Parallel Worlds – Asia’s Personalization of Mass Media

Manolo Almagro, Weekly Columnist

On June 8th, 2010,  I had the great honor and opportunity to be one of the speakers at the “Personalization of Mass Media” Conference, held at the super swank Shangri-la Hotel -Makati, Philippines.

The conference was well attended by approximately 250+ invited VIP guests, which just so happened to be the agency’s top clients and the country’s biggest brands.

The most refreshing part of the conference was the roster of speakers (not including myself, of course) ZenithOptimedia collected an elite group of the region’s visionaries that currently work in traditional media to talk about how digital experiences and social media has changed their industry.

A very impressive keynote was delivered by Mr. Harpreet Kaintel – the Chief Strategy Officer for Zenith Optimedia Asia Pacific. He outlined successful case studies of campaigns around the region that made the mass communication channel – personal. In all cases, the strategy was to create unique multi-channel experiences that included both traditional and digital approaches.

Key Highlights:

  • Exec. broadcast TV executive talked about the explosion of “mobile phone citizen journalism” and how local on-line crowd-sourcing get’s news reports out to the public much faster than traditional means, it was also mentioned that less and less 18-35 year olds read the newspaper to get their news.
  • A magazine publisher explained how her readers expected on-line versions of her magazine to be different that the print version – not just a repackaged digital format of the same content. She also explained that print magazine ads were more effective when combined with an interactive digital activation component.
  • An executive from the radio industry explained that social media and online communities are mined for insights into what their listeners want out of talk shows and music programming.
  • An unassuming- yet dashingly handsome international technology correspondent from the DailyDOOH, evangelized on how to create engaging digital experiences for out of home venues, by highlighting various regional campaigns he is launching. His unique approach integrated mobile + UGC + social media as the way to engage and sustain the conversation between brands and their customers.

I’ve said it before – digital out of home in Asia is getting more than just lip-service from the regions media agencies. When a reputable agency like ZenithOptimedia gives a nod to place based media, enough to include it in their annual conference, you can bet big things are on the horizon for our industry.

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