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Google tries to persuade Thai firms

Google (Thailand) urges local companies to pay attention to online marketing to optimise business globally.

It wants to persuade them to change their ways of doing marketing from only focusing on traditional platforms, especially TV, to becoming active on the online platform.

Business manager Ariya Banomyong said yesterday that the Internet was the game changer for the way of doing business. Almost all people are always online, via any device. That's a big opportunity for marketers.

Personal-computer Internet penetration is 36 per cent, while more mobile Internet users are becoming increasingly active. Internet penetration across devices is expected to pass 50 per cent next year.

"According to Nielsen, on average in a week, time spent on the Internet is 23 hours. That is more than time spent on TV, which is 17 hours. That is what marketers should be aware of, and they should prepare to catch up with consumers wherever they are.

"Online marketing is not a technical issue. It's a business issue," he said.

The role of Google is to provide information, consultants and tools for online marketing. The company has dedicated teams to take care of and closely work with large businesses and their agencies to assist them to do online marketing efficiently.

It also has an online programme for small and medium-sized enterprises to help them to make best use of Google's tools for online marketing.

"We as the industry as a whole, digital and marketing industries, need to educate the businesses' 'C' level to understand online marketing, what it is and what its benefits are," he said.

Three barriers are preventing marketers from going online - mindset, organisational policy and skills. These are the priorities that businesses have to change quickly in order to catch up with opportunities online that are out there now.

"First, businesses have to be present online. Then, they should invest more budgets for online marketing," he said. Online advertising and marketing is different from traditional methods. Commercials for TV should be only 30 seconds, while video adverts on the Internet can be longer, up to three minutes. During a 30-second spot on TV, many people switch to other channels, while for a three-minute video ad on the Internet, people watch it until it ends.

Video adverts on the Internet have more power to engage people and let people feel they are watching content rather than an ad, Ariya suggested.

"We have a lot of cases of video ads on the Internet that got several million views, even though they are three-minute ads," he said.

He will join ad:tech, an interactive advertising and technology conference and exhibition. It also features a marketplace, a networking community, a forum for exchanging ideas and an opportunity to contribute to industry trends and initiatives, to press businesses to invest in online marketing.


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