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Learnings at MMC 2018

Tom Hogg

Tom Hogg is Managing Director Malaysia of Trade Indy. He just can’t get enough of the Malaysian media scene and is back in the industry helping advertisers grow their return on digital ad spend. With unique experiences across media, insights, UX and customer strategy, he dreams of the day when regardless of the jargon, we’re all still aiming for the same goals.

With a promise of focus on conversations around media industry disruptions, the thirteenth annual Malaysian Media Conference (MMC) certainly delivered!

A wide range of industry specialists, across the full spectrum of advertiser, agency and publisher roles, took the stage to deliver a series of exciting and informative presentations. As billed, the innovative new format for digital audience interaction drove dialogue to new levels. At the same time, some of the classic misconceptions of the Malaysian media scene came back to the fore.

Inspired by the refreshing thoughts of Tai Kam Leong from Maxis regarding the exceptional inputs recent projects have seen from millennial colleagues, this piece follows on with a few thoughts about how we can start to put other assumptions in the industry to bed. Tai’s words challenged us to realign our thinking that “millennials expect too much and deliver too little” with a series of cases that showed the exact opposite to be true. Tai has found the capacity of youth to learn, remember, adapt and inspire to be a huge asset to his daily operations – millennial inputs help to drive more than 1.6m personalised product iterations for the Maxis brand.

With many questions from the audience focusing on what Malaysian professionals can learn from “more developed” markets, the challenges of “finding the right talent” and “whether traditional media will die”, it seems a fitting time to note how the MMC event itself showed how much more advanced the Malaysian media scene is than we sometimes give it credit for.

Tai Kam Leong, Maxis Head of Branding and Partnerships

Looking ahead instead of over our shoulders

Are there differences between the Malaysian media industry and other countries? Of course there are! But do these differences mean that Malaysia is “less developed”? Not in my view.

All media drives value. Multiple questions appeared in the audience stream regarding the future role of channels such as print, outdoor, TV and radio in the ever-evolving media mix. The perception that ‘traditional media’ is losing its place is understandable in some regards, with changing AdEx patterns and the movements of audiences across platforms. However, across the board, brands continue to feel that all channels play crucial roles. Understanding how multi-channel approaches should be implemented according to specific objectives and market segments is clearly an important area, but we won’t be seeing brands abandoning channels en masse so long as they continue to find audiences there. In any case, we’re seeing incredible advances and disruption in traditional spaces just as we are in digital – in many ways, ‘traditional’ is becoming more and more of a misnomer.

As it has since I arrived here five years ago, the Malaysian media scene continues to flourish. Enormous thanks and credit to all the speakers and contributors who helped re-affirm this again. Looking forward to MMC 2019 already!

To read the full story and more, click here!


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APPIES Malaysia is an annual 2-day Marketing Congress and Awards Festival showcasing, sharing and celebrating the country’s best marketing campaigns. Shortlisted entries will be judged by 30  leaders in the marketing industry who will put the presenters’ knowledge to the test in a unique Live Presentation environment.

Date: 16 & 17 April, 2018

Venue: Grand Ballroom, Eastin Hotel, Petaling Jaya.

Time: 8.30am – 6.00pm

To register, connect with Ruby on 037726 2588,

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