With the current boom in growth, Internet usage around the world has been dominated by users from more than 20 different Asia-Pacific countries, creating a dynamic APAC market.
This market includes East Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia, and Oceania. It’s a “tasty piece of cake” for brands who want to expand their market and promote their image globally.
In fact, the Asia Pacific (APAC) is one of the regions that take up the most significant number of digital users. Specifically, in 2019, China has added up to 50 million users.
With cultural, religious, and linguistic diversity, entering and developing into the APAC market is an excellent opportunity for businesses to foster creativity and innovation.
With the right strategy, brands can completely succeed and bring great experiences to this economy.
Helpful facts about Asia Pacific video trends
Bangladesh and Indonesia are on the list
Some of the APAC countries both watch more video content than others across YouTube and Facebook. In particular, the regions that are leading the audience growth from H1 2018 vs. H1 2019 are Bangladesh, Indonesia, and the Philippines.
On Youtube, Bangladesh's view of growth grew 61%, just behind Indonesia, which grew 80%. Bangladesh and Indonesia dominated the APAC region on Facebook, with a growth rate of 166% and 162%, respectively, from H1 2018 compared with H1 2019.
There have also been significant achievements in other APAC countries. For instance:
The Philippines has jumped 52% in YouTube views. This is particularly impressive, while India increased its views by only 53% despite a much larger population and thus a wider audience.
Myanmar, a significant outlier that grew its view on Facebook by 90%.
New Zealand that's not far behind Myanmar, has a Facebook growth of 79%.
All these data show the hunger for more video content among Asia Pacific audiences. But exactly what kind?
Audiences of YouTube in the APAC region like people & blogs
Everybody prefers what video content they like to watch. For instance, YouTube viewers in the APAC region have been particularly fond of people and blogs.
The genre of people & blogs took much of the view growth on YouTube throughout the Asia Pacific market from H1 2018 compared with H1 2019. In Indonesia and Australia, views on this content grew by 80% and 31%.
The development of people and blog content implies a desire to connect more personally and intimately with creators and publishers. APAC viewers love T-series and K-pop content as well, but they also want to see how others live their lives.
Other content that people in APAC interested in during this period
Beauty content views increased by 53% in India, people and blogs ranked second in this popular category.
The Japanese increased their views on business content by 29%.
In India and Australia, news & politics ranked second in the top four, while the travel topic ranks second in Japan, and stays in the top four in Indonesia.
Education was Japan and Australia's fourth-largest genre of growth.
Audiences don’t use Facebook for the same purposes. Indeed, the rapidly growing genres on that platform differ significantly from YouTube.
Asia Pacific viewers want various content on Facebook
There's no genre to refer to when it comes to the top video content on Facebook in APAC. Instead, a number of content types have contributed to the overall growth of this region on this platform.
Music & Dance, for instance, is the hottest category from H1 2018 to H1 2019 in Japan, with the growth of children's entertainment being followed closely. Australia, however, preferred certain informative business content.
In Indonesia or India, none of these genres were the main preferences. Indonesians preferred lots of content about home & DIY, with animals and pets stayed in second place.
Whereas Indians were obsessed with gaming (which also placed third in Australia for fastest-growing genres).
In India, it was the viral clip of gaming personality Xzit Thamer with 19.4M views, which is the Facebook gaming video with the highest 30-day view (V30) from H1 2019.
The video with the top 30-day participation rate (ER30) was an esports live stream of Dota 2 at 10x+, approximately ten times higher than the average engagement rate on the platform!
Audiences from Asian countries also followed those topics:
News & Politics: Second place in Australia and India
Film & movies: 4th in Australian, 3rd in Indonesian
Cars, trucks, and racing: 3rd in Japan (not so much an anomaly when you consider Toyota and Nissan uploaded videos that were almost about this topic during H1 2019)
All these genres and many more contributed to the growth of Facebook overviews in the APAC region in H1 2019.
How to grow your audiences in the Asia Pacific
So, what are you supposed to learn from the data? How can you do it yourself?
The APAC region can be regarded as a hard nut to crack – but it’s just because it’s unique. Every successful market entry starts with an understanding of the market, and for APAC, you should remember it’s mobile-first.
APAC users are mobile, and many have skipped a desktop generation. This is because mobile devices are more affordable and much easier to access.
That’s why In NA and EMEA, mobile will therefore be an option for some experiences, but in the APAC region, mobile is the default experience. The data also shows that APAC users regularly buy from mobile devices using digital payment methods.
Brands can leverage these components for a successful expansion, based on a clear understanding of the unique APAC’s e-Commerce experience.
You should now be obvious: brands, media publishers, creators, and firms that are not yet present in the APAC region should immediately establish one. Many eyeballs are ready to watch your creation.
Although Asia Pacific-based brands and publishers already have a strong point, since they have built their reputation with their audiences, improvement is always necessary.
To successfully promote your brand in the Asia Pacific, you can consider some strategies below:
Don’t start something too “big”
While you may be tempted to make efforts for large countries such as China and India, the massive growth of views in Bangladesh and Indonesia proves that these countries are ready to watch your creation.
To set up a good base for your start, you should determine which countries in the APAC group would suit your video strategy in particular.
Find the shortages
As Facebook and Youtube have many genres that attract APAC groups, it’s time you should join the game. Video data and even measurement can assist you in identifying your competitors' unique shortages, which can be used as potential opportunities.
Determine the best platform
As you have read above, audiences in Asia-Pacific have certain preferences for both YouTube and Facebook. Your mission now is to find which is your brand's best and most suitable platform? In which can you expand quickly?
Based on the audience insights, what platform is best suitable for this genre?
Concentrate on mobile content and services
APAC had a 4,214 billion population in 2018, with more than 2 billion people actively surfing the net. Of those 2 billion people on the Internet, 1,7 trillion are social media users active, and 1,713 billion are mobile users specifically.
GlobalData provided another landscape report stating that “the development of Internet and smartphone, as well as the proliferation of alternative payment methods, are three major factors boosting the adoption of eCommerce in Asia-Pacific.
That same report estimated "e-Commerce transactions made $1.6 billion in APAC in 2018, while China alone contributed $1.2 trillion to that total."
Simply put, the APAC is both a massive and mobile global buying power. Brands can reach these users by customizing content on smartphones, tablets, and even smart speakers using voice search.
Localize your content
The market in the Asia Pacific is enormous. However, not all the countries of the region are the same. They have hundreds of languages, multiple religions, diverse geographies, and overall economic development spoken on both ends of the spectrum.
Brands need to approach content locally carefully for each country or even city. For example, APAC consists of Oceania countries, including Australia, and Asian nations such as China, Japan, and South-Korea – each has its own distinct cultures.
Organizations can build a thorough understanding of each unique region, even at the city level, thanks to a proper plan and research.
According to McKinsey research, “brands will do better by focusing more on an urban area than by focusing on an entire country as one market."
This is an interesting difference. Over the past 10 years, people living in rural areas moving to the growing cities have reached a high growth.
"In developing and emerging Asia, cities are by far the primary node of mass consumption, and their importance will certainly be increased in the future.
There are more than half of all Tokyo or Osaka consumers living in Japan. A fifth of South Korea people is living in Seoul."
Transcreation, not only translation
Transcreation and translation are not identical while they are in the same family. Translation replaces existing contents in a new language, while transcreation aims to create entirely new contents that capture the overall brand tone, sense, and voice.
Messages which are written for one target segment, or audience usually don’t resonate with a whole new group.
The result is a brand new message that will be targeted and localized, with translation using new words that can convey the same message in a different language.
Transcreation allows your brand to offer tailor-made content for the unique elements of each region's culture, rather than a single content that doesn’t correspond to new audiences.
This is particularly pertinent for APAC, which differs in culture between cities and countries.
Other general factors to remember when entering a new market
Analyze the market
To successfully enter a new market, you should analyze it in various ways (this took you around 2 months).
You can conduct customer development interviews to understand the key customers, their pain points, difficulties, and potential solutions.
This helps you understand how to modify the product’s story to improve your proposals, key triggers accordingly.
These detailed interviews should give you a more nuanced view of the market from the customer's perspective.
You should also communicate with local companies (the ideal benchmark is someone who has the same business model and price level).
In addition, you can consult companies that have expanded successfully to this market, to learn about potential pitfalls and problems (infrastructure issues, paying systems, etc.).
Raise your brand awareness
Never underestimate the importance of brand awareness and trust, as they are crucial for market compatibility.
Nobody knows you, your product, or your concept when you enter a new market.
Therefore, you must use sufficient channels to sensitize your brand. This can be accomplished in many ways, such as: local partnership, collaborating with influencers, PR, local ambassadors, and feedback on websites.
It's crucial because people you try to reach must see and know who you are in many ways - an ideal option is having someone else recommend you.
Another great way is to encourage people to offer honest feedback on your product/service.
With its strong growth, APAC is an area worth researching and participating in. There may be some difficulties at first, but if you do research seriously and apply the advice in this article, sooner or later, your brand will have a firm foothold in this potential market.
Start with the above strategies, fine-tune the content, process, and goals to suit each stage, culture, customs, and region habits to get positive feedback from Asia Pacific region users. We believe you will be surprised to see what this new market offers you in 2021.
Statistics reference: Tubular