Reaching digital audiences in rural Vietnam

Nitin Gajria / March 2019

In recent years, Vietnam has become an important market for businesses. In fact, the World Bank expects the country’s GDP to grow steadily at a rate of 6-7% in 2019 and 2020.

The Southeast Asian country is also a mobile-first market, and with almost 70% of the population living in rural areas,1 mobile is the primary digital platform for consumers. Despite this, marketers struggle to reach these audiences because they have little information to work with. When data is available, it quickly becomes dated or provides insights on the whole country without drilling into rural audience behaviors.

The State of Mobile in Rural Vietnam Report closes this gap. It offers clear learnings that marketers can use to reach rural Vietnamese audiences. Here are some of them.

Deliver the right ads to the right audience at the right time

No matter how unique or creative an ad is, if it’s not relevant to an audience in that particular moment and in a specific place, it won’t resonate with them. For example, an ad about a product that is expensive and difficult to find would not be relevant in rural Vietnam.

While most marketers know this to be intuitively true, it’s a common mistake to show ads that are of low relevance to particular audiences. To serve ads based on consumers’ needs and desires, marketers should segment their audiences geographically and use tools that help reach consumers more effectively. The right messaging, delivered consistently, leads to a nurtured, engaged audience that is more likely to respond at every touchpoint.

Offer products on physical and digital platforms

Consumers in rural Vietnam like to peruse online but make purchases offline. In fact, of the 70% of rural Vietnamese audiences that click on search ads, 45% make an in-store purchase as a result of their search. This means businesses should ensure that advertised products are available for purchase in physical stores.

However, this may not always be possible in rural settings, where remote locations and other factors may make in-store product availability a logistical hurdle. To overcome this, businesses must ensure a smooth digital experience so consumers can complete their purchase through online stores.

Take advantage of a growing affinity for video

In rural Vietnam, 82% of users turn to the YouTube mobile app for relaxation, especially for content that is interesting and culturally relevant to them. This presents an opportunity for marketers, but they must be careful about how they utilise it and plan the messaging in a way that is engaging for the audience.

The State of Mobile in Rural Vietnam Report offers a lot more insight into what has thus far been an untapped audience. This report by MMA is a project led by Google with participation from MMA's network of partners, including Adtima, Dentsu Aegis Network, Infocus, Kantar Worldpanel, and Nielsen.

To learn how to effectively reach out to consumers in rural Vietnam, download the report below.

Masters of Mobile