The Importance of Social Selling in APAC

Misha Pabari

July 27, 2021

We’ve previously written about brands using livestreaming techniques as part of their Tmall marketing strategy, to build awareness in the Chinese market. In this blog, we’ll outline how other South East Asian markets are following in China’s footsteps and realising the importance of social selling in APAC.

Maximise your brand’s discoverability

Customer acquisition marketing costs can be high when you first enter a new market. For all brands looking to internationalise through marketplaces we recommend they establish brand awareness in the target market via social channels and advertising on the marketplaces. Livestreaming content can be used to promote your products in several ways; both to engage those who are already aware of your brand, and also to help consumers discover your brand and products for the first time.

Livestreaming has been adopted by marketplaces across the APAC region. Tmall, JD.com, Lazada and Shopee have all developed livestreaming platforms and reported uplifts in usage during 2020; particularly during lockdowns when stores were closed.

How social selling in APAC works

Your trade partner should have their own presenters on staff, who can present your products on livestream shows that are dedicated to your brand. This can help you to educate and convert customers who already have awareness of your brand.

You may also work with influencers (called KOLs or key opinion leaders) to showcase your products to their followers and extend your reach. We’ve successfully used livestreaming platforms to engage and convert customers in China, and the same techniques can work in South East Asia too.

Collaborating with KOLs and micro-influencers

While the most well-known KOLs can have millions of followers they are also extremely expensive. If you are prepared to pay for their involvement, then you can work with more widely known KOLs to feature your products on a livestream and drive thousands of purchases during the stream.

Alternatively, some brands opt to work with micro-influencers with expertise in their category instead. This can be an extremely effective way of engaging smaller audiences who are most likely to purchase your products.

Collaborating with KOLs and micro-influencers should not be restricted to just livestreaming content. Social selling in APAC can expand further to content on other offline marketing channels including Douyin (Tiktok), WeChat and RED, ensuring that you have the optimal marketing mix in place for your brand.

Competition for brand awareness in the Asia Pacific region is fierce, and international brands should be prepared to invest enough in marketing when preparing for a successful launch. When used effectively social selling techniques in APAC can help your brand to engage and retain customers.

Download our Influencer Marketing Report to learn more about how brands can use influencers to acquire new customers on marketplace such as Tmall, Shopee and Lazada.

Contact us now to discuss how we could support your marketplace sales in APAC, or other marketplace challenges that you face.

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Pattern UAE Shopper Report 2022 Cover Image
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Shopper trends and growth opportunities for brands in the United Arab Emirates

Pattern’s 2022 Amazon United Arab Emirates (UAE) shopper research has highlighted the consumer habits in the region, and demonstrated why it is fast becoming one of the most exciting growth opportunities for brands selling online. We surveyed UAE online shoppers at the beginning of 2022 to determine how their shopper behaviour was likely to develop during the year compared to 2021. We compiled our findings in the UAE Shopper Report 2022 and share the most interesting insights shown below. Shoppers have an appetite to spend Online spending in the UAE is set to see a year-on-year increase during 2022. Overall, 74% of online shoppers polled said they would spend more online shopping this year compared to 2021. A further 19% expected to spend the same as in 2021, with just 6% expected to spend less. Of the 74% who expect to spend more during 2022, nearly half (47%) said this figure was likely to be a lot more. Online marketplaces lead the way More respondents expected to purchase online this year from Amazon or Noon than other online retailers for every major product category, including fashion, consumer electronics, home and kitchen, and beauty. For example, in the consumer electronics category, 61% of online shoppers expect to buy from Amazon, and 42% from Noon. In comparison, only 14% expect to buy online from retailers with both stores and a website. For home and kitchen, 60% expect to buy from Amazon, 46% from Noon and just 18% to buy online from retailers with a store and website. This pattern is mirrored in many other categories. Amazon opens new doors The opportunity for consumers to discover new products and brands through Amazon is evident. 42% of Amazon.ae shoppers purchased a product from a brand that they had never purchased before. Our findings show that Amazon.ae is a great platform for brands to raise their profile amongst UAE’s online shoppers. Our UAE Shopper Report shows the growing popularity of Amazon in the region, with shoppers using Amazon to find new products and discover new brands. With increases in usage, spending and Prime membership across almost all age groups, Amazon.ae is a platform where consumer brands must build a strong presence if they want to achieve Middle Eastern sales growth. The UAE’s ecommerce market size is predicted to grow from US$10 billion in 2021, to US$17 billion in 2025, reinforcing the opportunity for brands to achieve profitable growth in the region. Download the full [2022 UAE Shopper Report](https://info.pattern.com/uae-shopper-report-2022) to learn more about the insights we have gained from this research.

People of Pattern - Ellie Dolphin
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Ellie Dolphin, Brand Manager: People of Pattern

At Pattern, we believe the key to success is our team members. Our PeopleofPattern series shines a light on the people that make Pattern great, learning about their roles, experiences, and what it’s like to work at Pattern. This week we spoke with Ellie Dolphin, Brand Manager in our London office. Could you tell me a bit about your role and experience working at Pattern? I work as a Brand Manager in the Brand Management team here in Pattern’s London office. I’ve been working here for two years now, having started in 2020. I act as the main point of contact for our brand partners, in my case I work with Rituals. I work as their key stakeholder within the business to help them liaise with all of our other functions. This includes our merchandising team, ordering team, advertising team, the warehouse team, and operations team, so it is a beast of a task! This alignment ensures the brand’s business is optimised and we are making good commercial decisions to hit their objectives on marketplaces like Amazon. Why do you choose to work at Pattern? My previous role was quite different to where I am today. I previously worked in a translation team, so we were always reacting to decisions that other people made and translating work that they’d made for other marketplaces. What I liked about Pattern, was that I would be the driver instead. Here, I get to drive forward the strategy and tactics for my brand partners that are best for them on the platform. In my role as a Brand Manager I am no longer reactive to other’s actions, I get to be really proactive and make key decisions. This suits me really well and has helped me develop as a person in terms of my commercial and strategic knowledge. I have learnt a lot about ecommerce in general and also about Amazon and marketplaces specifically, which has been really beneficial for my personal development. What has been the most rewarding part of working at Pattern for you? For me, it’s when I get positive feedback from my partners and when I’m able to cultivate a good relationship with them as well. When a brand partner is succeeding on marketplaces, it means we’re both winning. Pattern is winning, and most importantly our brand partners are winning as well. It feels great knowing that our team has helped them, such as supporting them in achieving their internal goals or sharing data that allows them to validate trends they see in other areas of their business. I enjoy championing my brand partner’s best interests and being their advocate. What does a typical day as a Brand Manager look like? One of the best things about being a brand manager is that no two days look the same. For me, it’s normally reviewing how my brand partner’s business is performing as a whole, so how my listings are appearing, how sales are performing, and then seeing if there are any opportunities to drive more sales in the short term. I plan for new product launches, coordinating with the creative team for new assets, or with the ordering team for forecasting what we might need to order, or with the overseas team on actually setting up those listings and getting them live. I also look at the bigger picture, thinking about the brand’s biggest goals for marketplaces and what our strategy will be in order to achieve this over the next quarter and year, The other part would be communicating with the brand partners themselves, to make sure they are aware of all developments and updates in the business, they have all the information they need to make decisions on their side, and that they are confident in what we’re doing and aware of the results. Why would you recommend working at Pattern? Like I said earlier, the days are really varied and interesting. This is great from a working perspective. For me, it’s also the people I work with. Pattern is a really social company, which makes coming into the office and getting through the work day really enjoyable. I’m actually in the social committee, a responsibility I really enjoy. I love getting the team involved in all the activities that we do. We enjoy going to the pub together, participating in charity races, we have our own Pattern bar in the London office called the Pattern & Crown where we host events each month, there’s lots of things that we all enjoy getting involved in as a team - it’s great. We’re growing our team at Pattern! If you're looking to start a career in ecommerce or even if you're a seasoned professional and want to learn more about our exciting opportunities, check out [our open positions here](https://pattern.com/about/careers/).

How ICONIC London’s Sales Increased 31% Year Over Year with Pattern
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How ICONIC London’s Sales Increased 31% Year Over Year with Pattern

ICONIC London is a British beauty brand with an increasingly international following. Whilst being 100% vegan and cruelty free, the brand strives to be all inclusive. Before the brand partnered with Pattern in 2019, it was managing its own Amazon presence internally (1P seller) but was not fully optimising product listings due to time constraints and internal resources.

ICONIC London Needs Creative Help to Drive Traffic and Conversion

To help ICONIC London position itself as a leading beauty brand on Amazon, Pattern enhanced the brand’s performance on Amazon by initially focusing on ensuring the top-selling ASINs were optimised to best practices, as well as implementing a robust SEO and advertising strategy to improve discoverability.

ICONIC London Partners with Pattern to Increase Amazon Sales

As its 3P partner, Pattern, the world’s top ecommerce accelerator, ICONIC London started to implement these initiatives.  Pattern set forth to improve product content with its creative resources and marketplace best practices.  Pattern successfully implemented a robust SEO and advertising strategy to improve brand discoverability, which led to more eyeballs on the brand and more product conversions.  Together, the revised creative and advertising strategy gave ICONIC London control of its Amazon presence and a richer brand equity.

ICONIC London Revenue Increased 31% YoY

As a result of optimising ICONIC London’s presence on Amazon, Pattern was able to increase the brand’s revenue by 31% (2020 vs 2021).  Pattern grew sales for its bestselling ASINs, Sept 2020 vs Sept 2021:

  • Triple Threat Mascara (+281%)

  • Sheer Blush - Rose Riot (+430%)

Pattern is the Accelerator for Brands on Amazon

1P brands typically lose control on Amazon, which hurts revenue as well as erodes brand equity.  Pattern has the resources as well as global marketplace experience and data to collaboratively rebuild brands on Amazon worldwide.

Avoid losing control of your brand on Amazon in 1P, Contact Pattern.


Partnering with Pattern to optimise our presence has allowed us to raise our profile in the premium beauty space on amazon, as well as attract new customers outside of our existing sales channels.

–Prash Asogan, Account Manager

ICONIC London