Staff Reporters
Jun 29, 2020

Asia-Pacific Power List 2020: Emily Wong, AS Watson

With degrees in music and physics, Emily Wong's background blends art and science. So does her approach to marketing one of the world's leading health and beauty retailers.

Asia-Pacific Power List 2020: Emily Wong, AS Watson
Asia-Pacific’s 50 most influential and purposeful marketers

Emily Wong

Customer director, Watsons International
AS Watson Group
Hong Kong

In addition to an MBA and marketing experience in foodservice, F&B and health and beauty, Emily Wong also holds a master’s degree in music and studied math and physics in her undergraduate days. So it’s fitting that she brings a blend of art and science to her regional role leading marketing for one of the world’s biggest health and beauty retailers.

Under Wong the brand has sought to build emotional bonds with customers, but also grounds its efforts in a firm belief in data science. Insights from keyword searches, social listening and the chain’s loyalty program support brand growth by virtue of understanding customer behaviour. For example a VIP loyalty programme launched in 2019 delivers money-can’t-buy experiences, such as celebrity meet-and-greet opportunities and workshops, specifically to the high-spending members who collectively contribute 25% of the company’s sales. The loyalty programme also provides a back-channel for feedback about the shopping experience, allowing Wong to further refine marketing strategies. 

For three years, Watsons’ 'Get Active' programme has engaged with customers by offering events such as Zumba in Malaysia and Taiwan. The company also undertakes a health study to provide deep understanding of customers. 

On the CRM front, last year Wong and Watsons launched Watsons One Pass, which grew out of a study that showed customers preferred to shop at Watsons even while travelling. As a result, One Pass members overseas get the same benefits and earn the same points they would in their home market.

Wong’s efforts have paid off, as the brand continues to expand—it now has more than 7,600 stores spanning Greater China and Southeast Asia, as well as Turkey, Ukraine and Russia—and has been the top APAC pharmacy/drugstore brand in our Asia’s Top 1000 Brands report since 2009.    

Asia-Pacific’s 50 most influential and purposeful marketers


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