eCommerce Facts

#TyasEcommerceProject #5 

Facts on eCommerce.

The evolution of business on the internet has grown so much including e-commerce.  Each country in South East Asia also has its own way entering the market based on different needs and focus.

Not long ago I met with Angga, another of my former member Digital and Social Media Team when at PSF. Angga is now the Editorial Content Team Lead for iPrice Indonesian market. iPrice is an Online Shopping Search Engine that is the affiliate platform of choice for more than 1000 eCommerce merchants across South East Asia. It is based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and currently serving in 7 market languages. Isn’t that just grand !

Through Angga, some insights shared of different strategies not only for business model but also characters and behaviors in each country are also different. For example, online users in Singapore and Malaysia does not engage through social media the same level like Indonesian people do. And how they strategies on counterfeits products is quite interesting.

iPrice as a technology based company also provide real data insights which I would say quite refreshing.

iprice insights state of ecommerce 2017

You can also get the iPrice’s State of e-Commerce in South East Asia 2017 here. Data from traffic, conversion rate, basket size for each country, COD payments, Mobile Revolution, Time of Purchase and map of e-Commerce on each country based on business models, store types and state of origin are available on their site. For example, Indonesia map on e-Commerce you can review here.

I think eCommerce will continue to excites the business ventures as stated through an article by  DailySocial that huge investments divided between TenCent and Alibaba will make quite an impact on SEA eCommerce Landscape in 2018.

  1. Each local companies on each country will choose a side
  2. Amazon will try to do acquisition for faster penetration in this market
  3. Offline becomes a new online: pure ecommerce players will launch physical stores to offset high online consumer acquisition costs, improve last-mile fulfillment, and accelerate growth
  4. E-Commerce start-ups will start ICO to fight for its existence
  5. 2018 will be the latest wave of ecommerce consolidation as local players adjust to the New World Rules
  6. Go-Pay will venture out of Indonesia via Sea, Traveloka, and JD to become the WeChat Pay version of Southeast Asia
  7. A new mobile-based fashion and beauty marketplace will fill the void left by Zalora
  8. Marketplace will “mature” and rid itself of “grey market” to serve luxury brands and blue chips
  9. Marketplace and e-tailers will introduce private labels and alienate brands
  10. B2B e-commerce will disrupt offline distributors, blurring the line between online and offline distribution

But that is all business.

All in all, what we need to understand is how to get the best online shopping experience.

The main traits on behavior and characteristic of Indonesian users on social media or the internet is how we like to come together. As a family or grow like a family we always find ourselves on regularly meet ups, liking to be a part of a family that has a purpose, and never liked being alone as an individual. Indonesian people will always put forward togetherness beyond anything else.

So I would like to close this story and simplify the facts.

Fact 1. Basic understanding of internet. Connecting through communication.

Fact 2. Basic management on the internet is using communication with influence. The way to influence better communication is similar like how we manage a community. Community management first, before anything else.

Fact 3. Experience is everything.

Thank you for reading.

See you on my next story.

To learn more about Customer Journey, read Brian Solis’ on Experience Design

Back to Tyas eCommerce Project post #1

Read also Tyas Digital Project and Tyas Social Project

Tyas is now Partner at Bangwin Consulting, Freelancer, Writer and Trainer on Digital and Social Media. For project enquiries : tyas@bangwinconsulting.com

Community Management on e-commerce with Muhammad Fikri

#TyasEcommerceProject #4

Interview with Muhammad Fikri, Head of Community Management Bukalapak

Let us open this post with one question. Why is Community Management essential for eCommerce ?

If you had the chance to read my story #TyasDigitalProject and listen to my interview with Bangwin about basic internet communication then the understanding might have been established. Why I really put forward digital community management as an important influence on any digital and social media activities. The concept of social media will always be my fundamental reason why we need to understand digital community.

Quoting Bangwin “Social media is a user based tool. When user become many it grows into a community. That is why, managing the many users on social media is similar like managing a community or through community management approach.” Abang Edwin is a online business consultant also an expert on digital community.

 

As a translation to the above quote, I would put take any digital business model to synergies face to face with the people who is using those products, those people on social media who has the same liking and are making conversation about the product are the representative digital community of the product.

Any similarity with multiply.com ? Well according to Fikri, Bukalapak is a market place. Social Market Place. Bukalapak does not sell things and our performance will be determined by the good experience between buyers and sellers. Our business model is to bridge between buyers and sellers at Bukalapak.

What a pleasure and lucky for me, one of my former staff members from PSF’s digital and social media team, Muhammad Fikri is now the Head of Community at Bukalapak. Bukalapak is one of the biggest market place that are influence by social commerce similar like multiply.com in those time.

To learn more about Fikri, open his blog https://defickry.com/about-fikri/

That is why I approach him to share his point of view and story on implementing Community Management at Bukalapak.

Let me share you on this short interview here.

Question :

Hallo Fikri, how are you ? Thank you having an interview with me. First things first, can you share a little bit of your community experience background please?

Fikri :

My experience on community was built from early on in life. From elementary I had boy scounts and on that early years being a scout my spirit in being a part of that community was awake and build upon. Because as part of the scout community we are taught to on how to be a leader and be led by a leader. Both important skill set to take part in any community activities. Sometimes, we see there are so many activists that were reluctant to be call upon as leader. However there has to be a leader no matter what right ? So the understanding and the exercise was fundamentally necessary.

My participation on scouting organization continues till I was in college. I was the chairman for UGM Scouting Committee 2006-2007. And another important thing being a part of a community was “contributions”. So my contributions were community service. Helping out a village outside Yogyakarta, its sorta like KKN mini or a community service program, we start with problem assessment, that review what do we have, what can we do, learn how we can contribute and measure the impact of what we have done. And that is what I mean on the important of skill set to be used till now.

Question :

Your experience on Community Management is quite a lot. Could you share your participation, in what industry and also your contribution on each of your experience ?

Fikri :

Since I am passionate in writing I’ve also established network with the blogger community. In Yogya I was a part of Cah Andong community of Yogya-nese bloggers with names like Ndorokakung, tikabanget and many more has been good friends ever since.

Originally I am from Palembang, therefore I am also a part of the Wong Palembang blogger community and in Jakarta with the Jakarta Blogger Community.

With this I gain nationwide network. It really paid off as I moved to Jakarta. My network was already established and become easier for me to get work opportunities, freelancing and side jobs all from the blogger community. Including a part of the Social Media 10 years from that that time I become a part of the pioneers of digital networks.

Me being me, always single and passionate to know more, learn more, I also took part on Rotaract building common interest in helping youth through education.

On June 2013, I was invited by US Embassy to participated in Global Service Leaders’ Inspiring a Culture of Service program in the US for two weeks. Given the opportunity I met with people in volunteerism and service-work in Indianapolis and Chicago as well as joined in an international conference on Volunteering and Service in Washington D.C. That experience led me to believe that the community building we progress here are more advance because of the nature of the people of Indonesia. And I had the chance to share.Having those experience and because I like to take part of some community movement, I believe I am a community person. You could say I am self-proclaim as a community person but I am. I associate with so many people, I this case a social butterfly hahahahahha. People would say, oh Fikri, he’s all over the place. On every event. Essentially that sense of community building DNA is inside me. And I see everything from a community sense of perspective.

As a community person I know the nature, I understand the people, understand why and what’s in it for me that makes people active, the objective and how people come together.

Question :

Okay, please share us your personal understanding about Community Management. The fundamentals.

Fikri :

To me, community management is a way or an influencing way like as part of marketing. If we are to reach a certain objective one of the way to strategise from marketing is through community approach.

As it is an approach, we must approach through listening, sometimes to be humble means being at the same level of understanding like being a friend, humanise a brand or a company.

When we are a part of a company we would understand there are stakeholders that we need to accommodate for example users, buyers, sellers and so on and there are also some functions within the organisation such as marketing, customer service with their own roles and responsibilities. Through community approach, we can share suggestions and inputs towards both sides. As friends we can share attention to the users and feedbacks to the company. As long as there are no transactional trade involve in the process and just influencing for the betterment of process and in then we could divert the solution to Customer Service for instance.

The success factor determine on Community Management would be in overcoming problems and challenges of the company’s face. A militant means “die hard” supporter for the company that open heartedly, without any hesitation or pay and any condition willing to help for the needs of the company. Evangelists. That could be one level indicator success rate on community management.

To grow and make evangelist is certainly not easy. Needs process and will be tricky since it cannot have any transactional factors. Sometimes there will come perception on free vouchers or get opportunities on discounts services but of course that cannot be.

Question :

So would you say it is important or vital for any business to get in digital use influence community management ?

Fikri :

It is very important. Because we manage people. People who uses our platform. And it will be a long term investment. The result might happen after 3 years. However, progress each year can be reviewed. Bukalapak is a data driven company we have our measurements metrics between the community management programs and the results benefited for all pelapak (sellers) at Bukalapak.

How to measure will be determine of course based on the business model and the industry. In terms of bukalapak automatically numbers of transaction is the main goal. Secondly how active we have been will also be an element of factor.

For us how we measure effectivity on each city is also very important uniquely for Indonesian nature we always need to meet up. However, we are active engagement online, if we do not meet the “sense of belonging” will never not happen.

How many attendees, equals how many new store.

How many complain, how many traffic, numbers of comments, and so on.

Those numbers of people on each occasion will be manage by each functions of the community team. So yes, there are divisions of functions, all established by needs and findings along the way. In this case, those new people entering bukapalak needs to be coached and who’s going to do it, in Bukalapak we have our engagement team with sets of responsibilities one of them is to make sure whatever effort we have done will leads to the goal of the company.

The key is to find a common interest between the member of the community and the company’s goal. And the most important is to know why people would be loyal or what we call the “sticky-ness effect”.

But also, community management can also minimize that sense of corporate point of view for Bukalapak. We don’t necessarily gives solution. But we build that bridge to those who might have that ability in the company.

Question :

For Indonesia, might have something to do with our culture difference and how we communicate ya Fikri ?

Fikri :

You are right. Different city, different ways. Bali and Manado will have a total different approach. In Bali meetups in consider rare since they have so many custom tradition activities all around the clock. What become accustom or habitual living should be consider in measuring the quality and quantity success rate.

Question :

What are the challenges met on a daily basis. Can you give examples and how to overcome those challenges ?

Fikri :

Challenges in terms of managing a community are mostly finding leaders. The community leader or the evangelists. As you know the character of each province is very different from on to the other.

And of course there are some rules of the games that one leaders and their members have to commit. Anybody can of course enter another same community like Bukalapak but not the leader. Remember, no transactional activities. Nobody gets paid.

So just like any other community development we empower each community city or region to develop themselves. We assist and support knowledge every step of the way, but the executions is in their hands. They have the power. Bukalapak can only contribute. Empowerment, encouragement and contribution. That’s the essence !

Note. The basic understanding on community is that those who come together are those who has the same the same liking, has join similarity and understanding, but the most strongest bond of community are the ones who has the same circumstances or fate.

Question :

Okay let’s get to the understanding between Digital Community and Community Management do you think there are any difference ?

Fikri :

No difference. We manage people like we manage a village. If we look from Bukalapak perspective, what is the actual reason that someone wants to be a part of Bukalapak community ? Because fundamentally they are a group of traders or merchants. They have the same interest.

“Bukalapak has always been committed to support MSMEs. And want to always be a part of the growing support in Indonesia. To be a part of their growth, to give a platform, a medium to learn and improve their knowledge, their ability not for Bukalapak but for their own prosperity. Bukalapak wants to be a part of them as they are a part of Bukalapak.”

We want to be able to give knowledge that benefits on their performance online selling at Bukalapak. If their performance increase, it will of course impact their welfare. When “what’s in it for me” are answered, it becomes easier for us to take that relationship wherever we want.

So when it comes to business we use community approach in order to maximize their attempt in doing better and gain profit. But do not use the marketing strategies on approaching them. If it was marketing there are always transaction that leads to how many do we need to budget and how do we calculate into awareness or reach or perception or leads. But in community results are more long term for any quality or quantity measurements. For short term is by using community approach, we reduced problems, gain understanding, productivity, feedbacks for our products and of course loyalty.

Question :

How about joint collaboration between Community Management and Marketing. What kind of teamwork would you do ?

Fikri :

The Community management division is under merchants’ departments. Therefore, we are marketing department’s stakeholders. So we collaborate based on brief to marketing on our agenda activities. However, there are times when marketing has their own agenda or activities and they would ask support and collaboration is usually done as a team.

Community has so many branches and can be an influence in so many ways so sometimes our BOD would seem confused.  Hahahahahhaha. Questions would raise like why are you all over the place, what’s your North Star Metric ? For example, we can be the bridge between the sellers and our product team that could help develop new features or get instant feedbacks. That is one KPI. KPI on optimising a product development. Another example is complaint to Customer Service for our priority seller from the Bukalapak Community.

Question :

May I understand how many are the registered online sellers are your member of the community ?

Fikri :

We have around 2,2 million registered online sellers on Bukalapak. The member of Bukalapak online sellers’ community has not reach 5% yet. We give priorities to those are members, yet there are layers of benefits based on how active the members are. Those who are not active will not get the list of privileges. However,  they are influencing other members. (smile). We manage people.

If it was a machine there are automation, there are AI and other learnings.

But in community management, is about relationships.

My division, the community management division including me is 19 staff.

With 4 function, Program, Partnerships, Content and Engagement.

Program ; are to develop the curriculum, standard, gamification system, developing the bible of community management, making blue prints or we call it the center of learning.

Partnerships ; as a bridge to our stakeholders and also support.

Content ; for any needs and necessities content and postings that has access to our sellers.

Engagement ; build relationships, coaching, follow up to other functions and so on. We divide the team based on regional and our interaction could go deeper like coming to weddings, birthdays, so it is not online online relationships.

Essentially through time the functions were identified based on what we see on the field. All the needs were answered based on what we mapped out each year through performance review.

Question :

We talked about sellers community at bukalapak. How about the buyers ? Have you manage their relationships yet ?

Fikri :

Yes, this year (2018) we start doing engagement activities. But that’s on the Marketing Team main responsibilities now.

Question :

I think our readers would be thankful if you could share what are the list of competencies must haves as a Community Manager. What makes them the capacity to be a good Community Manager ?

Fikri :

For me communication is the most important element of all. That is why so many PR people would fit in quite well. But what does it take is mostly to be a social person, outgoing, have an open mind, have compassion and flexible to fit in everywhere since there are basically no standard people you will need to establish relationship with. You will meet with all kind of people. You will need to always find yourself as the middle man between the community and the company. Be the glue of any crisis management, marketing activities, you would also need to understanding branding and much of writing.

Question :

For those who wants to start learning digital community through community management what can we do ?

Fikri :

Well, here at Bukalapak we are always open for internships. But usually it is based on needs.

To me the best learning is to be a part of a community. Join in whatever community based activity you want, it is up to you. It doesn’t matter. The importance is to understand how it feels to be a part of the community and how you can contribute. That way you will understand exactly what it means to manage a community.

Question :

Lastly, give us a quote that you use to reflect Community Management.

Fikri :

“ Learning community management you have to be part of the community itself. “ my own quote. 

My point of view, Bukalapak quite eminently want to make sure the experience of the users is progressively getting better. I believe through this interview it shows that community management gives a valuable contribution as part of the sustainable growth of Bukalapak.

Thank you so much Fikri and Bukalapak. Really appreciate the sharing. Wishing huge success. I look forward to see more in the future. Always do good ya !

So, what do you think readers ?

Lastly, eCommerce Facts.

Back to Tyas eCommerce Project post #1

Update. Podcast Version.

click on pic to listen

For more episode Mindshift Podcast click to,

Or use keyword Mindshift with Tyas.

Understanding the internet world with Abang Edwin

#TyasEcommerceProject #3

 Interview with Abang Edwin – Understanding the internet world.

On this next post we will be discussing about the basic understanding of internet with Abang Edwin is one of Indonesia’s expert on Digital Community as well as a Social Media Practitioner. Dabbled on the internet since 1994 and successfully built an internet-based radio for Indonesian listeners in New York City, USA, Voice Of Jakarta (VOJ).In 2007, Bangwin joined Yahoo! Southeast Asia as a Community Manager until he decided to build his own online consulting named Bangwin Consulting.

Bangwin discovered a gap on the understanding of how to manage social media or taking advantage through the internet from people or brands each time he met. It was the main reason why Bangwin Consulting was established. Bangwin has always push forward the concept of Digital Community on all of his sharing or opportunities.

Hoping this interview would give a more clear understanding on what does it takes to manage digital. The interview will be in Bahasa Indonesia however I have made the English translation on this post together with some additional supporting material. Hope you enjoy.

Tyas :  

OK, before we discuss about the world of internet, can we talk about what leads your interest to the internet, some history or background up until now.

Abang Edwin :

It started from when internet arrived in Indonesia. Around 1994 or 1995. It was when I almost finished college. At that time, it was the first time we got internet connection through internet monthly subscription. It was still windows 31, the earliest version and at that time when I begin to connect with the internet I was so excited because I get to see so many things. At that time, browsers were not like nowadays like chrome but those time we used mosaic, Netscape, even internet explorer was not yet available. Internet explorer arrived provided by mosaic. It was bought my Microsoft then it changed name.

So happy, we can try to make website. At that time, websites are only text based. The image is only on top and all texts. Not interesting at all.

Yahoo was already available but at that time, Yahoo was a search engine. So if we want to search for anything, we go to yahoo. Google was not available at that time. There are no social media or any terms on that. Those time it was only like magazines but online. They were named portals.

And then I started to try “chat” at that time the platform was mIRC. It was a hit at that time. You don’t need a browser, and mIRC was already available since DOS age. Black screen and all text. At that time, it was name IRC or internet relay chat. And when it became a bit modern it changes the name into mIRC.

At that time, first time I connected we had to choose a room, and it had so many rooms. And they would mention you. “Hey, ASL please”

Apparently it was how we introduce ourselves on the internet world at that time. We had to say our ASL, age sex location.

Up until now, mIRC still are used because it is so efficient as a platform.

Tyas :

The Scouts organization internationally still uses mIRC because its reliable and easy access, makes it accessible platform consistent in all countries.

Bangwin :

Yes, we use that on those days. And as we enter we met with all different people all around the world. From Poland, East Europe, Korea, at then I realised this technology is so cool because we are able to connected to any parts of the world as long as we are connected to the internet. So no limits. In terms of communication.

And then I realised there are some relevancies with a book I read before. It was a Bill Gates book and there was a quote about connecting the world. Title book, Overdrive.

On that book it was stated how Microsoft was not only to develop software with Bill Gates envision that the world with all human beings will be connected. As easy as that. In the olden days it was unimaginable but when we try internet then we realised what lies on the future possibility ahead.  It really felt what is the future.

Tyas :

And then when did you start experimenting. Could you share any example from your own experiences ?

Bangwin :

After dabbling on the internet, after chat on mIRC, and then I start learning about mailing list. The concept is the same, connecting with others but thru email. So we it is exactly like if we can imagine nowadays we use “WhatsApp group” but we use email. So we send one message and share through email then message will be distributed and all will be connected to each other. Now that concept is actually can be describe as Online Community. At that time, other than forum the foremost number one concept on Online Community. Because platform forum is specifically design for online sharing. There’s thread. But email is easier and everybody has it. So after mailing list I tried to build online community through mailing lists. So it starts from there.

Tyas :

So it was more than 15 years ago, to be exact 24 years ago that Abang Edwin started to experimenting on the internet. What I can imagine those time learning something new, it has some process of learnings on its own for some people. Funny misconceptions that might happen at that times ?

Bangwin :

Yes, when I was working for Panasonic right after college. I am a designer product so I was working at a factory. And I had to deal with many managers on the factory. And the knowledge about internet is still little. Because I love the internet, I helped the company to adapt internet technology to be utilise for daily work. Now with 3000 factory workers, you can imagine all facilities are completed on the factory. From TV factory, audio factory, internet has been provided for efficiency. You can imagine, it will be easier to coordinate meetings rather than walk hundreds of meters just to discuss where should we do the meetings. Now at that early times internet usage was using modem. And at that time, the understanding was if you use the internet, you are using your phone credit. Well if a company as large as Panasonic subscribe monthly internet usage, fiber optic, quite expensive USD 3000 per month. At that time, we had huge bandwidth, could use 24 hours.

But what we found out was nobody was using. We started using email for invitation meetings but nobody replied or even read. As we went around, and surveyed checked and we found out that they refused to use the internet. Why, because they fear it would be very expensive, they fear the phone billing of the (department) would explode and they could not take the responsibility.

So we finally gathered all managers to a meeting and explain about the subscriptions monthly fee that had been invested by the management for all to use. If not, it would be a waste. And then, they realised and eventually use it.

Tyas :

I can imagine having something new like internet there has been some socialisation, and you were also a part of it ?

Bangwin :

Yes, I also support socialising the whole factory on how to benefit the internet at that time.

Tyas :

Now after all the misconceptions, at that time, you must’ve also realized and foresee all the possibilities that could happen from the internet. Are there any predictions that you see happening or through any books you read at that time that actually happened?

Bangwin :

Oh a lot. Yes. Like business. At the old times, business was making a corporation, and you advertised through newspaper, now we know about Disruption Business where a company / we can gain Digital Economy with relying applications to do the business. At that time, we understand as the modem connected and then I became connected to people on mIRC and this means we can do business.

And through the internet it allows changes to happens like what’s happening now. For instance, ojek online all depends on the internet. Internet becomes something that is inevitable, everything relies on that.

There was a time on hand phone survey that for some people in the rural area, they say they don’t use the internet, but just facebook. And as time goes by, they don’t realize that the internet is all embedded in our gadget. It’s like a given value. All our hand phone numbers have internet connection.

Business media or portals at that time. And then there was search engine, Yahoo, infoseek, lycos. And we chat on mIRC on of the channels for example dog lovers, and I could offer a dog, now that is already e-commerce right ?

Tyas :

Next question, is a question that I have longed to asked and share to all our friends (listeners/readers). About the understanding on basic internet communication, community management and digital community. You have always brought that up on any of your sharing or opportunities as a speaker. Can you share the importance on those concept ?

Bangwin :

Very important. Why I always bring community management on any of my sharing because social media management or internet is based on communication. Communication is a starting point that a community is formed. So if we do not discuss about community (how to manage the community online) it will be a jump. It means we are just putting ads (advertisement).

So for example, if we meet a person, we just informed, that’s it, one-way communication. Once the other person talks back to us, that is already two-way communication but not yet a community. Once there are three, four and more person come together and talk about that ad and discuss about their interest on that product or let say hobby or whatever now that is a community.

Now why it becomes important, because rather than we talk to 1 person, if we talk to 1000 people that has the same opinion as us it would be more powerful. Faster, easier.

So when it comes to those who wants to sell or share and idea it becomes more enjoyable. That is why it is important to talk about online community.

Concept of communication between people. Community allows anyone to share and discuss ideas

Again an example, everything is all about community management. If one person has a twitter account or Instagram, with 800 followers, that is for sure the person needs to be a community manager on its own. Unless we don’t want take benefits from that but if we see we have 1000 followers and we want to take advantage we have to take our responsibility as a community manager to nurture our followers, so that they are happy to follow us. If not, they will easily unfollow.

So on the internet, when we talk about community, we talk about people. Just like hang out in the real world, there always some tendencies to judge or appraise a person. Now, our value on the internet is based on our reputation on the internet. And reputation is build based on trust. So we have to build our reputation on the internet community. Now that trust will become the currency on each person. Each person has its own value. For example, if Abang is speaking I trust him. Now that means our reputation is high. Referring to the book Wuffie Factor that explains it all. Value of each person online. Now reputation online is different from the reputation on the real world.

Let me be the example, I am well known to be a product designer in the real world, but when I come to the online world I am know to be an online community practitioner. So each place we can build our reputation. Now the beauty of being online or on the internet, we have the ability to build that. Build on what we want people to know us for, how popular we want to be. That can happened.

Tyas :

Now as we see on how we take advantage for business from the internet nowadays, there’s e-commerce, fin-tech, service tech, entertainment, media, there are so many, even now, do not realised the benefits or concept on online community influences on the internet on whatever form or model. Why is that, people do not realised til now ?

If I can give some examples, Bukalapak just uses influences community management starting 3 years ago. Other e-commerce just started last year. Why is that people seems to me jump over that ?

Bangwin:

There are so many reasons but the for certain reasons, online community is not something easy to be learn. That’s first. And secondly, people is used to see the end results. Whereas community is built for a long period of time, so it we cannot see the immediate result.

Tyas :

Is there are book references to learn online community that you can share ?

Bangwin :

Community Building on the web, Amy Jo Kim. This book til now is still relevant.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tyas :

Maybe we can learn community management on our own if we some have experience being a part of a community, we know how to manage community, and we could apply that learning on social media, right.

But this is how I view it. I may be wrong. From what I see, people often become too focus on the technology, how to manage the technology but forgot that those who are using those technologies are human beings. Not just the internet or social media but whatever brand or product sometimes a company tends to forgot, at the end of the day we have to give value for those people who buys those products. People do not want technical stuff. Could that be one of the problem maybe? Because they often think or see too technical of things?

You’ve got to start with customer experience and work backwards to the technology. You can’t start with the technology and try to figure out where you’re going to sell it. -Steve Jobs-

Bangwin :

Many people sometimes do not realize that when we manage a community we manage the people.  What’s in their heads, the understanding, habit and character that forms how they speak or communicate among others. So it’s about communication. That is why on any of my trainings it all starts from conversation. Because conversation is the initial state of building a community. From a questions and gain more conversation then sharing on each interests.

Jeff Bezos, CEO Amazon

Tyas :

The last question is about the future. What technology can you see for the future.

Bangwin :

Technology becomes a part and no longer an options of our daily lives. There are no stopping in the future. Social media might change forms and names but connection between human beings and communication becomes the base of any form of evolution. That is used to support that. It will only change form.

From IRC, mailing list, it was all tools for human beings to communicate. And now we are starting to use a tool to communicate using this smart phone, on the future we might use our own way of tool, telepathically who knows.

That is why when it comes to business it does not become relevant if we say we only want to do business in Indonesia. If the potential buyers come from overseas don’t you want to do business? However, there are still friends with that mindset, I really cannot understand. If we can have connected globally, might as well we try.

Thank you so much for the interview Bangwin !

Next, let’s continue, Interview with Fikri, Head Community Bukalapak.

To learn more about Customer Journey, read also, playing catch up on disruptive era.

Back to Tyas eCommerce Project post #1

My experience with eCommerce

#TyasEcommerceProject #2

My experience with eCommerce equals the experience I had at Multiply.com. Exposures to projects of strategic partnership, managing merchants and categorisation of merchants and also Counterfeit Project.

Let’s talk about multiply.com first shall we.

Multiply.com was built as a social network very popular in Indonesia. Multiply Inc. was launched in 2004 by Peter Pezaris, Michael Gersh dan David Hersh.

Those who start blogging uses multiply.com as platform to learn and gain network. The ability and functions on multiply gave the users to expand their sharing. Multiply.com was known to be very secured among other social network at that time like mIRC, friendster and hi5. Multiply facilitate users to access storage for limitless photos, videos and also voice recording. Multiply.com was quite similar like facebook however the difference in starting point was that the activation did not started from the coolest youth community like Harvard. But multiply.com was built first then offered to the general audience. Makes a huge difference ya.

In terms of content sharing at Multiply, the users connect with each other by sharing via Blog of many kinds of interest through photos, videos and also reviews. This is also the distinction that multiply has that the engagement was built upon comment threads on each of their blog accounts just about anything!

Activities of engagement grew and level up into buying and selling amongst the multiply community. It was found that in Indonesian users there are around 2 million active users, 40.000 were becoming sellers, grew each month of 2000 sellers and impacted 7 million unique visitors to the multiply site each month. Another country among the SEA region has the same similarity behavior is the Philippines and even much bigger market.

So in that situation, 20 September 2010, a group of investors named Nasper Limited started investing on multiply, building the commerce end to end features and then offered to buy multiply.com from the original founders. They wanted to change it to entirely an e-commerce site. At that time, Multiply already had 100.000 sellers and more than 20 million visitors each month.

PT Multiply Indonesia was established on 15 December 2010. The goal was to build a social commerce in Indonesia, giving the social shopping experience and to support entrepreneurship.

So what are we looking at ?

One, A social network of digital communities that uses blogging platform in multiply.

Two, an organic growth of Indonesian SMEs community all in one platform.

Three, a need to transition from social network to e-commerce.

Four, the goal is social shopping experience.

At that time, who else are in the running in ecommerce ? Locally, there were Tokopedia, plasa.com, Tokobagus, Rakuten, and  eBay coming in to Indonesia.

My time at multiply was only one and a half year as I was offered an exciting challenge that I cannot resist at Putera Sampoerna Foundation. One journey I have shared through #TyasDigitalProject.

But the learning at multiply.com was considerably quite substantial for me personally. And I truly feel for everyone who has join with Multiply Indonesia. It was quite a vigorous group of people. Not long after I left multiply.com, around 6 months after, Multiply Indonesia got cut and shut down. The investors had another investment to compare and multiply.com was competing head to head. Multiply at that time did not gave the performance as expected based on the time frame that was aimed. This is my point of view.

Strategic Partnership and Categorisation

The goal of strategic partnership was based on the business objective in creating an e-commerce experience and educate the market in the process. Using Key Opinion Leaders that is familiar to public in general hence generate new audience towards the new multiply. Categories of Key Opinion Leaders are famous people from any type of industry from musicians, writers, designers, cooks, photographers, community leaders from any type of focus-hobby to social organisations.

With my background in advertising I had many practice in translating different brands objective to marketing communication activities that leads into sales. Plus, my experience in developing my first personal brand was consider a success hence established my network to the entertainment industry.

The progress of business development also aims partnerships with publishing companies and Indonesian music industry from music labels, international and local including indie labels, clothing and merchandising labels, media platforms also music promoters. Books and music at that time was two industries that was perceived late for transformation in digital. Our objective was to established both market onto multiply e-commerce market category.

On each partnership we aim to have a yearly partnership deals. But we start with trial activities that could potentially become best practices on each category of the market. So it was developed and customised based on how the behaviour of each their audience, each calendar agenda and how do they do business. The activities were of course supported with other functions within Multiply.com.

Besides that, I had also given the opportunity to manage two other categories that are already established at multiply, which are babies’ category and kids’ category. The goal was store conversion. They started as bloggers or users of the platform. Most of the them become sellers by hobbies or started just because of the possibility in adding pocket money to their household. So the objective was getting the existing stores convert into the new e-commerce system of multiply.  It was an amazing experience from getting to know them closer, learning how they do business, the process of educating to the new system, and so on.

Counterfeit Project

One day, mas Daniel Tumiwa, the Country Head of Multiply Indonesia briefed me a project that I thought was amazing. Leading the counterfeit project for multiply.com. Multiply was becoming a market place, where multiply was also joining in on the buying and selling process. How to do it, where to start, what to do, became my responsibility as the Project Manager. There is a need to be able to place myself on each stakeholder’s position. A need to understand each point of view and to gathered each other concern and also insights. Meeting all in the middle and moving forward for the best interest of the stakeholders. I was given the opportunity to build the future blue print for multiply.com policy.

Let’s understand the word Counterfeit.Now let us understand the meaning of Counterfeit Product.

Initially, online selling and buying at multiply started off a social relation amongst the community. Based on a trusting a friend. The community grew organically without having any rules or regulations, just like any other community based group the law was built upon a strong sense of togetherness. Any problem or restrictions has a consensual agreement discussed together. Just on that understanding alone, I believe whatever actions we execute later must have a community management approach and influence, whenever that happens.

Counterfeiting is an intentional and calculated reproduction of genuine money or trademark for the purpose of misleading or buyer into believing in receiving or buying the genuine goods itself. So where do I start. Research on counterfeits learnings, study cases was mostly based on China market are the biggest counterfeit market but also the US market since we are an ecommerce company, I wanted to search similar business model so I turn to e-bay as a starting point as well. The US also initiated the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and International Anti-Counterfeiting Coalition.

I begin searching for main aspects that we can learn based on counterfeit as a problem. And I identified some main activities that all have sample of study case and learnings.

  1. marketplace clean up
  2. counterfeit laws
  3. counterfeit guidelines
  4. counterfeit penalty
  5. monitoring with regular updates
  6. educating the market
  7. partnership program

Based all those learnings to take any actions or communication from any counterfeit issues we must see from two sensitive background, first legal wise (ethically and morally) and second, through a business angle.

So the next was started to break down the objectives to encounter the issue. Which main activities should we choose to start with. And then discussed amongst the project member on what actions we can do on each objective. This means I shared actual problem founded and list up some ideas as advice to start the discussion. And of course time frame.

There would be time on some updates I share to central management team, Claudio would give ideas on how we could implement based on his experience looking over many digital and social media platforms throughout the years. Claudio Pinkus was the Chief Strategic Officer hired by Naspers for Multiply.com. Good guy 🙂

After all inputs have been gathered, the next stage on the planning was to choose alternative action plans. Legal was an integral part on the counterfeit project that is why the preparation needed different perspective on 3 alternatives plan,

  • Proactive Action, driven by Multiply
  • Reactive Action, driven by Users
  • Proactive and Reactive action, driven by both multiply and user moderation.

On each plan not only need to show how the implementation but all the negative and positive impacts that might happen as we integrate towards the multiply system. To get the same vision with each functions of the project we discuss the work flow and the steps on each alternative plans. Functions here means, organisation for example stores categorisation, customer service, sales, marketing and so on.

Continue, Interview with Abang Edwin, the internet world.

 

Tyas Ecommerce Project

#TyasEcommerceProject #1

What is Tyas eCommerce Project about ?

I have been wanting to share my experience in eCommerce for so long. Tyas eCommerce Project was inspired by my experience at multiply.com, one of Indonesia’s eCommerce pioneer rise together with the Philippines market. But from one job to another I couldn’t find the time to start writing.

Before this story, I have shared previously #TyasDigitalProject and #TyasSocialProject . The same reason why I wrote these stories, I feel it is very important to be able to shared what I have done, through all my experiences. To show not only the work but each strategising steps and the implementations of each task. Hopefully could contribute some learning on each industry and the professional world.

I will start from the learnings during multiply.com and I will share some interviews that I have captured, friends in e-commerce and also an expert in this field. The evolving learnings on e-commerce has always been an interesting topic in the business world all around including Indonesia.

Indonesia is one of the emerging markets that dive on this business competition and seems to excites many worldwide investors. Multiply.com was shut down in May 2016 however I would still think the learnings was as much valuable for everybody in this industry till now.

My opportunity to be a part of multiply.com came through mas Daniel Tumiwa. I will always be forever grateful to have that chance as it became a door opener for my professional growth. So thank you mas Daniel.

Through this opportunity I would also like to give my thanks to Claudio Pinkus. Claudio was the Chief Strategy Officer at multiply.com and on the early days had work together to map out some of the biggest ecommerce sites during that time.

My time at multiply.com was short but gave me so much to learn. It gave me a platform and a learning based for the next chapter in the digital world. As the senior marketing manager my role was Strategic Partnership. Of course when working for a startup you have to be ready for whatever opportunity or task given. I had gain experience creating trial practice for new substantial industry like books and music also lead two of the biggest categories, Babies and Kids. And was appointed the Project Manager on Counterfeit Project for the new market place at multiply.com.

The difference from the other Tyas Stories Projects is that I will heavily emphasise on Digital Community management. One concept that I really felt very important on any technology business model should have yet often be ignored.

Let’s start.

#1        Tyas eCommerce project

#2        My experience with eCommerce

#3        Interview with Abang Edwin – The internet world

#4        Interview with Fikri – Head of Community Management Bukalapak

#5        eCommerce Facts

Happy reading.

Continue, My experience with eCommerce