Myanmar Economy and Digital Era
Posted: Feb 04, 2016
A Part of Myanmar Market, Economy & Trends, this is particularly relevant to those of us who work for digital marketing agency in Myanmar like as media planner and marketer.The objective of my presentation is that I believe these facts and information can help planner and marketer.
Telecom is the Fastest Growing Industry in Myanmar. In 1884, Sir Graham Bell invented telephone. In 1993, MPT introduced its first cellular mobile phone. Unbelievable price tag: 1,500 USD per SIM cards officially. The Past of the Future, In 1993, MPT introduced with 1,500 USD per mobile phone system. In 1996-97, Digital AMPS and CDMA introduced. In 2002, GSM commercially launched. In 2008, providing first 3G service network to limited number of phones. In 2013 MPT introduced 1.5 USD SIM cards with limited availability and the government welcomed two international telecom operators; Qatar based Ooredoo and Norway based Telenor. In 2014, Official launched of Ooredoo and Telenor.
According to the Sales figures of the three telecom companies; they estimated 15% of country’s population owns a SIM card. 60 % of mobile phones are Smartphones. 58% of Smartphone users are male. They divided 5 different categories.These segments are Techno enthusiasts: the nerds and the geeks. Pragmatic Professionals; the business savvy people. Classic Users; the moms and the common users. Dream Chasers; those who dream to own a mobile phone and Tech Laggards; the tech conservatives.
Mobile War around the Cities of Myanmar Possession of the latest mobile phone is associated with high socio-economic status. iPhone is considered to be among the highest status but usually regarded as "out of reach" product. Samsung is top of mind good brand followed by HTC, Sony and Nokia. Mobile phones made in China are generally perceived as cheap, low in quality and have no warranty.
Television Commercials in Myanmar TVCs represent 68% of total advertising expenditure and it has grown 12% in the last year. (Source: MMRD) There are 7 television channels in Myanmar. Only two channels, MRTV and MWD is available nationwide. Skynet, the only pay channel of Myanmar do not feature local TVCs as it air foreign contents directly. Average TVCs per hour in Myanmar across all channels is around 14 minutes.
TVCs as part of the entertainment programs. Most of the local made TVCs are in "song and dance" format. A consumer buys a product because of its functions or somebody recommended it. There is only seldom situation where a consumer buys a product because he or she is emotionally evoked by a product advertisement.
According to the research of Myanmar Marketing Research & Development _MMRD, majority of the women rated television as their best companion according to the. It shows that 100% of respondents have at least one television set at their house and 13% own more than one television. Majority enjoys Korean drama series and other entertainment programs aired from free channels.
From observation, average person spends approximately 3-5 hours in front of television. On the side note, this research is done at major cities where respondents belong to higher socioeconomic level relative to rural areas, where radio is the dominant media channel. Most of rural areas didn’t get enough electricity. As a result, they can’t watch TV program even they own TV. For them, TV is mostly for watching Myanmar Video attached with DVD player by using battery.
Myanmar’s Consumer Behavior in Cultural Perspective. Usually elders hold authoritative power and younger members are willing to listen to them. Consumers are more likely to listen to authoritative figures in this society. For example, an advertisement with doctor recommendations is likely to work better in this society. Myanmar culture is more feminism, i.e. caring and quality of life oriented and men are still household decision makers. "Word of mouth" is relatively more effective tool.
Myanmar’s Consumer Behavior in Cultural Perspective. Myanmar culture is heavily influenced by Buddhism, the religion 89% of population devoted to. Moreover, 124 years of British colony left some western culture among the society. Men are the main earners in the family, and women tend to stay at home, care the home and elders who share the house. Majority of the families in Myanmar are extended families and Myanmar culture lean towards collectivism rather than individualism.
Facts you should know about Myanmar ( 1 ) Geographical Facts Myanmar = 15 states, 67 districts, 330 townships, 2981 wards, 13,698 village tracts. In the world, Myanmar is 28th most populated, 40th largest and second largest in ASEAN. Rural area represents 37.6 million, urban 13 million and metro 5.66 million. Bordering countries with large population, approximately 41% of the world population is in this region.
( 2 ) Trade Facts, Top 5 export products of 2012 are; Natural gas, Pulses & beans, Jade, Fishery products and Forest products. Top 5 import products of 2012 are; Petroleum goods, Automobile & automobile applications, Iron & steel structure goods, Machinery & machinery accessories and Edible oil. Top 5 investing countries of 2012 are; China, Thailand, Republic of Korea, United Kingdom & Singapore. Top 5 foreign investing sectors of 2012 are; Power, Oil & gas, Mining, Manufacturing and Hotel & Tourism.
( 3 ) Population Facts, 54% of Myanmar population is in economically active age range, i.e., 18-60 2% of population earns USD 12,000+ annually 37% of the population is unemployed. Average of 26% lives under poverty line.
( 4 ) Media Facts, 1 in 3 person reads weekly newspaper. MRTV launched its first radio station in 1946 and television in 1979, later followed by Myawaddy in 1995. Currently there are 7 television channels. Advertising expenditure is expected to hit USD 180 million at the end of 2013, still exponentially lower than Thailand. TVC ( Televised advertisements ) average around 14 minutes across all the channels, lower than international rate. TVC and print advertising are the leading media landscapes, representing 63% and 32% of total marketing activities. Top product categories spending on advertising; pharmaceuticals, beverages, cosmetics and personal cares.
( 5 ) Market Facts, 55% of international brands in Myanmar come from United States.
Considerations for Digital Marketing in Myanmar. Total Population -51,419,420. Rural area represents 37.6 million. Urban represents 13 million. Metro represents 5.66 million. 15% population own a SIM card. Estimate 583,564 people use internet. Estimate 1,240,000 active Facebook users. 2% of the population.0.2%, 1.2 million, represent the top 0.2% of socio-economic level of the country. Yangon represents 73% of while Mandalay, the city as developed only represents 12%. It is safe to assume that Mandalay population is more digitally conservative comparing to Yangon. Facebook population of age 20-3o years old occupy 58% of total. Middle aged 31-60 represents a quarter (25%). Facebook advertising is still expensive gauging with income in Myanmar. Business can run big budget advertising campaigns on Facebook without major risks. Facebook only represents 1.2 million out of 51 million population over 50% is young demographics of age 20- 30.
Is Myanmar ready for Digital Marketing? Myanmar is catching up in this online arena after visit from Google’s Eric Schmidt and Facebook making its advertising service available in Myanmar. Out of 51 million populations in Myanmar, the "guesstimation" of population with internet access is less than 4%. Starting from 2012,even though it is as slow as turtle ( The infamous Burmese metaphor for internet speed ), more people are accessing internet in Myanmar.
Digital Kaway is a one of fast growing Digital Marketing Agency in Myanmar and we offer digital works such as social media marketing, search engine optimization, content marketing, email marketing.