Staff Reporters
Aug 13, 2018

Indonesia's top mobile-friendly brands

Which brands are first in the hearts of a mobile-first populace, and why?

Indonesia's top mobile-friendly brands

As part of our look at Indonesia's top brands of 2018, which is part of our Asia’s Top 1000 Brands report, we found that Indonesia consumers see Google, Samsung and Apple as the top mobile-friendly brands. We asked in-market observers for their insights.

Do you agree these brands are the most mobile-friendly? If so, what are they doing right?

Rajiv Lamba, Managing Director, Neurosensum: This is true but it is only a reflection of urban centers. In semi urban and rural areas brands like Oppo and Vivo are also popular due to their good distribution networks and affordable price points.

Samsung has ensured good presence both at the ATL and BTL level, good distribution, and is able to give a good in-store experience to its consumer. Factors like front line canvassers and its sales team also played an important role in improving product knowledge of Samsung products. Samsung also has products that cut across segments, and income groups.

Apple is seen as expensive but aspirational, with very easy to use interface, which makes it popular among upper income groups -- both individuals and families with kids. It has created a good Word of Mouth buzz and is also popular in second hand market.

Google has a good reach and equity across segments. Google features are getting popular in Indonesia as it customizes them for the Indonesian market. Consumers use Google a lot for search, maps and reviews. Google also has introduced some new products for Indonesia in Banasa Indonesia such as Google Station Wi-Fi, YouTube Go, and the Google Assistant. It also provides backend support to a lot of businesses in Indonesia and has recently announced an expansion of its digital training programs for developers, startups and small businesses. This makes Google not only a mobile friendly brand, but one of the most aspirational brands in Indonesia.

Andreas Christiadi, Head of Digital, VML Indonesia: Samsung and Apple are likely on the list because of their association with the smartphone category. Google, on the other hand, has been persistently expanding its mobile search/voice assistant footprint, which could be a contributing factor.

As part of its strategy to reach more emerging, mobile-first countries, it announced this April the launch of Google Assistant in Bahasa Indonesia for smartphones. This integration, designed to make communication easier, allows for more efficient mobile device usage and ultimately positions Google as a mobile-friendly brand.

Google is also partnering with OEM players, including Xiaomi, Sony Mobile, and LG to introduce better, on-device Assistant integrations for new Android devices – clearly, in this regard, it has an edge.

Umesh Phadke, President Director, PT L'Oreal Indonesia: All three brands are high on innovation, media spend on their innovations and a general buzz in the market about their innovations. I guess they have strengths in the following departments: 1) Consumer understanding -- insight and foresight to not just know what consumers want today but also to forecast what they will need tomorrow; 2) Engineering -- real and meaningful innovations; 3) Media / PR -- the ability to create buzz and excitement out of the above.

Which social media platforms can really make or break brands in Indonesia? Give us some brand examples?

Lamba: Most of the brands in Indonesia are using platforms like Google, Facebook, Instagram, Youtube and Twitter. But I believe moving forward brands will also start using other social media platforms like Halodoc, Alodokter, Orami, Happy Fresh, etc. to achieve personalized targeting. Most of the companies are grappling with the ROI of online advertising but these smaller brands will be able to provide more targeted/personalized marketing depending on the brand needs.

Christiadi: At present, Facebook and YouTube are definitely the most impactful. In the lead up to the upcoming elections, however, Facebook has been faced with the threat of being shut down if it fails to tackle fake news and data breaches. In the event it fails to comply, we can expect brands that advertise on Facebook to suffer.

Instagram, which declared Indonesia as its largest community in Asia Pacific with more than 45 million monthly active users, is also a force to be reckoned with. Brands in the beauty, fashion and lifestyle categories in particular, have been able to drive engagement on the platform.

Partha Kabi, Technical Advisor, MediaCom: Indonesians use lesser number of digital platforms than their counterparts from other countries. Facebook is by far the largest. There are other popular ones such as Instagram, Whatsapp, Line, Blackberry Messenger and a bit of Twitter. However, each is used for a different purpose and is well segmented.

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