Monday, April 6, 2009

Generation Mobile Community, update

Mobile payment as a currency, sampling Malaysia, Philippines vs. HK

In my past 5 years of working in Asia Pacific, I've experienced first hand the use of mobile technology and wi-fi hotspots in the different economies in Asia. Four years ago when I was working at a Starbucks in KL, I am able to pay for Wi-Fi hotspots using my Maxis mobile prepaid sim card. For RM 5.0 a day, I can have unlimited wifi for 24 hours. Three years ago when I was in Manila, my partner gave me a prepaid SIM to use during my stay. At the end of the trip, my partner told me I can transfer the balance of the SIM card to one of their mobile numbers. So no remaining balance go to waste. I thought how convenient! I wonder if and when would Hong Kong mobile operators integrate more payment features into their service. Hong Kong however does have a unique environment where the Octopus card, the smart card which is used to pay from transportation to groceries to fast food, is so successful and pervasive that can raise the hurdle of other electronic payment options.

Web Wednesday and my first SMS marketing participation experience

The journey to discover digital media and mobile industry players in Hong Kong led me to Web Wednesday. Web Wednesday Hong Kong is started by Napolean Biggs, an internet marketing and digital media specialist. In less than a year, Web Wednesday has already attracted 1100 members according to Women in Publishing Hong Kong (WiPS) list serv. In its brief history, Web Wednesday has managed to organize high quality speakers, and good turnouts in the mothly social mixer. The meetings are generally on 1st Wednesday of the month. This month, in order to fit in schedule of speaker Matt Mullengweg, founder of WordPress, the social mixer is held on a Tuesday, April 7 (tonight). Details of tonight's event can be found here.
To promote Mobile Marketing, Web Wednesday also started running mobile marketing campaign Quiz using SMS shortcode. I will update the blog after the event tonight on how many participants we get on this campaign. All I know is I have spent HKD 2 for the chance of winning the prize tonight. Wish me luck!

The journey begins...

Tomorrow, I will have the opportunity to stand in front of 80 college students in Hong Kong to promote the Generation Mobile Community project. This is the first phase of the project which involves conducting surveys of young people 16 - 29 on their habits, understanding their use of social networks, web 2.0 user generated content technologies, mobile technology, and awareness as well as experience in mobile marketing.

Update after April 7 Web Wednesday

The turn out for this month's Web Wednesday is another success. There must be close to 200 people packed at Volar in LKF. Bigg is a fantastic speaker and did a great job in the interview with the rather shy Matt Mullenweg from WordPress. I thought the interview is well balanced to let members understand about WordPress product and business positioning in Asia. Thanks to HyperFactory, an international mobile marketing specialist, the mobile SMS quiz added mobile entertainment with prizes for the audience. There are 40 SMS entries to the quiz on site. Is 20% a high or low response rate?

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