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East Asia

East Asia covers the advertising markets of Japan and South Korea, both sophisticated countries marked by a high level of tech innovation and strong cultural ‘soft power’. Japan is one the world’s largest markets by adspend, with television retaining a relatively high share of spend versus digital compared with other developed markets.

Key Reading

Important papers from across the Warc database

This article argues that brands can adapt to the digital world by learning from the Asian model, based on shared values and collaboration with consumers, rather than relying on the increasingly outmoded western concepts of individual ownership and a top-down brand narrative. Brand examples discussed in the article include Muji and Nike.
Why Korean brands such as Hyundai, Samsung and LG became global household names.
Five 'truths' about Japanese consumer behaviour, and how this will develop in the next few years.
Predicted advertising expenditure across 12 key markets, including Japan, for the next two years.
Asia's leading competition recognising great strategic thinking in marketing.

Case Study

This case study describes how accommodations provider, Airbnb, leveraged digital and video to turn people's fear of strangers into a selling point for a global brand awareness campaign.

Case Study

This case study discusses a business-to-business campaign for Dell, the computer maker, in Japan that highlighted security risks via a survey and a white paper featuring advice on how IT professionals could overcome these risks.

Case Study

This case study shows how Onomichi-city, a small port town located in Japan's Hiroshima Prefecture, created an ingenious campaign using stray cats as the city's tour guides.

Case Study

This case study shows how Tadot, a braille engraved bath product, used a viral campaign to promote its launch in the South Korean market.

Case Study

This case study shows how Nissan, a car brand, successfully increased sales by engaging some of its core customers in unusual locations in Japan.

Case Study

This campaign marked the centenary of soft drinks brand, Coca-Cola's contour bottle in Korea with a live event-based campaign.
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Research Paper

Resonant advertisements—which employ a twist or deviation to create multiple meanings—commonly are used by marketing practitioners.

Article

This article investigates characteristics of Korea's emerging consumer demographics including millennial parents, internationalist singles and shoppers in their forties with high disposable income.

Research Paper

This paper examines how storytelling can be implemented into methodologies for understanding brand experiences in the Japanese and Asian market.

Article

The article uses consumer research to investigate the nuances of local beauty culture in Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia and South Korea, and outlines why local brands are beating their international counterparts in Asia.

Article

This article explains how three mobile gaming companies in the highly competitive Japanese market grew market share with more efficient keyword targeting, search and banner ads targeting dormant users.

Article

This article explores research into mobile search behaviour in Japan and how search advertising can be targeted to drive more conversions.

Article

This event report outlines how DramaFever successfully built a content-streaming brand, in the US and beyond, based around distributing drama series made in South Korea.
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  1. Article

    This case study describes how accommodations provider, Airbnb, leveraged digital and video to turn people's fear of strangers into a selling point for a global brand awareness campaign.

  2. Article

    This article outlines, how Shiseido – an iconic Japanese beauty brand – modernized and rejuvenated its brand by taking a new approach to storytelling, and challenging the traditional marketing culture common among Japanese brands.

  3. Article

    This article presents the predicted advertising expenditure across 12 key markets for 2015 and 2016.

  4. Article

    This article discusses the various marketing techniques, including Augmented Reality and Facial Recognition, that can be used to investigate and influence in-store purchase decisions.

  5. Article

    This report summarises the data stored in Warc's Adspend Database, which tracks advertising expenditure for eight media in 90 individual markets back to 1980.

  6. Article

    This article urges a rethink of luxury marketing, as western societies change and make mass-marketing less relevant, while other countries have different approaches to hierarchy.

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