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29/10/2011 by

Why Social Media Works In Asian Regions

Asia, the final frontier. For me, a 30 year old man from the Western Hemisphere, Asia is somewhat of a mystery. For my job I help organizations obtain their brand and business objectives trough social marketing.

On this side of the mountain we are driven by certain motives and these motives have been plotted and marketing models have been made accordingly. Most are moulded based on the human psyche, but the Asian psyche works slightly different…

The gross of all the behavioral consumer models that are used in boardrooms across Asia, have been developed in Western Countries. CMO’s still have difficulties tapping into marketing techniques that apply the best to non-western consumers. Most of these models are based on the assumption that Maslow’s hierarchy fits all people across the world. Guess what, not really…

When put into an Asian context we see that the priorities seem to shift. Interpersonal relationships and social interactions are highly valued, so much even that they tower above self-actualisation needs.

When we have a look at self actualization, Asians (yes I am talking IN GENERAL) find this in status, being admired and affiliated. Being independent or making your choices autonomously have less importance compared to Western Cultures.

Social Groups – Being Connected
Individuality is perceived differently by Asian Cultures, where the emphasis lies on how you are connected to your peers, how you fit within the group and if you are in harmony with them, importance lies in attending to others.

If we look at the West, we all want to be perceived connected, but defined by our individual talents, our personality and what we perform. In non-western groups they do not separate their values from their peers.

However, this does not necessarily mean that one conforms, that is why fashion brands are booming in the Asian marketplace. Dying hair, owning an IPhone (yes, thats fashion), having the best bag and strutting in top notch shoes. Check out the whitepapers on

Logically we can’t label all these differences between the West and Asia as black and white. But grosso modo, it is important for CMO’s to realize the importance of the Social groups for consumers to seek advice, rethink products and evaluate these products in their groups.

Social Landscape Of Asia


Asian Market Space
Asian markets are expanding their business abroad an into other cultures, but the most of their business is still done within Asia. So if you want to become a effective marketeer and understand Asian consumers, first have a look within Asia.

Asia is big, very big and has a mosaic of different cultures; fed by traditionalism but driven by modernity.


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