Has Bali Lost Its Allure?

June 27th, 2010   •   3 comments   

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Ibu Oka’s Babi Guling at Ubud

Bali has always held special meaning to me and my wife. It was on this tropical island that we had our honeymoon way back in January 2003. Back then, I was so inspired by the holiday experience and customer encounters that I wrote an article that was published in the Straits Times on the legendary hospitality of Balinese.

Sadly things have changed, even at Ubud (Bali’s cultural heart) which is supposedly less mercantilist than Kuta, Uluwatu or the coastal cities. While its verdant and pastoral landscapes have largely remained, the ugly effects of commercialisation and gentrification have left major scars on the island.
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Off to Undulating Ubud

June 19th, 2010   •   3 comments   


Source

To recharge, refresh, and relax, my family and I are heading off to Ubud this afternoon for a short break. Considered one of the more scenic and rustic spots in Bali, Ubud is the cultural centre of the island dotted with numerous art galleries, craft markets, museums and temples. From what I’ve seen and read, the Ubud region is full of picturesque scenes – rustic rice terraces, swaying coconut palms, charming temples, and healing resorts.

Of course, we will also be travelling to other parts of the island like Kuta Beach, Tanalok, and the Mara River (we’ll be staying a night at the Mara River Safari Lodge to experience lions upclose and personal). Hopefully, we’ll be able to catch a procession or two – those are quite spectacular from what I’ve seen and heard.

Do take care during the interim and see you all next week!


NTUC Income Scores with Flooding Ad

June 17th, 2010   •   no comments   

This morning, I was alerted to this full page advertisement in The Straits Times by Tessa Wong, one of its journalists on her Twitter account. Created by NTUC Income, a leading general insurer in Singapore, it caught the eye of many on Twitter who retweeted it to their friends and followers.

I applaud NTUC Income for scoring several goals (this being World Cup season) with this:

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Digging Deeper To Find Gold

June 14th, 2010   •   no comments   


Finding treasure requires a lot of investigating and digging. Just ask Indiana Jones! (source)

In any successful marketing endeavour, one must be willing to think, live and breathe like one’s potential customer. This also means that preconceived notions and prejudices must be tested and thrown out the window if they are proven untrue.

What are some of these common misconceptions and myths? Let me offer some examples.
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Collecting versus Creating – A Digital Dilemma?

June 10th, 2010   •   2 comments   


Don’t just collect tonnes of digital crap! (source)

Beyond the curation of online information (text, photos, videos, games etc), social media strategists should also learn how to be judicious in the art and science of collection. However, just like working in a museum, collecting digital “treasures” need to be done purposefully.

Frequent online users collect (and consume) a lot of things.
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Don’t Lose the Long Form!

June 8th, 2010   •   2 comments   


The greatest literary works Like “War and Peace” are not puny (source)

As more and more people consume information in byte-sized pieces, and veer towards Twitter, Facebook and other social networking platforms, it appears that we are losing the benefits of length.

Wait, hang on a minute. Am I telling you to be verbose and long-winded while beating about the bush? Isn’t instant, real-time and succinct responses the beauty of the age of digitisation?

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Eye Power versus i-Power

June 6th, 2010   •   no comments   


Source

In the age of digital dominance and wicked widgets, one tends to lose the use of one’s primary senses. Lulled by the comforts of computers, one can become oblivious to one’s immediate surroundings and end up relying more on secondary rather than primary data.

By inadvertently shutting ourselves to the real world and gluing our eyes (and fingers) on our mobile computing devices, we may then rely on third party “gurus” and “experts”. We put our trust on the charts, trends, data, and analytics churned out by researchers who are often located half a world away.

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Singapore’s Pavilion @ Shanghai World Expo

June 5th, 2010   •   1 comment   

At the Shanghai World Expo 2010, the country pavilions are especially significant as they are iconic representations of what each country has to offer. After visiting those from Europe and the Americas, as well as those closer to home in China, Australia and Southeast Asia, how does Singapore’s Pavilion compare?

Join me for an in-depth tour of the Singapore Pavilion at the Shanghai World Expo.

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Designed by architect Tan Kay Ngee, the Singapore Pavilion’s theme is Urban Symphony. Evoking images of a music box, it “forms an orchestra of elements and a symphony for the senses – from the choreography of the plaza’s water fountain, the rhythm of fenestrations on the façade, the interplay of sounds and visuals, to the mélange of flora on the roof garden.”
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Your Most Important Customers

June 2nd, 2010   •   no comments   


With courtesy from Starfleetyachts.com

Who should you pay the most attention to in your organisation?

A) The guy or girl who makes a purchase of your product or service.
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Touring Asia & Australia at the Shanghai World Expo

May 30th, 2010   •   no comments   

After visiting the various country pavillions in the European and American zones of the Shanghai World Expo, we focused our attention on the regions closer to home. Due to the shortage of time, we could only enter the Singapore pavillion as the queues to most of the Asian pavillions were rather formidable. However, I did manage to take some quick external shots of the various Asian pavillions which captured my interest.

Here’s a brief photographic journey of some of the pavillions which we saw.

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Indonesia’s pavillion looked pretty impressive in terms of size, albeit a little like a typical conference building with the flags and pillars and all.
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