Wix vs WordPress: Wix’s Negative Ads against WordPress

wix vs wordpress

On April 6th, 2021, Wix launched series of ads to promote their services on providing website solutions for business. But unfortunately, it did not end up well on some website developers and search marketing communities. Wix’s ads campaign “You Deserve Better” has seen as negative ads against WordPress, and the WordPress community did not feel happy with it.

Who is Wix?

Wix is an Israeli software company, which provided cloud-based web development services. It allows users to create HTML5 websites through the drag and drop tools that already provided.

Wix’s Ads Campaign Caused Anger

Wix’s latest ads campaign causes controversy among search marketing and the website developer’s community. The ads themselves focused on WordPress negatively, and a web developer was coming to a psychiatrist, seeking help for his mental health issues. This portrayal seems caused anger in the WordPress community.

In the ads titled “The Update Button of Doom”, WordPress portrayed as a grotesque person experiencing some glitching during a conversation, and that becomes of the causes that make the web developer experiencing mental health issues. The video ads below have considered typical attack ads.

Through video ads, the “You Deserve Better” campaign by Wix, along with Bose headphone, shipped to some developers and marketing influencers. Most of them are confused with Wix’s approach because they think Wix only wasted their marketing budget by sending those headphones to those not pleased with the campaign.

 

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On the other video titled “White Screen of Death… Is That You?”, “WordPress” was asked by a psychiatrist for the updates, and suddenly he felt sick and dead. The web developer on the ads mentioned that there could be any problem like plugin issue, hosting problem that caused “WordPress” death.

Maya Grill as the representative of Wix, say, “The campaign shows in a clever way that WordPress users don’t need to be stuck in a bad relationship with their platform, and they should consider the alternative which allows them to focus on their actual work,” Grill said. “Each video in the campaign revolves around user pain points, which also highlight Wix’s strengths.”

But instead of a clever way of a marketing campaign, Morten Rand-Hendriksen, one of the influencers who received Bose headphone, said that the campaign was “All Nuclear Troll-Marketing” and indeed not pleased with that.

Anti-Wix Responses Online

As mentioned before, the new ads campaign by Wix has caused furious and Anti-Wix, not only from website developers but also from the search marketing community. Wix’s ad campaign described as distasteful and bashing.

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Meanwhile, Matt Mullenweg, founder of WordPress gave his responses on the Wix’s ads campaign as below,

“Wix is a for-profit company… whose business model is getting customers to pay more and more every year and making it difficult to leave or get a refund. (Don’t take my word for it, look at their investor presentations.)

They are so insecure that they are also the only website creator I’m aware of that doesn’t allow you to export your content, so they’re like a roach motel where you can check in but never check out. Once you buy into their proprietary stack you’re locked in, which even their support documentation admits…

So if we’re comparing website builders to abusive relationships, Wix is one that locks you in the basement and doesn’t let you leave. I’m surprised consumer protection agencies haven’t gone after them.”

Wix vs WordPress Tensions

After all negative comment and responses to Wix’s ads campaign “You Deserve Better”, Avishai Abrahami, as Wix’s CEO, given his responses, by mentioning that Matt Mullenweg is angry and not telling the truth and accusing him by being hypocritical for criticizing Wix for negativity by claiming it was Matt that begun the bitter exchanges by being first to go on a damaging attack.

With the open letter by Wix’s CEO, Wix offers a public apology, as long as from the WordPress side, they also clarify regarding the issue mentioned on the Wix’s ads. Avishai Abrahami said in the open letter that they try to make the ads funny, but if the ads ended up offended the WordPress side, he apologized.

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Positive Campaign and Brand Goodwill

Given the example of how Wix marketing their services with their latest ads campaign, we can all agree that the way of Wix advertise it was terrible and it brings negative assumptions about Wix from the audience. Even Wix mentioned the truth about the issues that WordPress has. But by bashing and imposing other brands to make your brand stand out is not a good marketing campaign. Most consumers will choose a brand that gives them positivity and goodwill through their campaigns or their products while not making other brands looks terrible.

Running a good marketing campaign

If you are running your own business or part of a giant corporation, you understand the need for marketing. It can be an absolute nightmare to navigate the inner working of creating a successful campaign. What would help alleviate this would be someone who could take this burden off your hands.

MIU offers a range of marketing services that will help your company successfully launch and maintain a marketing campaign. With experience and skills, the disasters mentioned above can be avoided with our help. 

Feel free to contact us for a free digital audit or check out MIU’s website to learn more about how we can help you.

Voice Technologies for Digital Marketing

Voice Technologies for Digital Marketing

The best thing you can do for your brand is to stay ahead of the trends. Following the trend is effective, but it’s not always enough. If you want to stand out, the best thing to do is to predict future trends. We’ve already talked about the upcoming trends in marketing. Still, these are currently happening trends — now it’s time to ask, what will the trends in the near future?

With digital marketing on the rise, it’s essential to keep your eyes on technology and how it’s going to change. This would, after all, impact digital marketing significantly.

Voice technology is one such area that is predicted to grow a lot. Though it has been around for some time (the first digital speech recognition tool dates back to the IBM Shoebox launch in 1961), voice technology has never been developed until recently.

Now, voice technology is beginning to permeate our lives everywhere. From Apple’s Siri to Google Home to Amazon’s Alexa, more and more consumers are starting to use voice technology in their everyday lives. Why not look into this area and figure out how we can incorporate voice technology into digital marketing?

Statistics on voice technology

Google Home

BrightLocal conducted a study in 2018 on how voice technology could impact small businesses. They found that 46% of voice search users look for a local business daily, and 27% of these users visit the business’s website after searching. In fact, 76% of smart speaker users perform local searches at least weekly, with 53% of those searching using such devices daily.

The results above were collected back in 2018, so the numbers would have changed now — most probably reflecting an increase. Many consumers feedbacked that they would like to use voice search to hear business prices and find out which products businesses have.

Campaign Monitor also conducted a survey and found out that consumers use voice technology mainly for music, emails, checking news and blogs, and making purchases. When it comes to voice and audio technology, an area to keep in mind is podcasts.

Podcast Insights has recently updated its website on the latest podcast statistics and will continue to do so, with the most recent update in January 2021. More than 1.7 million podcast shows exist, and within this month alone, 43 million episodes were created.

Marketing statistics for podcasts show that 54% of podcast consumers consider purchasing an advertised product, and brands who engage in podcast advertising witnessed a 14% increase in purchase intent. In 2018, businesses spent almost half a billion dollars just on podcast advertising itself — perhaps it’s time for you to start as well.

How this affects digital marketing

Amazon Alexa is not working

The point is, people, listen to hours of content every day — a perfect opportunity for brands to take advantage of voice and audio marketing. Pandora refers to this as the audio renaissance. As voice technology becomes increasingly omnipresent in the digital marketing landscape, using such platforms to brand and market your business would be a lucrative idea. Here are some suggestions you could adopt for your digital marketing strategy:

1. Podcast marketing and advertising

Previously, we’ve already covered how influential podcasts are in our everyday lives as consumers. To maximise your podcast advertising and branding efficiency, keep in mind these few facts about podcasts.

Podcast-marketing specialists from Income School found out that consumers download the most episodes on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays. On the other hand, Saturdays and Sundays are when consumers are least likely to download podcast episodes.

Additionally, 60% of all podcast shows are downloaded from Apple, while 43% of podcast consumers use Spotify to listen to podcasts. Whether you decide to publish your podcast on Apple or Spotify, remember that smartphones are the most popular devices amongst consumers for engaging with podcast episodes.

Beyond that, 67% of podcast audiences are made up of people between 18 to 44 years of age, so make sure your podcast content targets that specific demographic. Take all these into consideration when you plan out your digital marketing and podcast strategy.

2. Create branded playlists

Podcasts aren’t the only lucrative platform for digital branding and marketing. One of the most common uses of voice technology is listening to music. Furthermore, according to Pandora, streaming audio has become a mainstream lifestyle activity by 53% of the US population. So why not connect with your audiences via music and playlists?

Create a branded playlist that resonates with your core values, and share them with your audience. You could even use these playlists for your events or on your video content. Allowing your audience to stream your music online will enable you to engage your consumers further and emphasise your brand.

3. Brand yourself with specific alert tones and notification chimes

Voice and audio technology give us plenty of opportunities to market ourselves in vastly different ways. For instance, imagine creating a notification tone unique to your brand and app. Just as your logo is a visual cue that audiences relate with your brand, your notifications and alerts can be an audio cue for your audience as well.

Even if you do not have an app for your business, you can use such tones for your website to alert visitors to new content, downloads or messages. Again, you can also use such audio cues in your video content, events, and any other platforms that require sound. This will help your audience identify your business aesthetic and develop your audio branding.

Overall, voice technology is still an underdeveloped area. However, with voice assistants becoming more pertinent in our lives, this might soon change. People who use voice technology regularly rather than sporadically don’t dismiss it as an inefficient method for marketing.

While we wait for voice technology to improve and incorporate itself into our lives, we can also take charge by getting ready for what the future voice technology has to offer us. We need to keep in mind that regardless of which strategy you choose to go with is your target demographic and the devices you decide to launch such a strategy. Make sure it is in line with what your consumers are using — you do not want to lose out on a potential audience that you could effectively market too! Contact us for assistance on how you could better brand yourself to your audience — we offer free consultations.

How to Run A Successful Instagram AR Filter Campaign

How to Run A Successful Instagram AR Filter Campaign

It wasn’t just in 2020 that the trend of digital marketing became immensely popular. Over the past few years, many businesses have started transitioning to the digital realm to offer their products and services there instead.

And it’s not hard to see why. Internet penetration is at an all-time high right now, with the majority of people consuming social media voraciously. In fact, the Digital 2020 report from Hootsuite and We Are Social shows that almost 300 million people came online for the first time over the last 12 months. More than 4.5 billion people use the internet today, with at least 3.8 billion of them on social media.

Not only are there plenty of users on the internet, but they spend a great deal of their time on it as well — a potentially large audience to tap into, so why wouldn’t businesses jump onto that opportunity? Statistics show that we are spending an estimated time of 6 hours and 43 minutes online everyday. To put that into perspective, that’s more than 100 days a year! Of this, the daily social media usage of internet users worldwide averaged out to 144 minutes.

With Instagram being the fastest growing social media platform, many brands are turning towards the app to market themselves in order to stay relevant. Just on Instagram alone, 80% of users follow at least one brand while 60% of users regularly discover new products on the platform. Additionally, 75% of them have taken action (such as visiting the website) after seeing the brand content.

This, alongside the rising popularity of Instagram Stories, means that brands are sure to up their social media game to produce better and more engaging content. Facebook has even revealed that there are 500 million daily active users just of Instagram Stories alone. After all, we know that video posts are more popular with consumers and often receive twice as many comments as image posts.

So what can we do with all these information? Well, perhaps it’s time to take a look at how brands can use Instagram Stories to their advantage. Evolve your online video strategy to stay ahead of the times and remain savvy. What do we mean?

Instagram’s augmented reality filter campaign.

Yes, you heard that right. Instagram recently partnered up with Spark AR to allow users to create their own custom AR filter. Not many brands have made use of Instagram’s AR filter function which is really a pity since it could very well be the future. Want to know how to run your own AR filter campaign successfully? Here’s how.

1. Define your objectives

Are you aiming for more conversions, engagement, or just increased brand awareness? Having a goal guides your creative team and makes it easier for them to settle on a clear design for the filter, depending on what you want to achieve. Remember to also keep in mind which audience you want to appeal to. Build out a persona for this group so that you can provide them the value they seek.

2. Get familiar with Spark AR

Facebook has a free downloadable programme for users interested in making their own AR filter. Brands can use this to experiment and find the best filter that works for them. The app also has plenty of pre-made templates to help beginners who are just starting out.

Alternatively, you can outsource the task to a talented filter creator. As a creative digital agency, MIU has the capability to design for you a captivating filter made specifically for your audience. While it might be more of an investment, the end result would be worth it if your brand manages to stand out amongst its competitors. AR filters or otherwise, we take pride in our work. Click here to contact us for more information today!

3. Include a call-to-action

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The end-goal of every marketing plan, a CTA is important to nudge your audience into taking the necessary next steps you want them to take. Otherwise, you might miss out on reaching the objectives you set.

Ask yourself this: what will your filter enable the user to accomplish, and how does it support your business objective? Whether your CTA is just to raise awareness for a certain issue, your brand, or to increase engagement, you need to keep it in mind so as to push the audience to take a certain action, be it subconsciously or otherwise, and reach your objectives — even if it is just to grow awareness.

4. Promote your filter

Once your filter is completed, it will be published directly to your profile and you can use it on your own Stories and Highlights. It can also be accessed via a dedicated filter tab found under your Highlights reel once it goes live. When you use said filter in your Stories, you can add a ‘Try It’ button for your viewers to test out the filter themselves. Anyone who uses your filter will automatically have a button linked to your filter so that their followers can easily try it out for themselves as well.

If you have a branded AR filter, your business partner can also promote your AR filter through their Stories! Branded AR filters also gets access to metrics (including impressions, captures, and shares) to allow brands to keep track of how their filters are performing. Furthermore, every Instagram AR filter has its own unique URL that can be found inside your SparkAR hub or from Instagram itself. Post this link across your social media channels and website to drive even more engagement.

Another efficient and effective way to promote your filter is by entering into a partnership with Instagram influencers. Reach out to those who are popular in your industry and you could work something out! Otherwise, you could also set up a paid promotion which allows brands to partner with influencers as business partners as well.

5. Check your ROIs

Even as your filter has been officially launched, your work is not done. Measuring your metrics and watching analytics is but part of the job. In order to know what works and what doesn’t, it is important to keep track of how your filter is faring and if it’s meeting the objectives you’ve previously set. This will allow you to better optimise your filter for future reference and improve on your marketing strategy.

That said, the world of social media is evolving ever more rapidly with new techniques and tools constantly being introduced every single day. It is up to you, as a brand and a business owner, to learn to stay with the times and keep your brand relevant. Hopping onto new trends early not only expands your marketing possibilities but also gives you a competitive advantage.

With the wide variety of tools that Instagram offers, it is the perfect platform for launching new social media campaigns. From Stories to Highlights to filters and so much more, these functions allow your brand to be even more interactive with your audience. Always keep a close eye on new innovations that surface to boost your business performance and craft a successful social media strategy.

Brand Story: The What and The Why

Brand Story: The What and The Why

Building a business means you have to make sure that your business has a brand that is easily recognised by people. An easy-to-recognise brand not only relies on the name, logo, or tagline but the story as well. A brand story is not something that is just created by yourself as the business owner.

Rather, a brand story is a cohesive narrative that encompasses the facts and the feelings evoked by your brand.  A brand story should inspire emotional reactions, unlike the traditional business advertisements that only shows and tells. Product, price, history, quality, marketing, in-store experience, purpose, and values are all points that can influence and drive the brand story. A brand story grabs people’s attention, elicits emotions and engages with the audience.

Apple is one of many companies that can deliver a successful brand story. Most people around the world know their products, have high enthusiasm when for their launches, and willingly recommend it to other people who are not yet familiar with Apple. These show just how Apple became such a huge brand with a successful brand story.

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There are 5 keys to building a successful brand story:

  1. It is meaningful. A good brand story has to be interesting and relevant to the people we are trying to reach.
  2. It is personal. If there is no place for the audience in our brand story, there is no reason for them to pay attention to it. A brand needs to spare places for the audience to become part of the brand story. Always remember, the brand owner is not the only author of the brand story.
  3. It is emotional. A strong brand story is all about stimulating people’s emotions and sympathy. By gaining the audience’s sympathy, you are creating the doorway for them to feel attached to your brand. 
  4. It is simple. Less is more. It is better for the story to tell itself and maximize emotional attachment while still being simple.
  5. It is authentic. Be open, honest and transparent, and let the brand personality shine through. This can make people recognize your story much more easily.

A successful brand story is more than content and narrative. It is beyond what is written on the brand website or on the advertisements shown on public media. A brand story is a complete experience made up of facts, feelings and interpretations.

A brand without a story is just like any other commodity with the possibility to be replaced. Without a story, the customers cannot define your product and distinguish it from your competitors. Building a brand story is not just simply about making your brand stand out and getting noticed. It is about making a brand that people care about and want to buy from. 

Susan Gunelius in her article in Forbes define brand story with this statement:

“Brand stories are not marketing materials. They are not ads, and they are not sales pitches. Brand stories should be told with the brand personality and writer’s personality at centre stage. Boring stories won’t attract and retain readers, but stories brimming with personality can.”

At the end of the day, every business needs a brand story to stand out and market themselves successfully. In the current state of consumerism, your brand is most likely one of millions out there. What can you do to make sure you are remembered?

Customers will feel more attached to a brand with a story behind it, but we cannot create and shape it ourselves as the brand owner. A successful brand story will build the foundation of trust with the customers, shaping a seamless story that will keep them loyal for a long time. With MIU, we will help you spark the tiniest details and nurture it into a wonderful story for your brand.

How to Up Your Graphic Design Game in 3 Easy Steps

How to Up Your Graphic Design Game in 3 Easy Steps

Graphics are one of the best ways to grab your audience’s attention. Used in essentially all forms of marketing, it has been proven time and again to be a surefire way to boost your business.

Perhaps you clicked on this article curious about improving your graphic design skills. Well, we completely understand. To help you, we’ve compiled some steps you could take on your journey to become a better graphic designer.

1. JOIN A DESIGN COURSE

Branding Services Singapore | Graphic Designer in Singapore

Plenty of schools in Singapore offer design courses that you could take to help you hone your design skills. There are various courses that focus on different areas of design, depending on what you’re looking for. Here are some of the best design courses in Singapore we recommend:

With plenty of design-related courses at their arsenal, including branding and animation, First Media Design School might be the institution you want to look at if you’re considering getting a diploma in media and graphic design. This course lasts a duration of 18 months (1½ years), so it may be more suited for students pursuing design as a serious career.

Maybe a full-time course might not be what you’re searching for. Or you might already have a diploma and am still looking for minor ways to refine your designing skills. At $540 a unit, Laselle offers more than 30 different design courses across a range of design disciplines. If you have a strong interest in graphic design, you may want to consider Laselle.

Feeling the hefty price tag on the previous two courses? There’s another alternative. Nanyang Polytechnic is providing a simple yet all-rounded design course under SkillsFuture. If you have some leftover SkillsFuture credits, now is the time to use it! At only $300, this is the perfect course for casual students dipping their toes into the world of design.

2. STUDY THE WORK OF GRAPHIC DESIGN COMPANIES

The 21 Best Graphic Design Companies in Singapore [2020]

In order to apply the skills you’ve picked up, it’s important to be able to look at the works of others and distinguish the good and the bad. With a vast amount of design companies in Singapore, there are definitely plenty of examples for one to study.

From web design to desktop computing and, of course, graphics design and branding, Hipster offers cost-effective digital solutions for your marketing needs. Their speciality lies in their augmented and virtual reality services. Just by entering their website do you see their portfolio of clean and aesthetic designs on display. Look through their case studies and you can see why Hipster is such a successful graphic design company.

Positioning themselves as a one-stop solution for creative advertising, branding and packaging label designs, Artnexus certainly strives to cover all aspects of graphic design — and come out on top as well. Under the creative umbrella, the company covers publication design, digital display advertisement, not to mention graphic designing. Take a look at their website to understand why their designs are so popular amongst marketers.

Having established themselves in the industry, Graphic Masters’s clientele consists of government agencies, public organisations and private corporations around the globe. These include the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore, SAF Yacht Club, and many others. Their services range from publications, advertising and promotions, corporate branding, infographics, and even corporate gifts — to list a few! With a strong understanding of the current graphic design trends, Graphic Masters’s professionalism shines through.

3. UNDERSTAND THE LATEST GRAPHIC DESIGN TRENDS

13 Graphic Design Trends To Expect In 2020 - Webgyaani

Besides upgrading your design skills and studying the portfolio of other designers, it is also important to be aware of the latest design trends. Some of the design trends that surfaced in 2020 and are likely to continue in 2021 include but are not limited to the following:

  • Muted Colour Palettes

Perhaps one reason why muted colours have been so in trend lately is because of its ability to evoke comfort and warm feelings. They also often feel natural and organic, which may why plenty of health and wellness companies are implementing the use of muted colour palettes in their design and marketing efforts.

  • Flat Icons and Illustrations

Flat icons have become somewhat of a popular trend, particularly when used as a social media graphic. With a simple icon, brands can communicate more by using less. Indeed, they are a powerful tool for communication. This trend is taking over companies by storm, including BMW, Volkswagen, and even Google, all of whom have adopted a flatter, more minimalistic logo for their brand.

  • Social Media Slide Decks

Slide decks are a great way to break up chunks of information. If you want to convey a lengthy message to your audience but are unsure how to keep their attention focused on you, try having various image slides rather than one single image. This habit has been employed by many brands on virtually almost all social media platforms, including Instagram, Facebook and Linkedin. Furthermore, the algorithm actually seems to favour posts with multiple slides rather than those with a single image!

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If you find these tips helpful, or have a friend in mind who is looking to hone their design skills, why not share this article with them?

As a creative agency, MIU strives to constantly improve itself. Providing digital solutions such as package design, logo identity and brand styling, the list of design services MIU offers runs on. Interested to find out more? Book a free consultation with us today!

Businesses in the Face of Covid-19

Businesses in the Face of Covid-19

Covid-19 and the ‘New Normal’

In the face of the Covid-19 era, many businesses and individuals have had to adapt to the new normal. From social distancing rules to travel restrictions, these measures to combat Covid-19 have affected the modus operandi of many businesses. The introduction of circuit breaker has seen many defaulting to having their employees work from home as a consequence. On the other hand, consumers have begun shopping online more voraciously.

With phase 3 of Singapore’s circuit breaker on the horizon, here are some things that one can expect.

Phase 3: The New Normal

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Social, cultural, religious and business gatherings or events will be allowed to resume during this phase. However, gathering sizes would still have to be limited so as to prevent large clusters from arising. Individuals would also have to be aware to avoid close contact with each other.

ESG’s Enterprise Infoline, as it has done in the previous two phases, will continue to assist businesses in the last part of the three-phased approach to resume activities in a safe manner during this post-pandemic period.

“With advisories and guidelines that were applicable to different sectors as the COVID-19 situation evolved, the Enterprise Infoline provided business owners with help to navigate the compliance requirements; procedures that can be complex particularly for small and micro SMEs. ”

Ms Chew Mok Lee, Assistant Chief Executive

One phrase which has gained momentum in the past few weeks is the ‘new normal’. Despite the fact that things are looking up, it is important to note that the impact of Covid-19 will still be felt far beyond 2020. Remote work will most likely be retained in the ‘new normal’, so don’t expect the current situation to change too drastically. Until a vaccine is uncovered, it will be a fixed aspect of our lives.

What this means for businesses and their employees

Working remotely with kids during the Coronavirus outbreak | eXo

Singapore’s phased approach to open the economy could mean that the ‘new normal’ may involve a cautious approach of alternating between remote work and the office. However, working life as we know it might never return to the normal we all remember.

This is not an indicator that productivity, creativity and profitability levels pre-Covid will not return for businesses. In fact, the changes that arose due to this pandemic may as well have presented more business opportunities in Singapore. Human beings, after all, tend to resist change and the ‘new normal’ allows businesses across the world to reimagine the impossible and shift to new ways of working and collaboration.

Leaders are redesigning their business operations to navigate this significant change and evolve the business for it to continue thriving. This has seen the acceleration of some non-traditional workforces. For instance, flexible working arrangements are expected to be the ‘new normal’ in some industries. Take Twitter as an example — CEO Jack Dorsey announced that employees can keep working from home ‘forever’ if they wish.

As everyone transitions through this period, the best way to ensure businesses’ survival in a post-Covid era would be to adopt a blended approach. Take the most efficient working methods from pre-Covid and combine it with the best methods mid-Covid, and we will see a strategy fit for commercial success.

When we look back at 2020 from hindsight, there’ll certainly be questions raised around company conduct. Organizations will be judged not only on how they managed the financial crisis, but how they supported their employees as well.

“People will remember how leadership and businesses dealt with the Covid-19 pandemic. They understand that it’s a difficult time for businesses and in most cases acknowledge that changes may be required due to changing business pressures. If these conversations are managed and handled in a human and authentic way, reputation and employer brand will be maintained and amplified.”

Robert Stone, Chief Talent Officer at McCANN

What this means for businesses and their consumers

Premium Vector | Woman using mobile app for online shopping cartoon

As the Singapore government eases the country back into normalcy, many Singaporeans are remaining cautious and playing it safe. They intend to adopt a wait-and-see approach when it comes to resuming activities. Only 1 in 4 Singaporeans, for example, say they would be comfortable to visit restaurants if the option is made available. 30% say they will not join a cultural event or gathering in 2020; 28% say they will not visit a gym or take a sports membership; and 53% do not intend to travel this year even if it is allowed.

“Many marketers had hoped that once the Circuit Breaker restrictions are eased, life would get back to the way it was. Singaporeans, at present, do not feel that way as seen from their reduced spend intention at dining out or disinclination towards going on holidays or attending large events or gatherings.”

Prasad Shinde, Senior Client Officer at Ipsos in Singapore

Due to the circuit breaker, online shopping has seen a tremendous boom in activity. With digital shopping becoming increasingly pervasive in our everyday lives, it would be a smart move for businesses to grab this opportunity to go digital in order to expand their customer base. It is where most consumers’ attention have turned in the face of the lockdown.

In a survey conducted, 88% of Singaporeans said that they have bought something online during this period, of whom, 2 in 3 say that they had shopped for a new product category for the first time. While the bulk of online purchases are on groceries and food products, other categories saw some first-time online shoppers as well.

“There are clear shifts in the adoption of e-commerce for the purchase of items that were typically purchased in brick and mortar stores — groceries and fresh produce for example –- as well as an introduction to different omni-channel purchase options. It has become quite common for example for a purchase to be made via WhatsApp and for collection to be made at a curbside pick-up. The awareness and familiarity with such possibilities, as well as the perceived greater convenience to shoppers, may mean that demand for these options remains long after life goes back to normal, so it will be interesting to see whether any retail sectors look to make some of these permanent.”

Nick Hunter, Director of Market Strategy and Understanding at Ipsos in Singapore

This could very well signal to businesses the type of change they need to undergo in order to adapt to this ‘new normal’. Covid-19 has proven across all industries that it is possible to maintain high quality outputs and relationships even with remote work at the core of their strategy.

Large Marketing Firms versus Boutique Agencies

Large Marketing Firms versus Boutique Agencies

All about boutique marketing agencies

When looking for a digital marketing agency, it may be easy to just pick one amongst the list of well-known companies out there. After all, with the number of projects they have undertaken, this seems like the obvious choice. It’s easy to be wowed by the big brands they have worked with and the testimonials they have gotten.

Oh yes, we know all about the psychology of choice.

Can you make informed decisions? | Construction Leaders Club

So why give boutique agencies a chance? Many have the misconception that businesses turn to these smaller agencies when they can’t afford the expertise of a larger company. Let me ask you this: if that’s the case, why are there still so many marketing firms sprouting up?

Betting your all on a boutique marketing agency that is barely established just doesn’t seem worth it when you have the budget to go big. But size doesn’t always matter, and neither does money.

Big brands have worked with smaller names just as well — and have been quite successful in their marketing strategy too! This only proves that boutique agencies aren’t just all bark and no bite. In fact, boutique agencies can just as well come up with the most creative digital marketing strategy for your company.

Still not convinced? We’ve laid down the pros and cons of large marketing firms against that of boutique agencies. The rest is up to you.

Why you should give boutique agencies a chance

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  • Large agencies

Pro: Renowned for what they do

Established companies of course have plenty of testimonials behind their business. It’s easy to develop a sense of security knowing that these companies are reputable and have handled all sorts of projects. After all, if they have the marketing skills to make it, they certainly have the skills to write about it.

Con: Heavy politics and bureaucracy

One weakness that bugs large companies is the bureaucratic process that they so often adhere by. But remember, all big businesses were once small businesses, after all. It’s possible to get the job done without first waiting for the green light from the head of the department, who is also waiting for feedback from a higher committee. It’s always easier to add processes than to remove them. The larger a company gets, the slower the decision-making becomes.

Pro: More resources

Since large companies tend to have more resources to work with, it’s easier for them to stay competitive — and offer you the same resources as well. With a large agency, the many resources act as a security net that can allow clients to feel assured leaving their marketing plan in the care of these big firms.

Con: The Innovator’s Dilemma

Following the work of Harvard professor and businessman Clayton Christensen, the Innovator’s Dilemma argues that large companies default to a status quo once they have reached a certain level of success. Rather than breaking the mold to disrupt the equilibrium, they stick to what they know and only innovate within that certain area.

  • Boutique agencies

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Pro: Budget stretches further

With lower overhead costs and agency fees, the money that you pump in for the campaign will be used to its full potential in the hands of a boutique agency. They are able to find ways to stretch your budget to its maximum, so you receive more bang for your buck.

Con: Inadequate management

Oftentimes in a small agency, there is only one or two people in the management team overseeing the whole process. This might mean that they do not have time to check in thoroughly with each employee and the work they do. Without a dedicated management team, there is a greater risk of mismanaging occurring.

Pro: More control and flexibility

With fewer processes for each step, boutique agencies often have more control and flexibility over their work. This means that you do too, since you have the final say. The small size of the team you are working with means that there is a lot more transparency — and thus accountability — that a boutique agency can offer you.

Pro: Niched and specialised

The only way boutique agencies are able to stand out in their field is if they find a niche that they are good at and position themselves as the leader in that niche. This way, they are able to compete with larger firms in the same industry.

Having a niche also helps them develop a stronger understanding of the work they do and thus allows them to hone their expertise in it, which may be something that a large firm is unable to offer. With their specialised knowledge, boutique agencies can then give advise on the best marketing strategies to undertake, leading to effective results.

What this means for you

MIU LLP | LinkedIn

Boutique agencies might not have many testimonials to go on, it’s true. However, this means that they rely a lot more on the outcome to prove their worth.

When it comes to a marketing agency, you need to discern which is the best partner to hire for your company.

Let us tell you — for a marketing plan to really succeed, you need to stick with it through and through. Long-term engagement is important, and if you don’t visualise yourself staying with the agency for a few years at least, then it is not the right one for you.

MIU offers a wide variety of services with comprehensive strategies to go along with it. As a client-oriented creative agency, we place a strong importance on the customer journey. Saying that we understand the importance of long-term engagement is not enough — this manifests in our policy of staying with our clients even after the work is done. With our diverse portfolio of work, we firmly believe that we can provide for you the service your company is looking for.

5 Creative Lessons We Can Learn from the Best Advertisements in Singapore

5 Creative Lessons We Can Learn from the Best Advertisements in Singapore

Advertising. Such a key component in marketing. Did you know that in 2018, the most watched ads on YouTube, by Singaporeans, were made in Singapore?

That’s right. According to the YouTube Ads Leaderboard itself, six of the top 10 ads in the first half of the year came from Singapore. In fact, the top 4 places were dominated by ads with a compelling and emotional story. What these ads do well in is portray a heartfelt story driven by a goal to connect, rather than to sell. And that’s the key to truly engage your consumers.

Evolve your advertising strategy with the times

In 1984, a psychologist by the name of Walter Fisher developed a communication theory that we can put to use when we talk about ads. Known as the narrative paradigm, it posits that humans, at our core, are storytellers, and thus we thrive on narrative communication.

This is perhaps one of the reasons why emotional content performed so well in the YouTube Ads Leaderboard. Since storytelling is one of the oldest modes of communication, humans today still make decisions and act within this narrative framework, approaching the social world in such a mindset.

With this knowledge, we can confidently construct effective ads that will capture the heart and minds of Singaporeans alone. Today, there are so many advertisements floating around in the digital space that it can be hard to stand out amidst the clutter sometimes. Here’s some lessons on how to better stand out that we can learn from the top ads themselves.

1. Disrupt the conventional

Singapore Airlines – The Briefcase: You’re never far from those you love

The Briefcase is an advertisement that balances the fine line between heartwarming and bittersweet. Inspired by the experiences of many travellers, The Briefcase captures this universal feeling of homesickness to bring us on a journey — even when we’re not flying.

Powerful yet emotive, this ad pulls on the heartstrings of its viewers and leaves them with a bittersweet feeling. By inspiring viewers to think about their families during the festive season, The Briefcase successfully manages to connect with its audience on a topic that all of us can relate to — family — driving home the tagline, You’re never far from those you love.

Produced by TBWA Singapore, the ad by the Paris-based agency taps into their core philosophy, “disruption”. Taking notes from Todorov’s narrative structure theory, TBWA Singapore seeks to “disrupt the peace” with the unconventional. Using this system, they identify recent changes or action in culture to develop their advertising strategy.

Todorov’s theory states that there are five stages of narration and that all stories begin in a state of equilibrium. Disruption – the second stage in the narrative cycle – refers to an event that disrupts the peaceful state of equilibrium. By using this theory to their advantage, TBWA manages to stand out amongst competitors and implement their own unique flavour in each of their ads.

2. Animation is key

GoBear

Not convinced with this advertisement? Animated videos are all the rage right now, particularly when it comes to explainer videos, and here’s why. 75% of adults turn to YouTube for nostalgia rather than tutorials or current events. With animation, your imagination is the limit.

In a way that live-action videos might be unable to, animation videos bring concepts to life and simplify them for viewers to easily digest. Just look at TED-Ed. Knowing how helpful animations can be in engaging their audience, they have begun incorporating it as part of their content.

Not only that, animation suits just about any marketing need imaginable. Be it explainer videos or other forms of content, marketers recognise this great trend and are all adopting it as part of their strategy. This might explain why more than 60% of the best explainer videos collected by Hubspot, Video Brewery and Switch Video are animated.

In fact, did you know that 92% of consumers watch videos with the sound off? And only 50% of them rely on captions to understand the video content!

You could be potentially losing 50% of your consumers just because your content is not reaching them. To rectify this, you need to make sure your video is able to portray whatever message you want to bring across. In this scenario, a live-action video might present some restraints where an animated video does not.

The ad by Invisible Artists does just that — it explains the brand perfectly while remaining concise and engaging. The adorable animation is what draws the audience in at first, where the topic of finance is then presented. Everyone needs money — so this is a perfect point to focus on since viewers can relate to it.

Invisible Artists is an award-winning company that has worked with famous brands like Coca-Cola, Facebook, and The Body Shop. In 2014, they were titled the Investment Into The UK Award, just three years after their establishment. This advertising agency has definitely proven its potential, to say the least.

3. Gamification

If you want to go above and beyond, the best way to capture your audience’s attention is to involve them in an activity. Sticking a video in front of their noses might work, but do you know what’s even better? Games!

The amount of information absorbed by a viewer cannot be calculated or determined even if they have watched your video — but you can be sure that your brand is going to leave an impression in their mind when you present them with an activity to engage in.

This is what Hashmeta does well. They understand how pivotal a game can be in propelling an advertising strategy to success, and capitalise on it to generate leads and engagement for their clients. Even a simple quiz can be quite entertaining, as you can see for yourself!

The advertisement for NTUC LearningHub in fact reached more than 8000 players. Better yet, the average number of times a user played was 2.09. That means that players were actually hooked onto the quiz itself that they decided to replay it once more! Talk about engagement. Certainly, games might be the future of online advertising, so why not jump into it now?

4. Use the environment to your advantage

What can we say? These creative environmental ads just blow our mind. By taking an ordinary space into something funny.

Billboarders are here to help — by going against the norm. Despite the soar in the popularity of digital marketing, they recognise the potential in physical space. Instead of going with the flow, they decided to think out-of-the-box and offer a multimedia solution instead.

By creating the idea of human billboards, Billboarders give business a chance to build interpersonal relationships with their consumers while at the same time seeming witty. Comprising professionals who interact with audiences, they are able to deliver advantages that no other medium can match.

Such an innovative way of advertising not only grabs immediate attention, but is also interactive and fun. Not to mention, these human billboards can go anywhere and anytime, based on your preferences!

If you have been searching for a clever and extremely unique concept for your next advertising campaign, consider Billboarders’ direct media solution of limitless opportunities and remarkable results.

5. Let others do it for you

Ahh, yes. Social media advertising is yet another at the height of the marketing industry. With 3.5 billion social media users worldwide, it is no wonder businesses are turning to such platforms to drive their advertising campaigns. Of these users, 1 billion of them are active monthly on Instagram.

We’ve talked about how sponsored videos get thrice more comments than sponsored photos. But we have not yet talked about the potential of Instagram Stories, and how you can tap into it to bring about the best benefits for your brand. So let us.

Just based on statistics alone, there are 500 million daily active stories users, of which one-third of the most viewed Instagram Stories stem from businesses. In fact, Socialbakers found that brands can generate over four times more interactions on Instagram compared to Facebook!

What does this mean? Well, perhaps it’s time to look beyond Instagram Ads and Instagram posts for marketing — and dive deep into the world of Instagram Stories. Your consumers are already using it, why shouldn’t you?

In fact, Stories stickers can increase video viewership 83% of the time. This means that there is a huge potential in grabbing consumers’ attention via Instagram stories, by creating your own branded stickers and filters.

Introducing the Spark AR Studio, Facebook now lets anyone create their own augmented reality filters, which means that businesses can use this tool to further their marketing needs. Filters can even be used while streaming on Instagram Live, which gives you even more reason to use it!

Here’s a little fun fact: the heart love sticker is the most popular Giphy sticker in Instagram Stories, and the most used face filter is the one with the heart eyes. With this interesting tidbit, perhaps you now have an idea of what sort of stickers and filters you want to create for your brand?

The Secret Little Agency partnered up with Circles Life to address one issue brought about by the pandemic. Targeting working adults who are now working from home, they adeptly created an Instagram filter for those who are too lazy to put on proper clothes when answering a work-related video call.

Comprising a few different “outfits”, these filters are not only available on Instagram but also on Snapchat, Zoom, and Google Hangouts. Talk about being handy! Indeed, this tongue-in-cheek advertising stunt brought about many laughs for consumers who had an amusing time playing around with the filters.

Is your brand in need of a clever advertising and marketing strategy?

If you thought the list above ended at the fifth point, you’re in for a treat. There are so many ways to creatively express yourself through different marketing stunts, the possibilities are endless. Why not let MIU think of one for you?

So if you’re looking for a professional company to kickstart your digital marketing campaigns, consider contacting us today. Get ready to go on the wildest journey with our crazy ideas and innovative experiences — for both you and your consumers.

Top Media Agencies in Singapore You’ve Never Heard of

Top Media Agencies in Singapore You’ve Never Heard of

With millions of media agencies out there, it can be difficult to find a market segment for potential customers. Having a defined marketing angle is but the key to thriving in the business of media planning and buying. While the basic responsibility of a media agency is to advise companies on how they can better advertise and present themselves to the public, there are plenty of ways one may do so. Here are some local media agencies that have carved out a niche for themselves based on their creative marketing.

5 best media agencies and their niche areas

Singsys Pte Ltd Profile, Reviews, Contact, Services | Singsys is a one stop  source for all your custom website design, iPhone, iPad and Android and  e-commerce application development.

1. Singsys – mobile app development

Many media agencies may boast of their web development services, but Singsys takes it a step further. Not only do they offer web design and web development services, but they also specialise in mobile web design and development as well. An increasing digital penetration rate means that there are plenty of internet users to market to. According to this study, 58% of site visits come from mobile devices. It is therefore important to put a focus on mobile development to attract the consumers there, and Singsys knows that. With expertise in iOS and Android app development, they are confident of providing a top-notch service that few other media agencies claim to have.

Hashmeta Pte Ltd

2. Hashmeta – gamification

Now that we all know that 58% of web visits stem from mobile devices alone, what better way to capture your audience’s attention than with online marketing? Hashmeta capitalises on their strong coding experience to up your digital marketing game… literally. With skills in gamification, Hashmeta creates more than an ad — they create an experience. From mini-games like spot the difference, catching games, and quizzes, audiences are hooked into the ad from the very start. To top it all off, Hashmeta ends their mini-games with vouchers that players can redeem. This allows them to generate leads and results in a win-win situation for both the consumer and the client!

Award Winning Digital Agency in Glasgow and London - Dog

3. Dog Digital – content management systems

Dog Digital places importance on its transparency with its clients. Right from the get-go, they do not shy away from revealing their digital marketing strategies. Content management systems such as Umbraco and Sitecore are a huge part of the tools they use — but these are not the secret to Dog’s success. The key ingredient is Dog Digital’s team of dedicated professionals that make sure consumers get the most personalised and seamless experience no matter where the content may be. Although Dog has a strong base in content marketing, they also offer other services (of which they also specialise in!) such as search engine optimisation, web and content architecture, as well as public relations and social media marketing.

Mother partners with The Secret Little Agency in Asia expansion | Campaign  US

4. The Secret Little Agency – immersive ads

If you’ve ever seen a Secret Little Agency ad, you will understand why they are so good at their job. By combining various elements to create a powerful multimedia ad, they easily and successfully intrigue any viewers that chance upon their advertisements, no matter the product or service being promoted. Just take a look at their portfolio! Hopping on the Animal Crossing bandwagon — whose popularity skyrocketed due to quarantine — The Secret Little Agency uses this adorable game to promote Deliveroo’s services. Another ad that they did for Grab saw them handing out water bottles to passengers across the island. After such an incredible stunt, customers’ had positive reinforcements towards the brand, and Grab’s user engagement on their social media actually doubled. Talk about impressive!

Wavemaker - IAB Southeast Asia & India

5. Wavemaker – positive provocation

Another agency that comes up with extremely creative ads is Wavemaker. You’d be surprised that their advertisements are even considered as one — because of how ingenious it is. What Wavemaker does differently is that they always make sure to include a positive provocation in all their ads. They did just that for Netflix, challenging the brand to take over the local television channel as their positive provocation. In order to promote Netflix’s original show Stranger Things, they broadcasted 80s movies back to back with fake throwback commercials weaved between. Indeed, with a heavy focus on user experience, their advertising solutions know no bound.

We’ve joined the club

Top media agencies in singapore blog image 2.jpg

MIU is another agency that goes beyond expectations by bringing you the best in their work. With plenty of media planning services offered, one thing MIU does right is having a client-focused digital marketing plan. As a creative agency, they’ve done their marketing research and know what’s up-and-coming in the industry. What they boast is their commitment to giving clients their 100%. Their unlimited design and epic SEO packages are created to serve their clients’ needs from start to finish — never stopping until results are seen. In fact, MIU strives to continue the communication between them and their clients even after the service has been rendered. After all, everyone wants long-lasting results — and that is what we’re here for.