Byravee Iyer
Oct 20, 2016

Facebook’s mobile pitch to retailers in SEA

Social network touts products that will help engage region’s mobile-first consumers.

Facebook’s mobile pitch to retailers in SEA

SINGAPORE - Retailers in the region must accelerate their mobile efforts to capture new opportunities and growth, according to Nicolas Franchet, head of ecommerce global vertical marketing for Facebook.

Franchet was speaking at ‘Mobile Moves Commerce’, an event hosted by Facebook.

“The economics of retail has been catering to the rule of stores,” Franchet said. “Everything is organised around large areas where there is a lot of inventory. But the rise of ecommerce is disrupting that and mobile is now becoming the most important touchpoint.”

To reinforce the point, Facebook asked brands to consider that two out of three Southeast Asians browse for products on mobile, one in two makes online purchases on mobile and ecommerce sales totaled $14 billion in 2016.

“Mobile is not just a technology—it is consumer behaviour and that is very important for this region.”

Apps are especially an important tool to connect with consumers; 85 percent of mobile time is spent on apps and 57 percent is spent on five apps. In Indonesia, for instance, 31 shopping apps drove 100,000 downloads this last year alone. Globally 29 shopping apps resulted in 10 million downloads.

“We’re seeing mobile commerce take off an incredible pace in this region as businesses learn which mobile stratgies work best for them,” said Sandhya Devanathan, country head for Facebook Singapore. “Our goal is to help businesses reach the more than 265 million people in Southeast Asia on Facebook and to get ahead in the shift to a mobile-first commerce landscape.”

The way to do this is by creating tools across the chain, the Facebook executives said. “We create thumbshopping experiences, build personal relevance connecting one-on-one with people on their phone and measure the value along their journey,” said Franchet.

Creating video content designed for the mobile experience is especially significant. Franchet said the social network’s users now watch 100 million hours of video everyday and by 2020 75 percent of all mobile data will be video. Facebook has seen a 300 percent increase in videos and time spent watching video on instagram grew 40 percent in the last six months.

Brands are hacking and innovating with tools like carousel ads and storytelling. “The idea is to have a fully immersive catalog like experience.”

Case Study: Uniqlo Hong Kong

The retailer boosted its carousel ads with a target block, raising awareness of its ‘Re-Jean’ campaign, and reached a wide spectrum of people in Hong Kong.

The campaign resulted in a 20-point lift in ad recall, a 14-point lift in campaign awareness and a 7 point lift in brand favourability. Additionally, there was a 7-point lift in message association between Uniqlo and Re-Jean.


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