The VidCon team sat down for a chat with Grab’s Cheryl Goh to find out how she’s helped shape the company’s journey and why innovative video is driving its future success.
Hello Cheryl. Can you tell us what you be speaking about in your VidCon Asia Summit fireside chat?
I will be sharing examples of video-led campaigns that Grab have used in the past year and how they contribute to business goals, primarily through evoking emotion
You took on the role of CMO at Grab early in its development. What was it about the business that motivated you to join?
My first job was in a start-up and I stayed for eight years. We ended up becoming a large, global company. Working in start-ups is satisfying, because you have a great opportunity to influence the future of the company.
We were a team of 16 when I joined Grab, and even though we didn’t have much, I was surrounded by really smart and passionate people. We were really motivated by Grab’s vision of wanting to make taxis safer, solving local problems, and really just doing something for the greater good.
What do you do in your role as VP of Marketing at Grab?
Marketing tends to be on the frontlines, engaging directly with our customers. They have more channels to speak up now, and as such have a strong say in a company’s brand and corporate reputation. My role involves actively shaping the Grab brand by engaging with our customers -- by creating better experiences, giving them more value with deals, and doing more for the causes they care for.
Ultimately, my job’s about better articulating what Grab stands for and why customers can trust us. This is why I’ve recently taken on Grab’s social impact programme. We really believe that Grab will only succeed if Southeast Asia succeeds, and we’re focused on scaling our initiatives to uplift our local communities and partners. An authentic brand is built on our actions.
I’m fortunate to have a team that has tremendous heart, and we’re driving Grab’s double bottomline -- purpose and profit. Marketing is also a real business growth driver, and we support our business verticals, such as transport, food delivery, payments and financial services, to grow and achieve our targets.
Which video platforms do you use the most at Grab?
It’s about going to where our audience is, so we most frequently use social networks and influencers to share our videos. People comment and tag their friends on platforms like Facebook and Instagram, so interesting content can have longevity. I’ve also found that branded partnerships with media or influencers are effective, because the videos are filmed in a style that their existing followers like and find authentic.
Can you tell us about a specific video campaign that has worked well for Grab?
One of my early favourites was done in 2015. We were still known as MyTeksi then and had started up for about three years. We had driver-partners driving long hours to earn more for their families, and we really wanted to do something for them. So we invited the driver-partners to our office and surprised them together with their families! We then treated them to a day out, did a ‘driver swap’ and chauffeured them around. Customers responded really well, and more importantly had more empathy for how hard our driver-partners work.
Stories always work well, as I think it’s human nature for us to want to root for each other. We recently compiled inspiring GrabforGood stories from all across Southeast Asia of our partners (drivers, delivery, small businesses) and how going online with Grab has improved their businesses and quality of life. I’m so proud to be part of a super app and platform that creates multiple economic opportunities for everyone.
Where do you see the role of video marketing in the future?
The tools that marketers have at their disposal today are evolving rapidly. The internet has obviously changed the way people consume media and data allows us to be more precise with targeting and also better track outcomes.
Video is a key component in marketing, and it’s up to us to learn how best to use the medium. We need to know how to approach production of different quality, what platforms to use for amplification, and exactly what we’re trying to achieve. Then, we can build a strategy.
What would be a piece of marketing advice you would share with people who are starting out in the industry today?
I actually had no marketing experience before meeting the CEO of Grab, and I think the good thing about little experience is you’re not constrained by norms, and can be a lot more creative in helping to achieve business goals.
Reading about the industry is also really important. Be naturally curious and humble enough to ask for help and guidance from a mentor. It doesn’t need to be formal; it can be someone you can call on when you need to bounce ideas around.
Cheryl will be at VidCon Asia Summit on 3-4 December 2019 in Singapore, sharing the brand’s most recent video work. See her session details here and book your ticket today.