Marketing in Singapore: Embracing Campaign Goals Over Metrics - eMarketer
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Marketing in Singapore: Embracing Campaign Goals Over Metrics

November 17, 2017 | Advertising

Germaine Ng Ferguson
General Manager, Integrated Solutions and Analysis

Advances in Singapore’s advertising ecosystem leave the space rife with opportunity for brand advertisers. But before they take the next step, brands need to rethink the narrow metrics they use to measure success. Germaine Ng Ferguson, general manager of integrated solutions and analysis at Singapore-based telecom StarHub, spoke with eMarketer’s David Green about the state of the country’s advertising market and why some brands have the wrong approach to campaign metrics.

eMarketer: StarHub recently partnered with Nielsen to do TV audience measurement. Why are digital publishers and media owners shifting to work with third-party verifiers?

Germaine Ng Ferguson: For [our television audience measurement system] SmarTAM, 100% of the first-party data is coming from our set-top boxes. But even for that data, we worked with Nielsen as a verifier because they are known in the industry. This helps build trust with our advertisers.

In February, Google and Facebook opened themselves up for verification. That’s a good sign that digital platforms are moving toward what traditional media is used to—verified data. But it’s important for brands to understand that the more they ask for verification, there are always costs.

“Digital platforms are moving toward what traditional media is used to—verified data.”

eMarketer: In the digital advertising ecosystem, what ad formats are most popular at the moment?

Ferguson: A lot of digital consumption in Singapore is actually on foreign websites. Because of that, brands tend not to produce too many different types of ad formats. The Interactive Advertising Bureau ad units are still the most common, simply because of the availability of inventory.

We are focusing on video ads to see how we can leverage dynamic creative optimization and personalization in both video and display. This ad format would use existing video ad formats, but also lay a display banner on top of the videos. The display banner is created dynamically according to the target audience. It’s a lot more appealing to the audiences than just a plain static display ad.

“Some clients have their own benchmarks, and this is where some are being too demanding.”

eMarketer: As ad formats evolve, how have the conversations you’re having with brands changed?

Ferguson: Some clients have their own benchmarks, and this is where some are being too demanding. For example, 100% viewability is not possible all of the time.

Some brands are fixated on one particular metric rather than overall campaign metrics. A campaign should result in an objective such as audience lift, some type of awareness or improved ad recall. This is where there’s sometimes a gap between brands and a media owner.

eMarketer: What else is on the horizon in the digital advertising space?

Ferguson: We’re starting to explore second-party data sharing with partners. We’ve been working on our first-party data to support our own internal marketing and at the same time, we want to enable advertisers to leverage our media sales capabilities.

We’re also looking at artificial intelligence to help us with audience segmentation. We just started exploring this area because we think it’ll offer a lot of value.


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