Lehman Brothers, Merrill Lynch, AIG, AIA in SEA context

Much has been talked about the current financial crisis in the US and how it possibly (if not already) spreads out to the whole world.
From the Search Engine Marketing point of view, we would expect the search volume for a couple companies (Lehman Brothers, Merrill Lynch, AIG, AIA) to be sky high during these days.
Using Google Insights for Search, i try to evaluate the interest about the current financial crisis from SG and other SouthEast Asia countries.

Let’s start with Singapore:

lehman brothers - merrill lynch - aig - aia singapore

The above screenshot shows the search volume trends for Lehman Brothers, Merrill Lynch, AIG, AIA in Singapore during the last 90 days.
It’s clear that none of these brands managed to capture any interest from people in Singapore before middle of Sept. One can deduce how effective the marketing managers for these brands are in Singapore!

And then on 14th of Sept, we saw the sudden spike in terms of search volume for all of them.

lehman brothers - merrill lynch - aig - aia singapore 2

It’s hardly a ground breaking discovery when we see the graph. However, it shows that when people are curious about something, hear something on TV, read something on newspaper, they will go online and search for more information! People in Singapore are no different from any other countries in the world. They don’t remember Yahoo Finance URL, they don’t remember Channel News Asia URL or CNN URL, they just simple go online (to Google) and search.

The free online news portal in Singapore Channel News Asia benefits from this crisis since more people go online and read news from their site.

lehman brothers - merrill lynch - aig - aia singapore 3

How about the interest from other SouthEast Asia countries:

Malaysia
lehman brothers - merrill lynch - aig - aia malaysia

Indonesia

lehman brothers - merrill lynch - aig - aia indonesia

The Philippines

lehman brothers - merrill lynch - aig - aia philippines

Thailand

lehman brothers - merrill lynch - aig - aia thailand

Vietnam

lehman brothers - merrill lynch - aig - aia vietnam

While it’s not my intention to analysis different interest level from each country in SouthEast Asia, i definitely want to once again demostrate that:

  • Online Brand Searches are often triggered by offline events. It applies to crisises, product launch, PR news release etc…
  • People in SouthEast Asia countries want to find out more information online through Search just like every where else!
  • While there is a massive interest from the mass about a particular brand, one should take advantage of it by simply running a Paid Search campaign, trying to deliver the correct message to the audiences for damage controlling purposes.
  • Search Engine Marketing (showing ads to people search for your brand on search engines) can be used as the branding tool as well.

Finally, let’s hope that the current situation is not getting out of hands and US government is able to rectify it.

Bye for now,
Chandler

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