When Brand Alliance released Malaysia Superbrands in 2016, many homegrown brands and made in Malaysia products topped the list, alongside other widely popular international brands. Familiarity to brand names and their imagery were important deciding factors, as were their product quality and value.
Not only do these Malaysia Superbrands offer great products, many did great marketing that captured the eyes and hearts of Malaysians.
Delivering the Best Experience
Southeast Asia’s number one marketplace for services – Kaodim, transacted US$10million worth of sales in just four months. It certainly wasn’t by mere chance; but by the team’s determination on providing the best product experience to both the service providers and customers. To get buy-in from service providers, Kaodim allowed them to use the platform for free so that they were exposed first-hand to the real benefits of the platform. Some service providers reported more than 100% increase in sales solely through this platform.
While on the other hand, Kaodim gains trust and traction from customers by vetting through service providers, improving matching speed and making it easy to use with web and mobile options. Jeffri Cheong, co-founder of Kaodim, noted that many of its customers repeatedly use the platform for desired services.
Expanding outside Malaysia, Kaodim localized the platform to better tug at the hearts of customers. In Singapore, it is known as kaodim.sg and in Phillippines, it is called gawin.ph (meaning ‘get it done’).
Marketing tip: Make it easy, convenient and effective for your customer to use you. Having a name that directly relates to local understanding is immensely useful as well – e.g. ‘Kaodim’ is used in Malaysia and Singapore, but adapted to ‘Gawin’ in Philippines.
Product Reinvention and Innovation
Uniqlo, a Japanese casual wear designer, manufacturer and retailer brand is known for its contemporary designs and high performance materials and fabrics. The clothing lines are designed to offer trendy basic wear that combines function and art.
Through a collaboration with Japanese-Muslim designer Hana Tajima, Uniqlo reinvented Muslim fashion with the launch of its modest fashion series in 2015. It is a combination of the high functionality of Airism fabric with trendy modest fashion designs. This line includes hijabs, kebayas, jubbahs, loose fitting western skirts and long sleeved tops. By reinventing the use of Airism, Uniqlo is able to serve the Muslim fashion industry well. Not only are the designs current and modest, they also provide comfort.
To even better connect with the Muslim market, Uniqlo also engaged Malaysian singer Yuna to model for the advertisements.
Marketing tip: Product reinvention and market innovation – how can your product fill in the gap in another untapped market?
Branding with Words
A recipient of the 2017 SME & Entrepreneurship Business award, LifeJuiceCo builds its business with honest to goodness cold press juices, with the aim of #SavingGoodPeopleFromBadJuice. With such a wacky and catchy hashtag, customers cannot help but use it on social media platforms like Instagram, Twitter and Facebook!
Their brand imagery displays the honesty and simplicity of their product; coupled with creative concoctions and tongue-in-cheek names for their juices, making them the most interesting juices to try. Who doesn’t want to have a Royal Flush during Chinese New Year? And Why be Ironman when you can just have one in a bottle? Hate to munch those greens? Have a Salad in a bottle.
The company stays in touch with their customers through Facebook and Instagram; and making full use of the social media platforms, they actively listen and respond to customers’ feedback and comments. It is no wonder they are Southeast Asia’s most beloved cold press juice company.
Marketing tip: Your brand says who you are and what you are, be consistent – From logo and visuals to words and tone of voice, right down to how you choose to open yourself to communicate with your customers
The popular local burger chain, MyBurgerLab is a great example of how listening to your customers is the way to go. Right from the very start, MyBurgerLab listens to its customers every step of the way. From testing and researching out of the Red Beanbag Restaurant to running creative promotions such as the world’s easiest challenge and the lemon challenge, that their fans simply love! Realising the long wait in-stores, MyBurgerLab launched their ordering system over Whatsapp so that customers can simply pick up their orders when it’s ready.
MyBurgerLab embraces social media, listening to their customers has brought them to where they are now. However with the myriad of social platforms and networks, it is time-consuming and exhausting to monitor and listen on each network.
Which is why entrepreneurs can make use of platforms such as Microsoft Dynamics 365 to have a consolidated view of what your customers are saying online. The affordable starting rates gets you valuable information from listening to your customers without the high price tag of a big data scientist. More importantly, it frees your time to run other parts of the business!
Marketing tip: Listen to your customers online and offline and do it smart – by making use of technology
Get Creative with Advertising
Advertising makes up a large part of marketing; it used to be how customers gained awareness or information about a brand. Now, with the rise of technology and social media, advertising has become one of the ways to interact with customers. Do it well and it is enough push factor for customers to choose you over your competitors.
Ah Huat White Coffee makes great use of advertising to engage their customers. Staying true to their brand image of traditional coffee (with a modern twist), Ah Huat dishes out catchy Chinese New Year videos every year. Endorsed by Ah Niu, who has gained popularity around the region, the videos retains the local Malaysian flavour, while celebrating a common festival. Captivating and humorous, the videos become highly viral.
In 2016, Ah Huat launched an interactive video campaign that was integrated with chat apps like WeChat and Line, to create the impression of Ah Niu calling you. It also had the ability to customize recipient’s name when you share it through your social networks. From the mass platform, it was transformed (or so it seems) into a personal message. With highly viral and creative advertising content, Ah Huat is able to stand out in the competitive instant coffee market.
Marketing tip: Get creative with your advertising – higher engagement, higher retention
Marketing is about getting the correct product to the correct customers at the correct time, through the correct platforms. Learning from the top brands, when your customers have a good experience, they are likely to come back. So listen to their comments and feedback and continue to reinvent and innovate your offerings, you may uncover untapped opportunities. Stay true to your brand and values and engage with your customers whenever you have the chance to.
There are many areas in marketing that entrepreneurs overlook when operating their businesses and it often costs more than they expected. Learn about the 5 common but avoidable marketing mistakes every startup makes, and pick up more invaluable advice from there!
Know of other Malaysia SuperBrands? Share them on Share Your Juices.