KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia, April 21, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- SY Lau, Senior Executive Vice President of Tencent and President of its Online Media Group (OMG), today addressed the Malaysian CMO Conference in Kuala Lumpur and spelled out the development of China's Internet, and particularly the mobile Internet, which has changed the lifestyles of millions of Chinese. He pointed to the need for all Chief Marketing Officers to embrace digitalization to meet consumer demand and transformed the way marketing is carried out.
The Internet has become a driving force for the entire Chinese economy, with its impact on businesses and consumers gradually deepening and becoming more generalized, he said. According to research from BCG, the Internet economy accounts for up to 5.5% of China's national GDP, the third highest percentage in the world. Growth is expected to be 6.9% in 2016, surpassing the U.S, the EU and other developed economies.
"China has now entered the era of Digitalization 3.0," SY Lau told the audience, "in which the Internet has become a mainstream media that has altered the media landscape and impacted how marketing budgets are allocated."
"In Digitalization 3.0, buyers are always looking for new products and services at lower prices and will take to social media to sharply express their dissatisfaction with suppliers who do not remain competitive," said SY Lau. Whenever consumers are offered better service at lower prices, they will raise their expectations of every other supplier in the same area.
SY Lau warned the audience of the need for marketers to be ever mindful of the power of disruptors who use creative marketing and innovation to attract customer. Disruptors, he said, are not necessarily pure Internet companies or traditional industry leaders. "Most of the time, they're nobodies. But they can still beat you in totally unexpected ways!"
Marketers must continue to innovate to stay a step ahead of disruptors, SY Lau told the audience that CMOs must adapt to the era of "Digitalization 3.0," meaning they must develop a new set of competencies rather than simply offering marketing services. Marketers in China, he said, have become masters of navigating the terrain of technology, a model that should be adopted by CMOs everywhere.
SY Lau noted that he was born in Malaysia and lived the past 20 years in China, giving him a unique perspective on Internet development in both countries. He believes that digital services in Malaysia are attracting increasing numbers of users and "the digital wave of Digitalization 3.0" would come to Malaysia soon.
Earlier in the year, SY Lau was named Cannes Lions 2015 Media Person of the Year, an award that has been shared in the past by visionaries from Google, Facebook and HBO.