Updates, Reflection and Thinking Ahead

This personal website/blog of mine hit a bit of a mind block recently, since the two articles published on 1st and 2nd October 2017. I had a few technology news and business articles to share for the past week, it slowed down for 1+ week, it will come back again soon!

I was reflecting upon, thinking ahead and adding to what I wrote in my 1st October 2017 article, titled “Start of Q4 2017, Final Sprint“. During the past 1+ week, it’s a bit of a consolidation, realignments, readjustments and also changes for the final quarter of 2017. All this things going on inside my brain and mind, contributed to this additional article today, a key reason why there wasn’t much news/articles published on my website/blog here during the past 1+ week.

Upgrading / Learning new skills and knowledge

Learning is life-long and never-ending, that’s my philosophy for both personal and professional aspects of it. I am looking to improve on my skills and knowledge segment, for improving my current skills set and knowledge, as well as learning new skills and knowledge.

  • Drone flying – Planning to add this skill, for my travel photography in the future.
  • Travel and Tourism Public Relations – I wanted to add this knowledge, theory and skill, not just to complement my travel photography projects/assignments, I am thinking and strategising new business ideas.
  • Workshops/Courses – Finding courses and utilising Skills Future Credit to improve myself, first course is Lightroom organised by Canon Imaging Academy.
  • Digital Marketing and Social Media Marketing – I recently attended #MDCDigitalMarketingDay at Management Development & Consultancy (MDC) by MDIS. For somebody who had been hands-on inside this segment for the past 10 years, I still have knowledge and skills to learn, keep a lookout for my upcoming article!

Thinking and Strategising Ahead

I need to brainstorm a business plan / model for travel and tourism public relations + photography + social media/digital marketing coverage.

Still very tough economic times and difficult + slow market

I have a few real life stories of business owners facing huge challenges in this very tough economic times, it’s still a difficult and slow market. I shared their pain, their difficulties and challenges, I might write more about this if my time allows.

When the economy and market returns to better levels and stabilises in the near future, we are no longer looking at big GDP growth numbers, we are probably looking at slow and small GDP growth, maybe 1-3% per year (that’s my personal humble view).

I will be back writing and publishing articles soon! Thank you for reading, following and supporting!

Thoughts, feelings, ranting on 22nd June 2016

As the article title goes, it’s probably not going to get many readers to my article, read what the heck and hell am I writing again. This might be a TLDR (too long; didn’t read) article for some or many of us, with our human beings attention and reading span reduced to “I don’t know what quantity and levels you are at right now”.

There a number of topics, thoughts, feelings and ranting inside me, that I do not type it out on my Facebook wall or Twitter. It will really get too long winded and I just paste it together here into one article for all to read and know, for all my friends who make the time and effort to read.

Facebook

We need to get a life, beyond Facebook, that includes myself. It’s a constant, timely reminder and warning to myself too, there are just too much things on my Facebook feeds. I should take more concrete action soon, hide away some of the articles sharing from some portals,websites that are not my cup of tea. Yet, some of my friends on Facebook feed keeps sharing them.

I keep most of my photography posts on my Facebook Page, thus avoiding any fatigue in terms of oversharing too. That’s where I post most of my updates and I don’t write long winded stories and status/stories. Sometimes I do post some things on my personal Facebook wall, not really a lot at all.

Commenting on Facebook

Most recently, I finally realised why some of my friends felt so angry when people/strangers just spam comments on their posts, whether it is on their personal Facebook wall or Facebook Groups. It just doesn’t end there and it turned into a verbal battleground on social media sometimes.

A media sharing article posted on my Facebook wall triggered a small influx of comments that made me wonder if the person ever read the context and content of the article even though the points the person made were valid from another perspective. I just let it go and I am not planning to ask that person too. I have more meaningful business to work on, my personal leisure and recreational activities to do and enjoy.

Another incident was the person commenting on an article that I shared from other sources, I am fine with the person commenting and offering their strong alternative points of view, I just let it stay there. The worse part is the person’s friend (a total stranger) barged in and added their comment on post. From then on, I changed the settings to only allow my friends to comment and not a friend of theirs to do so.

Short fuse, Tension, Anger

Our rat race lifestyle, stress, relentless chase for material wealth and monetary wealth is probably causing more people to have a “short fuse”, filled with tensions and anger. The amount of bashing is quite substantial and loud voiced, from sensitive national/international topics to intolerance. Such news went viral, fast and furious like a big forest fire, feeding the frenzy social media channels and platforms.

Sometimes, I am also on a short fuse due to stress and pressure, therefore, I can blow my temper. I am seeking to relax and not get too deep into such situations above.

Economy

The SG economy is not in an ideal situation, with the recent revision of GDP 2016 forecast lowered again. The world is having some weak/poor climate conditions, thus everybody is affected. Ask any business owner for their views on business, industry, economy, there is a certain consensus that it is not in a good shape, things will only get tougher.

Ask the ordinary working class person on the street, their views, opinions and thoughts might be pretty diverse? I wonder if they really care about the economic situation?

Entitlement

There is a growing mindset and concern towards an entitlement mentality that is deeply worrying. I have encounters myself that people say to me, I should be getting this and that because it’s our entitlement. I strongly beg to differ, this a huge trap that once we fall and spiral into, we might never get out of, regardless of the type of products/services that we deemed to be “entitlement”.

Partnerships and collaborations

Juggling two jobs, a real balancing act, it’s really very tough and challenging. Finding and building partnerships, collaborations. Ups and downs, not smooth at all. Some potential partnerships doesn’t seem to be to take off for now, maybe it won’t take off, maybe it can be look into some years later.

Meanwhile, I have to seek and find new partnerships and collaborations with other different business entities, partners.

The progress is slow, economic climate is getting tougher, making it more crucial and essential that I go back to the drawing board, strategise again, relook at current industry business model and refine my own business model.

Some understand, some don’t. Some care, some don’t. Some judge, some don’t.

It’s a very long journey ahead.

Managing my time on my social media platforms

I had for-seen this thing coming to me, sometime back, I had started to slow down on social media usage especially on my personal Facebook wall and moved towards updating photography stuff on my Facebook Page. In the most recent months, partly due to heavier workload and the friends FB wall getting more complaining, ranting, sharing of stories from “those sources”, it got me to a point whereby I was quite turn off by the posts and rants on Facebook.

The peak and crunch came during the most recent General Elections 2015 in Singapore, the amount of arrows, posts and words flying across the social media channels and platforms. For once, I was kind of switched off totally from my Facebook with the exception of updating my Facebook Page with posts and sharing of photography articles.

Social media, writing, blogging and sharing had brought me to many places, made more new friends and gave me the outreach that I can never imagine for my photography. From the various social media channels and platforms, I was able to learn, improve, participate and interact with like-minded people on photography, travel, heritage, conservation, tech stuff etc etc. Social media is useful for connecting with friends and relatives living overseas and to keep up to date with them.

The turnoff probably come from too much ranting and complaining. In some aspects, fighting and bickering on their FB wall. When my friend Jude shared a video on Anti Social Behaviour, it made me realised that the human race had become Anti Social. Yes, we can’t deny that social media will now be a part of our lives and lifestyle, for the future generations and beyond.

I will still continue to use social media for my outreach, publicity, awareness and marketing. I will also manage my time on social media platforms. The key social media platforms for me in the near future would probably be

Quick and Instant Updates

Twitter

Instagram

Summary Updates

Photography Site

Facebook Page

500px

Flickr

These few platforms allow me to provide instant updates and sharing of my photography. Twitter, of course allows me to say quite a lot of different issues/matters/topics under the weather (I must remember not to anyhow write and post stuff).

Our adult time in this era, quite a lot of time is spent on work and work (and it is already very stressful and pressuring). In my leisure time, I want to spend quality time on quality human touch connections whenever possible and the other is for my personal photography projects that are meaningful, fulfilling, intrinsically rewarding and that can contribute back to society.

This is probably just me, you might share the same thoughts and feelings with me too. However, this might not apply to you too. My friend Jude wrote in our conversation “Don’t disconnect the human touch”. I totally agree, even when we are using the social media platforms and channels.

Let’s bring back the human touch and connections.

Branding, Marketing, PR and Publicity

These four words have been an integral part of my work and social media engagements. I didn’t learn it as a specialisation in university, just as a subject that was part of my business degree curriculum. When I started working in the financial services industry 10 years ago, the nature of the industry taught me many real life work experiences relating to branding, marketing, public relations and publicity.

They were extended into my social media exploration adventure, from a social media consumer in 2006 to a social media influencer today. The branding, marketing, public relations, publicity and a bit of fame doesn’t fall from the sky. They were built through lots and lots of hard work, sweat, tears with emotions going high and low at different cross roads in time.

My Hokkaido Photographers Invitation Program in November 2014 was probably my maiden start into a higher level of branding, marketing, public relations and publicity. I was very grateful and full of gratitude for everybody that had supported me in this journey.

Fast forward into the May 2015, having a management and leadership role in my family business. I began to apply my various experiences in branding, marketing, public relations and publicity to my organisation. This efforts took a while and it began to see some fruits of labour from them. As I began to enter the third quarter of 2015, there are a number of events/things (3 to 4 of them) happening in the month of May and June, that puts me, my work, photography and social media sharing into a bigger limelight.

I would not know how I would feel when the 3 to 4 events/things come in, the excitement, anxiety and euphoria. Nevertheless, I must always remind myself to remain humble, down to earth, continue to learn and improve. I must not let fame get into my head.

Had I finally make it? Maybe Not Yet, I still have a lot more to learn, improve, grow and lead. Yes, I have punched through this level and can hold my head up high, to reach a top and see that my journeys ahead are going to be even higher and bigger summits, for me to carry on forward and conquer them.

Will you walk with me?

Mobile Networking Trends and Boom with Younger Generation

GlobalWebIndex (GWI), a market research company specialising in online consumer behaviour, was in Singapore, in November 2014 to give a presentation on mobile networking trends and the boom with the younger generation. I was there during their lunch presentation and went away with interesting insights and information on the mobile networking trends.

When we talked about mobile networking, it has grown and evolved along with the boom of social networking worldwide. Mobile networking is booming!

“Mobile networking is booming – 40% of global internet users are now doing this, rising to 46% in APAC. Worldwide, the size of the messaging audience has grown by 40% in the last two years” – GlobalWebIndex

My interest in mobile networking comes from a few areas, my interest in social media networking, the usage of mobile networking apps and how mobile networking would impact future consumer/business activities. There were a number of mobile networking apps available and each of them were used differently for work and leisure. I used WhatsApp for mobile networking in Singapore, WeChat for mobile networking with friends/colleagues in Singapore, China and Taiwan due to the nature of my business and work.

Mobile messaging is rising and expanding very quickly, it’s free, easy to use and connect with people in your country and worldwide. One of the mobile messaging apps that had witnessed a remarkable growth is WeChat. They experienced significant growth with an active user base increase of 156% globally, and a staggering 499% in Singapore between Q1 2014 to Q3 to 2014. WeChat’s dominant position in the mobile messaging arena is a strong presence of 23% of the world’s internet users and 39% within the APAC region, actively using the WeChat app.

It was very interesting to view the profiles and trends of WeChat users in Singapore. With the growth of mobile networking in Singapore and the influence among the younger generation in Singapore, it will be interesting to see how business and brands tap on them together with the usage of social networking platforms.

* Information, figures and details courtesy of GlobalWebIndex and Ogilvy Public Relations Singapore *

HootSuite World Cup 2014 Daily Highlights & Weekly Round Up

World Cup 2014, the holy grail of the football world coming together to win the World Cup and fanatic fans catching and watching World Cup football action in Brazil. It had been a week since the official opening and the first game between Brazil and Croatia. The first week of World Cup 2014 football has produced some awesome, exceptional and to some extent surprising results and outcomes. Moreover, World Cup 2014 in Brazil is proving not just to be a live football action on the pitch and television, there were lots of actions and followings on the social media channels and platforms. Football is not just taking the world by storm on the pitches in Brazil, the world of Social Media is talking and discussing a lot about World Cup 2014!

Twitter, one of the main influential social media platform an channel, is seeing a lot of “action” with their tweets and mentions on the Twitter time, accompanied by the hashtags. World Cup 2014 is a very suitable timing for major brands to further and widen the outreach, awareness and publicity of the brands, not just on television, it’s also on the social media channels and platforms.

With 2010 World Cup Champion Spain crashing out of the first round, how will the remaining Round One matches turn out? How are you, the football fanatic going to follow the latest football and World Cup 2014 news besides football websites and major news websites? A modern football fanatic leveraging and following on social media can even be faster than the traditional media news channel! Stay tuned to the tweets, mentions and posts on the various social media channels!

The number of mentions of the most socially connected World Cup season yet breaches the 7 million mark, here are some of the highlights to show the teams and brands that fans are rallying for.

In the Games:

  • 1.6 million mentions of the Spanish team was recorded this week, during the defending World Cup and Euro Champs’ 2 miserable defeats, which led to their failure to enter the knockout stages of the cup.
  • Brazil’s forward Neymar was mentioned 3 times more after he made 2 goals against Croatia in the opening game (15k mentions on 13 June) than after yesterday’s tie-game with Mexico (5k mentions on 18 June).

For brands:

Have the sponsor and partner brands found the magic bullet to pulling them out of social media obscurity? 

  • Sony leads the partner brands in the total number of mentions this week (close to 500K mentions), while others like Coca Cola and Adidas trail close by (each with about 400k mentions).
  • Sponsor brands’ live tweets during the game are gaining a lot of traction: Macdonald’s smart play on words with #macdonegoal peaked at 250 mentions on 17 June and Budweiser’s Man of the Match conversations helped them gain over 1.5k mentions on 18 June.

There are some valuable information and graphs provided by uberVU Boards and HootSuite on the outreach of World Cup 2014! Take a look through the various graphs, infographics and statistics!

uberVu via Hootsuite World cup daily-highlights 19-Jun-2014-page-001

hashflags-report 19-Jun-2014-page-001

sponsors-and-partners-example-report 18-Jun-2014-page-002

sponsors-and-partners-example-report 18-Jun-2014-page-005

* Information courtesy of uberVU Boards, HootSuite and Ogilvy Public Relations *

I Have New (Running) Shoes!

Running, a sport that became close to my heart, soul and personal development over the past few years as I started to play less team sports and do individual sports. It was a sport that I always go for when I am down and running in the night lets my hair down, de-stress and kept me fit and not getting fat too fast over the past few years. Running to me is therapeutic and relaxing although the longer distance runs such as the 21km and 42km does make me ache. I used to write and share my stories on running over the past few years, somewhere inside my posts here, into a journal here, the ups and downs, the milestones and achievements.

Looking back in time around February 2010, I got myself into a freak accident and went through a lot of rehabilitation, rest and recovery. Running from that time onwards took a back seat totally for about a year. It took me quite a long period of time before I get myself out from the couch after resting/recovery from too long on the sidelines and started running again. There were times when I missed joining the runs in Singapore, however, whenever I looked at the number of runs in Singapore, I was glad that I didn’t go and sign up all of them. There were a bit too many runs in Singapore over the years, this is my personal humble opinion.

Due to the nature of my injuries, I am currently retired from running a full marathon 42.195km, I may or may not run a full marathon again. My roll of full marathon runs completed included 5 full marathons from 2006 to 2009, 3 of them were Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore from 2006 to 2008, 2 of them were Sundown Marathon from 2007 to 2008 and  the 2009 Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore that I did not complete. Definitely not the best of timings since I never trained enough and consistently, completion of the full marathon was always a memorable and big achievement for me, with all the sweat, muscle ache and pain, many times of mind over body, the full marathon run was just like how my business/work operates.

I was happy with completing 10km runs, a distance that is not too damaging to me since my injury days in 2010. Looking ahead, running is like goals and objectives in life, in work, in business. I am aiming to return and goes back to my next level of running distance, the half marathon, 21km distance. This will be another personal goal and personal achievement to attain since I had to “reset” myself since the injury. It’s falling down, slowly getting up and started running again, towards a new age of freedom, a New Hope, another new beginning.

My current running shoes were peeling away and turning into “crocodiles”, I had to search and replace my running shoes. After researching and consideration, I finally bought my new running shoes from the New Balance factory outlet, this bright and shining lime green M890GY3! It’s really lightweight and shining! I believe it will bring me back to my next level of running and completing the half marathon 21km distance.

Alright, now I need to start training and running consistently in a disciplined/planned training schedule.

IMG_7607

WeChat Reinventing Social Conversations in Singapore

Media Release: WeChat Reinventing Social Conversations in Singapore

The usage and growth of social media platforms, channels and tools have grown tremendously recently especially in the past five to ten years. Social conversation and group chats are new form of communication between individuals or groups of friends/colleagues. The birth of social media conversation has led to many different social conversation apps being designed. The growth of WeChat is phenomenal and this social media communication app is taking the world by storm and it is reinventing social conversations in Singapore. I would be trying out WeChat app too and share with the readers at a later time about my thoughts and experiences.

WeChat, the leading mobile social communication application with 300 million registered users accounts worldwide, is all set to change the way social-media-savvy Singaporeans interact with their friends and people from all around the world.

As Singapore is one of WeChat’s strategic markets in Southeast Asia, the company is looking to launch a series of brand engagements to reach as many Singaporeans as possible. The app’s new advertising campaign – which made its debut in Singapore on Monday – features popular celebrity-WeChat users, Rainie Yang and Show Lo demonstrating how users can playfully express and romance each other throughWeChat’s signature platforms such as its “Hold-to-Talk” function.

Singaporeans can also look forward to connecting with their favourite brands like KFC, Starbucks or even Hollywood celebrities such as Selena Gomez, John Cusack, Maggie Q, Paris Hilton, Adam Lambert, and many others.

A Newer, Safer Way to Connect to the World

As telcos continue to ramp up the roll-out of 4G network coverage in Singapore, connecting with friends and expressing oneself on WeChatwill only become more seamless and fun. Here are some of the other popular WeChat social features:

•                    Connect to Facebook – You can login or connect with WeChat using your Facebook profile.

•                    Moments – sharing photos, texts and URL links with friends.

•                    Shake –contact other people around the world by shaking your devices and start chatting.

•                    Look Around – you can use it to find people around to chat. Imagine when you are bored at the airport waiting for your next flight.

•                    Web WeChat – chat with someone using a computer.

•                    Personalise your emoticons – WeChat allows you to download emoticons from its online portfolio or choose your own from your phone album

•                    Hold to talk and Real-time video chat – Include voice messages or switch from voice to video calls seamlessly to speak to friends ‘face to face’

WeChat is now available for download on iOS, Android, Symbian, BlackBerry and Windows Phone smartphones and remains the most downloaded mobile social app on iOS and Android smartphones in many Asian countries including Indonesia and Malaysia.

Singtel TGIS Season 2

Singtel’s TGIS Season 2 kicks off with a big bang after a highly successful Season 1 with a popular lifestyle series on YouTube that garnered many followers. The gorgeous and beautiful lady, Miss Joanne-Marie Sim hosted TGIS Season 1 and she’s back for Season 2! Check out this video clip on TGIS Season 1 –

TGIS Season 2 promises to be more entertaining and fun, providing young Singaporeans on infotainment news with local and international flavour. TGIS Season 2 kicks off on 8th August 2012 with a National Day Special episode featuring popular Singapore artists and personalities such as Hossan Leong, Tay Kewei, Ginette Chittick and Alvelyn Alko. On the show, they shared their views on what it means to be Singaporean and also their fields of work. Here’s the video clip on TGIS Season 2 National Day Special –

Looking ahead into TGIS Season 2, it would feature things that Singaporeans are passionate about and interested in. Viewers would be able to learn more about the world of gadgets, social media and technology and how it would help them in their daily life and work. The second episode of Singtel TGIS Season 2 will go live on 29th August 2012, keep a lookout for it!

Keep up to date with Singtel TGIS by bookmarking these links –

–  SingTel’s Facebook Page (www.facebook.com/singtel)

– YouTube page (www.youtube.com/singtel)

Looking forward to Singtel TGIS Season 2 ! 

The Social Media Jungle

Traditional communication channels are still important today because they are the pillars and cornerstones that laid the foundations for human interaction and communication. However, in today’s highly inter-connected internet and social media life, there is a need to tweak and change the communication networks into the modern and fast moving social media networks.

It’s not just for businesses, organisations or individuals … It’s for everybody !

Quote  from 20 Factsand34 Examples About Social Media Oct09 Christian Palau – “Social Media is the new marketing school … and our teachers are our users”

The social media landscape as we speak/write/breathe/share/apply is and always constantly changing. From the above presentation, showcasing 20 Facts and 34 Examples about Social Media, how many can you relate to ?

Are you inside and actively using and applying social media without yourself knowing it ?