to WPP when they fell into financial trouble, and that didn’t work.

I think for me the essence of a creative hotshop is you have to have independence. You have to be in a position to say, ‘It’s not working with this client. Let’s find another one’. Which is what we did for 15 years.

What are you working on now?

I’m working with a digital agency called Albion in London, I work with Current TV, which is owned by Al Gore, and I lecture, write books, I do lots of freelance, just keep very busy really in the spirit of doing new things. Anything that breaks down the status quo is a good idea. Advertising is a criminal waste of money. It’s absolutely diabolically an inefficient industry. Huge sums of money are spent, 95% of which is wasted, so the industry should really be exploring, experimenting – but it doesn’t. It’s got stuck and it’s got scared.

You were on the Jury at ADFEST’s 1st festival in Chiang Mai. How does it feel to be back 13 years later?

Great, actually. The judging system is done very well so it’s good to be back. It’s my first time in Tokyo. When Jimmy Lam (ADFEST President) rang me and said, ‘You’re going to be in Tokyo,’ I was very pleased.

Any highlights?

I always enjoy judging because you get to see fresh work, you get to meet new people, you see really interesting experimenting going on. In the democratic process of judging, the most interesting, spiky stuff doesn’t always get through. I love that. That’s not a criticism of the judging process, it always happens at every awards show.

For me, it’s a hugely competitive industry and I’ve never liked that element of advertising. So it’s always nice to get people coming together and as much as possible putting that competitiveness away and just celebrating good work.

Lowe & Partners Kuala Lumpur lead the way!

Lesser entries, fewer winners marked the mood at the judging of the Asia Pacific Advertising Festival (ADFEST) 2010 in Tokyo over the weekend. The Asia Pacific Advertising Festival was originally scheduled to take place on 18-20th March 2010 in Pattaya, but was postponed due to political circumstances in Thailand. The decision to relocate this year’s Jury panel to Tokyo was first announced in May 2010.

• Lowe & Partners Kuala Lumpur won 1 Silver 2 Bronze:
Outdoor Silver for Plant Earth Day
Outdoor Bronze for Glow in Dark Earth Hour
Poster Bronze for Brands Essence of Chicken "Teacher"

• McCann Erickson won a Silver in Print Craft for The French Culinary School in Asia "Snail"
and a Finalist in Poster for Barclays Premier League 2009/2010 "Football Anywhere".

• Naga DDB/Rapp Kuala Lumpur clinched 2 Bronze, one in Direct for
Google Earth "RoadKinGPS" and another in Press for Stabilo Marathon Pen
"Handwritten Newspaper". Stabilo also picked a Finalist in the Design category.

In 2009, Malaysia won 2 Best of Show, 5 Gold, 1 Silver, 4 Bronze and 26 Finalists.

Mudah.my Malaysia's largest marketplace is no longer just the most popular Malaysian website, it now attracts even more users than the more established global players like Google's Gmail.

Mr. Shylendra GM for Mudah.my told ADOI, “We thank Malaysians for using our website and giving us their stamp of approval. We will continue to innovate to create an even more compelling marketplace, always providing the easiest access to the most buyers and the best sellers."

Mudah.my page on Facebook had 163,135 fans at the time of this announcement.

Mudah.my is the largest online marketplace in Malaysia. The service allows anyone to buy and sell in his or her region conveniently and in a very simple manner.Mudah.my is a brainchild of the regional online classified's company 701 Search Pte. Ltd, a joint venture between Singapore Press Holdings Limited and Schibsted ASA.

Source : comScore, a leading source of global digital market intelligence and measurement services
Leo Burnett & Arc Worldwide Malaysia has been appointed by national automaker, PROTON Holdings Berhad as the global agency of record integrating the national car company’s group branding and marketing communications. This appointment follows a creative review that took place earlier, which also involved agencies including incumbent, McCann Erickson, Ogilvy & Mather, and Milk & Co.

Tan Kien Eng, CEO of Leo Burnett & Arc Worldwide Malaysia and Singapore, told ADOI, “As Malaysians, having the chance to work with, and be part of the team to help grow a national icon like PROTON to its next level of progress is of huge significance to us. PROTON has come a long way since its beginnings in 1985 and we are definitely looking forward to leverage our HumanKind approach where we put people at the center of everything we do and identifying a brand human purpose to help raise the bar for PROTON brand to reflect its serious commitment to be a global player in the automobile industry.”

This year marks the Silver Jubilee for PROTON since it rolled out its first car in 1985. Its 25 years of steady improvement in automotive product development, has made PROTON the only full-fledged automotive company in South-East Asia with the ability to design, build and test cars with its own R&D centre. PROTON has also produced and trained many engineers for the local industry. Its inception as a key driver of national development has seen the company accelerated its learning curve through technology transfer with strategic partnerships and technical collaborations.
Pulse Group PLC appoints Allan Meldgaard (32) as Head of Online Communities, responsible for Planet Pulse growing and managing research panel members across Asia Pacific, India, Europe and North America.

Mr. Meldgaard has more than 10 years of experience in Search Engine Marketing, Social Networks, Payment Solutions, Usability, Internet Strategies and Product Development. He has been executing Performance Based Advertising solutions and Organic Growth strategies in more than 150 countries and has work experience from Europe, South America, Africa and Asia. He has played a key role in several successful company start-ups  and have a passion for nurturing businesses through hyper-growth online strategies.

“Pulse Group PLC is the perfect match for me. Being an innovative market leader with huge potential and first-class management, I’m looking forward to contribute with my experience in online scalability, optimization and internationalization” said Allan Meldgaard, Head of Online Communities for Planet Pulse.

PETALING JAYA: Guinness Anchor Bhd’s (GAB) RM10mil promotion during the month-long 2010 FIFA World Cup was well worth it as its trade partners’ outlets, pubs and coffeeshops saw an average 30% increase in sales during the period compared with average month sales.

Some outlets even registered more than 320% increase in sales compared with the same period last year, GAB marketing director Mark Jenner told a press conference on the impact of the World Cup on the company yesterday. – Bernama

He said an estimated 90,000 people attended 750 viewing parties staged at GAB’s flagship outlets, pubs, coffeeshops and food courts nationwide.
THE last vuvuzela, the extra loud trumpet of South African football fans, was blown on July 11 - when the final of the 2010 World Cup was played.

That eventful day also marked the end of clever World Cup-related marketing campaigns, which certainly would have helped drive advertising expenditure (adex) around the globe.

On the local front, the Malaysian advertising market rebounded from a decline in the first half of last year to record a total spending of RM3.5bil in the first half of 2010, and a lot of it can be attributed to this global football tournament that comes once in four years, say media specialists.

But will the adex growth in the second half (H2) of the year continue to be as robust?
FONTERRA Brands (M) Sdn Bhd has been able to accelerate its growth over the past two years thanks to the implementation of its “Power Brand” strategy.

This unit of New Zealand-based Fonterra Co-operative Group was growing on average by 8% from 2001 to 2008.

While that was a solid figure, the pace of revenue growth picked up substantially after the Power Brand strategy was introduced in 2008. In the last financial year ended July 31, 2009, Fonterra Malaysia’s revenue jumped a whopping 17% to about RM500mil.
VITAGEN, the leader in the local cultured-milk market with over 60% share, will continue its advertising and promotional (A&P) activities to remain top-most on consumers’ minds.

Cotra Enterprises Sdn Bhd deputy general manager Michael Ong says the company spent not less than RM10mil on A&P for Vitagen last year, and it will at least maintain the level of spending this year to enhance the brand value.

Cotra is the trading arm of Malaysia Milk Sdn Bhd, the manufacturer and owner of Vitagen. The product is widely distributed in Malaysia and Singapore.
MEDIA magazine (quickly transmogrifying into Campaign Magazine SEAsia) seems to be the only ad site that remembered there was a Cannes Awards this year.

The World Cup, being the “solar eclipse” that it was, had blocked out this usually deafening annual gong fest. Not that there was much to shout about anyway.

Media’s number one choice was a direct campaign, featuring iconic rock person Iggy Pop for New Zealand’s Orcon Telco.

ADFEST 2010 received 2,708 entries from agencies and production companies around the Asia Pacific this year and they will vie for fame and glory across 14 categories. ADFEST received 3,309 entries in 2009, down 35% from the previous year.

Yesterday, 50 of the world’s top advertising executives judged in Tokyo to determine the ADFEST 2010 Lotus Award Winners. When the 2010 Finalists were announced, Malaysia obtained 9 making it our poorest showing in recent years. There were 115 entries from Malaysia this year. In 2009, Malaysia scored 2 Best of Show, 5 Gold, 1 Silver, 4 Bronze and 26 Finalist.

Finalists for Press, Poster, Outdoor, Radio, Cyber, Design, Film, Direct, Print Craft, Film Craft and New Director can now be downloaded at www.adfest.com

“This year, we have only given away awards to the very best pieces of work. So if you win something at ADFEST this year, it will be very precious,” says Ted Lim, Jury President of Press Lotus and Poster Lotus, and Executive Creative Director and Deputy Chairman at Naga DDB Malaysia.

The Asia Pacific Advertising Festival was originally scheduled to take place on 18-20th March 2010 in Pattaya, but was postponed due to political circumstances in Thailand. The decision to relocate this year’s Jury panel to Tokyo was first announced in May 2010.

DRAFTFCB’s digital arm has made 2 key senior hires in the form of Yoveindra Arumugam and Danny Wong.

Yovein comes on board DRAFTFCB as Head of Digital Operations, while Danny will assume the role of Creative Group Head, Digital. Both have extensive experiences in senior capacity prior to joining DRAFTCB; where Yovein had held the role of General Manager of Shiroku Productions while Danny was formerly Senior Art Director in Agenda.

With these key senior hires, DRAFTFCB and it’s sister company IGNITE hope to strengthen its position as one of the main digital marketing agencies in this space.

DRAFTFCB have been making waves in both digital, integrated and the social media space since the appointment of Noor Ashikin Aziz as General Manager and Executive Creative Director Digital for the group in September last year.

DRAFTFCB was the lead creative agency behind Telekom Malaysia’s Everyone Connects campaign that went viral and voted one of the World’s Top 10 Viral campaign by GoViral.com in November 2009.

“We’ve no doubt that Yovein and Danny will add strength to our digital offerings” said Group C.E.O, T. Renganathan. “As it is, not many agency if at all, can offer the kind of integrated ideas and solutions that we can. And we know that social media seem to be a key play in most brands’ marketing plans. Yovein’s and Danny’s role will be to make sure that we can deliver a total campaign experience. It is no longer enough to espouse digital and social media marketing, agencies must learn to adopt and be strong practitioners of it. We owe it to the brands we work on”.

Noor is also a strong advocate and practitioner of social media engagement, himself running several thought leadership and industry related blogs as well as engaging his key industry followers very regularly on his Twitter and Facebook accounts. “Not many industry leads to this. Most tend to preach and not do, relying instead on freelance consultants”, he told ADOI.

It's only a matter of time before some marketing pundit boldly declares this to be the Era of the Boldly Declared Era. Our attempts to make sense of the rapid changes in consumer media consumption have spawned such era-defining labels as "Web 2.0," "Emerging Media," "Generation Facebook," "The Death of Print," and most recently, "The Splinternet."
A couple of years ago I flew to Spain and a former friend (you'll understand soon why he is "former") recommended a specific airline. Everything that could go wrong did go wrong, beginning with an unpleasant journey when I had expectations of a positive and happy flying experience with this particular airline, sold to me as an experience I wouldn't forget. Yes, the friend was right about that...

Maxis was awarded the Gold Award in the innovation category at the Malaysia Human Resource Award 2010 event this week in recognition for innovation in nurturing employee talent. The award was presented by the Minister of Human Resources, YB Datuk Dr. S. Subramaniam to Azmi Ujang, Senior Vice President and Head of the Human Resources Division of Maxis.

The award recognises organisations that have successfully implemented new or re-engineered human resource initiatives or transformed traditional human resource practices, products or concepts that have contributed to higher productivity, efficiencies and cost savings in the organisation. The awards, organised by the Malaysian Institute of Human Resource Management with the Minister of Human Resources as patron, are strongly supported and endorsed by the human resource community in Malaysia.

“We are truly grateful for this award which recognises our efforts in empowering our employees with the best knowledge and skills using the latest technology and platforms. Our employees are our strength as Maxis moves from being a leader in mobile communications to being a leader in integrated communications. We are committed to nurturing them as we continue to change the way Malaysians live, delivering to their hands or homes, quality and innovative communications solutions and experiences. In addition, through our efforts in the Academy, we are pleased to support the government’s vision of a highly-skilled Malaysian work force,” said Azmi.

Maxis was specifically recognised for its innovation in transformational learning through its state-of-the-art training academy, Maxis Academy (‘Academy’). The innovative programmes provided by the Academy include mobile learning initiatives which extend to educating employees via mobile text messages on various topics such as leadership, technology, finance, human resource and customer service.

The Academy also leverages on Second Life, a realistic three-dimensional virtual world application that has taken the world by storm. First launched in 2003, it has 18 million registered accounts as of January 2010. In November 2008, Maxis became the first company in the Asia Pacific region to use Second Life for learning and development when it launched its own island on the platform known as Maxis iLearn. Maxis’ pilot project for Second Life is the Next Generation Manager or NGM@Maxis programme, a core programme for Maxis managers.

Azmi added, “Maxis established the Academy in 2001 with the vision of enriching employees by providing the best in-house corporate learning centre in the country and to support educational excellence in the Malaysian community in general. To realise these objectives, a holistic 'Transformational Learning Framework' that serves as the foundation for the Academy's learning and development initiatives, was created in 2005. At Maxis, we want to create a culture of 'want to learn' rather than 'have to learn' among our employees. We aspire to create an environment that is conducive to learning and collaboration; a place where our employees are eager to come to."

e-HR initiatives add another dimension to Maxis’ innovative human resource practices and have proven to be a cost effective avenue in providing employees with a seamless and efficient relationship with the human resource department. “Our web-based employee self-serve portal allows us to leverage economies of scale by aligning our processes and creating effortless service delivery. The team can now focus on further elevating the quality of the internal customer experience”, concluded Azmi.

Azmi Ujang was also recently recognised at the Asia HRD Congress 2010 Awards in Kuching, Sarawak with the ‘Contribution to the HR Community’ award which is presented to human resource development professionals who have demonstrated leadership and have made a lasting impact on human capital development in the human resource community, organisation and society.

Minister of Human Resources, YB Datuk Dr. S. Subramaniam (left) presented the Gold Award in the innovation category to Azmi Ujang, Senior Vice President and Head of the Human Resources Division of Maxis (middle) at the Malaysia Human Resource Award 2010 event.

Maxis engages its employees on various topics at the Maxis Academy, its state-of-the-art training academy.

Maxis allows its employees to experience first-hand the latest in mobile data services at the Maxis Academy.

Maxis became the first company in the Asia Pacific region to use Second Life for learning and development when it launched its own island on the platform known as Maxis iLearn.

REMEMBER how this economic cycle was going to be different (ie, horrible) for advertising? In a typical upturn, advertising expenditure follows the revival in GDP with a lag of a few months, because spending on ads tends to be one of the first things that firms cut going into a downturn, and one of the last things to recover.
This week, Ed McCabe, who worked for a number of major advertising agencies and is a founder of Scali, McCabe, Sloves, will be responding to readers’ questions about his life and career in advertising in the 1960s.

Readers who would like to ask Mr. McCabe a question should do so in the comments box below. His first set of responses will be published on Wednesday.
If you’re looking to cozy up to some billionaires, you’re in the right place. A map  posted at jordiplanas.com shows which parts of the world have the most super-rich people, and sure enough, America is No. 1.

David Beckham said in an interview hosted by Yahoo! that his ideal last game as a professional football player would be in the next World Cup final, playing for his national team England. He also said in this dream game, he would help create one goal and score another in the last minute to make England the 2014 World Cup champions.

Beckham spoke out during a unique global event in which 600 millions of Yahoo! users around the world participated in interviewing him. The interview took place live in London and connected fans by video from 19 other countries over 90 minutes.

He also shared during the interview that he had never been interested in the prospect of managing when he retires from playing professionally. “It's not a passion of mine to be a manager of a football team,” Beckham said. He added that while he enjoyed coaching kids, coaching a team and being a manager was not something he was keen on, now or in future.

In total, 30 questions were asked of Beckham covering topics from football to family, his future and fame. The questions were drawn from fans on Yahoo!’s social media products, other Yahoo! products and third party partner platforms: Yahoo! Answers, Yahoo!’s World Football Facebook page and Twitter.

The interview was streamed live worldwide on Yahoo! on its Sport pages and extracts from the interview can still be accessed on Yahoo! Malaysia at http://game.penaltyshootout.yahoo.com/beckham/my

The global interview involved fans from the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Canada, USA, Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea, Australia, Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, Indonesia and India. Fans from each country interacted with David Beckham through video utilising Cisco’s TelePresence high definition video suites.

Earlier this month, David Beckham signed a global sponsorship deal to serve as Yahoo!’s Global Sports Ambassador. The partnership brings together the world’s largest online media company and the world’s most iconic sports star to offer exclusive content only found on Yahoo! for Yahoo!’s coverage of the World Cup and the 2010/11 football season.

ADRIAN Miller, whose creative leadership helped push Saatchi & Saatchi Malaysia to the number two spot in Campaign Brief Asia’s regional creative rankings this year, is joining JWT Delhi as chief creative officer effective mid-August.

The South African, in an email reply to a StarBizWeek query, says India is where “it’s happening these days.”
THE Yasmin Ahmad-directed TV commercial entitled Funeral, which won two gold Lions at Cannes recently, was a collaboration between Leo Burnett/Arc’s offices in Kuala Lumpur and Singapore.

It was shot in Singapore and for Singapore’s Ministry of Community Development, Youth and Sports (MCYS), but many Malaysian talents were involved, including the director/scriptwriter (Yasmin), director of photography, art directors, editor, music composer and main actress (Jo Kukathas).

Regional online classifieds company 701Search Pte Ltd has appointed Gaurav Bhasin as Chief Operating Officer. Gaurav, who was formerly CEO of Universal McCann in Singapore and Malaysia, replaces Mr Morten Blomfeldt and reports to Chief Executive Officer Mr Julian Tan.

701Search Pte Ltd is a joint venture between Southeast Asia's leading media organisation Singapore Press Holdings (SPH) and Norwegian media group Schibsted ASA. It is a new media company specialising in online classifieds services for the Asia Pacific region. The service allows anyone to buy and sell in his or her region conveniently.

Omnicom Media Group (OMG) Malaysia has promoted Danny Chin to the position of Digital Director. Danny reports to Andreas Vogiatzakis, Managing Director of the network’s operations in Malaysia.

Danny was previously Associate Digital Director and was responsible for digital operations across the group’s client accounts in Malaysia since 2008. His career as a digital specialist started in the United States more than a decade ago, where he lived whilst pursuing his tertiary studies. Danny joined Omnicom Media Group from Universal McCann Malaysia where he was head of Digital & Emerging Media and helped to establish and developed the agency’s digital capabilities and services.

He will be assisted by Karen Mak, who joins the network as Digital Manager. Karen hasmore than five years of experience in marketing and communications with a focus on digital advertising and hands-on experience across a number of industries and blue-chip brands including Hewlett-Packard, British American Tobacco, Guinness Anchor, Nestle, Purina South Africa, Maxis Communications and has worked with international advertising, CRM and Media agencies in delivering award-winning marketing and advertising campaigns.

Andreas told ADOI, “We believe in retaining and promoting good talent and I am pleased to activate this well-deserved promotion for Danny. Digital media is fast becoming a way of life and Danny and his team have been tasked to be digital advocates both internally as well as externally across both OMD and PHD brands.”

Proton and McCann Erickson have parted ways following a four-way pitch for the advertising account.

McCann Erickson, driven by a passion to produce good work for Proton, one of Malaysia’s best-loved – and sometimes maligned brands – respected the company’s decision to move to another advertising agency.

Proton will be appointing Leo Burnett as their Agency of Record for future campaigns.

"It has been eight years and perhaps it is also time for us move on and hand the baton over," said Tony Savarimuthu, CEO, McCann Worldgroup. "It was our privilege to work on the Proton account because we overcame a number of challenges to help re-build the brand and achieve success with some of their best cars over the last decade. Executive Creative Directors Hwa, Szu and I have had over 30 years of service at Leo Burnett, so we are very happy for our former colleagues and wish them and Proton all the best."

McCann retained the Proton account three times in the past and launched the Proton cars in Thailand, Indonesia, and Australia. During their tenure, McCann also worked with the Proton team to launch the Saga, Persona, and the Exora. The agency also recently concluded the launch of Proton’s 25th anniversary celebrations and worked on an eight-episode branded entertainment programme targeting Chinese consumers on 8TV.

"We continue to have a solid relationship with the Proton management,” said Savarimuthu, “and we part company on the best possible terms."

He added that Proton’s CEO, management team, engineers, and designers at every level worked diligently to exceed customer expectations in terms of the product and service quality.

"The Proton management was always keen to listen to feedback. We were an essential part of numerous dialogue sessions with focus groups involving current and prospective buyers, dealers, vendors, and other brand owners to get an insider’s view on how to execute positive changes in terms of the product and service quality."

In the last three years, Proton won a number of prestigious awards for the work done by McCann, including two Golden and one Silver Dragon awards from Promotion Marketing Awards of Asia (PMAA), a Silver in the 2009 Effie Awards, a Bronze Medallion in the International Advertising and Marketing Effectiveness Awards (International AME), and a Gold award in the 2010 Malaysian Media Awards (MMA).

Savarimuthu confirmed that McCann is currently working on a number of key assignments for Proton to be completed before the end of the year.

"Our deep commitment to produce compelling and engaging work for Proton was very rewarding for the McCann team," Savarimuthu said. "The fact that a number of our staff bought the Exora after it was launched attests to our belief in the product."

The Proton Exora, Malaysia's first MPV, has achieved sales of over 32,000 units to date.

F&N Dairies (M) Sdn Bhd has announced the appointment of Lowe & Partners Malaysia as its new communications agency, after reviewing credentials and case studies of several leading agencies.

Lowe, known for their emphasis on effective as well as creative solutions, and consistent winner of effectiveness awards, will be tasked with the brand rejuvenation of F&N’s TEA POT brand condensed and evaporated milks.

TEA POT which holds the no. 2 position in the condensed milk category, which is estimated to be worth RM1 billion per annum. It was launched over 30 years ago and, till today, remains a firm Malaysian favourite for both in home and off-premise consumption. The brand was acquired from Nestle Products Sdn Bhd 3 years ago.

"TEA POT is a strong brand, entrenched in the hearts of Malaysians. It’s the right time to rejuvenate the brand, as we have ambitious plans for it. There are also plans to introduce line extensions for different and unmet market needs.", commented Mr Tony Lee, Chief Operating Officer of the Dairies Division of F&N Holdings Bhd.

“We need a strong creative partner who can deliver high-value brand building to realize our ambitions. We have known about Lowe’s reputation for some time. Their strategy is business focused, ideas creatively engaging and in synch with our brand’s premium image. Lowe is the right fit for TEA POT, and for us.”

Lowe Malaysia Managing Director Khairudin Rahim said the condensed and evaporated milk categories, while competitive, still offered opportunities to clearly differentiate brand positioning and messages.

“We’re looking forward to taking advantage of these opportunities, and raising the game. Lowe’s ‘High Value Ideas’ approach has helped create consumer breakthrough for a number of our clients, and we believe we can do the same for TEA POT.

“We’ll be taking this approach across all contact points and across all disciplines – advertising, word-of-mouth, branded content, digital and promotional platforms. We have great chemistry with F&N Dairies, who have helped us to quickly understand the brand and category; it is a great honour to be working with such a premier, home grown Malaysian brand and a great team of brand builders.”

No details of the planned expenditure for the Lowe work are available at this stage. The new positioning work kicked off on July 16.

FINDER301, location based Malaysian mobile directory, brings new dimension to customer engagement with world’s first Augmented Reality integration!

Maxis has launched FINDER301, the country’s first location based mobile directory that allows Maxis customers to locate and share information. Customers on FINDER301 can find the closest service points in the country for key services such as from more than 230 Maxis stores nationwide, emergency services such as hospitals, clinics and police stations and products from other leading merchants in Malaysia including banks. FINDER301 offers the largest listing of verified food outlets in Malaysia with over 12,000 listings.

FINDER301 is a service that appeals to the most basic of mobile users, the SMS user, and is scalable to fully integrated multimedia experiences for users of the most sophisticated devices such as the iPhone and Android phones. Maxis is the first communications provider in the world to integrate the Wikitude Augmented Reality technology on the FINDER301 application for iPhone and Android phones, enabling users to operate their mobile phone’s camera to view what is around them by simply panning the camera by 360 degrees.

Whilst traditional voice directory services only return one result and charge high rates, FINDER301 offers several results, sorted according to the location’s relative distance from the customer, with user-reviews to help the customer choose the right product or service destination, and a map to help him or her find it.  There is no premium or registration charge to use the directory and only normal SMS and data charges apply. In addition, customers enjoy special offers and promotions from various merchants on the platform. The service is easy to use; the customer just needs to type keywords such as “food” or “bank” in an SMS message and send to 301.

T. Kugan, Maxis’ Vice-President and Head of Product, Device and Innovation said, “Maxis has established itself as a regional leader in mobile content through its constant stream of innovative offerings to the Malaysian market. It is our aspiration to enrich the lives of our customers by offering them variety and depth in our content offerings. Today, we are pleased to take this position one step further with the introduction of FINDER301, a service which has received excellent response from the market since its soft launch in October 2009.

“As of June 2010, 34% of Maxis’ active mobile data customer base is on FINDER301 and they have performed 3.7 million searches across the various categories. The service ranked among the top five services offered by Maxis within three months in terms of customer take-up. FINDER301 was also an awards finalist at the global MEFFYS (Mobile Entertainment Forum) Awards 2010, in the category of “Mobile First Innovation” being nominated by 45 journalists from across 60 countries.

“Today FINDER301 offers customers Malaysia’s largest food directory with over 12,000 listings of food outlets sourced by teams on the ground. In addition, the service presents an open directory where registered customers can contribute content, enabling others to enjoy a wide variety of food reviews by independent parties.”

Andreas Hauser, Chief Innovation Officer of Mobilizy GmbH, Maxis’ partner for the Wikitude Augmented Reality feature on FINDER301, said that he was delighted with the strategic collaboration with Maxis adding that the telecommunications giant is Mobilizy’s preferred partner for its large customer base. Hauser said, “Our venture with Maxis means that more Malaysians will enjoy even more value-added services with the augmented reality feature and enhance their multimedia experience at work and play,” he said.

Media Contacts has appointed Saurabh Shanker as associate director of search. In his new role Saurabh will report to Gautam Dutt, Director of Media Contacts for Southeast Asia.

Saurabh has five years of experience in online marketing with a special focus on paid search, media buying, SEO and link building. He was most recently handling search marketing for Media Contacts sister brand Ecselis based out of India, where he has spent three years. Prior to joining Escelis, Saurabh was with Ishir Infotech where he led the paid search team.

Saurabh’s responsibilities will include growing the SEO/ SEM and web analytics practice in the region. He will be a senior consultant on DBS’s SEM business. Besides DBS, the key accounts he will be working on includes KLM and Study Adelaide

Rajeev Bala, managing director of Media Contacts said that Saurabh's appointment is part of Media Contacts’ aggresive growth strategy across Southeast Asia and India, which has seen the agency grow rapidly both in revenue as well as deep domain expertise. “We believe that this investment in talented and qualified people will see us continue to lead the growth in the digital agency space.”

Gautam Dutt, director of Media Contacts for Southeast Asia said: “Having worked at Media Contacts global centre for Search in India, Saurabh comes with a lot of experience in handling search for large clients across the globe.”

In recent days Media Contacts has won a series of high profile clients including Chevrolet Malaysia, RS Components, DBS SEM, Global Beauty International (GBI) among others.

Christopher Lyons has been appointed as Regional Shopper & Retail Marketing Director together with Charlise Chen, as Shopper Marketing Creative Director. Based in Singapore, Lyons and Chen will operate across all markets of Asia Pacific.

In his new role, Lyons has been tasked with the goal to continue to grow Leo Burnett & Arc Shopper Marketing & Retail business and draw on all sizeable opportunities for the agency-network’s clients to win at retail.

"Leo Burnett global network with our deep and the latest Shopper Marketing knowledge and applications will fully support Lyons and his team to achieve our aggressive goals in Asia Pacific. The appointments underline our focus on shopper and retail marketing as one of the pillars of profitable business growth for us and our clients.", said Jarek Ziebinski, President, Leo Burnett & Arc Asia Pacific.

With extensive experience on both sides as a client and an agency professional, Lyons had spent 5 years at Fosters Australia where he was responsible for brand, merchandising and retail growth strategy. He oversaw over 200 store conversions; and under the Foster’s brand umbrella, was responsible its Australian division, which comprised of 130 business units and 270 retail outlets. Following that he went on to join Ogilvy & Mather in Beijing as Asia Regional Business Director – Retail for both Motorola and Michelin. In this role, he was a senior member of the 200 member team and was responsible for the go-to-market retail strategy, channel selection, retail partner programs, pricing, store audits, store formats, merchandising and the whole path to purchase for the Motorola and Michelin brand.

He was subsequently engaged to work on the Dell Business as the Global Retails Lead with focus on North America, China and India in ENFATICO.

Chen began her career working on shopper-dependent businesses including Guiness, Horlicks, Carrefour, Dunhill, Pantene, Head & Shoulders, Pampers and Oral B. Prior to Leo Burnett, Chen has worked in Malaysia, Vietnam and China at agencies including G2/Grey and Saatchi&Saatchi.

Apple has called together a select gang of shaved apes in the mainstream media to address the grand buffoonery surrounding their wonky iPhone 4 "death grip" drama that has been allowed to spin out of control.
If you think word of mouth (WOM) marketing is last season, you may be surprised to know that this powerful marketing tool has become even more important and turbo-enhanced by the latest technology trends.
The growing power of the Internet probably means government censorship of opposition newspapers is pointless. The recent controversy surrounding the Malaysian government's crackdown on the opposition parties' publications Suara Keadilan and Harakah rekindles the need for some much-deserved attention on the state of press freedom, or the lack of it, in the country.

MAGGI has launched their new brand idea of ‘Happiness is Homemade’ with a 40 seconds brand TVC. The new advertising by Publicis Malaysia aims to capture the intimate role that MAGGI plays in the lives of all Malaysian’s in bringing people together around cooking and food.

“We are aiming to capture and inspire the bonding experiences that cooking with MAGGI creates for Malaysian families”, said Izham Mohamed, Executive Director, Food for Nestle Malaysia & Singapore t ADOI, “MAGGI products range across the entire cooking experience from instant noodles to cooking aids, recipe mixes, seasonings and sauces. ‘Happiness is Homemade’ is an idea to help people celebrate cooking together and enjoy tasty and balanced meals everyday”, quotes Izham.

“In today’s times, when bonding moments are few and far in between, MAGGI creates wonderful shared moments through homemade cooking and the campaign seeks to encourage more Malaysians to cook and eat at home together”, said Dean Bramham, CEO of Publicis Malaysia.

Lowe + Partners has appointed Rupen Desai, currently the network’s Operating Director for Unilever’s worldwide business, to a newly created role of President, SE Asia. Hs role will extend to include leadership of the Lowe Singapore agency.

The role will see Desai focus on all SE Asia Pacific territories, including Australia and New Zealand but excluding China and India. Desai will report to Lowe + Partners Chairman Tony Wright and CEO, Michael Wall. Desai will also retain his leadership role on the network’s Unilever business. Lowe is Unilever’s biggest agency with some 20+ key Unilever brands across the world.

With over 15 years within Lowe, Desai’s experience has spanned across large multinational clients, including Unilever, InBev, J&J, HSBC, Columbia Tri-Star and Nokia. He has been based in Lowe offices in India, UAE, Lebanon and Thailand. Currently based in Singapore, he will continue to direct Lowe teams across the Unilever Asia business; whilst leading their Laundry communications globally on brands like OMO, whose ‘Dirt is Good’ strategy is extremely successful across a number of geographies.

The ‘Dirt is Good’ work has been awarded at numerous national and international advertising awards such as Cannes, New York Advertising Festival, the Effie’s, The London International Advertising Festival, and the Clios amongst others, over the last 2 years.

Speaking to ADOI Tony Wright, Chairman Lowe + Partners said, “We are already amongst the top 5 agencies in most countries in this region and this move allows us to continue to deliver the highest standards in Asia - in terms of our product, our talent pool as well as our processes. Lowe has been a well kept secret regionally, for too long”.

Michael Wall, Lowe + Partners CEO added, ”Rupen is a proven leader across the region on behalf of our clients, our agencies and our work. Lowe has a competitive and compelling footprint in Asia and we believe Rupen can help us build on this strong foundation as we look to accelerate our growth and capabilities”.

JWT has announced the appointment of Juhi Kalia as ECD on the Lux Global Team, starting 15 July 2010. In this role, Juhi will report directly to Tay Guan Hin, Regional ECD, JWT Southeast Asia and Global ECD of Lux, and will work closely with the Lux Global creative teams. She will be based in Singapore.

Juhi joins from Saatchi and Saatchi Indonesia where she was the ECD. In just over one and a half years, she helped to win multiple pitches, contributed towards growing the business organically, raised client appraisal scores and raised the creative profile of the agency. She helped take the agency from a few metals the previous year to a close runner up for Agency of the Year at the local Citra Pariwara show and helped lead the agency's first ever haul at Cannes.

On Juhi’s appointment, Tay Guan Hin said, “I had the privilege of working with Juhi before and know that she has a strong strategic mind and her attention to detail is second to none. Her impressive credentials combined with our other top global Lux creative teams means we are well positioned to continue driving forward Lux creative globally in the key areas of consistency, coherence and excellence in execution.”

Previously, Juhi worked at JWT Jakarta where within one year as ECD, she took the office from 11th position to 2nd, achieved Agency of the Year at the National Show and created history by picking up the first Cannes Lion for the country. Prior to this role, Juhi worked for Lux locally and produced some of the most memorable ads in Jakarta.

Nigel Bogle, co-founder and Group Chairman of BBH said: “The Levi’s brand has been an enormously important part of the BBH story since BBH London won the business as a founding client in 1982. We feel it is best that we part company, which we do on good terms. We wish Levi Strauss & Co. all the very best for the future. It has been a privilege to work on this iconic brand.”

Sir John Hegarty, co-founder and Worldwide Creative Director of BBH told ADOI, “The ‘Original Jeans’ campaign for the 501 is widely recognized as the most successful jeans campaign of all time. BBH and Levi’s will always be linked by the great work we have produced together.”

John Anderson, President and CEO of Levi Strauss & Co. said, “We're grateful to BBH for nearly three decades of inspiring work. Their talent and leadership helped create memorable and award winning campaigns. Both teams decided that it's the right time to end our partnership’

The 28 year relationship has produced some of the most iconic advertising in Europe and Asia, and has helped the careers of many of the world’s leading creative talents, from film director Jonathan Glazer to movie star Brad Pitt. Commercials such as “Launderette”, “Creek” and “Flat Eric” produced seven number one singles in Europe.

KUALA LUMPUR, July 14 — Budget airline AirAsia overtook national carrier Malaysia Airlines (MAS) last year in terms of overall passenger volume, the Dewan Rakyat was told today.

Transport Minister Datuk Seri Kong Cho Ha said AirAsia flew 15.23 million passengers last year compared to the 13.87 million recorded by MAS.
A digital poster for the London Dungeon featuring the sudden transformation of Queen Mary into a zombie-like character has been banned by the advertising watchdog for scaring children.

The ad, developed by the agency Farm, ran on digital screens throughout London Underground stations.
The world's media and soccer fans may have left Johannesburg, but Nike wants to remind people about an even bigger goal: the continuing need for AIDS education and medication in Africa. Its new spot promoting its partnership with (RED) aims to stir up soccer fans by featuring stars such as Didier Drogba.
Sports Marketing maestro Marcus Luer sends us some pix of him with this Dad and son from South Africa's FIFA World Cup. As you can see, their favourites became champs. A roller coaster experience that was downhill for Rooney, Messi and Ronaldo and a high ride for the super-passing Spanish, magical Xavi and the sobering Paul the Octopus.

Marcus is CEO of TSA - Asia’s leading and most innovative sports marketing agency. They assist rights holders in maximizing their commercial rights in Asia via media rights sales and distribution, sponsorship/licensing and more.

He will be conducting a Sports Marketing workshop in July 27 in KL. For details, please click here.

MNC Wireless Berhad is helping brands transform how they communicate with customers with Go!MMS, a new web-based system to send customized rich Multimedia Messaging Services direct to a large number of mobile phone users. This allows use of images, graphics, animation, sounds, video and audio clips and is the next step after sms.

“We expect to see an exponential increase in the number of companies adopting the use of MMS in their campaigns whether for increasing brand awareness, sales, promotions or even CRM. The availability of the MMS infrastructure and the high penetration of MMS enabled phones make it now the perfect timing to introduce this product.” Chung Jaan Hao told ADOI on the growth of MMS marketing.

The key attraction for adopting MMS into marketing campaigns is its ability to create a more interactive and emotional appeal on the mobile device compared to SMS. While SMS as a marketing medium performs very well in conveying short and concise messages to consumers, the sight and sound impact which is an important portion of connecting with consumers emotionally is missing. By including the element of sound, animation and images, MMS is able to produce a high quality mobile experience with amazing branding possibilities.

“Go!MMS was created to integrate and to enhance existing consumer engagements. When strategized, planned and integrated properly into any campaigns it enhances the campaign’s appeal, reach, mobility and interactivity to a level not possible through other marketing means. We believe the greater functionality of MMS will continue to create greater consumer experience for mobile marketing. It is also a go green initiative where the use of paper is cut down to the minimum or even totally phased out in certain cases,” added Chung.

Ex-Saatchi & Saatchi Kuala Lumpur ECD Adrian Miller is now Chief Creative Officer of JWT Delhi, JWT India's largest office.

He teams up Senior VP and MD Rohit Ohri on a new journey to raise the bar for JWT on the sub continent.

Interestingly, Bruce Matchett who replaces Adrian Miller as ECD for Saatchi & Saatchi Singapore and Malaysia, was once National Creative Director of JWT India.

Adrian, who has judged at D&AD, Clio, Cannes, Spikes and AdFest., will work on many of India's largest blue chip clients.

Michael Maedel, President of JWT Asia Pacific told ADOI, "India is an important market for global clients and Miller's appointment will further enhance the value we bring to bear on the brands we handle."

Adrian has also judged at D&AD, Clio, Cannes, Spikes and AdFest.

Vocanic, specialists in Social Media Marketing and Word of Mouth, has been appointed after an 8 way pitch to manage Social Media for a major DiGi project. Vocanic will be working closely with DiGi to further expand and develop the platform in the coming months with already 3,000 fans added within the first few weeks of Vocanic taking over.
To support DiGi’s projects and expansion of business from its other KL based clients, Vocanic has added community management expert, Chew Xian Kim to its Malaysia team.
“Community management is a critical element to executing a Social Media strategy and we are very happy to be building a solid team of people with proven successful track history in the field -  Kim was part of AirAsia’s massively successful Social Media program,” Ian McKee CEO Vocanic tells ADOI.  She now joins Derek Tan, Head of Strategy, in Vocanic’s KL office.
Vocanic is a 5 year old agency dedicated to Social Media and Word of Mouth Marketing, and is now the largest agency in its field working with local and regional projects for brands such as DiGi, StarHub, Norton, Pfizer Nutrition, Nokia, Blackberry, Motorola, Topshop, Microsoft/Xbox, and others.

  • 90% of consumers intend to make online purchases over the next 6 months
  • Asia Pacific consumers most likely to share negative product or service experiences
Consumers in the Asia Pacific region are the world’s most prolific online shoppers and more than one third indicate they spend upwards of 11 percent of their monthly shopping expenditure on online purchases, according to a recent Global Online Shopping Report compiled by The Nielsen Company.

The Nielsen report found that Asia Pacific consumers spend the most on online purchases, as a percentage of total shopping expenditure, compared to any other region globally. Thirty-five percent of Asia Pacific consumers direct more than 11 percent of their monthly spending to online purchases,
compared to the 27 percent global average. This percentage rises to 59 percent in South Korea, the highest in the region, followed by 41 percent in China. A further 31 percent of consumers in Asia Pacific attribute between six and 10 percent of their monthly shopping spend to online purchases (see
chart 1).

The average Asia Pacific consumers’ intent to make online purchases in the next six months was also the highest around the world. Just 11 percent of Asia Pacific consumers said they did not intend to make an online purchase in the next six months, compared to 18 percent globally. Within the region,
consumers in South Korea (96%) and China (95%) are most likely to make an online purchase in the next six months. Only 13 percent of Asia Pacific consumers indicated they had never shopped online, compared to 16 percent globally.

The products and services most likely to be purchased online in the next six months by Asia Pacific consumers were books (52%), clothing / accessories / shoes (44%) and airline tickets (35%) (see chart 2).

Online-only retail sites were the preference of Asia Pacific online consumers – close to one third of Asia Pacific consumers who reported to have made online purchases said they most frequently purchased from retail sites with an online-only presence (31%), compared to 19 percent who purchased most frequently from sites that also had traditional ‘bricks and mortar’ stores. Thirty percent said they most frequently purchased from sites that allowed them to select products from many different stores.

“Technology and the Internet will very likely fundamentally change how and where shoppers spend their money and interact with retailers,” observed Pete Gale, Managing Director of Nielsen’s Retailer Services in APIMEA and Greater China. “We are already seeing a strong trend in markets like Korea,
where a significant population of online shoppers buy essentials such as groceries, cosmetics and nutrition supplies over the internet. Increasingly, as consumers look for more convenience and 24/7 access to products and services, this is a great opportunity for retailers to redefine their channel
strategy in order to meet the changing needs and wants of consumers.”

The Nielsen report also highlighted the importance of online opinions as part of the decision making process in purchasing products and services, particularly in Asia Pacific – 60 percent of Asia Pacific consumers use social media sites to help them make purchase decisions (compared to 43% globally)
and 41 percent viewed online product reviews as a trusted recommendation (compared to 38% globally).

Asia Pacific consumers indicated that online reviews and opinions were most important to them when buying consumer electronics (59%), cosmetics (44%) and cars (42%), and many Asia Pacific consumers went so far as to say they would not buy products or services without consulting online reviews, and again this was particularly important in the purchase of consumer electronics (41%), cars (36%) and cosmetics (30%) (see chart 3).

With online reviews and opinions weighing so heavily in consumers’ decision making processes, it is interesting to note that Asia Pacific consumers were the most likely to share a negative product experience online – close to half of Asia Pacific consumers surveyed (49%) said they were more likely to share (post a review/Tweet/review) a negative product or service experience online than they were to share a positive experience. At the country level, this tendency was the highest amongst consumers in China (62%), Vietnam (46%), Singapore and India (both 44%). Globally, 41 percent of
consumers were more likely to share a negative rather than a positive product experience online.

“The increasing accessibility of the Internet and the incredible popularity of social media and online discussion forums means today’s brands have nowhere to hide,” emphasized Megan Clarken, Asia Pacific Managing Director of Nielsen’s online division. “Any organisation offering a consumer product or service in today’s marketplace is open to scrutiny from every angle, and it is critical that these organisations not only understand those consumers, but effectively engage and communicate with them.”

Chart 1: Online shopping spend as a percentage of total monthly spend

Chart 2: Top 10 products/services consumers expect to purchase online in the next six months

Chart 3: Online reviews integral to consumer purchasing decisions
The Procter & Gamble Company has won the Corporate Social Responsibility Program of the Year in Asia (Subcontinent, Australia and New Zealand) category and was named a Stevie Distinguished Honoree in the Corporate Social Responsibility Program of the Year in Asia (China, Japan and Korea) category at the 2010 International Business Awards for its Live, Learn and Thrive (LLT) corporate cause program.

The International Business Awards are the only global, all-encompassing business awards program honoring great performances in business and is nicknamed the Stevie® for the Greek word “crowned”. Honorees were selected through two rounds of judging by business professionals worldwide, and winners selected from more than 1,700 entries received from organizations and individuals in more than 40 countries.  

"We are very pleased and honored that this is the second consecutive year that our Live, Learn and Thrive program has won at the International Business Awards,” said P&G Asia President, Deb Henretta, “The fact that the LLT program scored well in the same categories as last year as a result of votes from the industry shows the sustainability and enduring value of our program.”

In 2009, P&G won the Corporate Social Responsibility Program of the Year in Asia (China, Japan and Korea) category and was a finalist in the Corporate Social Responsibility Program of the Year in Asia (Subcontinent, Australia and New Zealand) category. The countries in the Subcontinent include India and ASEAN.

In Asia, P&G focuses on helping children to “Learn” and aims to actively engage P&G’s employees, customers and other stakeholders to help amplify the impact of the programs for underprivileged children.

The “Learn” programs in the submission that gained the most votes from the judges include:
  • “Gawad Kalinga” in the Philippines - an initiative to help fight child poverty alongside employees by  building homes and learning centers for children and their families
  • “Shiksha” in India - a partnership with multiple NGOs to educated marginalized children in rural India. In 2009 alone, 24,000 children were beneficiaries of this program. Employees also visit and volunteer at P&G-supported schools
  • “3-Pid Handog Edukasyon” in the Philippines - a partnership with the GMA Kapuso Foundation to provide school supplier to students to help keep them in school
  • “Open Minds” in Malaysia – an initiative to improve the lives of children with various developmental disabilities such as cerebral palsy and autism. More than 7,000 special children have benefited from this initiative. P&G’s recent pledge to build additional multi-sensory therapy rooms at 40 community-based rehabilitation centers in partnership with the Malaysian Social Welfare Department is expected to benefit another 1,000 children
  • P&G also launched an ASEAN-wide promotion from October to December 2009 to enable consumers to contribute to the LLT program in their country by donating a portion of the sales of specially marked products
In 2009, P&G’s LLT programs in the region reached 19.5 million children in more than 10 countries.

The Stevie® awards will be presented to winners at a gala dinner on Monday, 27 September in the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Istanbul, Turkey.

Reading tweets and stories that @Biz reported that Twitter search is up 33% in a month (and it’s a month old data). So I started exploring related posts.

SearchEngineLand does a great job of analyzing it (using the month older data)

Twitter does 18 billion searches a month, working off the 600 million per day figure? Williams said the monthly figure is closer to 19 billion.
Guy Kawasaki is the co-founder of the news aggregator Alltop.com, the former chief evangelist for Apple, and author of, among other titles, The Art of the Start. At the end of The Influence Project’s first week, Kawasaki sits comfortably in the top 10, so we sought him to discuss the power of social media, how Twitter followers and Facebook fan numbers can be misleading, and the benefits of artfully telling someone off on the Internet.
12 July 2010
Themed 'Let's Get Social', this year’s Malaysian Media Conference (MMC) took on a grand party feel with thousands of balloons adoring the Sime Darby Convention Centre in Bukit Kiara on June 9. More than 350 media, marketing and advertising professionals attended this year’s conference which has come to be known as an annual wake-up call on what’s hot in the media industry.
12 July 2010

Once upon a time online video used to suck. There was a time when creative directors in advertising agencies thought that thanks to bandwidth and the lack of computer penetration, videos would never flourish online. Even big players like Microsoft and Yahoo! were non believers. Then a few kids started YouTube and changed all that.

For such a massive tournament as the 2010 FIFA World Cup, there’s no doubt the expert analysis will continue long after the whistle blew on this morning’s final between Spain and the Netherlands. The likes of ESPN have already named their team of the tournament while Uruguay’s Diego Forlan has won an official FIFA poll to take home the ‘Golden Ball’ as the player of the tournament.

In terms of online marketing campaigns, there was also plenty to admire both in the build up and during the premier event staged in South Africa.

Not surprisingly, social media was at the heart of all the best campaigns, be it YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare or a host of others.

CNN’s tie-up with Foursquare was an interesting one, given that they weren’t broadcasting the games, but may have started a trend for other brands to use the new social tool around other big sporting events in the future.

If we were to pick one campaign, however, there’s no doubt that Nike’s ‘Write the Future’ would be at the very top of the list.

If you’re reading this blog, it’s highly likely that you would’ve seen the ad – either posted by one of your friends on Facebook, QQ.com or through any number of online blogs. The ad campaign, which features the likes of Wayne Rooney, Ronaldo, Didier Drogba and Spain’s hero Andres Iniesta, is now being talked about as one of the greatest campaigns of all time.

You’d be hard pressed to find a better example of just how powerful an online campaign can be when executed correctly. According to a recent Nielsen online study in June, the campaign has completely demolished its rivals in terms of creating an online buzz. And most importantly, this was ahead of official World Cup sponsors such as adidas, Coca-Cola and Visa.

Nielsen’s executive VP of digital strategy Pete Balackshaw probably summed it up best, “This study shows that compelling, savvy marketing can establish this sort of connection in the eyes of consumers without having to write that expensive sponsorship check.”

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comScore, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCOR), a leader in measuring the digital world, today released its May 2010 ranking of the top online properties in the Asia-Pacific region based on data from its comScore Media Metrix service. Google Sites led as the most-visited property in the region reaching 55 percent of the online population, while Tencent led in engagement with visitors averaging 6.5 hours at the property during the month. The report also examined the top destinations across 13 individual countries in the Asia-Pacific region, revealing various brand preference across markets. These and other relevant findings will be presented in the comScore live complimentary webinar, State of the Internet with a Focus on Asia Pacific on Tuesday, July 13. Details on the webinar and registration can be found below.

“Home to nearly half of the world’s online population, the Asia-Pacific region represents a wealth of opportunity for both local and global brands in the digital media space,” said Will Hodgman, comScore executive vice president for the Asia-Pacific region. “With an average Internet user in the region spending nearly 17 hours a month online, brands not currently using this channel are missing a significant opportunity to reach and engage audiences. For most brands, having an online presence is no longer optional, it’s a marketing necessity.”

Google Sites Tops List as Most-Visited Property in Asia Pacific

In May 2010, Google Sites ranked as the most-visited property in the Asia-Pacific region, reaching 270 million unique visitors during the month, followed by Microsoft Sites with 218.5 million visitors and Yahoo! Sites with 205 million visitors. Baidu.com Inc. and Tencent Inc. secured the fourth and fifth most-visited positions with 177 million visitors and 174 million visitors, respectively.

In terms of engagement among the top 20 most-visited properties, Tencent Inc. ranked as the most-engaging property with visitors averaging 6.5 hours on the site during the month, consuming 716 pages of content and visiting the property an average of 39 times. Facebook.com also witnessed strong engagement, with visitors spending 3.5 hours on the social networking site and visiting more than 21 times throughout the month.

*Excludes visitation from public computers such as Internet cafes or access from mobile phones or PDAs.

Top Destinations Vary Across Markets

An analysis of the most visited Internet properties in each of the 13 individual Asia-Pacific markets revealed differing brand preferences across countries. Google Sites led as the most-visited property in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam, while Yahoo! Sites attracted the most visitors in Hong Kong, Japan and Taiwan. Microsoft Sites led the market in Australia reaching 93 percent of online users. Local entities topped the list in China and South Korea, with Tencent Inc. and NHN Corporation reaching the largest percentage of Internet users. In the Philippines, Facebook.com reigned as the most-visited destination reaching 93 percent of online users, the highest penetration of any global market for the social networking site.

*Excludes visitation from public computers such as Internet cafes or access from mobile phones or PDAs.

comScore will present a complimentary live webinar, State of the Internet with a Focus on Asia Pacific, on Tuesday, July 13 from 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. SGT (+08:00 GMT). For more details and to register, please visit: https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/863741001

Driven by strong economic performances and rapidly improving consumer confidence levels in the first quarter of 2010, media advertising activity across 12 Asia Pacific markets surged by 18% - the second consecutive quarter of positive growth.

In the clearest sign yet that the region is accelerating out of recession, six of the ten most confident consumer markets globally are from Asia Pacific and these are setting the pace of recovery, with positive consumer confidence level increases in the Q1 2010 Nielsen Global Consumer Confidence Index.

Richard Basil-Jones, Managing Director, Nielsen Media Asia Pacific comments “The latest Nielsen findings show that economic prospects are also improving rapidly, a sign that marketers, manufacturers and retailers have been eagerly waiting for, as consumers’ spending intentions are turning into actual spending reality.

In Q1 2010 global consumer confidence rebounded to the highest level since Q3 2007, however Asia Pacific posted the highest increase in confidence of all regions – up 8 points. The positive news for marketers is that Asia Pacific consumers are all ready upbeat on how they will utilize their spare cash, including 41% on holidays / vacations, 35% new clothes, out of home entertainment
29% and new technology 30%.

All of these discretionary spending considerations showed significant growth over the same findings in Q1 2009 and this is not lost on most marketers who are now back in growth mode. This is translating into advertising activity rapidly returning to pre GFC levels; where we now see the second consecutive quarter of media advertising growth across all 12 markets in Asia Pacific (compared to the same period in 2009)”.

“Based on the most recent ad spending results, the outlook for main media advertising across the remainder of 2010 appears extremely positive in all 12 markets. The challenge for marketers however, will be strengthening their brand awareness and positioning where visibility diminished during the downturn. Consumers are out there spending and intending to loosen up their purse strings, so the onus is now on marketers to ensure their products and services return to top of mind” Basil-Jones summarised.

Click here to see full report.

ADOI citizen journalists hit the ground in Kuching over the weekend for The Rainforest World Music Festival. As it is the case ever year, before we leave we hit the town to confirm our hotel accommodation for next year since most rooms are booked out a year in advance.

Little did we expect to uncover that celebrated Creative Director Ted Lim had already planted his roots in this part of the world too.

Cruising along Jalan Tun Haji Openg we did a double-take when a sign stared right at us in between a goldsmith shop an apparel centre. Keeping  great company amongst illustrious businesses was Ted Lim Trading! And it was trading almost everything under the Kuching sun.

Our curiosity got the better of us as we walked in hoping to see our good friend D&AD Yellow Pencil winner Ted Lim in person. But we were disappointed when a few 'illegal-looking' shop assistants told us their boss Ted Lim was away in KL.

Is there something we are not aware of? Is he the same Ted Lim we know so well? The Asia-Pacific Effie Award Winner who claims that he has never been to Kuching before. As this story goes to press, we are pleased to inform you that Ted Lim Trading is doing a post-Rainforest Festival clearance sale this week.

As for Ted, he's probably heading to Kuching...

Shannon (the secretary) has lost her cat and has asked David (the graphic designer) to help with a lost poster. This is their email correspondence…
This video on Social Media in APAC created for a recent internal meeting of our regional Digital Influence team. Enjoy!
09 July 2010

First of all, let us be clear about this. Peanuts are not nuts. “But, why else is it called a peanut?”, you’d ask. No one really knows...

09 July 2010

I can tell you one of the things that keeps you up at night once you’ve reached the “heights” of Chief Creative Officer is, “Where’s the next job going to come from if this one doesn’t work out?” Actually, now that I think about it that was probably my wife whispering to me as I tried to fall asleep

09 July 2010

Differentiation has become a core element of any brand strategy. Central to differentiation is to demonstrate both points of parity and points of difference from competing brands.

09 July 2010

As nations celebrate and cheer on their homeland players at the World Cup, Malaysia is inspired by its glory days through Maxis’ new advertising campaign which hopefully will spark a new era of football eminence for the country.

Media Contacts recently launched a mobile campaign to drive lead generation for Chevrolet Cruze model. This campaign is a part of an integrated digital solution that also includes a branded Facebook Fan Page and YouTube channel respectively.

Launched on June 10 to coincide with the launch of Chevrolet Cruze in Malaysia, the campaign garnered over 1,000 leads in a short span of three weeks.

Targeted at men above 30, the campaign utilises an SMS 2.0 Smart Phone Application platform to reach 35,000 highly targeted Maxis users who have downloaded and use the SMS 2.0 application regularly. SMS 2.0 is an upgrade to the regular SMS application, which is accessed each time the user decides to SMS on his phone.

"We were thrilled to be presented this solution by Media Contacts. Mobile penetration is extremely high among our prospects and most of them have business phones with 3G and web capability. This was an optimal solution to reach our prospects through a medium that they have an emotional bond with. The results thus far have vindicated our decision to go down this route. Our integrated digital marketing strategy is the cornerstone of Chevrolet", commented Sanjeev Garg, Country Director of Chevrolet Malaysia

The strategy involved using a banner ad with three key subsections on the mobile menu. First, users were given an option to directly register for more info about the Chevrolet. The database collected was subsequently used for telemarketing.

Prospects also had the option to Book a Test Drive. Users who clicked on this option were automatically connected to Chevrolet Test Drive Careline from the user's phone activating an instant user-initiated action.

The third option was to "Visit The Chevrolet Malaysia Website" where user were directed to Chevrolet CRUZE microsite (www.chevrolet.com.my/cruze) immediately on their phone.

Dinesh Sandhu, Country Director, Media Contacts Malaysia said: “This platform provides the user with a host of interactive functions to engage with the Chevrolet Cruze brand. The objective was to make getting information about the new car and booking test drives effortless.”

The award-winning Chevrolet Cruze made its debut in Malaysia after a successful run in Europe, Australia, India, Egypt, Middle East and the Asean region. The four-door sedan is being distributed by Pavilion Crest Sdn Bhd, an associate company of Naza Motors Trading Sdn Bhd, which signed an agreement with General Motors Southeast Asia.

Mobile Advertising networks company, BuzzCity announced a partnership with MediaMind, the integrates Buzzcity’s Mobile Internet Advertising into MediaMind’s Channel Connect for Mobile.

Through the partnership, customers can use MediaMind’s interface to serve mobile ads to multiple mobile publishers and gain real-time visibility for advertisers and agencies. Channel Connect for Mobile’s powerful capabilities, coupled with BuzzCity’s features, provide agencies with enhanced reporting for unique users making it easier for them to view mobile and internet advertising placements. This would in turn enable them to prepare better integrated mobile and internet advertising campaigns giving advertisers more reach and depth.

“Accountability of mobile campaigns is becoming increasingly important to advertisers,” according to Jordan Khoo, Regional Director, APAC. “MediaMind’s integration with BuzzCity provides agencies with unprecedented capabilities that bring reach and frequency into the mobile environment.”

“We observe an increasing trend in the amount of users surfing on mobile web. APAC alone was responsible for over three billion impressions in May 2010 and this has been a growing trend for the past six months. This partnership will allow users of MediaMind to confidently target potential mobile users via BuzzCity,” said Delynn Ho, Vice President, Sales.

Facebook is partnering with MOL Global to deliver a new way to buy Facebook credits--in person at a MOL-connected store. It's a strange real world/virtual world crossover, and definitely a sign of the way future digital finances will work.

MOL is a hot-topic Internet financial company, though if you haven't heard about it it's not surprising--while it operates in 75 countries, mainly its operations are centered in Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, India, Australia, and New Zealand. According to its press data, the company handles "over 60 million transactions" annually, leveraging "a network of more than 540,000 physical payment collection points" that connect to 88 banks in nine different countries. It's also a name you may have heard of in relation to Friendster, since it acquired the social network back in December 2009.

Ogilvy & Mather Guangzhou was awarded the integrated branding communications assignment for Guangzhou’s Leatop Plaza, following a competitive pitch against two other 4A agencies. O&M’S scope of marketing services will include overall brand strategy development and promotion planning, public relations and visual identity design.

“Ogilvy’s deep understanding of Leatop Plaza’s positioning in the market was absolutely apparent when they presented their vision for our brand. It was powerful and thought provoking, and consistent with Leatop Plaza’s values and culture. We are excited to see what Ogilvy can do for this important assignment – our first commercial real estate development,” said Jinfeng Fu, General Manager of Guangdong Leatop Real Estate Investment Co., Ltd.

Charles Chiu, Chairman of Ogilvy & Mather Guangzhou Group, said: “We are thrilled to partner with Leatop Plaza to reveal their brand identity to the market. The new branding concept will provide a platform for all sorts of great ideas over time, which will generate real support and, ultimately, demand for Leatop Plaza, the newest landmark in Guangzhou’s central business district.”

MOLPoints is soon to be the Euro Dollar of Facebook.

Malaysian born company MOL is the first country in Southeast Asia to form a strategic partnership with Facebook, to become the payment provider for Facebook Credits. This is also the first time Facebook Credits will be available at retail stores across Asia.

This partnership will make it easier for Facebook users to purchase virtual goods in online games and applications. An MOL member will be able to use their MOLPoints account to buy Facebook Credits directly on Facebook, as well as through MOL’s website, a new MOL Facebook application and through co-branded prepaid cards.

“Over the last few quarters, we have seen a double-digit increase in payment transactions and volume. This partnership continues MOL’s momentum to build the largest end-to-end content, distribution and commerce network in Asia,” says Ganesh Kumar Bangah, group CEO for MOL Global.

This service will be available by the end of the month through MOL’s network of more than 500,000 outlets mainly in Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, India, Australia and New Zealand. In addition to outlets such as 7-Eleven stores and cybercafes, customers will be able to purchase Credits through MOL’s network of online banks in these countries. Facebook and MOL will also offer co-branded gift cards at outlets in Malaysia and Singapore that can be redeemed for Facebook Credits.

Prior to signing with MOL, transactions were made through PayPal or credit cards. Vaugh Smith, Director of Business and Corporate Development in Facebook says, Facebook’s past providers did not deliver the coverage that Facebook was looking for, as compared to MOL.

Vaugh says Facebook has a total of 10 million users who use their top 24 games. “Approximately 70% of users use Facebook applications every month. With MOLPoints will be like the Euro Dollar as it can be used around the world.”

As explained by Ganesh, the deal will be important with the popularity and hence the activity on social network sites increasing. He says, 2% of people pay for social games, 80% of online game sales payments are made via physical card and 15% use online banking and 5% use PayPal. For MOL, the content Facebook brings will help increase their payment volume.

The signing ceremony takes place today, as MOL celebrates their 10th Anniversary.

You must have wondered how sports sponsorship deals are made, the royalties, legal implications, commissions, branding possibilities, corporate tie-ups, the works. You need not necessarily have a client who wanted to sponsor the World Cup, but the same principles apply with your current portfolio and opportunities abound. Now you can..

This is a classroom-style workshop format, encouraging personal, hands-on dialogue and interaction. Maximum is 35 pax. We already have 14 signed up so far. It is HRDF-Claimable. All details attached.

Mark the day: July 27

The lecturer is Marcus Luer, CEO of Total Sports Asia.
He is currently still in South Africa rooting for Germany!

Marcus is Malaysia's hidden jewel and knows this subject inside out. Licencing, ROI, promotions, media rights...from Kuala Lumpur to Tokyo, Mumbai to Shanghai and Beijing to Dubai and Bangkok, this Malaysian sports marketing company has been playing the game like the pros for more than a decade.

Total Sports Asia recently helped Telekom Malaysia Berhad seal a partnership with Manchester United for the next 5 years starting from season 2010/11. With this landmark deal, TM’s brand and association with MU will be showcased to 4.2 million MU fans in Malaysia and more than 330 million fans and football followers worldwide!

Sponsorship has been been used to brand golf courses, stadiums to condominium townships and restaurants and Marcus will cover that too.

More details here...

According to cofounder Biz Stone, who spoke yesterday at the Aspen Ideas Festival, Twitter now reaches some 800 million search queries per day. That's over 24 billion searches per month, more than Bing (4.1 billion) and Yahoo (9.4 billion) combined.

While Stone's company is still a long way off from Google, which supports around 88 billion search queries per month, Twitter is quickly catching up. Since last April, Twitter searches are up 33%. To put that in perspective, a study by Nielsen last year concluded that Bing was the fastest-growing search engine in the U.S. after it ballooned over 22%. Now it seems Twitter has taken the title.

The 2010 FIFA World Cup fever on official Pay TV broadcaster Astro saw an increase in viewership of 41% over the World Cup in 2006. Viewership grew from 3.8 million in 2006 to 5.3 million this year.

The opening match between host country South Africa and Mexico the viewership doubled compared to the opening match in 2006, from 784,000 to 1.377 million viewers, while the highest number of viewership to date is the Argentina and Germany clash with over 1.93 million home viewers. Apart from home viewership numbers, out-of-home viewership also increased by 30%.

The 2010 FIFA World Cup matches are also available online as well as on mobile phones making it easier for customers to catch the live streaming of the matches on the go via Astro B.player. The B.player is also available online where users log onto the www.astro.com.my and register to access the B.player application. Astro sports pack customers as well as Maxis customers can enjoy live video streaming of all 64 matches, while other registered users can enjoy free access to 38 matches. This service is only available to Maxis and Hotlink customers with an activated 3G device.

*All numbers are based on Nielsen Media Research statistics

MIDEA in Malaysia has announced its plans for Malaysia as it embarked on a multi-million ringgit nationwide campaign in brand re-positioning to increase awareness for the brand. In order to profile the newly positioned brand, MIDEA, from July until September. “As our brand name is relatively new in the market, we hope through these events, we will be able to make further in roads from our existing marketing activities so as to speed up the acceptance of our products by the consumers.

Mr Ng Kong Chin, Chief Executive Officer of MIDEA Scott & English Electronics Sdn Bhd (SEE) Malaysia told ADOI, "The total cost involved will be RM 1.2million for the initial 3months of the campaign. The company has a total budget of RM4 million for the above mentioned and other on going promotional activities for the current year,”

A Global Top 500 Brand, MIDEA, has entered the esteemed top 500 global brand listing when on 20th February 2010, the international well-known organization Brand Finance, a brand value consultation company from Britain, issued the Top 500 list of most valuable brands in the world. MIDEA was listed 473 with the brand value of $1.99 billion, which becomes the sole mainland household appliance brand of the Top 500 global most valuable brand.

BERLIN - Told they couldn't watch the World Cup on the job, Italian auto workers went on strike — conveniently, a half hour before game time. German companies set up office viewing areas to keep employees from defecting on game days.

And Brazil? Brazil basically shuts down when its team plays, with businesses and schools closed and elective surgery put off so people can be in front of a TV.

Christian is no stranger to mobile advertising working with AdMob, one of the world’s largest mobile advertising network, who recently published its quarterly Southeast Asian Mobile Metrics Report:. Mobile traffic in Malaysia increased to 161.4 million in the first quarter of this year…

Mobile is touted as the key driver for Social Media. In Malaysia, Maxis has announced its intention to be an integrated player, side-stepping jargon like triple play and quad play, insisting instead on a holistic ambition with data, voice, entertainment and more… what sort of opportunities do these present to marketers?

With such an approach, more consumers will jump on to the mobile bandwagon, mainly due to the entertainment offerings by mobile operators. The number of adopters will also keep growing as more interesting content becomes available – improved data plans, smartphones, rich mobile content – which media and mobile phone companies are creating. This is still in the early stages, but is growing very fast.

What this means for marketers is, they can better reach their customers through the use of richer content, targeting a wider range of consumers without losing the ability to cater individual messages for each one. There is neither compromise of content nor reach.

What about Social Networking on mobile?

According to ComScore, 77.5% of the web population in Malaysia can be reached by FaceBook. According to FaceBook, about one fourth of the people using the social media platform regularly access FB on their mobiles. Given these metrics, it would be only a matter of time before brands start developing content specifically for social networks, further encouraging more people to get online on social networking sites using their mobiles.

Mobile provides the ability to target by site, phone model, demographics and location, all of which are key to advertisers…

By serving highly interactive ads, a marketer can build interest for the brand. Surveys can also be done on mobile platforms. These give marketers a better understanding of what the consumer which would, in turn, result in better quality ads.

AdMob serves ads which link to mobile pages. These pages bring another dimension to just standard banner ads, offering more comprehensive content that engage customers and ensure better click-through. An understanding of the lives and needs of the target customer and being able to connect with them emotionally is key to building the relationship.

Tell us about services like Lovegety in Japan which contain social-media elements allowing users to broadcast their live locations to a network of potential profile matches, alerting them when a matchmaking possibility is nearby…

Location-based social media, such as a Lovegety and Foursquare, open up opportunities for both consumer and marketer. Consumers get to access information of actual places as they visit these places and, this allows marketers to leave information in a cloud, i.e. advertisements.

Privacy issues and permission-based marketing remain an issue for mobile. What is the latest update on this concern?

There will always be an argument over these two issues, but without insightful consumer information, consumers will probably only get ads that either make no sense or incite no interest from them.

The ability to track consumer decisions may be deemed as an invasion of privacy, due to the use of private information to predict consumer choices. Trust is an important factor in consumers accepting content and we can build this by giving them more relevant information.

MediaBanc has invested in a new Research and Development Centre to reduce their cost by more than 15%. They are a market leader in the media monitoring and media intelligence industry, has been growing rapidly year on year following global trends. Situated at Technology Park Malaysia, it will cater to Local/International Multinationals, Government Agencies, Advertising and PR Agencies. Among them are Nokia, GlaxoSmithKline, Microsoft, Sony, Weber Shandwick and Shell. Overall, MediaBanc has invested close to RM2mil on its state of the art R&D centre.

Since 1997, MediaBanc has been slowly capturing the Southeast Asia market. Following its inception in Kuala Lumpur, the company soon set up offices in Johor Bahru (1997) to cater to Singaporean clients, Jakarta (2000), Manila (2002), Bangkok (2003) and Ho Chi Minh City (2005).

Media intelligence is growing into a multi-million dollar industry with consumers willing to pay for strategic information to up their competitive edge. In South East Asia, MediaBanc enjoys the biggest share of the pie with about 4,000 clients (including 1000 yearly retainer clients) and about 60% of the market in Southeast Asia. Currently, the total market is estimated at around RM50 million and is expected to grow at 20% to 30% annually as organizations outsource their media monitoring to manage cost and obtain real time information.

Alan Lim, CEO of MediaBanc, told ADOI, “Today, all effective strategic communication will have to be based on the Outputs, Outcomes and Business Results. Companies find themselves in an increasingly competitive environment hence, the need to keep abreast at all times. With the belief that “Information is King” we will continue to improve and innovate to serve our customers better, to give them that competitive advantage.”

Last month, Alan was in Barcelona, representing MediaBanc at the 2nd European Summit on Measurement organized by AMEC. He was the sole representative from Southeast Asia speaking on the role of technology in media evaluation. “Product development and technology enhancements are key elements to efficient media monitoring. Cost is also greatly reduced with superior technology,” he adds.

Recently, MediaBanc was awarded a RM1 million Brand Promotion Grant by Matrade and underwent a rebranding exercise with the new tagline, “Be Informed”.

Y&R has just consolidated its spanking new office on the 8th Floor of Menara E&C in Bukit Damansara.

CEO Robert McBrain told ADOI about about his 'One Team, One Dream' plan, "We have won four accounts so far this year notably Tiger Beer, ECM Money, Skypark and there is more good news on the way. The Y&R network also clinched 50 Cannes Lions recently and our Malaysian office got shortlisted for RSPCA and Unicef."

A beaming Robert, (please call me Bob) in paying a tribute to outgoing Chairman Dato' Rishya Joseph said, "Dato' Rishya is my esteemed Chairman and his last wish was to insist that this Opening party didn't turn into a Leaving party. He wanted this to about celebration."

For Y&R Malaysia this marks a new chapter, and what better way to begin then to throw a crazy party!

Oglivy & Mather Malaysia Creative Director Richmond Walker is tipped to join BBDO/Proximity Malaysia as their new Executive Creative Director come September.

Richmond, often called Richie, has been in KL for more than two years now and worked actively on the Maxis account making him a valuable asset when he does the same at BBDO. Richie contributed to Maxis' current World Cup ad campaign 'Committed to the Game'. He replaces the multiple award-winning ECD Mun Tuck Wai who is serving his notice as he looks forward to an overseas posting, possibly within the BBDO network.

Richie was Creative Director at Ogilvy & Mather Ho Chi Minh City for a couple of years, before coming to Malaysia. And rumour has it that prior to his adventures in advertising, Richie was a stage artist dabbling in scriptwriting, comedy and acting in his native England.

Editor's Note: ADOI broke this news first!

Pulse Group PLC and The Truly Loving Company (TLC) are collaborating in a CSR program called ‘TLC’s Promise Me Campaign’. TLC’s Promise Me campaign was launched today by Dato’ Sri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil, Minister of Women, Family & Community Development.

About 70 wishes have come in from TLC’s charity partners: The Handicapped & Mentally Disabled Children Association Johor Bahru, Hospis Malaysia, National Stroke Association of Malaysia and Rumah Aman.

During the one-month campaign period, the youths who have volunteered to make these wishes come true, will record their progress at www.tlcpromiseme.com, a dedicated microsite that will allow the online public to follow their individual journeys and participate by assisting the youths in fulfilling their pledges.

Julia Chong, CEO and Founder of The Truly Loving Company commented that Promise Me is about channelling the collective energy of communities in helping the less privileged in our society. “As Gen Y is the next generation of opinion leaders and decision makers, it is important that we inculcate in them caring values so that when they venture into the work force, Corporate Social Responsibility becomes a way of life,” she said.

Pulse is supporting this campaign with the strategizing and tracking of TLC’s brand and campaign awareness, usage and attitude trends in order to help TLC develop future strategic directions. Bob Chua, CEO of Pulse said “We are extremely delighted to be able to participate in such an important program, and wish that more companies would contribute to such causes in the future”.

Pavilion Kuala Lumpur has appointed Edelman as its public relations partner following a competitive review.

“As the definitive authority on fashion, style and urban leisure, there is never a dull moment in a mall. Edelman’s presentation of ideas was very much in line with our thinking, indicating strong synergy between the teams. Additionally, Edelman demonstrated sound understanding of retail marketing and impressed us with passion and energy for our business,” said Nikola Hassan, Senior Manager, Marketing of Pavilion KL.

The appointment was confirmed last month. Edelman will hit the ground running as Pavilion KL prepares for a ‘Super Stylish’ Malaysia Mega Sale Carnival 2010 and a festive Hari Raya themed ‘The Art of Sharing and Giving’.

The appointed also includes consumer engagement and public relations campaigns for Fahrenheit 88, the new retail hub for hip and cool. Fahrenheit 88, the former KL Plaza, is set to open in August 2010.

No serious conversation about Malaysian advertising is complete without the mention of Dato’ Rishya Joseph. Probably the first Malaysian to helm an international agency network in the country, Rishya has been with Y&R for some two decades.

He has seen the agency through name changes, three recessions, office relocations and led the agency to great creative heights during his time.
Market talk about him always hovers around his suave handling of clients and as a respected marketing strategist who has proven his mettle time and again. Not one to back down from a healthy argument about market dynamics, Rishya is as articulate as they come.

The Y&R of today is a different agency than the one he built up till the end of last year. It is leaner and is helmed by new CEO Robert McBrain and GM Lisa Hezila.

Rishya has left an indelible mark on Y&R and ADOI hopes that he will not leave the ad business entirely. His network, capabilities and astute acumen are too valuable for our growing industry. While Rishya has championed the creative product admirably throughout his tenure, he also got along famously well with many ad legends including the celebrated Neil French who remains his dear friend to this day.

Word on the street suggests Rishya will open up his own shop. And with the exodus of staff from Y&R since the beginning of the year, it is anybody’s guess what his plans are. Will they join him? Has he already started his own thing?

Watch this space!
When Sir Martin Sorrell got himself a puppy, a red setter, he named it Savage. As our car crawls through central London, from WPP's Mayfair head office to Millbank, where Sorrell is to sit on a panel, the dog sits placidly in the back, lolling its head in the sun. The name couldn't seem less apt. When Sorrell gets out, he offers a firm handshake and urges me to be nice to the mutt. "I called him Savage, because he isn't," he says.
The so-called Ad Jesus announced yesterday that he'd quit the biz he so heavily influenced. What's that mean for the powerhouse "ad agency of the decade" that traded on his name?

Malaysian advertising creative standards have been plunging! Gone were the glorious hey days of the past decade when we were celebrated as one of the best in the world.

MEDIA specialist Universal McCann (UM), by clinching the Agency of the Year title at the Malaysian Media Awards (MMA) last Friday, proves that one doesn’t have to be the biggest to be the best in the industry, says chief executive officer Prashant Kumar.

He says the victory shows that even small agencies can be named as the Agency of the Year if they do a good job.

“We are extremely happy and proud with our achievement in the MMA. Our people are very excited as they have put in their heart and soul to do their work and be recognised by the industry,” he tells StarBizWeek in an interview.

The moment of reckoning has come.

Malaysian advertising creative standards have been plunging! Gone were the glorious heydays of the past decade when we were celebrated as one of the best in the world.

This happened in 2004 when J Walter Thompson Malaysia was on “top of the world” for their entry for client TV Station Channel 9.

They clinched the Outdoor Grand Prix at the Cannes International Advertising Festival, considered the ultimate benchmark for advertising creativity or the holy grail. And it was Asia’s second ever Grand Prix win since the festival started 52 years ago.

Now is the time to look at our report card and take stock of our standing on the world advertising stage. At this year’s Cannes Festival, Indonesia (which won its first gold) and our neighbours outclassed us, as we scraped through with only two Lions.

Grey Group KL picked up a silver for P&G’s Downy while Ogilvy Malaysia won a bronze for GlaxoSmithkline’s Dequadin Lozenge in the outdoor category. Last year Malaysia clinched seven Cannes Lions, which begs the question: What’s happening to us? What has changed? And these are not rhetorical questions.

Ironically, this is Malaysia’s Year of Creativity and Innovation as espoused by our Prime Minister. Unfortunately, there is a creative brain drain in our industry and some major advertisers made no bones about their frustrations on this issue to me recently.

We used to shine in most categories from direct and press to outdoor, radio and design. Two years ago we even won our first gold in film with the late Yasmin Ahmad’s irreverent Petronas TV commercial titled Tan Hong Ming. While this year, Leo Burnett Singapore picked up two Film Craft Gold Lions with a TVC done by our dearly departed Yasmin for Singapore’s Ministry of Community Development, Youth and Sports. It won for film direction and copywriting, which was clearly her forte.

Some of our creative stars who have done us proud in the past are Edwin Leong (JWT), Adrian Miller (ex-Saatchi & Saatchi), Huang Ean Hwa and Lee Szu-Hung (McCann Erickson), Ted Lim and Alvin Teoh (Naga DDB), Gavin Simpson (Ogilvy), Selina Ang (OgilvyOne), Edmund Choe (Saatchi & Saatchi China), Ng Heok Seong (Lowe), Ronald Ng and Mun Tuck Wai (BBDO), Tan Kien Eng, Tan Yew Leong and Ali Mohamed (Leo Burnett), Andy Soong (ex-Publicis), and Henry Yap (M&C Saatchi).

Why am I using Cannes as a reference point? Because I wish us to be the best and refuse to lower the bar. Why must we go from World Champion to jaguh kampung?

After our heady world-acclaimed performance in 2004, we won four medals (Lions) in 2005, 11 in 2006, 12 in 2007, 11 in 2008, seven in 2009 and finally a lame two this year. In fact, in 2006, we beat powerhouses like Japan, Thailand, China, Singapore and India to lead the field as the No 1 Creative Nation across Asia!

But enough about the past. Where are the new heroes?

How do we attract new talent to our growing industry if our list of accomplishments pale in comparison to our neighbours?

What went wrong? Are we marketing our ideas as well as we are creating them? People respect us when they learn about us and what we are capable of. Do we have ambassadors who carry this message to the creative capitals of the world?

Make no mistake: A creative person’s main currency of credibility is winning awards. We must keep our flag flying high, there must be no turning back. I urge both ad agencies and advertisers to work together and help us make our mark once again on the world map.

An economic slowdown cannot be an excuse for not producing award-winning work. The financial crisis which started in 2007 did not prevent us from still clinching 11 Lions in 2008.

After spending almost 30 years in the advertising business, half of which spent writing about it, I am a natural stakeholder in this mission.

So this is my wake-up call to Malaysia’s advertising industry: We have lost our creative compass, and I am not in a mood to pussyfoot!

Harmandar Singh, regional CEO of Sledgehammer Communications (M) Sdn Bhd wants Malaysia to shine again and everyone to work together for our collective good.

XM, the digital subsidiary under JWT in Asia Pacific, has added several new hires to their XM-JWT Malaysia operation.

Tony Low has been appointed as Creative Group Head, responsible for the overall leadership of the creative and rich media department. Tony joins from Ogilvy where he held the position of Senior Art Director handling Maxis. Previously, he held stints with Arachnid and Agenda. Tony was also with XM-Asia Pacific in Singapore in 2005. He will report to Rueben Anthony, General Manager, XM-JWT Malaysia.


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