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advertising harmandar singh rainmaker

It is not often that you get to read a book about advertising in Malaysia.

Long-time Star Billings columnist, Harmandar Singh or Ham, has just authored a timely book titled “Rainmaker – Making brands and people famous and furious for three decades.”

The book chronicles his life in advertising and more than 500 copies of this limited edition have been snapped up so far. He has also culled stories from his experiences working overseas over the years.

“This is a compilation of my selected writings across three markets – Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia. I wrote this book to give those in advertising, media and marketing a window into how I see the industry work.

“Even the lay person can enjoy my adventures in this book and it is quite hilarious. I have shared many blunt truths and debunked common myths about the business,” said Ham.

The book also talks vividly about advertising legend Yasmin Ahmad, how ad people can survive anything, falsehoods about advertising, and also takes a stab at corruption in the industry and unscrupulous practices that have yet to be weeded out of the business.

Some thought-provoking chapters include “YouTube has come between me and God”, “What about the illegal outdoor sites?”, “Losses from 1MDB can buy us 30 islands the size of Penang” and “How I gatecrashed my way into advertising”.

“For every bully or gangster who thinks he is the king in the industry, there is even a bigger bully above that person,” added Ham.

“Humility, which is rare in the business, takes a back seat in a world where it is know-who instead of know-how. The competition is fierce and the game can be brutal.

“But I am perpetually confident that good work still triumphs over mediocrity, as consumer feedback can make or destroy a brand. So risk failure at your own peril,” he added.

Having spent most of his working life in the advertising industry, half of which as a creative lead for global ad network McCann-Erickson creating enough campaigns to last a lifetime, Ham has been the publisher of Marketing magazine to 30,000 readers for almost two decades.

“Life, like marketing, needs a script,” Ham shares. After bestowing almost 2,000 awards to deserving winners in the industry over the course of his life as a publisher, he is dubbed the “rainmaker” for many reasons. This book is just one of them.

Ham intends to publish a Bahasa Malaysia edition of the book early next year for distribution to public universities, libraries and upper secondary schools. He said this is his legacy for the next generation of thinkers.

“If I can inspire enough youngsters and students to get into the advertising and marketing business, I will have achieved my objective for doing a BM version,” he quipped.

The 280-page paperback is available at [email protected] for RM37.50 a copy, while stocks last.

Source: As published on The Star

appies asia pacific

APPIES Asia Pacific 2022 is happening in Malaysia!

Submissions Deadline: 15 November 2021

Announcement of Finalists: 29 December 2021

Judging & Presentations: 25 & 26 January 2022

Winners Announcement: 22 February 2022


Download the entry kit here.

Submit your entry here.

APPIES Asia Pacific is an annual event that presents a rare opportunity for creative, media, digital and marketing agencies or brands to present their best campaigns to the industry.


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The APPIES is an annual event that presents a rare opportunity for creative, media, digital and marketing agencies or brands to present their best campaigns to the industry.

This is the only event where Live Presentations meets Live Judging.

Similar to TED Talks, The APPIES is the chance for great presenters with outstanding work to show it off to some of the industry’s most important industry leaders.

This year’s winners will receive Gold, Silver or Bronze trophies for 21 categories, and 6 special Best of Best categories (red trophies) that require no submissions!

Campaign entries must have run between June 2023 to May 2024

Submissions Deadline
30th June 2024

APPIES Festival – Judging & Presentations
11th – 12th July 2024 (Malaysia)


Download Event PDF
Submit Entries Here

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