In the past few years, the Asia Pacific region has seen a dramatic growth of social media and viral content, providing a perfect landscape to launch Rally, IPG Mediabrands’new service.

The offering, which exists in Malaysia since 2009, is being launched across hubs in Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand, providing services in the areas of social marketing strategy, P2P communications, advocacy management, conversation planning and social commerce and aims to strengthen a brand’s social strategy in the digital world.

Social marketing strategy provides brands and businesses with a strategy to maximize the opportunities as well as minimize the threats while the P2P communications offering leverages the notion there is a lot of power in people's hands and it’s important to manage a brands reputation.

Rally also provides an advocacy management service, nurturing influencers and deepening the relationship with them. Besides, conversation planning offers clients a well developed, strategically led plan to manage the online conversation, while the social commerce arm of Rally aims to offer genuine monetization and sales attribution opportunities.

Prashant Kumar, President IPG Mediabrands, World Markets Asia noted, "All marketing ultimately will be social. So, the challenge is not how to add some social on the marketing fringes, but how to redefine marketing and commerce around peer-to-peer networks. Rally is not just about community and crisis management; it's everything about mainstream marketing – product innovation, communication, content, media and commerce. Its role pervades the entire demand chain and we hope to design campaigns around affinity networks and end-to-end crowd sourcing."

IPG Mediabrands hope Rally to be the first ‘earned media’ offering in an industry replete with ‘paid media’ agencies. Rally's ambition is to deliver at least two-thirds of an integrated campaign's media value via earned media. So far the majority of Rally's campaigns are able to achieve that.

IPG Mediabrands’ approach to managing conversations with brand communities has shown valid momentum in terms of brand love and the business impact, believing that if social numbers in many of the markets look as big as traditional numbers, it is high time that marketing investments follow the allocation patterns, too, thus, persuasion and influence must work hand-in-hand.

"Now the time is ripe for our clients across the region to benefit from this blue ocean opportunity. It's time media agencies become truly socially-infused", Prashant Kumar concludes.

Social marketing is already a big part of IPG Mediabrands' offering across Asia. In Malaysia, Rally has worked with more than a dozen clients from various industry sectors, including Microsoft, J&J, F&N, or Telekom Malaysia. The success of the social strategy created indicates there is a huge potential for this type of communications strategy and clients are more than willing to be a part of the changing environment.

Rally Malaysia is credited with some of the most successful social campaigns and communities in the market. Last year, Rally’s Virtual Ramadan Social gaming campaign engaged 5 million plus Malaysians, with 60,000 open houses held inside the game while their connect-o-meter Facebook app for Microsoft generated 216 million impressions. Earlier this year, the Johnson's baby Room makeover inspired first time mommies and their friends to do-up baby rooms for their baby, which exploded in the social sphere to create a huge momentum. ‘TM’s Everyone Connects’ and ‘Taylor’s Young Achievers’ communities have become one of the most vibrant brand communities in Malaysia.

"If brand-building is about trust and love, there is no other place, where it is being expressed and shared more beautifully and more often than in social media. We believe Asia has an opportunity to leapfrog traditional thinking and design marketing around “social”. I am really excited about the launch of Rally and how it could help our clients in Asia create competitive advantage via us." said, Mauricio Sabogal, Global CEO, World Markets, IPG Mediabrands.

By MediaBUZZ