Trends for Digital Marketing in 2017

by Moi Bagadiong, Senior Digital Media Associate

MobileTrends2These days, a lot of people think that digital marketing is equivalent to social media posting, but this isn’t the case. Digital marketing is so much and the online environment is getting bigger and even more exciting.

This year’s digital trends are continuously bringing data- and objective-driven campaigns to light through amazing tracking schemes and smarter strategies, posing the need for brands to be deliberate and thoughtful when it comes to their content online. This is especially true given the fact that statistics have been used to measure marketing efficiency since the birth of digital ads.

For this reason, it is necessary for brands to be updated on trends to effectively engage their audience. Here is a rundown of those that we’ve observed for the first half of the year.

  1. Intense Consumption on Mobile

Since 2012, we’ve seen a huge jump in mobile consumption. Our target audiences now prefer to use their mobile phones and tablets more than their computers. Based on metrics, Indonesia consumes 91% of their day in mobile. For the US market, which is one of the biggest markets in the world, the time spent on mobile is 71% of the day. On the other hand, 38% of the Philippine market web traffic comes from mobile and it is anticipated to grow by more than 8% in the next few months. Mobile consumption has been reaching new heights and we predict a growing trend in the coming years.

What does this mean for marketers? Mobile optimization should be the top consideration when developing plans and rolling it out in various channels. This means that all ads and organic campaigns must be fit for viewing on smaller screens. Our copy materials should be shorter and our images should be compelling all while considering the ad budget.

An added bonus: Instagram Stories is killing it right now.

  1. Influencers Help Build the Brands

Majority of digital brand awareness campaigns revolve around one disciplinesocial media. A good population of influencers thrive in that space and that is why all brands, from B2B to B2C, need a relevant and proper influencer to help them build their image.

How strong is influencer marketing? According to a recent study, 71% of consumers are more likely to make a purchase based on social media reviews and reference. Another study says that US businesses generate $6.50 for every $1 invested in influencer marketingnow that is ROI.

In the Philippines, brands use celebrities and product endorsers as digital influencers to leverage on their following. It is undeniable that loyal followings do exist in the local celebrity scene, which is why consumer brands such as McDonald’s, Jollibee, and the like use well-known showbiz personalities. There are no documented ROI statistics from their recent campaigns, but the digital engagement they had is enough to speak volumes of success in terms of awareness.

We also recently ran an influencer campaign for one of our clients, Jollibee. In line with the Framily campaign, we chose a couple of influencers to create buzz and we had tons of engagement as seen on the materials below!

FRAMILYFRAMILY 2Given all these trends, metrics and dimensions are a must when implementing influencer-driven campaigns. There are ways on how to efficiently track resultseverything’s better with numbers!

  1. Emotions Influence Engagement

If your goal is to get engagement on social media, there is no stronger tactic than to go straight to the heart. Nowadays, content go viral online because of three major ingredients that help them be as heartfelt as possible: the perfect blend of messaging, delivery, and wit. We’ve seen tons of brands do it and the strength of their online engagement is indisputable.

Why does this method work? It is because a huge chunk of the market are millennials and they are extremely open, opinionated, authentic and emphatic. The market enjoys consuming content that they can relate to. In fact a recent study shows that the market loses trust in brands when their content appears “fake”as verified by 71% of 11-17 year olds and 74% of 18-34 year olds. These age groups hold a big chunk of the market population who are active on social media.

  1. Big Data keeps on getting Bigger!

How big? Digital advertisers now take advantage of different targeting parameters that allow ads to be served to markets that weren’t as specific as today. In the current landscape, advertisers can target you if you’ve visited a certain channel and more. In general, both B2B and B2C brands use big data to gain more coverage. Also, a huge trend nowadays is using both public and paid information to create compelling and personalized ads that hit the campaign objectives right on the button.

Big data refers to huge data sets that can be analysed and programmed to reveal trends to create human behavior patterns. For digital marketers, these data could be device used, geo-analysis, time of consumption, most used language, consumer interests, and other behavioral metrics.

But in a nutshell, why do marketers use and exhaust big data? Not for engagement, but for customer retention and overall conversion.

A lot can change in the coming months with pay-per-click tools becoming more advanced. It’s only half of the year, and we’re super excited to see more. Metrics will always be there to support and supplement these new trends and strategies which makes analytics top priority before anything else. It would be best for all digital marketers to keep up in order to create effective and relatable campaigns.

 
References:

http://www.smartinsights.com/managing-digital-marketing/marketing-innovation/digital-marketing-trends-2016-2017/

https://www.forbes.com/sites/kateharrison/2017/01/09/top-10-trends-that-will-transform-digital-marketing-in-2017/#773258163bf5

http://www.smartinsights.com/mobile-marketing/mobile-marketing-analytics/mobile-marketing-statistics/

https://www.forbes.com/sites/deeppatel/2017/04/21/how-to-measure-the-roi-of-an-influencer-marketing-campaign/#799118e96348

http://www.bluleadz.com/blog/the-impact-of-influencer-marketing-in-2017

 

TeamAsia’s sweet LU escape: three days in Flotsam and Jetsam Hostel

by Axl Ross Tumanut, Kaye Chua, and Luigi Almario 

Three days at Flotsam and Jetsam Hostel in La Union could fill any traveler’s newsfeeds with all sorts of upload-worthy snapshots–beach selfies, groufies, sunset photos, surfing shots, influencer poses, live videos, stories, and more. For us at TeamAsia who are all too deeply absorbed in the fast-paced agency life, our getaway was a chance to unplug from the busy city life.

And though it’s been weeks since we had our outing, we still look back fondly to the moments we spent in surfers’ haven away from the Metro’s concrete jungle. Here are our newbies Axl, Kaye, and Luigi sharing about their very first TeamAsia getaway.

Pre-getaway: the anticipation builds

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Axl: Planning this entire adventure was like pitching for an event and bringing it to life. All of us who worked behind the scenes knew that the entire experience is not just about sights or sounds. We needed to tell a story like we do for our clients. After all, this is not just another out of town trip, this is a celebration of TeamAsia’s 25th anniversary.

There were brainstorming sessions and timelines to follow, and everyone worked together to make it happen. The time, talent, and effort we all shared to make our clients happy were shared with equal dedication so that our colleagues could have a wonderful time.

Kaye: As a person who is so enthusiastic to explore the great outdoors, I have always believed that travelling to places and trying out new things are like bringing my dead-tired body back to life. Adventures do not just introduce me to new places; they immerse me into diverse cultures.

I was excited about going to La Union because I have always wanted to try surfing there. Aside from that, I’ve seen how everyone in the committee exerted so much effort in putting everything together to make sure we all enjoy our three-day break.

Luigi: I have never been to LU but it has been featured extensively on my friends’ Instagrams, so much so that I already have a gameplan in mind of what I’m gonna do when I get there: swimming, surfing and most of all, trying out that hipster coffee place – El Union Coffee – that seems to be a main fixture on my friends’ IG posts.

DAY 1: Getting to the surfers’ haven

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Wooden artisan chairs and tables at the Flotsam and Jetsam (with Abi!)

Axl: The last person you would expect to miss the call-time is the person who wrote the “be on time” EDM, who is no other than myself. On the day of the departure for La Union, I woke up at the very minute that the bus should leave.

The bus left without me, and I managed to ride with my colleagues, who happened to be holding an event that day. When I arrived at Flotsam that evening, the chill night program that my colleagues from the outing committee planned was underway.

Kaye: LU captivated my heart instantly not just because of its beauty and laid-back vibe, but also because I was with a bunch of amazing people. There were a lot of new people in the team, and there were games such as Charades–but with a twist! We had to act out a song, a movie, and mimic the mannerisms of TeamAsians. It resulted in a lot of laughter and amusing guesses from everyone.

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So much team spirit!

Luigi: Our home for the duration of our stay is the Flotsam and Jetsam Hostel – it has this “wooden shack” vibe that I’ve always been very fond of. During the program, I had to do the infamous butt spell for the second time in my thus short stay here in the company. You see, it’s tradition here in TeamAsia for the newbies to perform the butt spell during their first week in the company, and even though I already did it a task I undertook as tradition permits.

After the program ended, drinks were had, songs were sung, and guitars were played til the wee hours.

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Crashing of the waves

DAY 2: Game on!

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Group activities under the sun

Axl: The TA getaway day two was a day for games and surfing lessons for most of us. One part of the day that I really looked forward to was the fun night, which I had to host. And since my co-host was sick that day, I had to do a solo act.

Hearing my colleagues laugh while I do the hosting was such a rewarding experience.Though a long time have passed since our outing, remembering my colleagues’ laughter that night still inspires happy thoughts.

Of course there is only one part of the entire getaway that can top all performances–the toast led by our president and founder Ma’am Monette Hamlin. Most of us imagined a quick celebratory toast around the bonfire but she asked us to form a circle and arrange ourselves based on our birth order–a scenario which meant to show how long TeamAsia has been elevating stories and experiences to the next level.

 

 

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We gathered around the bonfire by the beach

Then she asked each one of us to share about the things we are grateful for. Some of us are grateful about work, some of us about life, some of us about our families, and some expressed their gratitude to God. The toast served as a reminder of the things we are passionate about and how passion fuels everything that TeamAsia does.

Kaye: We played games by the beach not minding the scorching heat of the sun and made a group yell out of spontaneity. On the night of the awarding, our team, Live, placed last among the four groups but we really didn’t mind because we all had a great time!

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The beautiful beach of La Union at sunset

After the awarding, we all headed to the beach for the toast. That was the most heartwarming moment that I never thought that I’d actually feel home with this family that I have now. Being the not-so-confident person that I am, I grabbed the opportunity that night to to thank everyone in TeamAsia for believing in me when I can’t even believe in myself.

Luigi: Day 2 was wholly devoted to contests of skill, cunning and intellect, of which, my team was in abundance of. Hence, we emerged victorious. (I may or may not be exaggerating, but we really did win.)

The true highlight of the entire trip, though, would happen much, much later. In the night, we started a campfire beside the shore and a formed a circle around it. Our esteemed president, Ma’am Monette Hamlin, delivered a thoughtful speech to kickoff the proceedings, and then, it was party time!

It was an unbelievable atmosphere – a campfire by the beachside, people jamming to the sound of acoustic guitars and free-flowing drinks all around! Y’know, just wholesome stuff. For the first time ever, I got to witness people from other departments bond with each other. Drinks were being passed around and while the fire eventually burnt out, the feeling of being just under the stars only served to heighten the experience.

Post-getaway musings

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TeamAsia fambam!

Axl: Of course, not everything turned out the way they were planned no matter how meticulously they were put together.  Yet for all these challenges that came along the way, we knew that the show must go on. And then there were surprises such as the amazing TeamAsian talents who really caught the spotlight during the two evening programs of our getaway.

For those of us who worked behind the scenes, it was a rewarding feeling to watch everything we planned (and didn’t plan) unfold. And all those unforgettable moments would not have happened if our TeamAsian colleagues were not equally willing to share their time, talent, and efforts to create unforgettable moments during our getaway.

Kaye: Aside from the usual happy stuff and good food we shared that day, there was something else that came up. Sarah, Dezza and I had to look after one of our colleagues who had so much fun on our last night and got a massive hangover before we left LU! Hint: his name starts with an L and he may or may not have also written about his experiences here.

My stay in La Union was beyond amazing, and I definitely look forward to more geTAways with these bunch of people I love to call as my family.

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Content team in Flotsam and Jetsam

Luigi: I woke up to the view of the sun directly above me and the sand beneath me, with only the faintest recollection of how I ended up there. Then, it hit me: I recalled resting my head on one of the beanbag chairs we had set up on the beach after taking what would’ve been my last shot of whiskey sip of grape juice. I passed out on the beach! was probably so exhausted from last night’s festivities that I fell asleep where I laid by the shore.

Still tired and suffering a massive headache after a night of fun, I skipped breakfast entirely and barely touched my meal at lunch time. If I’m going to be completely honest with you, everything was a blur that day. Even the long, six-hour journey back home was a blur.

And so there it was, two days of pure, unadulterated fun, followed by a day of headaches. That being said, even though I was not able to do everything I set out to do in LU: the surfing, the hipster coffee experience, not to mention suffering through a massive hangover migraine, it was time well spent with the most amazing people you can ever hope to work with. I would do it all again if I could, preferably minus the headache.As for La Union, I will be back! And next time, I may even try surfing.

Postscript

Those three days at La Union gave us TeamAsians a well-deserved respite from work. Every day was an opportunity to bond with our teammates and our colleagues from other teams. Each day was full of discoveries about our fellow TeamAsians–things we would not have found out within the familiar corners of our office. Those three days offered us glimpses of the things that our fellow TeamAsians are passionate about.

There is a bittersweet feeling at leaving Flotsam and Jetsam after soaking in the sun and waves with our friends and colleagues turned family, but we all came back more energized and refreshed, ready once again to bring our clients’ stories to the next level experience.

TeamAsia at 25: Looking back, moving forward

by Jeff Enriquez, Web Development Director

1They say that practical work and experience lead the young to maturity. That saying definitely came true for me when I crossed paths with TeamAsia.

It was July 9, 2004 when I received a call from one of my batchmates in University of the Philippines-Los Baños about a career opportunity. I was fresh out of school then, and with no work experience yet. She found out through Friendster (how old is that, eh?) that I was not yet employed, and she referred me to an Alabang-based company called TeamAsia. In retrospect, I honestly did not have any idea who TeamAsia was and what they did. But I decided to give it a shot.

I was hired as a Junior Web Developer under the Creative Department. My first few months consisted of maintaining the TeamAsia website, backing up files for my department, and creating a lot of eDM’s. I was the only web developer at that time. (A fun fact about TeamAsia: we were one of the first companies in the Philippines to have a company website back in the 90’s.)

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Going into my 13th year in TeamAsia—now as the IT and Web Development Director—here are glimpses of my journey and the milestones that I have achieved in the past years.

2005 —This is the year when I was regularized and first promoted, moving up from Junior Web Developer to Web Developer. This was the turning point when I realized that I had finally adjusted to the professional life, and that I was a good fit with TeamAsia. This was a huge deal for me because one of the biggest challenges I had faced was transitioning from the student to the professional life.

By this year I was able to contribute to the development of the TeamAsia website, I had worked on some Microsoft projects, and participated in events of clients such as Global Steel, Bayantrade and Microsoft as technical support.

32009 — Fast forward to this year when the Web Development team branched off from the Creative Department, I became the Web Development Director with one senior staff. Indeed, the practical work and experience that I gained from my past five years with TeamAsia led my young, fresh-out-of-school self to the maturity that I needed to possess to take on my new role as department director.

During my first months as director, I had to learn how to coordinate with the other departments on our processes. Aligning the Web Development Department’s plan with the company’s strategic plan also became a challenge. But with the help of my boss and mentor, the late Sir Mike Hamlin, I was able to overcome all these and learn new skills that I needed to accomplish my job effectively.

Our department was able to move beyond developing just the TeamAsia website to the website of our clients, such as ExcelAsia, International Outsourcing Summit, and Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP).

42010 — As TeamAsia found itself gathering more new clients and expanding its core services, the Web and MIS Departments were merged into one. In turn, this merger widened the scope of my responsibility. It was surely another challenge because it meant that my responsibility as director now went beyond my expertise. But with a team to back me up, we were able to streamline the processes, resulting in the elimination of redundant workload. I am proud to say that the Web Development Department became more productive, ready to cater and support the company’s internal requirements and its clients.

We had advanced the technologies we used for TeamAsia’s processes by utilizing Google Apps, moving some tools to cloud storage, and creating an online and on-site registration system for events.

5.png2012 to 2013 — These two years are certainly memorable for me because two members of the Web Development Department, Gary Aure and Darell Sapin, were promoted to Web Manager. Three other guys who completed our team were also hired during these years—Leo Halili, Marvin Desuasido and AC Esguerra.

I have always believed that as a leader, you should always bring out the best in your people. That is why I consider it a great achievement when I see my team growing professionally, gaining more knowledge in their fields, and being able to exercise their skills in their respective projects.

With our team of six we were able to improve our event technologies like mobile apps, audience response system, and tweetcasting. We had also begun adopting open source website platforms and creating website responsive design.

62016 — Moving to the new TeamAsia office proved to be a whole new challenge for our team. I certainly learned a lot from planning the logistics of our move to actually executing them. One moving mishap that I won’t forget anytime soon was when our IT supplier informed us that they will not be able to deliver the service we hired them for. It was definitely a cause for panic, but thankfully, we were able to switch to a new, reliable and cost-efficient supplier under a short amount of time.

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8People ask me why I chose to stay this long in one company. I will be lying if I said that leaving has never crossed my mind. But I chose—and I still choose—to stay because TeamAsia has become more than just a job to me. TeamAsia has become my family, which I have learned to love through ups and downs.

TeamAsia provided me with the best mentors back when I was still a fresh graduate with no work experience. They have given me opportunities to learn, to grow, and to lead. Most of all, they trusted me enough to challenge me with tasks that I honestly thought were impossible to accomplish—but I was proven wrong every time.

This year, as TeamAsia turns 25, I am confident that we will continue to come out strong as a seasoned independent IMC agency, full of bright people who are passionate about delivering the best out of each day.

Video

Eat Your Way Through Madrid Fusión Manila

By Kia Sta. Ana, Senior Account Executive

Join me as we discover and try out the different flavors of the Philippines (and the world) in Madrid Fusión Manila 2017!

This gastronomic event was held at the SMX Convention Center in Manila, Philippines on April 6 to 8, 2017. It was attended by world-renowned chefs who shared their expertise with fellow culinary connoisseurs in the Regional Lunches and the Fusión Manila International Gastronomy Expo. Entrepreneurs and regional exhibitors also participated in the three-day Gastronomy Expo, where foodies shared their mutual love for unique and delicious dishes.

Integrated marketing communications agency TeamAsia has been Madrid Fusión Manila’s digital sponsor—and one of its Expo exhibitors—for the past three years.

Credit for background music used

Track: High
Artist: LYFO
Release Date: March 4, 2017

 

10 Things Millennials Look for in a Company

By Alisa Docena, Content Department Intern

It is estimated that by 2020, at least half of the global workforce will consist of millennials—a generation mostly labeled as “self-absorbed” and “entitled”. As someone from this generation, I think our motivations are a little bit misunderstood. It’s not that we are expecting everything to be handed to us, it’s just that we are more assertive because we want to make the most of everyday. We are hungry for experiences and we seek employers that take time to consider the needs and expectations of our generation, and understand where we are coming from. In return for understanding, we will pour our hearts and souls into our work, because time is too short to not give your 110% all the time.

A couple of months from now I will officially step out of school and step into the corporate world. As an intern at TeamAsia, I saw firsthand how millennials like myself thrive in a workplace. And as I seek to make my mark, I hope I find a good balance of these 10 things at the company I am lucky enough to be a part of:

  1. Culture

Millennial or not, most employees would find an eight-hour shift exhausting. However, workplace culture can always either improve or aggravate our attitude towards work, especially when the load is heavy. A positive work environment promotes workplace collaboration, so whether even if work turns into 12-hour shift,  that positive attitude towards achieving a common goal makes it all worthwhile. Personally, I can be thoroughly motivated by a workplace culture I see myself comfortable in, where I can work effectively, either individually or with a team.

1. Culture

The TeamAsia culture—young and vibrant.

  1.      Inclusivity

As someone who supports equal rights, I would consider the inclusivity of a company before I apply for a job. It is important to me that the employer I will work for supports the same values I do. I would consider it my pride to have the opportunity to work in a company that accepts their employees regardless of age, sexual orientation, gender identity, or religion, and sees applicants for their skills and determination to get the job.

2. Inclusivity

Photo from imgflip.com

  1.      Personal Development

Aside from skill development, I also look for companies that will not only train me for the job, but will also let me expand my horizons and discover new things about myself. I want a company that will provide me plenty of room for improvement, both in my skills and personality, by allowing me to be myself and by addressing my failures and mistakes in a way that will keep me motivated to do better next time.

3. Personal Development

I gained new insights on the e-commerce industry when I was chosen to join the UREKA Forum team.

  1.      Innovation

Innovation widens my creativity, allowing me to experiment on new ideas and think of new concepts to execute my work. I prefer a working environment that will constantly encourage me to challenge the norms, and will guide me to discover and explore new opportunities in my line of work.

4. Innovation

My supervisor allowed me to draft some of the team’s writing projects. I got to ask questions and I received immediate feedback on my drafts from the Editorial Manager and the Content Director, which inspired me to write thoughtfully and purposefully. After each exercise, I had a better grasp of what it takes to write for an agency (and it definitely was not easy–kudos to all creative agency people, I am in awe).

  1.      Benefits

To be honest, although the paycheck is one of the main things to consider, I also value the benefits I will gain from the companies I will apply to. If I will be given similar compensation packages by two different companies, I would prefer the company with better benefits, good work-life balance, leadership opportunities, and flexible working conditions rather than the company with a higher pay. For me, a company that offers employee perks such as health, dental, retirement, and financial spending plans benefits, is definitely one to consider.

5. Benefits

Interning at TeamAsia allowed me to experience the daily grind at an IMC agency. TeamAsians are fun and laidback but their work calls for whiplash speed and it’s here that I’ve seen how creative people are able to draw inspiration from everything — whether it be the people around them, their surroundings, or the big wide world of the internet (hah!) but in the end it’s passion (and for editorial — thorough research) that brings everything together.

  1.      Passion

Companies that show how passionate they are for their craft and at the same time support the interests of their employees are surely on my list of target companies. I believe that this is the kind of passion that drives an organization’s success. I would like to be part of a company where there is intentional support from the whole organization to work towards a common goal and where I can pursue my interests.

6. Passion

On the right is the breathtaking view from the TeamAsia pantry–which is inspiration in itself. I was lucky enough to have worked with people who are passionate about what they do. TeamAsia is filled with millennials like me but everyone works to be at the top of their game and I’d like to be just like that in my career.

  1.      Challenge

Like most people in the corporate world, I follow the path that leads to the acquisition and enhancement of skill and talent. However, I am looking for something more than that. I would like to work in a company that would not only allow me to use my God-given gifts, but will also challenge my abilities. I look forward to what’s in store for me, and I am excited to be able do the things I never thought I can for me to reach my fullest potential when it comes to my field of work.

7. Challenge

TeamAsia’s Internship Program required that I create and present a communications plan for the Director of Content and representatives from Public Relations, Media Relations, and Editorial team to assess and evaluate afterwards. I was a little intimidated coming into it but as I got to work alongside the Content team daily, I was very excited to present when it came to my final day at TeamAsia.

  1.     Stability

Financial stability is one of the reasons why people look for jobs. They want to be able to provide for their own and their family’s needs without having to deal with crises. I am no exception to this. In this world where it is considered lucky for one to not have to fear for his/her tenure to be cut in a few months, I persistently search for companies that offer job security.

8. Stability

Photo from weknowmemes.com

  1.     Corporate Social Responsibility

People who search for jobs now have more access to a company’s background because of the internet, compared to how it used to be before the digital age. I leverage on this to thoroughly get to know prospective companies and to make sure that my values are aligned with the values of the company I will apply to. One of the indicators of a company’s values is their CSR program. Through this, I am able to determine what the company cares about, allowing me to assess its relevance to me.

9. CSR

Every year, TeamAsians give shoeboxes filled with school supplies to students through their CSR program, My Dream in a Shoebox. Everyone contributes in preparing these gifts and there are volunteers who join the gift giving days.

  1.   Fun!

Like my peers, I constantly look for fun and adventure wherever I go—yes, I look for it even in the workplace. Although the traditional atmosphere of a typical office is not a stranger to me, I still expect to have fun every once in a while, even amid busy and tiring work days. Whether the company hosts fun office games or planned-out company outings, any activity will surely fill my tank!

10.2 Fun

My internship in TeamAsia also gave me new friends who made work more fun!

I may have a lot of expectations when it comes to my employment experience, but whether I am embarking on my first job or the fifth, I am always after this one goal: to work for a company where I can serve my purpose and make an impact.

After my two months of internship at TeamAsia, I can say that I am better prepared to take on the challenges in my next journey as part of the corporate world.

Pop of Creativity

By Hardy Araza, Graphic Designer

Art lives. Art lives in me. It is my hunger for beauty and character that makes me a restless soul of boundless vision.

It seemed like a hobby, but it had eventually become a part of my personal growth as my mind continues to sprout ideas that bring more color to my quirky world.

My first medium was on paper with a pencil or pen. I would usually lock myself at home, with art becoming my form of travel to a far-fetched place in the universe. During class, I would escape to medieval and fantasy worlds by drawing monsters and knights at the back of my notebook.

And so I kept drawing and creating until I entered the college publication as a cartoonist. Then they wanted me to add colors to my comic strips using Adobe Photoshop, a computer program for editing and creating visuals digitally.

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“Toph: Sweetness” (The Last Airbender) is one of my first attempts in digital art.

Eventually, I was tasked to do layout and graphics for newspapers and magazines and learned graphic design. It was really fun and it became a lot easier to give color to my sketches, put effects that I couldn’t do on paper, and cheaper too, since I don’t have to keep purchasing materials for it. Thanks to the internet, I can upload my work online where it also serves as my portfolio (link: http://soda-kid.tumblr.com)

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A peek in my Tumblr world.

My passion for design is driven by my passion for expression and individuality. Since I love mixing and matching colors, it became more prominent when I started loving fashion—another channel of expression for me. Moreover, my love for Japanese culture led me to discover their Harajuku fashion scene. I love that they’re very bold and experimental in their clothes, representing the otherworldly nature I had always been drawn to. In 2015, I met a group of of friends who were into streetwear, which I evolved into my own version where I could still play up the loud colors or crazy style but I would make it more contemporary for everyday wear. It broadens my creative vision, adds to my persona as an artist, to get to play this way. It’s not just style—it’s a culture that I embrace; an ever-changing one representing the new age.

But how do I keep up with artistic trends? I don’t exactly follow what’s popular, but rather what’s new to the scene. Popular doesn’t always translate to new. For example, the gesture called “dab” (which is originally a dance move that started from the hip-hop scene) is popular but it’s no longer a new thing. Taking photos in “flat lay” is popular but it’s not new either. What I’ve noticed from people who start trends, especially in art, is that they create something new out of the conventional or take inspiration from it. That way, they are able to innovate. Keeping up with trends is not really hard since the internet is there but the challenge is in keeping it classy and cool.

One of the artistic trends I have grown to appreciate is “Vaporwave.” I never knew of the term until roughly eight months ago, when a friend mentioned it. But unknowingly, I have been embracing almost the same art style which consists of neons, pink colors and pixels since I have been into Japanese culture for years. I fell in love with it in no time.

Vaporwave came from the term “vaporware” which means software. It is an internet subculture and music genre of lo-fi computer sounds and retro-futuristic vibe. And like any other subculture, it has a visual form. Its visual style commonly consists of old school Windows 95 and Mac graphics meshed with shades of pink, screen glitches, Greek sculptures and Japanese elements, forming a specific aesthetic. I have not fully immersed myself in the Vaporwave subculture but I’m still able to express my love for it by using contrasting colors in my artworks and even in my day-to-day outfits.

Samples of the Vaporwave aesthetic:

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Loop-the-loop by Thao Tran

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Street by Holzperle

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~ • S A F E T Y • ~ by Aaron Campbell

I always try to express myself in my work for TeamAsia, where we are always excited for creative ideas and executions. I’ve been able to incorporate my love for the art of Vaporwave through the 3D pixel text and the use of bright pink and blue bubble gum colors for key visuals like this one:

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Together, all these art forms, namely street fashion, Japanese culture, and Vaporwave, greatly inspire my creative vision. It has influenced my art style which I’m able to alter to fit the client’s requirements. It has also affected my view of the world; the constant digitalization of a growing age and the nonstop flow of ideas, opinions, and information through the internet space. Because of this, it has driven me to love my field more. Studying behavior in the digital market and applying it in concept creation for brands to engage its customers through visuals has been my interest. My creative process also influences my work culture. I’ve been able to fuse ideas to form concepts with the way I integrate my interests together.

My best tip is this: surround yourself with artistic people of good taste. They don’t have to be of the same taste as yours but they have enough credibility and personality to inspire you and your visual aesthetic. But don’t just rely on them! You should also be able to create for your own, or at least make something out of what inspires you. Stay fresh and think new. But most importantly, you have to be yourself and not pretend. Never, ever pretend. You must embrace what you expresswhat you believe in.

Thanks to the diverse culture we have, we are able to find different ways to appreciate each other’s uniqueness. This gave value to self-expression and the celebration of individuality, which has saved many lives. My passion for it saves me everyday by giving me purpose.

Driving Passion: TeamAsia Town Hall 2017

By Hapy Benitez

Last February 3, TeamAsians gathered in Launchpad Coworking, Alabang for a catch-up afternoon also known as our Town Hall.

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Launchpad Coworking’s wall of encouragement.

It was my first time attending a Town Hall of any kind, and as such, I looked forward to it. For this year-starter event, TeamAsia opted for a venue with a laid-back vibe (for which our own office is known for!). The Town Hall unofficially opened with refreshments. We were served a satisfying combo of burger and potato chips with iced tea—not to mention the popcorn and gummy bears free for the taking on each table. I must admit: for me, that set the good mood right off the bat.

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The best food combo to feed hungry TeamAsians.

When the official program began, TeamAsians were given an energetic welcome by Marketing and Accounts Director Denise Limon. She kicked it off by calling on the new members of the family and having them introduce themselves the TeamAsian way—by name butt-spell or talent presentation. You can just imagine the awkwardness of it all, but it was hilarious all the way through!

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The Web and IT team.

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The Finance and Administration Department.

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The Marketing and Accounts Department with Ms. Maricel and Ms. Bev of the Finance and Admin Department.

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The Experience Department.

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The Content Department with Meynard and Pat of the Creative Department.

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The Digital Department.

2017 is indeed a remarkable year for TeamAsia because we will be celebrating our 25th year anniversary in May. And to kick off this celebration, our Managing Director, Bea Lim, unveiled this year’s theme: “25 Years Driven by Passion”.

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TeamAsia Managing Director Bea Lim launches #OurSuper25.

To underwrite this mantra, a guest speaker, Sam Pimentel, shared with us important principles on passion and overcoming difficulties. Being the first Filipina to conquer the North Pole, Sam knows how passion plays a big part in winning against struggles to achieve your goals. She shared with us her rigorous training before joining the last degree ski expedition to the North Pole and the harsh environment she and the other hikers went through to reach their destination.

At the heart of it all, there are two things I learned from Sam:

1.      Never take your eyes off your end goal

2.       Finish what you started

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“If you believe that you can do it, you will find solutions to overcome the problems.” – Sam Pimentel on conquering the North Pole.

For TeamAsia, 2017 is the Year of Passion. That is why one of the highlights of the Town Hall was the Directors’ announcement of each department’s plans. Coming from the year where TeamAsians were challenged to “Think Big”, there really is no way to go but up. It really excited me to learn that so much is in store for us in the coming months—new projects, weirdly-named innovations (such as one of my favorites, the “Project Baby Monitor”), and new territories to foray.

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Directors Denise, Bea and Jeff announce what TeamAsians can look forward to in 2017.

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TeamAsia’s ManCom: Pam Jocson (Experience), Anna Limon (Content), Maricel Salialam (Finance), Denise Limon (Marketing and Accounts), and Beverly Aguilar (Human Resources)

Each of us has something we are passionate about. They may be the little things in life, or the big dreams we want to attain. Nonetheless, they motivate us to get out of bed and work hard each day.

Before she closed the Town Hall, there was one thing that Ma’am Monette Iturralde-Hamlin said that struck a chord in me. After observing what we had written on the big 25 standee that has been displayed in our lobby for weeks now, she discovered something interesting: most of us had written not just what, but who makes us passionate. Ma’am Monette gave us something to ponder when she made us realize that we do not need to look far to find our motivation—because we draw it from the people who are close to our hearts.

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TeamAsia CEO Monette Iturralde-Hamlin gives her closing remarks and a thought for TeamAsians to ponder.

For me, each day is fueled by the comforting thought that I can end it with my family and a good book. This makes me passionate to deliver the best that I can for each day so I can go home in peace, knowing that I can have tomorrow worry about itself.

How about you? What are you passionate about?