25 October 2020

The Digital Mindset of Business Leaders in Asia Pacific

Prioritising Digital Experiences Report

In 2021 the difference between surviving and thriving will be memorable digital experiences. In partnership with Ecosystm and Sitecore, AKQA has commissioned a study. Six hundred industry leaders from across the Asia Pacific region had their digital mindsets assessed, including the role this plays in how organisations are evolving to meet the demands of the connected customer.

AKQA’s our purpose is to create impactful brand experiences, reshaping our client’s organisations and technology around their customer’s needs. Consumer expectations have evolved faster than organisational structures and processes. For brands to truly embrace a connected customer experience approach, leaders need to be ready to drive the vision of their organisation as a whole, align systems and unite their siloed functions in the delivery of this vision. When an organisation and its leaders are on board to make the changes required, the transformation of a brand can begin and importantly, follow through for the long term.

The report found that digital experiences are more necessary than ever. Social distancing, remote working and local or national shutdowns have forced customers online and employees apart. Businesses and government agencies are required to accelerate and refocus their digital transformations to satisfy changing customer needs.

AKQA Asia Pacific leaders share their views and reflections on the current landscape and recommendations:

Foundations for the future

On the role of the Marketer in Covid and post-Covid times, Sam Sterling, Chief Strategy Officer AKQA, Asia Pacific said:

“It’s very different in each market, but I’d like to believe this year’s circumstances have made marketers that bit bolder and braver. Importantly it has made everyone more careful with their money, less keen on big bets and more in favour of small tests, where the winners get backed and the rest fuel knowledge for future tests. It’s a habit I’m hoping more will cultivate!
To be successful brands and businesses need to have good foundations both in terms of scaling, but also to fall back on in challenging times. Now, perhaps more than ever, is absolutely the moment to innovate, get creative, and be agile in response to evolving market conditions. It is not the time for building weak foundations or throwing form out the window.
There are so many tools available to brands today with which to build and scale these powerful foundations. The trick is to implement them comprehensively and then curate and interpret them through the lens of your particular business and brand, so as to build and sustain a competitive advantage and offer customers an alluring alternative to the status quo.”

One size doesn’t fit all

When creating unique customer experiences, Eric Orton, Executive Technology Director AKQA, ANZ said:

“Keeping up with and making the right technology decisions is one of the biggest challenges facing marketing teams today. As customer expectations continue to change, we see lots of marketing teams struggling to make the right technology choices to respond. This is made harder by technology vendors putting themselves forward as the one solution regardless of the problem, and not being able to connect the technology capability to marketing outcomes.”
“We spend a lot of time helping customers make the right MarTech decisions by starting with the experience they are trying to create for their customer. Once that’s understood it’s easier to understand the right technology solutions needed to deliver the customer experience.”
“There is not a once size fits all approach to digital experience. We believe strongly in the balance of art and science in our work. It can be easy to fall into the science & process of creating a digital experience leaving you with a generic outcome. A strong creative balance is essential to ensure your digital experiences created are strongly rooted in the culture of your customers and tells your brand’s story properly in the moment.”
“It’s fantastic that so many companies are working to align their digital experiences around their customer needs. Companies who do this well are going further to recognise that customers don’t segment their view of the business by channel, so when considering customer journeys, it’s important to look at the full picture of how your customers are engaging with your business beyond just digital touchpoints.
It’s also not a once and done exercise. Strong experience-focused businesses continue to learn and evolve their views of the customer journey as they strive to remove pain points across touchpoints and better engage their customers.”

Read the full Digital Mindset of Business Leaders in Asia Pacific report.