Facebook, Google, SCMP band together to spur Hong Kong’s growth in digital advertising

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 26 October, 2016, 8:43pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 26 October, 2016, 10:11pm

Facebook Inc, Google Inc and the South China Morning Post have formed a group to set guidelines and standards to support the steady rise of online and mobile advertising in Hong Kong.

“Our goal is to make digital marketing useful to more advertisers in Hong Kong, especially the local and international brands,” said Kevin Huang, the chief executive at digital advertising agency Pixels, one of seven founding members of the Digital Marketing Association of Hong Kong (DMA). “We want advertisers to better understand the digital ecosystem and cultivate new talent to further develop the industry.”

Huang said the DMA expected to set the proposed guidelines at “some time next year”.

The other founding members of the DMA are Yahoo, Next Digital, and media measurement and analytics company comScore. The DMA has signed up 29 new members as of Wednesday.

Global consultancy PwC has helped fan optimism over the future of digital marketing in Hong Kong, following its prediction in June that the city’s internet advertising market will be worth US$1.07 billion by 2020.

Digital advertising is also expected to overtake broadcast television revenue globally this year, and hit US$260 billion by 2020, fuelled by the growth of paid search, such as Google AdWords, according to PwC.

By venturing into the role of a standard setter in digital advertising, media organisations including the Post can better transform themselves from legacy publishers into the digital media, said Elsie Cheung, chief operating officer at the Post.

“We also believe that context is important. So when the right piece of content is paired in the right context, a brand’s advertising message becomes extremely powerful,” Cheung said.

The DMA is not alone in spurring more digital advertising engagements since other organisations, such as the Hong Kong Association of Interactive Marketing, have been ahead.

Huang said the DMA’s members were all focused on the major brands, while others promote small businesses.