Phew! Over a billion online in APAC

10 Jul,2012

By A Correspondent


The Asia Digital Marketing Association (ADMA), in co-operation with leading digital marketing companies and research houses, has published the sixth annual Asia Pacific Digital Marketing Yearbook. Among the thousands of facts and data points, readers will learn that 46 per cent of the world’s online population – 1.016 billion people – is now in Asia Pacific, of whom 623 million access the web via mobile.


Although this enormous and growing addressable market seems to hold boundless business potential for marketers, the reality is more complicated – and more interesting.


The Yearbook is compiled for marketers, advertisers, and their agencies, to help them understand and maximise the digital potential of their business in the region. The 2012 Yearbook has more information than ever before on online demographics, user behaviour, online advertising, mobile, e-commerce and social media.


“The billion people online in Asia Pacific are spread across more than 14 countries, with a wide range of languages, cultures and online habits. More than half of them (513 million) are in China, which has its own media properties and consumer dynamics. In fact, seven of the top eleven sites in the region are in China,” said David Ketchum, ADMA Chairman.


“Across the rest of Asia Pacific there is remarkable diversity; the way people use the web and interact with content and with one another differs significantly from Australia, to Korea, to Indonesia, to India. The Yearbook helps marketers make sense of what works where in Asia’s increasingly social, local and mobile web environments,” he added.


The one billion user number is made up of hundreds of thousands of communities of users, spread across a wide variety of devices and platforms, languages and cultures, and who use the web in a profusion of different ways.


The data in the ADMA Yearbook send a clear message: it’s time for marketers to get local and get personal.  The implications and opportunities are far-reaching:

  • Social media continues to gain in importance, but brands have to proceed with caution. Although 60 per cent of social networkers say that social networks are a good place to learn about brands, 50 per cent also say they don’t want to be bothered by brands.
  • As in past years, people still put the most trust in recommendations from friends and family over all other media channels (with 52 per cent of users in Asia Pacific trusting friends and family completely as compared with newspaper and magazine ads at 14 per cent).
  • Social commerce is on the rise, and marketers can deploy sophisticated, personalised approaches, depending on where they are in the sales funnel, to build brand awareness and understanding, create brand preference, make sales, and do CRM.
  • Search remains vital to helping customers find your brand and for you to find your audience. With crowd-sourced curation of content, natural search rises in importance and complexity, and paid search is still effective for driving “last click” results.  Search/navigation properties in the region have 84.7 per cent reach.
  • Despite the rise of social media and user-generated content, paid, owned and earned media all continue to play important roles in achieving marketing goals.
  • Although in this fragmented environment marketers must work harder to understand and find their target customers, analytics, behavioural targeting and big data are providing more and more powerful tools for marketers to reach and engage with internet users in personalised ways.


The Yearbook, compiled by editor Rachel Oliver from government, industry, company and research data, is the single most comprehensive source available for the Asia Pacific region.


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