Connecting with Youth in Asia with Patrick Rona

Connecting with Youth in Asia with Patrick Rona
Patrick Rona from McCann World Group discussed how brands should connect with youth & in Asia with different social media platforms from QQ to Snapchat.

Patrick Rona, chief digital officer in Asia Pacific from the McCann World Group, joined us on an interesting conversation about connecting with youth in Asia. Drawing from the McCann World Group’s recent study “Your Toughest Audience? Connecting with Youth”, we discussed how the youth market is defined, their habits and characteristics and the interesting observations on their behaviours and aspirations globally and also specifically for youths in Asia. We reviewed the emerging platforms from QQ to Snapchat that are dominant for the youth market in Asia and the best practices for brands to engage this customer group.

Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion (with time-stamps included):

  • Patrick Rona, Chief Digital Officer – Asia Pacific, McCann World Group (@pprona, LinkedIn)
    • How did you start your career in marketing and eventually lead to your current role? [1:22]
    • His role in the McCann World Group [3:10]
    • What are the interesting career lessons that you have learned? [3:55] 
  • Your Toughest Audience? Connecting with Youth [6:37]
    • How is the research report put together? [7:06]
      • Based on global research sample: 33,000+ Interviews, 32 Markets, 120+ Focus Groups. Specifically for the markets in APAC, the research included Japan, Korea, China, India, Hong Kong, Philippines, Australia, Thailand and the study covers those aged 16-30 but today we’re going to focus on 16-20, so called Generation Z. 
    • When we talk about youth, who are we talking about? [8:41] 
    • What are the characteristics of youth which are similar and yet different today? [10:04]
      • 25% of youth has sent out a “sext” message.
    • What are some of the interesting observations on youth as a whole? [13:55]
      • Characterisation of today’s youth as “super-species” in the evolution biology context. [14:18]
    • How does the youth today used the mobile smartphones? [16:09]
      • Making voice calls 
      • Sending Texts 
      • Sense of smell vs having a smartphone 
    • How does older and newer millennials split between real persona vs their social persona? [18:25]
    • Are the youth’s habits similar across US, Europe and Asia, barring certain cultural nuances? [20:15]
    • What are the rules for the youth today getting into social media, specifically for Asia where we use messaging apps such as QQ, Wechat and LINE?  [21:22]
      • Unwritten rules by youths today on how to behave in social media [21:45]
        • Don’t look like you are trying too hard.
        • Look like you are having fun.
        • Don’t over-edit your pictures.
      • The Instagram / Finstagram (Fake Instagram) phenomenon – kids today setting up 2 accounts [24:20]
    • What are the best practices for brand to engage the youths? [28:50]

Podcast Information:

The show is hosted by Bernard Leong (@bleongcw) and are sponsored by Ideal Workspace (Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn) with their new Altizen Desk on Indiegogo (Twitter, Facebook, Medium). Also check out Ideal Workspace’s new standing desk, Altizen and sign up for their mailing list. Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, “The Beginning” from Red Cliff Soundtrack.