ASIA-PACIFIC CORPORATE SOCIAL MEDIA STUDY 2011

AMManagement

Nov 25, 2011 (5 years and 9 months ago)

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Burson-Marsteller Asia-Pacific is the leading consultancy for organisations communicating in Asia-Pacific and internationally. With a presence in the region dating back to 1973, Burson-Marsteller Asia-Pacific today includes 34 offices and affiliates in 16 countries integrated seamlessly into a global network operating in 98 countries. Our evidence-based approach to communications provides our clients with effective, data-driven programs delivered through multiple channels and focused on tangible, measurable results. Our team of more than 700 professionals offers a powerful combination of local knowledge, sector expertise and global communications reach. For more information, please visit burson-marsteller.asia.

HOW
ASIAN
COMPANIES
ARE
ENGAGING
STAKEHOLDERS
ONLINE
ASIA-PACIFIC CORPORATE
SOCIAL MEDIA STUDY
2011
Burson-Marsteller Asia-Pacific

is the leading consultancy for
organisations communicating in
Asia-Pacific and internationally.
With a presence in the region dating
back to 1973, Burson-Marsteller
Asia-Pacific today includes 34
offices and affiliates in 16 countries
integrated seamlessly into a global
network operating in 98 countries.
Our evidence-based approach
to communications provides our
clients with effective, data-driven
programs delivered through multiple
channels and focused on tangible,
measurable results. Our team of
more than 700 professionals offers
a powerful combination of local
knowledge, sector expertise and
global communications reach. For
more information, please visit
burson-marsteller.asia
.
© Burson-Marsteller Asia-Pacific, 2011. All rights reserved
This study is made available under a Creative Commons
Attribution 3.0 Unported License.
T A B L E O F
CONTENTS
2 Introducton
3 Executive Summary
4 Methodology
6 Corporate Use of Social Media
13 A Case for Open Digital Leadership
15 Use of Social Media by Market

16 Australia
17 China
18 Hong Kong
19 India
20 Indonesia
21 Japan
22 Malaysia
23 Philippines
24 Singapore
25 South Korea
26 Taiwan
27 Thailand
29 Approach to Corporate Social Media
& Next Steps
33 Company-Market Index
34 Further Reading
35 Acknowledgements & Contacts

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BURSON-MARSTELLER ASIA-PACIFIC
W
h e n we c o n d u c t e d
Burson-Marsteller’s first
annual Corporate Social
Media Study in 2010, it
was striking that Asian companies
were eyeing social media tentatively,
even skepti cal l y, fearful of what
might happen should someone post
something negative on their online
front-door.
This year, despite many more firms
dipping their toes in the social swirl,
it is clear that Asian firms remain
reluctant to get involved in open online
discussions, in part because they
tend to be highly conscious of their
image and fearful of publicly losing face, in part as they realize
– correctly – that committing to social media is not something
to be done lightly.
Let’s face it, social media isn’t for every occasion. Using the
web to lobby governments accustomed to hammering out
deals in smoke-filled rooms will probably miss its target, and
may simply alienate officials. The business media remain a
more credible source of information, news and analysis than
Sina Weibo or YouTube for board directors. Most senior
decision-makers are uncomfortable with the concept of
blogging on industry issues and having to defend difficult or
controversial decisions openly.
But for most audiences, the Internet and social media are
indispensible to their working and personal lives, for talking,
sharing ideas, meeting new people, conducting research and
making decisions. If you’re under 30 you’re unlikely to pick
up a newspaper – news is consumed in bite-sized chunks
between stretches of work, networking and gaming.
To reach and persuade stakeholders
today, it is not just the vocabulary and
tone of corporate marketing that must
evolve. More important, companies
must adopt a mi ndset that puts
listening and acting genuinely and
transparently front and centre. And
they must understand how to deal
with negative feedback expressed
publ i cl y that coul d resonate and
escalate.
When the upside is a greater ability
to reach and i nfl uence corporate
stakeholders of all types, and the
downside is appearing disinterested
or irrelevant, companies have little
option but to participate on social platforms.
I hope you enjoy this study. If you have any questions,
comments or suggestions, feel free to post them to our
Facebook page at:
http://www.facebook.com/bursonmarsteller.asia
We’d love to hear from you.
Sincerely,
Bob Pickard
President & CEO
Burson-Marsteller Asia-Pacific
bob.pickard@bm.com
@bobpickard
INTRODUCTION
Bob Pickard
CORPORATE SOCIAL MEDIA REPORT 2011

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EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
Social media is now a key channel for corporate
marketing and communications across Asia

Top Asian companies are placing greater emphasis on
deploying social media channels for corporate marketing
and communications, with 81% of firms covered - double
the number across Asia in 2010
1
and almost on a par with
84% of Fortune 100 companies
2
- now using branded
social media channels.

South Korean and Chinese companies are most active
in their use of social media for corporate marketing,
especi al l y to domesti c audi ences. However, many
companies also view social media as a means to build
awareness amongst international stakeholders.

While few top Asian companies have no corporate
presence or voice in social media, firms in Taiwan and
Singapore continue to use social media sparingly, a
reflection of their conservative business cultures.
Corporate social media strategies remain short-
term and piecemeal

Despite corporate marketing taking advantage of an
ever greater array of social media platforms, over half of
these branded accounts are ‘inactive’. The great majority
of social media channels are used primarily for product
marketing campaigns, which are rarely updated after the
campaign has ended.

Few Asian companies have set up social media channels
specifically for corporate marketing or communications
purposes, with most opting to piggy-back on consumer
channels. While this one-size-fits-all approach enables
firms to reach an established community quickly, it
also means that it can prove more difficult over time to
segment users and target them with relevant corporate
news and information.

Most firms are failing to promote their social profiles
through their websites, implying that they continue to
regard their efforts as pilots and remain wary of negative
discussions ‘over-spilling’ on to their core owned assets.
Conti nued corporate f ocus on pushi ng
i nf or mat i on, r at her t han st akehol der
engagement

Social media provides companies with an opportunity to
use content and dialogue to drive user interest, sharing
and advocacy. However, most firms are making little effort
to engage audiences in corporate-related discussions,
preferring instead to push content at users in a manner
consistent with ‘traditional’ public relations and marketing.

The most popular use of social media for corporate
purposes across Asi a i s to rei nforce and extend
ongoing media and influencer outreach. Engaging core
stakeholders on ‘softer’ topics such as Corporate Social
Responsibility or Thought Leadership as a means of
stimulating questions or feedback take a back seat.

In a similar vein, other than in South Korea and China,
very few Asian firms use overtly two-way communications
channels such as corporate blogs for corporate marketing
purposes, despite their value in helping explain complex
topi cs. Mi cro-bl ogs are the preferred standal one
corporate marketing channel.
Corporate digital storytelling remains in its
infancy

While video is hugely popular on the Internet, the great
majority of company video sharing channels are product
marketing vehicles. Corporate use of video in Asia is
mostly limited to illustrating good social deeds and some
leadership communications.

Accordi ngl y, compani es are mi ssi ng a si gni fi cant
opportunity to bring alive their activities in ways that
audiences can relate to and might want to share with
others.
1 Asia-Pacific Corporate Social Media Study 2010, Burson-Marsteller – October 2010
2 Global Social Media Check-Up, Burson-Marsteller – February 2011

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BURSON-MARSTELLER ASIA-PACIFIC
METHODOLOGY
T
hi s study assesses corporate marketi ng and
communications activity on top social media channels
by 120 of Asia’s leading companies. Companies were
selected from the Wall Street Journal Asia 200 Index
of Asia’s leading companies as determined by executives
and professionals across Asia-Pacific. The top 10 companies
per country were selected. A full list of companies surveyed
is available on page 33 of this study. The countries studied
were: Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan,
Malaysia, The Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan
and Thailand.
Corporate marketing is defined as: Media and Influencer
Rel ati ons; Corporate Soci al Responsi bi l i ty; Thought
Leadership; Leadership Communications; Crisis and Issues
Management; Recruitment Marketing.
Social media channels analysed comprised the top social
networks, micro-blogs, video sharing and corporate blogging
platforms per country – hosted on third party platforms and/
or website-based.
Data was collected in July 2011 by Burson-Marsteller’s Asia-
Pacific digital and research teams. Accounts were considered
‘active’ if they had at least one post by the company on or
between July 1st and 15th, 2011.
CORPORATE SOCIAL MEDIA REPORT 2011

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ASIA-PACIFIC CORPORATE
USE OF SOCIAL MEDIA

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BURSON-MARSTELLER ASIA-PACIFIC
S
oci al medi a has been a buzz phrase for some
time now, yet its impact and its relevance remain
questioned. For some, these new channels are a
byword for disruption and loss of control, for others
it’s a wonderful opportunity to expand cost-efficiently into new
customer segments and markets and to build real interest
and loyalty in one’s brand.
Consumers are pointing the way forward, taking to micro-
blogs, social networks, mobile social applications and other
tools with ease and often breathtaking
enthusiasm. Social media of different
types now domi nate I nter net use,
with Facebook leading online time in
Australasia, Hong Kong and across a
swathe of Southeast and South Asia,
while domestic players such as Tencent,
Naver, FC2 and Wretch are hugel y
popular across North Asia
3
.
Asia is shaping the Internet and social
medi a i n terms of technol ogy and
behaviour. Sina’s Weibo (micro-blog) platform is considerably
more technically sophisticated than Twitter. Asian-based
social networks and online gaming platforms introduced
virtual currencies and online transactions long before their
western counterparts. Smartphones are al ready near
saturation point in Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong and
Singapore.
One of the most conspicuous aspects of social media in
Asia is its highly contributory culture. According to Forrester
Research, Koreans and Chinese are the most active creators
of online content in the world
4
, uploading vast quantities of
video, photographs, and blog posts every day. Indonesians
love to share news and updates using Twitter.
Clearly, organisations looking to target consumers, especially
the under 30s, must now incorporate social media into
their marketing mix or miss their target. It is equally clear
that the Internet and social media are now critical tools to
communicate with corporate stakeholders.
The gr owi ng chal l enge of r eput at i on
management
Accelerated information flows make it much harder for
companies to manage their reputations. With journalists,
bloggers and other opinion-formers assiduously tracking
micro-blogs for breaking news and combing discussion
boards for story ideas, companies must approach the
Internet as a core tool to track topics and issues relevant to
them and as a channel to build relationships with existing and
new influencers.
I n par al l el, i t i s cl ear t hat NGOs
and activists, as well as disgruntled
customers and local communities, have
become much more adept at using the
many low-cost channels and tools at
their disposal to share their experiences,
voice their opinions, organize campaigns
and raise funds. Social media are a
crucial part of their new weaponry.
In addition, large and especially publicly-listed companies
are under pressure to become more transparent and
accountable, in part due to government intervention, in part
due to increased stakeholder and consumer expectations of
good behavior, and in part due to ever greater demands for
information and dialogue.
This raises the question as to how organisations should
structure themselves to participate with the multiplicity of
stakeholders actively using social media. Most organisations
are struggling with questions such whether engagement
shoul d be handl ed central l y or l ocal l y. Who are the
appropriate spokespeople? What are the skills and tools
required? How to measure success? Who pays?
CORPORATE USE OF
SOCIAL MEDIA
3 Asia-Pacific Social Media Infographics, Burson-Marsteller – August 2011
4 Consumer Social Technographics, Forrester
Social media are a
crucial part of the new
weaponry for NGOs,
activists and disgruntled
customers
CORPORATE SOCIAL MEDIA REPORT 2011

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How companies are responding
Social media provide an opportunity for organisations to
increase awareness of their activities and to build interest,
trust and advocacy amongst their stakeholders. That they
can also do this direct with their audience and by-pass
conventional gatekeepers is also an attractive proposition.
Yet enthusiasm amongst companies in Asia has been muted.
Last year’s Asia-Pacific Corporate Social Media Study
5
by
Burson-Marsteller identified that top Asian companies had
largely been hesitant to use branded social media channels
to communicate with corporate audiences.
This hesitancy is also evident in more recent research
6

showing that most companies believe they are poorly
prepared for crises that emerge and spread online, despite
believing that digital has made them more vulnerable and
made responding to a crisis more challenging.
Figure 1: Number of social media channels with
corporate activity - 011
Number of company social media channels used solely or in part for corporate communications & marketing purposes
Research for this year’s study shows that more top Asian
companies are using branded social media channels for
corporate marketing and communications, with 81% of firms
covered (Figure 1) - double the number across Asia in 2010
7

and almost on a par with the 84% of Fortune 100 companies
8

- now using branded social media channels.
It is clear that Asian companies are also leveraging a greater
number of the channels at their disposal, with just under a
third using three social media channels or more, compared
to only 3% in 2010. Conversely, only 19% of firms are not
using any form of branded channel for corporate purposes –
a significant increase on the 60% identified in 2010.
5 Asia-Pacific Corporate Social Media Study 2010 – Burson-Marsteller, October 2010
6 Reputation In The Cloud Era: Digital Crisis Communications Study – Burson-Marsteller, June 2011
7 Asia-Pacific Corporate Social Media Study 2010 – Burson-Marsteller, October 2010
8 Global Social Media Check-Up, Burson-Marsteller – February 2011
Number of social media channels with corporate
activity - 010

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BURSON-MARSTELLER ASIA-PACIFIC
Preferred social media channels
Social networks are proving the most popular social channel
for corporate marketing and communications (Figure 2). This
might be regarded as surprising, given that Facebook – the
top social network across much of Asia-Pacific – tends to be
regarded more as a consumer marketing channel. Yet many
Asian firms have opted to focus their activities on a single
branded profile that is used for both consumer and corporate
marketing.
In our experience, the principal reason for this is that social
networks were mostly first used by firms looking to increase
awareness and buzz about their products or services.
Corporate teams then piggy-back on these established
channels, often in addition to advising on messaging and
governance.
It is also true that many firms have started (and continue to
start) their official social network presence without considering
carefully their target audiences and objectives. In this ‘me
too’ scenario, companies develop a channel in the corporate
name and see how it evolves based on a combination of its
popularity, user feedback, resources and content available.
Less surprising is the fact that Asian companies are deploying
micro-blogs for corporate purposes. Twitter, the weibos
(‘micro-blogs’) in China or me2day in South Korea tend to be
seen more as influencer networks of journalists, bloggers and
brand advocates, while also being used by media outlets and
publishers to extend their online presence.
Given the relative ease of resourcing micro-blogs and their
search engine-friendliness, firms are more likely to set up
a dedicated corporate channel that serves a broad range
of purposes. Asian companies are also starting to develop
standalone profiles for product brands and specific corporate
functions, notably recruitment.
Micro-blogs are also popular as they are typically seen
as an additional information ‘push’ tool, enabling broader
dissemination of content and messages across the Internet
and, increasingly, to mobile devices. Better still (from a
corporate perspective), there seems little need to engage in
sustained discussions – for most Asian companies the main
forum for dialogue is face-to-face.
This reluctance to enter into public dialogue is testament to a
widespread conservative business culture; it also means there
is less chance of firms losing face in front of others. Hence
also the general lack of enthusiasm for corporate blogs,
where conversation is expected – even if it actually tends to
be limited (in many instances, almost non-existent).
And while video sharing platforms rarely attract significant
levels of corporate-related discussions, they remain in the
minority across much of the region, despite the very high
popularity of online video in most markets.
For many firms in Asia, the slick corporate paean to superior
leadership and products remains the video of choice rather
than the more ‘genuine’, on the ground feel that is now
commonplace amongst Western companies.
Local differences
The use of soci al medi a for corporate marketi ng and
communications is by no means consistent across Asia-
Pacific; some markets are very aggressive, the majority are
active if cautious, a few remain highly conservative.
Active (at least one post during the period July 1-15, 2011) use of company social media channels for corporate purposes
Figure : Top corporate social media channels used for corporate marketing & communications
28%
30%
12%
9%
Social Networks
Micro-blogs
Corporate Blogs
Video Sharing
2011
2011
2011
2011
18%
20%
8%
12%
2010
2010
2010
2010
CORPORATE SOCIAL MEDIA REPORT 2011

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Figure : Corporate social media channels by market - 011
Figure : Corporate social media channels by market – 010
Percentage of companies using the four major social media channel types across Asia-Pacific in 2010
Thailand
Taiwan
South Korea
Singapore
Philippines
Malaysia
Japan
Indonesia
India
Hong Kong
China
Australia
90%
50%
50%
80%
90%
50%
30%
60%
70%
30%
70%
70%
20%
40%
50%
40%
20%
30%
70%
40%
70%
90%
70%
90%
60%
80%
100%
20%
80%
50%
40%
40%
30%
30%
50%
20%
40%
30%
70%
90%
70%
10%
10%
10%
n
Micro-blogs
n
Social Networks
n
Corporate Blogs
n
Video Sharing
Thailand
Taiwan
South Korea
Singapore
Philippines
Malaysia
Japan
Indonesia
India
Hong Kong
China
Australia
30%
10%
20%
20%
30%
20%
50%
10%
30%
30%
20%
10%
30%
40%
10%
10%
50%
30%
40%
20%
100%
20%
10%
10%
10%
20%
40%
10%
10%
10%
n
Micro-blogs
n
Social Networks
n
Corporate Blogs
n
Video Sharing
10%
10%
Percentage of companies using the four major social media channel types across Asia-Pacific in 2011
10
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BURSON-MARSTELLER ASIA-PACIFIC
On the whole, north Asian firms are the more aggressive
users of social media. Often focused on managing costs,
they view social platforms as a cost-effective route to build
short-term market share in their domestic markets. And for
both established and emerging players in China, Japan and
South Korea expanding into foreign markets, social media is
now a critical component of the marketing mix to reach both
corporate audiences and consumers.
Leading north Asian companies are also more likely to use
video, though this tends to be more a reflection of their
impressive broadband networks than their desire to use video,
graphics and other visual formats to tell their corporate story.
Compared to last year, Australian and Indian firms are placing
greater emphasis on social media, especially in their use of
micro-blogs and, to a lesser extent, social networks. In both
markets, journalists, activists and business decision-makers
are actively using Twitter, which are seen as central to the
evolving online reputational ecosystems. By contrast, social
networks are regarded principally as consumer vehicles.
The most startling change has been in Southeast Asia -
notably amongst Malay, Thai, Philippino and Indonesian firms
– most of which were barely using social media at all twelve
months ago. What’s behind this shift?
Their fast expanding local online Internet populations and
improved telecom infrastructures are one reason. Playing
catch up with peers and competitors in the region has also
doubtless spurred action.
The rel ati ve vol ati l i ty of thei r onl i ne cul tures may al so
have played a part. All these markets have witnessed the
emergence of a more vocal, and politicized, citizenry, who are
more willing to express their views on their political systems,
corporate behaviour and quality of products and customer
service. Leading companies in these countries realise they
must at least have a presence in these conversations.
Push and pull communications
Questions that corporate communications professionals
(rightfully) ask before participating in social media include:
What are we going to speak about? What’s going to resonate
with users? Do they really want to hear about our company
news and point of view? How often do we have to post? Who
should answer feedback, and how often?
As we saw in last year’s study, Asian companies are –
and remain - much more focused on pushing news and
information at users rather than responding to comments or
actively engaging them in conversations.
This reluctance to get into online discussions has many
explanations, not least the lack of dedicated resources
with the necessary skills and remit to reach out across the
organisation for a response, express it in an appropriate
manner and be able to manage the necessary follow-ups.
It is also likely that many corporate communicators do not
fully appreciate the interests, requirements and behaviours of
their audiences (other than some key journalists). What about
product marketing? Few invest in qualitative or quantitative
research that can yield invaluable insights into stakeholders’
interests and content preferences.
At another level, the reluctance to get into conversations is
also evident in firms’ preference to use their branded social
media channels primarily to relay corporate news direct to
opinion-formers (Figure 5) in the hope that they will report it
and share it with their own online networks.

Figure : Focus of corporate social media activity
Percentage of corporate marketing or communications posts to company social media channels
across Asia-Pacific
CORPORATE SOCIAL MEDIA REPORT 2011

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11
Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is another area
where companies feel relatively comfortable when using
social media. Examples of local community programmes or
business commitments to reduce electricity use or to recycle
water are naturally ‘Like’-friendly and can work well as short
videos. Even better if people can be persuaded to contribute
their own suggestions or ideas, as Pepsi has done with its
Refresh Project
9
.
While CSR can help paint a softer picture of the entity,
companies need to also be aware of the risks of being seen
to over-claim or misrepresent the facts. As market research
agency Nielsen has shown
10
, the Internet is fertile ground for
activists and others looking to pick apart corporate claims,
especially concerning ‘green-washing’ and the environment.
Another notable area of corporate social media activity is
crisis and issues communications. While crises are rare,
issues of different types need to be handled regularly, a tricky
proposition when it is taking place in the full glare of your
Facebook page.
With the corporate rumour mill now real-time and global,
companies are profoundly aware of the potential for customer
complaints and other issues to escalate overnight into full-
scale problems. Some Asian firms are monitoring and
responding to negative posts, albeit on a largely ad hoc basis.
But the majority feel they are unprepared to handle online
crises
11
.
Long-term commi tment and short-term
campaigns
Similar to last year, this study reveals high levels of inactive
branded social media accounts (Figure 6) that were either
not updated during the research period or that had been
registered but not used.
Clearly, many firms continue to struggle to identify the content
and topics of conversation that will help sustain interest
over the long-term – indeed, developing a regular stream of
engaging, relevant content (especially video) and dialogue is
challenging for many organisations.
There is also another explanation for the high levels of inactive
accounts: the large numbers of social media profiles that
were set up to support product marketing campaigns and
were abandoned once the campaigns had run their course.
9 http://www.refresheverything.com/
10 Greenwashing: Who’s Winning and Losing the Green Race Online? – Nielsen, April 2008
11 Reputation In The Cloud Era: Digital Crisis Communications Study – Burson-Marsteller, June 2011
Figure : Levels of activity on social media channels
Percentage of companies with active (at least one post during the period July 01-15, 2011) or inactive (with no company posts or activity during the period July
01-15, 2011) social media channels used solely or in part for corporate marketing or communications purposes
62%
Social Networks
53%
Micro-blogs
77%
Corporate Blogs
54%
Video Sharing
38%
47%
23%
46%
n
Active Accounts
n
Inactive Accounts
1
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BURSON-MARSTELLER ASIA-PACIFIC
The management of official social media profiles takes
considerable time and effort, and demands organisations
think carefully about their marketing and communications
objectives, marketing mix and channel strategies.
Despite this, the high percentage of inactive accounts
indicates that many Asian organisations are yet to develop a
sustainable social media strategy that places social media in
the context of the broader marketing mix, including ‘traditional’
PR, internal communications, knowledge sharing, marketing,
customer service and sales.
In the meantime, a high proportion of top Asian companies
continue to treat their corporate social media as pilot projects,
keeping them deliberately separate from the company
website (Figure 7). While firms may remain wary of the
capacity for users to say what they want, keeping their social
channels at arm’s length also makes it more difficult for users
to find them and reduces their effectiveness.
Figure : Integration of social media channels with corporate website
Percentage of companies promoting their branded social media channels via their homepage or using page sharing tools
50%
Australia
60%
n
Homepage Integration
n
Social Sharing Tools
10%
China
20%
30%
Hong Kong
20%
20%
India
50%
20%
Indonesia
20%
40%
Japan
40%
0%
S. Korea
70%
40%
Malaysia
60%
20%
Philippines
30%
20%
Singapore
20%
20%
Taiwan
20%
0%
Thailand
50%
CORPORATE SOCIAL MEDIA REPORT 2011

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1
So what does all this say
about a path forward?
Fi rst, I thi nk i t’s very l i kel y that
companies in Asia who want to get
serious about their online presence
might first re-examine their preferred
metrics in order to encourage the right
tactics and management approaches.
If we want a sustained presence and
meaningful engagement, then we
must begin with metrics which can
reveal any improvements along these
lines. Perhaps most importantly, a
revised dashboard must also be well
aligned with the corporate strategy.
We can especially see in the year-on-year comparison that
some companies are putting digital channels to good use. I
am encouraged to see significant growth in activities such as
media and influencer relations and thought leadership. These
can be great investments of time and resources trusting that
the messaging strategy is aimed at something more than
simple push, one-way announcements. In other words,
having enough content for sustained corporate engagement
with stakeholders means that we must all start operating like
we are a media company. We need quality narrative content
that evokes a response.
Delivering sustained narrative content over blogs or video
channels, however, is not easy. The growth of media
channels revealed by this study also suggests that we need
talented staff who can deliver such content. My sense is that
such people can be in short supply in Asia’s many emerging
markets. So in addition to revising our measurement
dashboard, the increased adoption of more digital channels
along with the high levels of inactivity lead me to ask about
our talent schemes. Are we attracting, developing, and
retaining enough skilled storytellers to maintain an on-
going dialogue with stakeholders? Perhaps not. Until
that happens, the partnership between organisations and
agencies will be critical to any successful online presence.
And while I am encouraged to see more companies dipping
their toe in the digital media pool, I believe the opportunity
for a company to firmly establish itself as a leader in this
F
or communi cat or s, f ew
opportuni ti es today are as
exci t i ng as st udyi ng t he
corporate use of relatively new
digital channels across Asia’s many
emerging markets.
I wel come t he oppor t uni t y t o
contri bute to thi s report not onl y
because we have so f ew usef ul
studies of corporate social media
in Asian markets, but also because
of the study’s design. In this age of
fast data and quick white papers, I
believe in some ways we could be
making it more difficult for marketers
and communi cators to craft wi se
strategies when faced with so much fragmentary evidence.
This report is different. Replicating the 2010 study, Burson-
Marsteller offers us a year-on-year look at corporate uses of
digital channels. For me, several findings stand out.
• The top activities for companies in Asia, by percentage
of posts, are: media and influencer relations, thought
leadership and CSR. These are all meaningful uses
of digital channels which can help shape a company’s
operating landscape.
• The data also reveals how many more companies have
created multiple social media channels and appear to be
increasing their online presence.
Creating the channels is an important first step, but perhaps
the easiest. The findings also reveal opportunities for
companies to use these channels more fully.
• Channels which allow companies to develop a rich
narrative (e.g., video sharing and blogs) appear to be
used less frequently than do short-form communication
channels such as micro-blogs.
• Additionally, sustained use of the digital challenges
appears to be an on-going challenge. While more
companies have a presence over many channels, the
levels of inactivity are surprisingly high.
Michael Netzley
A CASE FOR
OPEN DIGITAL LEADERSHIP
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BURSON-MARSTELLER ASIA-PACIFIC
space remains ripe. The findings of this study appear highly
consistent with my university research—few companies
have really established themselves as genuine leaders in the
digital sphere. The early mover advantage still appears to be
available in many markets and industries, but the increased
adoption of digital channels indicates the clock is ticking.
I have little doubt that in the coming years digital channels
will reshape more than just marketing and public relations.
These channels are set to impact all aspects of business.
Today we can see increased use of digital channels for
customer service and employee engagement as two obvious
examples. But companies are also increasingly adopting
enterprise communications to increase speed and efficiency
of operations. Social networks are being leveraged to
make companies innovate and shorten the time it takes to
bring a new product or service to market. And university
researchers are busy discovering how we can mine big data
for better insights.
Digital communications are making businesses more social.
Companies are immersed in a web of stakeholders who are
all aware of each other and talk about organisations. This
study delivers one of the few comparative year-on-year
snapshots of how Asian companies are coming to terms with
this changed environment. Much work remains.
Those who exhibit leadership, learn the quickest and become
the first to capture the benefits of digital communications will,
no doubt, gain a significant advantage.
Michael Netzley, PhD
Assistant Professor of Corporate Communication (Education)
2010-11 Research Fellow, Society for New Communication Research
Singapore Management University
michael@smu.edu.sg
@communicateasia
CORPORATE SOCIAL MEDIA REPORT 2011

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1
USE OF SOCIAL MEDIA
BY MARKET
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BURSON-MARSTELLER ASIA-PACIFIC
12%
12 Digital Life, TNS, October 2010
AUSTRALIA
Social
Networks
67%
Micro-blogs
Corporate
Blogs
60%
Video
Sharing
n
Active Accounts
n
Inactive Accounts
60%
33%
40%
40%
Corporate Use of Social Media Channels
0%
Carly Yanco
Head of Digital
carly.yanco@bm.com
@carlyyanco
T
his year’s findings show that
Aust r al i an compani es ar e
taking an ever more integrated
approach t o soci al medi a.
Having initially dipped their toes in
the water and set up sole-purpose
social media accounts, focusing on
brand marketing or customer service,
compani es are now taki ng a more
sophisticated approach.
Major Australian companies such as
Westpac and Qantas have increased
the number of branded channels they
offer, while using these channels to
support a mi x of brand, corporate
content and customer service functions.
The study also finds that corporate
content tends to resonate strongly
with Australian audiences, with users
largely disinterested in or reluctant
to comment on or share corporate
content wi th thei r own networks.
Why? For one, levels of online dialogue
amongst Australians are lower than the
global average
12
. Another reason could
be that Australians are by nature fairly
cynical about marketing.
Corporate (and marketing) content itself
must also be interesting and relevant. It
is very simple for users to share content
with their friends and colleagues (the
desi red ‘network effect’), but the
reality is that much content fails truly
to engage the user. However, the jury
is out as to whether it is the nature of
Australian audiences that is driving the
reluctance to ‘engage’ with corporate
content online, or whether it is based
on the nature of corporate content
itself.
Australian companies that are weaving
corporate messaging into their brand
marketing and/or customer service
efforts appear to be most successful,
suggesting that an integrated approach
increases engagement levels.
For example, with close to 35,000
followers on Twitter and over 85,000
on Facebook, and dedicated resources
to maintain and facilitate the accounts,
Qantas Ai rways manages to keep
cust omer s updat ed, respond t o
queries, communicate latest offers
and promotions and suggest travel
and holiday destinations. Accordingly,
Qantas’ audiences are more engaged
and responsive to intermittent corporate
messages.
As Austral i an consumers conti nue
to move online thanks to improved
broadband infrastructure and rising
smartphone penetration, it is only to
be expected that more businesses
will take advantage of social media as
a means to communicate with their
audiences, at a lower relative cost.
We a l s o e x pe c t t o s e e mor e
Aust r al i an compani es t aki ng an
integrated approach to social media,
wi th accounts evol vi ng true onl i ne
representations of the company, giving
audiences a more authentic and holistic
brand experience.
Westpac uses its YouTube channel to support its thought leadership
communications, posting weekly economic news updates and business
information and insights. The channel is also used to showcase the firm’s
Corporate Social Responsibility efforts. The channel averages approximately
300 views per video and supports the bank’s broader stakeholder
communications.
Westpac – Thought Leadership
Source: www.youtube.com/westpacbanking
CORPORATE SOCIAL MEDIA REPORT 2011

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1
CHINA
Source: http://csrblog.alibaba.com/
12%
Social
Networks
67%
Micro-blogs
Corporate
Blogs
100%
Video
Sharing
n
Active Accounts
n
Inactive Accounts
60%
8%
10%
Corporate Use of Social Media Channels
60%
20%
Leon Zhang
Digital Strategy & Insights Lead
leon.zhang@bm.com
http://weibo.com/leonzhangliang
@digimarketing
C
hi na’s I nt er net i s growi ng
explosively, with 485+ million
Internet users of which some
235 million are social media
users, with a year-on-year growth rate
of 33.7%
13
. So it is little surprise that
more and more companies in China
– both local and international – are
jumping on the social bandwagon.
This year’s study shows that all the
companies surveyed are now using
at least one corporate social media
channel, most often a corporate blog,
sometimes a social network profile and,
increasingly, a weibo (micro-blog profile).
Micro-blogs, in particular, have been
the tal k of the town over the past
twelve months, with huge numbers
of users (Sina and Tencent both now
state they have over 200m users for
their respective weibos), and playing
an active, and highly visible role, in the
Zhejiang high-speed train crash and a
series of protests, scandals and natural
disasters.
The weibos – especially Sina, which
i s seen to have a more educated
and i nf l uent i al user base – ar e
provi ng popul ar for marketi ng and
communi cati ons purposes. Chi na
Merchants Bank, for instance, now
counts well over 300,000 followers of
its Weibo account.
Yet whi l e the wei bos are i n vogue
for both consumer and corporate
marketing and communication, and
some firms can boast high numbers of
followers, actual dialogue with users
remains very thin, certainly on corporate
marketing and communications topics.
The relative lack of dialogue is precisely
why many firms feel comfortable using
weibos in the communications mix –
they are primarily used to disseminate
i nformati on as far and as wi de as
possible, rather than truly ‘engage’
users.
Thi s may s eem t o cont r adi ct
companies’ (ongoing) use of corporate
bl ogs, wi th hal f of the compani es
surveyed having one or more of these
channels. Yet only 20% of these blogs
were active during the research period,
pointing to a larger issue – the paucity
of skills to man these channels and
feed them compelling content on an
ongoing basis, and a general lack of
commitment to fill this need.
The fact that social media channels in
mainland China are rarely promoted,
let alone integrated, with the corporate
website also indicates that companies
remain cautious in this area. In China,
there are good reasons for caution, not
least due to the uncertainty surrounding
the weibos – will they be regulated? Or
has the government let the social cat
out of the digital bag?
Meantime, Chinese companies would
do well to clarify who they are aiming at
and why they are using social media. A
common mistake is simply to focus on
the quantity of fans/followers, ignoring
their quality and influence. This may
be a reason why “zombie followers”
(inactive or fake followers manipulated
by some companies / individuals for
busi ness purposes) have become
prevalent in China recently.
In addition to a dedicated website, Alibaba Group has an official blog
specifically to highlight its Corporate Social Responsibility activities,
providing a stream of CSR-related news, updates and reports on
volunteering, disaster relief and environmental protection programmes.
Alibaba Group – Corporate Social Responsibility
13 28th China Internet Development Report – CNNIC, July 2011
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BURSON-MARSTELLER ASIA-PACIFIC
12%
HONG KONG
Social
Networks
73%
Micro-blogs
Corporate
Blogs
100%
Video
Sharing
n
Active Accounts
n
Inactive Accounts
Source: http://www.facebook.com/lowcarbonaction
43%
27%
57%
Corporate Use of Social Media Channels
100%
H
ong Kong’s love affair with
social media is a little more
muted than i n some other
markets, perhaps because
it is a small place and people meet in
person frequently.
Non e t h e l e s s, c ompa n i e s a r e
increasingly keen to use social media,
especi al l y for consumer marketi ng
campai gns. And t he Hong Kong
government i s al so pl aci ng much
greater emphasis on Facebook and
other channel s for i ts own publ i c
communications, perhaps spurred by
a well publicised campaign against a
proposed high-speed railway.
While consumer brands are actively
usi ng soci al medi a, Hong Kong-
based companies are lagging in their
use of soci al medi a for corporate
communications and marketing, with
few exceptions, notably Cathay Pacific
Airways, which uses a variety of social
platforms to communicate with a broad
spectrum of stakeholders.
Facebook is much the most popular
soci al channel, reachi ng around
77% of the population
14
, and is used
principally for short-term product and
brand marketi ng campai gns, wi th
some compani es al so usi ng i t for
general stakeholder communications
and to highlight their Corporate Social
Responsibility programmes.
However, active and sustained use of
Facebook and other social media for
corporate purposes remains thin on the
ground.
Why this conservatism? It is partly due
to a lack of skilled resources, partly
due to the perceived loss of control
that social media represents. There
is also the added difficulty of needing
to manage soci al channel s usi ng
traditional Chinese as well as English
and perhaps also simplified Chinese.

Equally, while Sina Weibo has gotten
some real traction in Hong Kong over
the past few months thanks to its user-
friendly interface and abundance of
fun and engaging content, the ‘weibo
fever’ that has been sweeping mainland
Chi na does not appl y to the same
extent in Hong Kong.
This is perhaps surprising, as Hong
Kong-ers prefer content that is short
and contai ns a l ot of graphi cs (i n
contrast to the readi ng habi ts of
mai nl and Chi nese). They are al so
used to a style of media reportage that
favours fewer words and more pictures.
In addition to a general conservatism,
this relative lack of substantive media
output and online content might also
explain why so few firms are using
dialogue – either on Facebook, micro-
blogs or on dedicated corporate-blogs
to communicate with stakeholders.
All of which points to video as perhaps
the best opportunity for companies
looking to bring alive their corporate
marketing messages. YouTube is highly
popular in Hong Kong, as are some of
the Chinese online video channels such
as Youku and Ku6, and the mainstream
media are busy launching video news
channels. Yet companies seldom use
video to promote their brands – a big
missed opportunity.
Hong Kong & China Gas uses a variety of social media tools to raise
awareness and encourage its customers of its ‘Towngas Low Carbon Action!’
campaign to save energy and adopt a generally more environmentally-
friendly lifestyle.
Terence Yam
Digital Strategist
terence.yam@bm.com
@terenceyam
Hong Kong & China Gas –
Corporate Social Responsibility
14 Asia-Pacific Social Media Infographics – Burson-Marsteller, August 2011
CORPORATE SOCIAL MEDIA REPORT 2011

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1
INDIA
Source: http://www.wipro.com/blog/default.aspx?category=Sustainability
12%
Social
Networks
57%
Micro-blogs
Corporate
Blogs
75%
Video
Sharing
n
Active Accounts
n
Inactive Accounts
29%
43%
71%
Corporate Use of Social Media Channels
50%
50%
25%
S
oci al medi a i s t he new
buzzword i n Indi a amongst
consumer s, ci t i zens and
companies. India now counts
over 32 million registered Facebook
users, nearly 52% of the local online
popul at i on. Twi t t er and Li nkedI n
now have around 10 mi l l i on users
respectively
15
.
In the past twelve months, more and
more Indian companies have started
using social networks and other media.
But corporate use remains at an early
stage, with the focus largely on product
marketing and customer service.
Indian companies’ preferred channel
is social networks, with almost 60%
of compani es usi ng Facebook, as
well as Google’s Orkut, as opposed
to some 30% using Twitter. Only 10%
of compani es surveyed are usi ng
online video in any way for corporate
marketing or communications.
There can be said to be something of
a herd mentality generally that applies
to marketing in India, and this appears
Salil Jayakar
Digital Strategist
salil.jayakar@bm.com
@salilicious
IT company Wipro’s official ‘Applying Thought’ blog features regular posts
from India and foreign-based senior executives, experts and guest bloggers.
The blog aims to positions the company as an expert on a range of topics,
from business strategy and organisational design to sustainability.
especially true of social media. Some
of India’s largest companies remain
family-owned, for which traditional
marketing formats such as TV ad spots
and posters have worked well.
Moreover, decision-making is often
controlled by a single individual (more
often than not) who has little time to
study a new medium that appears to
have little immediate impact on the
bottom line, and the top management
/ policy makers in these companies
t end t o be seni or members who
have little exposure to social media
tools. For them, evaluation of social
media presents a learning curve and
a risk-investment-gain analysis to be
conducted.
In addition, many firms are worried
about the ri sks of overl y exposi ng
themselves in these public domains.
2011 saw India suffer its fair share of
social media crises and there is no
reason to believe that 2012 will be any
different.
The challenge many companies face
is how to deal with such an open and
volatile environment. Few firms in India
have much idea how to respond during
a public onslaught on the Internet, and
in our experience few have prepared for
this eventuality.
That ’s not t o say t her e ar en’ t
companies prepared to take a risk. In
particular, India’s leading technology
firms (for instance, see Wipro below)
are acti vel y usi ng corporate bl ogs
and other social media for thought
leadership companies, and to help drive
awareness and credibility in foreign
markets, especially English-language
ones.
For those Indian companies yet to
make the soci al medi a j ump, the
waiting time has been getting shorter.
And, there’s an elephant in the room,
and one they cannot choose to ignore.
Wipro – Thought Leadership
15 Various sources – Bloomberg, LinkedIn, WATBlog.com, September 2011
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BURSON-MARSTELLER ASIA-PACIFIC
12%
INDONESIA
Social
Networks
100%
Micro-blogs
Corporate
Blogs
100%
Video
Sharing
n
Active Accounts
n
Inactive Accounts
Source: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Garuda-Indonesia/
100%
Corporate Use of Social Media Channels
100%
16 Twitter Growth Worldwide - Comscore Media Metrix, August 2010
17 Checkfacebook.com - September 2011
18 Asia-Pacific Corporate Social Media Study 2010 - Burson-Marsteller, August 2010
19 http://www.internetworldstats.com/stats3.htm#asia
D
ubbed t he most Twi t t er-
addicted nation in the world,
I ndonesi a’s prol i fi c use of
social media and its general
influence on society continues to garner
considerable attention globally.
Last year, at t ent i on f ocused on
t he ‘ A Coi n f or Pri t a’ movement
waged against a hospital in Jakarta;
thi s year was the turn of enraged
Har r y Pot t er f ans cast i ng spel l s
on Twitter after the announcement
that the film would not be screened
i n I ndonesi a. Meanwhi l e act ress
Emma Watson tweeted i n support
of the #IndonesiawantsHarryPotter
movement.
Despite the fact that Indonesia has
one of the highest levels of Twitter
penetrati on i n the worl d
16
and the
l argest number of Facebook users
in Asia (over 40 million
17
), data from
this study indicates that companies in
Indonesia continue to use social media
sparingly for corporate activities. In
line with last year’s results
18
, popular
social media channels are principally
bei ng used by t op I ndonesi an
companies for consumer marketing
Natashia Jaya
Digital Associate
natashia.jaya@bm.com
@natsii
Garuda Indonesia, the national airline for Indonesia, uses its Facebook
account mainly for recruitment marketing. In addition to posting information
about new openings, the company also directs its followers to the Garuda
Indonesia’s career website where prospective employees can apply online.
purposes only rather than stakeholder
communications.
One of the reasons behind the general
rel uctance to use soci al medi a for
corporate purposes i s that most
companies still prefer traditional media
channel s, notabl y pri nt, broadcast
and, increasingly, online media to build
emerging domestic markets and market
share. There is also a distinct lack of
qualified local personnel to devise and
manage social media programmes.
The growi ng concer n that soci al
media will result in a loss of control
of messaging and content has also
hi ndered compani es f rom usi ng
t hei r soci al medi a channel s f or
corporat e purposes. Compani es
are uncomfortabl e thei r corporate
information the public where it might
generate uncontrolled conversations
or questi ons that may undo thei r
reputations.
Additionally, there is still a big question
mark amongst companies on how to
measure ROI for corporate use of social
media.
Yet whi l e I ndonesi an compani es
continue to shy away from detailing
their corporate activities on the Internet
and t hrough soci al medi a, most
established companies are well aware
that they are increasingly expected to
be in this space whether they like it or
not. Hence, the majority of Indonesian
compani es surveyed have ei ther a
Twitter or Facebook account, or both,
though rarely for corporate marketing
alone – product campaigns dominate
social media thinking and doing here.
With a population of over 240 million,
I nternet penetrati on at 16%
19
and
massi ve enthusi asm for al l thi ngs
social, there is untapped potential that
companies in Indonesia can address.
As consumer access to broadband
becomes more pervasive and mobile
broadband services reduce, companies
are going to find it harder to say no in
the future.
Garuda Indonesia – Recruitment Marketing
CORPORATE SOCIAL MEDIA REPORT 2011

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1
JAPAN
Source: http://twitter.com/#!/masason
12%
Social
Networks
14%
Micro-blogs
Corporate
Blogs
57%
Video
Sharing
n
Active Accounts
n
Inactive Accounts
50%
86%
50%
Corporate Use of Social Media Channels
0%
43%
C
ontrary to some commentators’
opinions, Japanese firms of all
shapes and sizes are actively
using social media to market
their brands and products.
But it remains true that Japanese firms
remain slow in using social media for
corporate communications. There are
three main reasons:
First, Japanese companies continue
to think that social media is only about
consumer marketing. Second, local
firms of all sizes remain worried about
the possible loss of control that social
medi a entai l s. Thi rd, they l ack the
requisite resources and skills, especially
in the corporate communication arena,
despite the international footprint of
many of the companies surveyed.
Nonetheless, there’s no question that
Japanese compani es have started
to consider corporate use of social
media more seriously having seen the
role that social media played in the
Great East Japan earthquake, as well
as by a spate of digitally-driven issues
and cri ses dri ven by a more vocal
Masayoshi Son, CEO of telecoms company Softbank, uses Twitter to talk
about company news and activities, and to gather feedback on its services.
He also sheds light on his private life and his thoughts on politics, business
and the environment to his 1.3 million followers.
set of audiences both in Japan and
elsewhere.
For the moment, the focus is on setting
up the core social infrastructure and
looking for opportunities to engage
with online media and bloggers. Actual
engagement with stakeholders on the
Internet remains thin.
Corporate dialogue can also suffer from
being inappropriate. There is much talk
now of so-called ‘soft-touch (or casual
social media) accounts’. Commonly
f ound on mi cro-bl ogs and soci al
networks, these corporate accounts
do little more than engage in what can
appear to be fairly pointless chatter
with fans/followers, as if to fill space in
a conversation that seems to be going
nowhere. While this approach has been
popular since the first wave of company
social media accounts in 2009, it has
only recently started to be questioned
by target audiences and companies
alike.
Of the options available, micro-blogs
- especially Twitter – are the channels
of choi ce, chi ef l y as they are so
easy to use and require little effort to
maintain and promote. It is also worth
rememberi ng that i t i s possi bl e to
express much more in Japanese than
many other languages within the 140
character limit.
There is also a widespread belief that
news and information added to Twitter
wi l l somehow mi racul ousl y spread
out across the Internet like fairy dust.
Yet many corporate Twitter accounts
struggle to attract large followings.
Overall, Japan’s use of social media
will follow the contours of its path as
a culture and as country: the more
open we become, the more likely we
are to express ourselves openly. This
applies to ourselves as people, and as
businesses. This may take time. But
with Facebook increasingly popular,
and Japanese firms look outward for
growth, the future is promising.
Softbank – Leadership Communications
Kyoko Toyoda
Strategist
kyoko.toyoda@bm.com

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BURSON-MARSTELLER ASIA-PACIFIC
12%
MALAYSIA
Social
Networks
92%
Micro-blogs
Corporate
Blogs
100%
Video
Sharing
n
Active Accounts
n
Inactive Accounts
Source: http://www.youtube.com/user/airasia
80%
8%
20%
Corporate Use of Social Media Channels
50%
50%
Kelvin Lim
Digital Strategist
kelvin.lim@bm.com
@kelameity
AirAsia uses a mix of social media channels, including a company blog, to
provide insight into its staff and working culture, as well as to announce
product news and promotions. AirAsia also encourages its customers to
share their experiences through the blog using videos and photos.
M
a l a y s i a n s ’ g r o wi n g
acceptance and enthusiasm
for social media has created
per si st ent chal l enges
for compani es l ooki ng to engage
a communi ty l ong accustomed to
basic value hunting and the pursuit of
personal and social causes.
As excitement over the promise of
social media engagements begins to
abate, consumers and corporations
alike are faced with increasing exposure
fatigue and a general lack of strategic
sophistication.
In turn, corporations have adapted
to the predominantly incentive-driven
local culture by running campaigns
focused on simple metrics. By contrast,
long-term relationship building is often
pioneered by the consumer product or
services sectors, where fresh content
and engagement t act i cs can be
routinely deployed sustain activity levels.
This often leads to brands under-valuing
their corporate assets and messaging.
This is by no means a reflection of lack
of will, but rather, adjustment in lieu
of Malaysian netizen behaviour and
AirAsia – Media & Influencer Outreach
expectations. Rising living costs and
recurring political turmoil has coloured
consumer sentiment, and brands are
now faced with larger pockets of highly
opinionated consumers that are more
unforgiving of corporate mishaps than
ever before.
I n addi t i on, a gener al l y react i ve
approach to online issues management
together with a lack of understanding
of digital crisis management has caught
many Malaysian companies unaware,
l eadi ng to consumer fl are-ups on
Facebook and Twitter.
It comes as no surprise that service
i ndust r i es such as ai r l i nes and
tel ecommuni cati on provi ders are
among the most active participants in
social media, while banking institutions
shy away from online engagement,
mostly opting to limit their activities to
corporate social responsibility efforts on
their corporate websites.
As brands continue to extend their
online presence into the social space,
channels such as Facebook, Twitter
and blogs will increasingly serve as key
communications hubs, where corporate
messagi ng i s spri nkl ed amongst
promotional consumer content.
Meantime, other corporate channels,
including corporate blogs and video
and image hosting sites, often remain
dormant. This is attributed mainly to
l ow traffi c and engagement l evel s,
leading to difficulty in justifying return on
investment.
CORPORATE SOCIAL MEDIA REPORT 2011

|


PHILIPPINES
Source: http://www.facebook.com/flyPAL?sk=app_57675755167
12%
Social
Networks
29%
Micro-blogs
Corporate
Blogs
100%
Video
Sharing
n
Active Accounts
n
Inactive Accounts
40%
71%
60%
Corporate Use of Social Media Channels
100%
S
ocial media is an increasingly
ma j o r p a r t o f F i l i p i n o
consumers’ lives, and yet few
l ocal compani es are usi ng
social channels in any strategic manner.
The results of this year’s study indicate
that use of social media for corporate
marketing and communications remains
low, and that companies are using
social media mainly to push content
rather than conversing with their fans or
followers.
Furthermore, integration of branded
soci al channel s wi t h company
websites is very limited, and many
soci al accounts i n the Phi l i ppi nes
are inactive. And while use of social
networks has increased, it remains
pri mari l y rest ri ct ed t o sal es and
marketing activities.
The big story is the growth in micro-
bl oggi ng, whi ch many Fi l i pi no
corporations have taken to with gusto.
As Filipinos continue to upgrade to
smartphones, we expect companies
to place greater emphasis on micro-
blogging going forward.
Jinny Jacaria
Account Director, Strategic Edge
jjacaria@seinc.com.ph
Philippines Airlines –
Stakeholder Communications
Philippine Airlines uses Facebook and Twitter primarily for customer
service purposes, but also to highlight the company’s 70th anniversary, its
repatriation of Filipinos from Libya and to communicate its position on an
employee strike. Overall, the impression is of a company that listens.
Social networks will also become a
greater focus on corporate activity.
Fi l i pi nos hav e been gener al l y
accepti ng of corporate enti ti es on
Facebook and other soci al medi a
channel s, and react posi ti vel y to
well-crafted marketing and customer
service efforts, particularly contests
and promoti ons. Fi rms respondi ng
ope nl y a nd c ons t r uc t i v e l y t o
customer queries and complaints are
seen as responsive and engaged.
Yet, while Filipinos may be inclined to
‘like’ or ‘fan’ a company on Facebook
or Twitter, the great majority are little
more than ‘lurkers’ passively consuming
content but less than likely to share
links let alone interact, comment or
contribute to a company profile.
Meanwhi l e, meani ngf ul di al ogue
remains limited, especially on corporate
topics. Few Filipino companies appear
to be communicating with their fans
and followers in a personalised manner,
preferri ng to push corporate news
and information at them rather than
proactively encouraging discussion and
feedback.
As social media becomes more and
more central to Filipinos’ daily lives
and to their experience of and contact
with organisations, they will expect
much greater l evel s of i nteracti on.
This will require dedicated resources
and increased budgets but perhaps
most importantly the adoption of a
new mindset that puts a premium on
listening and responding.

|

BURSON-MARSTELLER ASIA-PACIFIC
12%
SINGAPORE
Social
Networks
100%
Micro-blogs
Corporate
Blogs
60%
Video
Sharing
n
Active Accounts
n
Inactive Accounts
Source: http://www.facebook.com/OCBCCareers?sk=app_10442206389
33%
40%
67%
Corporate Use of Social Media Channels
0%
S
o c i a l me di a pl a y e d a n
i mp o r t a n t r o l e i n t h e
Singaporean General Election
i n 2011, openi ng up t he
debate to an unprecedented degree
and significantly affecting voter support
for the ruling party. This has galvanized
government and business to take a
closer look at the possibilities and
applications of social media as well as
the potential risks of engaging in this
space. The results remain inconclusive.
This year’s study shows that more top
Singaporean companies have created
social media channels, compared to the
2010 study. However, given the quality
of the local telecoms infrastructure and
the connectedness of its population,
Singapore still lags most other markets
in the region in terms of corporate
adoption of social media.
One trend that continues from last year
is the high proportion of inactive pages.
While companies use social media fairly
assertively in the marketing of products,
thei r corporate presence remai ns
sporadic and under-utilised. Every
video channel reviewed in the study
was inactive, for example, despite the
OCBC’s Facebook page helps people explore career opportunities with the
bank and in financial services in general. Its effectiveness is diminished by
the fact that it is linked not to the company’s website homepage but to a
single page deep in the site architecture.
Steve Bowen
Managing Director
steve.bowen@bm.com
@steve_bowen
OCBC Bank – Recruitment Marketing
fact that video remains one of the most
downloaded types of online content.
Online dialogue is also scarce. The
Singapore social media model, at least
for corporate use, continues to be
focused on broadcasting messages
r at her t han openi ng di al ogues.
Cor por at e websi t es cont i nue t o
shy away from the comparati vel y
straightforward task of incorporating
social media sharing functionality into
their content and few of the companies
reviewed provide links to their social
media channels from their homepages.
In other words, whilst we have noted an
increase in the number of companies
opening channels, we are not seeing
a concomitant increase in the level
of engagement or the frequency of
interaction, especially on corporate
i ssues. I n one notabl e exampl e,
Si ngTel posted an apol ogy to i ts
Facebook page for a temporary drop
in service quality but did not respond
to any of the 300 comments that were
solicited as a result of the post. By
contrast, the page is significantly more
responsive when users comment on
sales promotions.
That sai d, some compani es are
beginning to show a more structured
and strategi c approach to soci al
media, even if outreach remains limited
to relatively ‘safe’ topics. In other
areas of the mix engagement remains
minimal. None of the companies in our
study had a particularly active Twitter
presence. The DBS Twitter feed that
was highlighted as part of last year’s
study is today used largely to respond
to customer service enquiries. Other
companies have established their own
channels on Twitter but have yet to
post.
In short, top Singaporean companies
remai n hesi t ant about engagi ng
i n the soci al medi a space beyond
consumer marketi ng outreach. We
have yet to see a major Singaporean
company fully embrace the possibilities
of t hese channel s f or cor por at e
communications.
CORPORATE SOCIAL MEDIA REPORT 2011

|


SOUTH KOREA
Source: http://sktstory.com/library-happyapp/
12%
Social
Networks
11%
Micro-blogs
Corporate
Blogs
17%
Video
Sharing
n
Active Accounts
n
Inactive Accounts
29%
89%
71%
Corporate Use of Social Media Channels
30%
70%
83%
DaeChul Shin
Digital Associate
daechul.shin@bm.com
@andyshin
A
s we noted last year, South
Korean companies have been
highly active in social media
as a platform to communicate
with customers and other stakeholders,
both at home and abroad. Based on
this year’s research together with our
own experience working with a range
of Korean companies, it is clear that
Korean companies continue to invest
significantly.
For Koreans, soci al medi a are a
staple of daily life. While local social
network CyWorld has lost some of its
luster, top online portals (comprising
a host of blog, micro-blog and online
community platforms) Naver and Daum
reach 84% and 68% of the population
respectively
20
. Over 7m South Koreans
use me2day, a l ocal mi cro-bl og
competitor to Twitter owned by Naver.
Smartphones are now in the hands of
one in five locals
21
.
Most t op Kor ean compani es -
especially technology, telecoms and
financial services players - have now
established their basic social media
infrastructure and put in place their
measurement systems. For corporate
purposes, micro-blogs and corporate
bl ogs are the weapons of choi ce,
the former to di stri bute news and
information, the latter often as online
SK Telecom uses a mix of Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and SKT Story, its
corporate blog, to talk about its community and environmental activities,
including smartphone applications for the visually impaired and a Twitter
campaign to support children suffering from myopathy.
‘hubs’ for campaigns. Social networks
and video sharing channels are used
primarily for consumer marketing.
Having built some initial momentum,
Korean fi rms are now focused on
maki ng t hem wor k har der and
resourcing these channels properly,
often setting up specialist social media
teams that support product, brand and
corporate marketing.
They are also busy figuring out how
best t o t ar get and engage t hei r
audi ences. Marketi ng campai gns
that do not include social media are
i ncreasi ngl y rare and whi l e use of
social media for corporate marketing
remains behind its consumer cousin,
companies are experimenting with a
range of options, including hosting
special events that can be broadcast
across multiple online channels.
Despite this, the appetite amongst
Korean compani es for substanti ve
di al ogue on bot h cor por at e and
consumer topics remains low. Most
discussions on branded social media
channels are limited to basic customer
servi ce support; there i s very l i ttl e
chatter on topi cs such as CSR or
thought leadership, even if companies
are banging the CSR drum more loudly.
This dearth of discussion may be down
to Koreans’ tendency to react adversely
to ‘corporate speak’. Equally likely is
that many companies are shy about
engaging users on corporate topics,
whi ch necessari l y i nvol ve deeper
discussions on sometimes awkward
issues.
They may al so be war y of l ocal
and international moves to improve
disclosure with bloggers. Many South
Korean companies have been actively
courti ng, seedi ng and sponsori ng
power bloggers, especially so-called
‘wife-loggers’ – housewives actively
sharing their thoughts and experiences
on food, education and clothing.
After it became clear that one such
blogger had reputedly earned over USD
300,000 when advocating an ozone
steril i zer product wi thout reveal ing
her relationship with the company,
a number of firms pared back their
blogger outreach programmes. Others,
such as Samsung, have started to
disclose their relationships through
‘Clean Online PR’ policies.
SK Telecom – Corporate Social Responsibility
20 Asia-Pacific Social Media Infographics – Burson-Marsteller, August 2011
21 Google Study Finds Smartphone Usage Up in South Korea - Wall Street Journal Digits blog, April 2011

|

BURSON-MARSTELLER ASIA-PACIFIC
12%
TAIWAN
Social
Networks
50%
Micro-blogs
Corporate
Blogs
67%
Video
Sharing
n
Active Accounts
n
Inactive Accounts
37.5%
50%
62.5%
Corporate Use of Social Media Channels
0%
33%
Luna Chiang
Senior Account Director, Compass PR
luna.chiang@compasspr.com.tw
S
ocial media has been highly
popular in Taiwan in recent
years, wi th l ocal s fl ocki ng
to Wretch, YouTube, Pixnet
and other soci al communi ti es to
document and share their thoughts and
experiences. Facebook now boasts
76% reach in Taiwan, and Wretch some
9 million users
22
.
Social platforms are also playing an
increasingly central role when buying
product s. Accordi ng t o a recent
study by l ocal market researchers
InsightXplorer
23
, 50% of Taiwanese
Internet users use social networks to
conduct product research and ask for
advice.
However, it is clear from this year’s
research data that top Tai wanese
companies are lagging their peers and
competitors across Asia. Social media
still constitute a new communications
tool for most Taiwanese companies,
which lack the resources and support
necessary to make these channels a
success.
Indeed, Taiwanese companies tend
22 Asia-Pacific Social Media Infographics - Burson-Marsteller, August 2011
23 Research on Virtual Communities in Taiwan - InsightXplorer, May 2011
http://www.benqfoundation.org/earth14.php
Taiwanese consumer technology player BenQ uses social media to
communicate its CSR activities, including actions to reduce carbon
emissions and measures to protect the environment, such as encouraging
employees’ families to assist in the planting of 40,000 trees close to its
Taichung manufacturing plant.
t o have rel at i vel y l i mi t ed publ i c
relations competencies and have not
traditionally put much store in ‘listening’
to stakeholders. Social media simply
implies further loss of control of their
messaging and content, not least in
an environment that demands instant
response and act i on. Hence t he
(continued) focus on using ‘owned’
channels such as websites to deliver
corporate messages.
It is also clear that the top Taiwanese
firms covered by this research continue
to approach social media largely as a
product marketing tool for consumer
technol ogy and goods compani es
such as mobile manufacturer HTC and
convenience retailer 7-11.
Moti vated pri nci pal l y by product
features and value, local consumers
are more likely to react to and discuss
product marketi ng than corporate
messages.
This is not to say that some Taiwanese
companies are not experimenting with
social media for corporate marketing
and communications. Firms such as
HTC, ASUS and bicycle manufacturer
Giant are leading the way, mostly by
mixing corporate messages in with
product marketing, which both helps
reduce the emphasis on promotions
and sales while softening the image of
the brand.
As Tai wanese fi rms conti nue thei r
international expansion, a greater focus
on social media for both product and
corporate purposes can be expected.
But to catch their competitors and
peers, they will need to put greater
emphasis not just on the channels but
in corporate programmes as a whole.
BenQ – Corporate Social Responsibility
CORPORATE SOCIAL MEDIA REPORT 2011

|


THAILAND
Source: http://www.facebook.com/cpall7?sk=app_106878476015645
12%
Social
Networks
43%
Micro-blogs
Corporate
Blogs
100%
Video
Sharing
n
Active Accounts
n
Inactive Accounts
33%
57%
67%
Corporate Use of Social Media Channels
100%
M
ajor Thai corporations have
made some progress i n
their use of social media
over t he l ast year, but
remain very tentative in their willingness
to actively engage with stakeholders,
preferring to push news and information
to stakeholders, much like they have
always done with more ‘traditional’
communications vehicles.
There are a number of possible reasons
for their apparent reticence to engage
openly in online conversations, notably
corporate cultural norms, a shortage
of individuals with the necessary skills
and an unwillingness to commit the
resources needed to actively engage
stakeholders in ‘social media time’.
Social networks, especially Facebook,
conti nue to be the most popul ar
social media platform for corporations
i n Thai l and. But, even here, both
corporations and the public have not
shown significant interest in engaging
in meaningful dialogue. Facebook in
Thailand is generally considered to be
a fun diversion for urban youth and
young adults, rather than a serious
Jeremy Plotnick
Knowledge Director, Aziam Burson-
Marsteller
jeremy.plotnick@abm.co.th
CP ALL’s flagship CSR programme involves promoting the study of the
classic Japanese board game Go among Thai youth to foster strategic
thinking. Facebook, YouTube and Twitter are used alongside its corporate
website to raise awareness and increase participation in the programme.
communications channel.
And whi l e many compani es i n
Thailand have established a presence
on Facebook, most have opted to
focus on marketing communications,
CSR updat es or i nf or mal/f un
communications. Unsurprisingly, the
firms most active on social networks
are those with significant consumer
exposure: tel ecoms operators and
banks.
Twitter has also been gaining traction
in Thailand but again it has not been
wi del y adopted by l ocal corporate
communications practitioners. While
some local media are active on Twitter,
most usage comprises of simple news
updates and personal communications.
That said, Twitter’s profile was raised
significantly during the April and May
2010 demonstrations in Bangkok when
it became a major source of real-time
information for local and international
media as well as the general public.
A significant potential barrier to a rapid
expansion in the use of social media
for corporate communications relates
a lack of clarity in Thailand’s strict legal
code regarding online incidents of libel,
defamation and/or lese majeste.
The primary area of concern is the fact
that with social media tools any party
can post comments on the corporate
platform, which are then visible to the
general population. If an individual
posts libelous or defamatory comments
on a corporation’s social media channel
and the company does not remove the
comments fast enough, there is a risk
that the corporation will be criminally
liable.
Further, there is also the possibility that
the company will be exposed to civil
law suits by the person(s) defamed in
comments on a corporate social media
channel. For risk-averse organisations
this may be enough to take a wait-and-
see attitude toward using social media
for corporate communications.
CP ALL – Corporate Social Responsibility

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BURSON-MARSTELLER ASIA-PACIFIC
CORPORATE SOCIAL MEDIA REPORT 2011

|


APPROACH TO CORPORATE
SOCIAL MEDIA & NEXT STEPS
0
|

BURSON-MARSTELLER ASIA-PACIFIC
AN APPROACH TO
CORPORATE SOCIAL MEDIA
Companies considering developing and implementing a corporate
social media strategy might usefully consider the following:
• Monitor Continuously
Discussions online don’t conveniently take place during work hours – they can
happen anytime, on any channel and any topic. Make sure you are tracking top
influencers, forums and other online channels in order to identify potential issues
early and proactively enter into relevant conversations.
• Clarify Objectives
Many organisations stray into social media without a clear idea of what they are
looking to achieve, and using rudimentary metrics and tools to evaluate their
performance. Having a clear set of objectives will make the programme more
effective, easier to sell and simpler to evaluate.
• Get Management Buy-In
Encourage senior management to be aware of – and, optimally, participate
in social media – in order to foster appropriate participation by employees on
behalf of the company. Setting a positive example is the best method of digital
leadership.
• Align Messages
Until recently, different stakeholders could be treated separately using different
sets of messages and materials; the Internet now gives all audiences access
to much the same information. The need for more consistent messaging to all
audiences and across all channels is becoming increasingly important.
• Connect the Dots
Your stakeholders may have a different view of your company than you do, and
can voice these opinions whenever they want. When considering your corporate
social media strategy, look laterally across your organisation to identify potential
weaknesses or contradictions and plan your communications accordingly.
• Contribute to the Community
Make sure that your participation in social media is relevant and genuinely helps
and adds value to your audiences, as opposed to always providing content
that is marketing or promotional in nature. As with human relationships, people
respond to companies that listen and are responsive.
• Participate in Good Times and Bad
There will always be situations in which it is best to avoid participating in online
conversations but, generally speaking, negative content provides an opportunity
for an organisation to share its point of view or set the record straight. Avoiding
negative issues can also make you appear uncaring and perhaps with
something to hide.
CORPORATE SOCIAL MEDIA REPORT 2011

|
1
• Be Prepared to Respond in Real-Time
Social media conversations take place in real-time and can spread like wildfire,
so it is often necessary to respond immediately to ensure that you are seen to
care about your customers. Equally, a quick response can stave off reputational
damage that may take months to repair.
• Be Flexible
Whilst it is preferable that your message and content are as clear and consistent
as possible in today’s faster, flatter communications environment, the dynamics
of online conversations can turn on a dime. Try to retain some flexibility both in
your messaging and in its delivery.
• Speak as a Person
People expect to be talked to as people, not as constituents of a demographic
or members of a database. When interacting with customers and other
stakeholders on the internet, it is essential that your voice and tone are both
personal and true to your organisation’s values.
• Don’t be Heavy-Handed
Be careful about getting into fights with people on the Internet – large
organisations rarely win spats in the broad court of public opinion. Furthermore,
the use of legal actions or threats often only makes matters worse, alienating
your audiences and helping spread the fire.
• Optimise Continuously
It is increasingly easy to track online conversations relevant to your organisation,
as well as monitor use of your branded social media channels on Facebook,
Twitter, YouTube etc. Such data can be enormously helpful in ensuring that your
approach is appropriate. It can also help fine-tune your messages.

|

BURSON-MARSTELLER ASIA-PACIFIC
Below are some initial actions for organisations considering planning
and implementing corporate social media programmes.
1. Understand Audiences
Few organisations get a grip on what their audiences think about them, beyond
those they already know well. It is also important to appreciate their behaviours,
in terms of preferred sources of information, approaches to research, relative
spheres of influence etc – both online and offline. What people say and do
online does not necessarily reflect their offline lives.
. Assess Communications Capabilities
Understand how well equipped your internal teams and supplier are to plan,
implement and assess social media programmes, build relationships in the
online environment (including leveraging existing ‘offline’ relationships), and
track, analyse, escalate and manage online discussions. Beware: self-anointed
social media ‘gurus’ abound.
. Identify & Strengthen Gaps
Identify the gaps between your overall communications objectives and plan, and
your current social media knowledge, skills, systems, processes & tools. Look
to strengthen weaknesses through training, recruitment or by improving internal
decision-making processes and procedures.
. Re-design Policies, Procedures & Toolkits
Make sure your current communications infrastructure is up to date and
sufficiently flexible to meet today’s reality. This may include the introduction of a
corporate social media policy, the development of social media playbooks and
other resources and updating your crisis communications protocols.
. Communicate Employee Roles & Responsibilities
It is very easy, and tempting, for employees to share their own views and
experiences on company-related issues on the Internet. It is vital that your
people are aware of the evolving legal framework (in some countries) governing
disclosure to bloggers, their professional and personal responsibilities and the
broad principles of communicating online.
. Cascade Learnings
While often the best way to develop capabilities in any area is through the actual
implementation of communications programmes, also consider how best you
can develop a system for sharing social media knowledge and learnings within
and across your communications teams, and ensuring these stay top of mind.
NEXT STEPS
CORPORATE SOCIAL MEDIA REPORT 2011

|


COMPANY-MARKET INDEX
The companies surveyed in this study comprise the top 10 companies per market as ranked in the
Wall
Street Journal Asia 200 Index for 2010. The Index can be viewed at:
http://asia.wsj.com/public/page/asia200.html
Australia
Australia & New Zealand Banking Group
BHP Billiton
Coca-Cola Amatil
Commonwealth Bank of Australia
National Australia Bank
Qantas Airways
Rio Tinto
Westfield Group
Westpac Banking Corporation
Woolworths
China (mainland)
Alibaba.com
Baidu, Inc.
BYD Co.
China Merchants Bank Co.
China Vanke Co.
Ctrip.com International
Lenovo Group
Li Ning Co.
Tencent Holdings
Tsingtao Brewery Co.
Hong Kong
Cathay Pacific Airways
China Light & Power Holdings
Hang Seng Bank
Hong Kong & China Gas Co.
Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing
Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group
MTR Corporation
Swire Pacific
Sun Hung Kai Properties
Shangri-La Asia

India
Bharti Airtel
Hindustan Unilever
Housi ng Devel opment Fi nance
Corporation
Infosys Technologies
Larsen & Toubro
Maruti Suzuki India
Tata Consultancy Services
Tata Motors
Tata Steel
Wipro
Indonesia
Bank Central Asia
Bank Mandiri (Persero)
Bank Rakyat Indonesia
Hanjaya Mandala Sampoerna
Holcim Indonesia
Indofood Sukses Makmur
Indonesian Satellite (Indosat)
PT Astra International
Telekomunikasi Indonesia
Unilever Indonesia
Japan
Canon Inc.
Fast Retailing Inc.
Honda Motor Co.
Nintendo Co.
Panasonic Corporation
Seven and i Holdings Co.
Softbank Corporation
Sony Corporation
Toshiba Corporation
Toyota Motor Corporation
South Korea
Hyundai Heavy Industries Co.
Hyundai Motor Company
Kia Motors Corporation
LG Corporation
LG Display Co.
LG Electronics Inc.
POSCO
Samsung Electronics Co.
Shinsegae Co.
SK Telecom Co.
Malaysia
Astro All Aisa Networks plc
CIMB Group Holdings
DiGi.com
Genting
Malayan Banking
Malaysia Airlines System
Maxis
Nestle (Malaysia)
Petronas Gas
Public Bank
The Philippines
Ayala Corporation
Ayala Land, Inc.
Banco de Oro Unibank Inc.
Bank of the Philippine Islands
Globe Telecom, Inc.
Jollibee Foods
Metropolitan Bank & Trust Co.
Philippine Long Distance Telephone
Company
San Miguel Corporation
SM Development Corporation
Singapore
CapitaLand
DBS Group Holdings
Overseas-Chinese Banking Corporation
Singapore Airlines
Singapore Airport Terminal Services
Singapore Exchange
Singapore Press Holdings
Singapore Telecommunications (SingTel)
StarHub
United Overseas Bank
Taiwan
Acer Inc.
Asustek Computer Inc.
Chi Mei Optoelectronics Corporation
Formosa Petrochemical Corporation
HTC Corporation
Hon Hai Precision Industry
MediaTek Inc.
Uni-President Enterprises Corporation
Quanta Computer Inc.
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing
Company
Thailand
Advanced Info Service
Charoen Pokphand Foods
CP All
Kasikornbank
Land & Houses
PTT Exploration and Production
PTT
Siam Cement
Siam Commercial Bank
Total Access Communication

|

BURSON-MARSTELLER ASIA-PACIFIC
Burson-Marsteller regularly publishes analysis and
points of view on topical communications issues.
Recent examples relevant to readers of this report
include the publications below, which can be
found at: http://slideshare.net/bmasia
• Managing Corporate Reputation In The
Digital Age
October 2011
• Reputation In The Cloud Era: Digital Crisis
Communications Study
August 2011
• Asia Online? How Asian Companies Are
Missing The Online Train
March 2011
• Asia-Pacific Corporate Social Media Study
010
October 2010
FURTHER READING
CORPORATE SOCIAL MEDIA REPORT 2011

|


Acknowledgements
The following employees at Burson-Marsteller and its affiliates
across Asia-Pacific contributed to this study: Ana Gonzalez,
Carly Yanco, DaeChul Shin, Gosuke Kumamura, Harold Li,
Haruehun Airry Noppawan, Jeremy Plotnick, Jinny Jacaria,
Kelvin Lim, Leon Zhang, Luna Chiang, Natashia Jaya, Maggie
Hicks, Niki Kao, Palin Ningthoujam, Rachel Yeung, Rhoda
Wong, Salil Jayakar, Steve Bowen, Terence Yam, Tomokazu
Ishida, Vivien Law.
Further Information
To speak to one of the authors of this study, or for further
information, please contact:
Charlie Pownall
Lead Digital Strategist (Asia-Pacific)
charles.pownall@bm.com
@cpownall
Zaheer Nooruddin
Lead Digital Strategist (China)
zaheer.nooruddin@bm.com
@zooruddin
Albert Pereira
President, Digital (India)
albert.pereira@bm.com
@albertvpereira
Craig Adams
Director, Marketing
craig.adams@bm.com
@chadams623
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS &
CONTACTS
D
|

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