Brands may be increasingly getting behind female empowerment but they aren’t getting it quite right – especially in APAC.

This was what Emma Gage, managing director of Crowd DNA Singapore, recently observed at How To Speak Woman: The Asia Edition, co-hosted by the cultural insights firm with advertising agency 72andSunny.

“A lot of global female empowerment advertising and campaigns are all about personal agency and about bucking the system, and celebrating women that are going out and making it happen. They are strong,” she said.

“But that’s quite different when you come from a background that is all about sacrificing and expectation, and that is what being a good mother, being a good woman, being a good wife, daughter is.”

Such cultural expectations even cloud the great sense of optimism in the region, since “the start-point, when you are a woman in Asia, is that of expectation and sacrifice”.