Bananachinese’s Weblog

June 3, 2013

BN: To rebuild, to regain or to fall into some blackhole that is the question

Filed under: Citizenry, Malaysia, Media, Politics, Repair — Tags: , , , , , , , , , — bananachinese @ 7:15 pm

After BN’s big loss of face outcome from Malaysia’s 13th General Election, Samy Vellu declared sagely recently that it is time for BN to regain people’s trust.

Hmmm… a bit late there (somebody beat the MIC legend to it in 2010).

Makes one wonder why BN still keep them UMNO cybertroopers who helped Najib Razak to lose face big time (especially in Selangor) by repelling voters below 50s.

Listen up UMNO, MCA, MIC – you better find yourselves some quality social media engagers if you want to stay on to give a good fight in GE14. Otherwise it will be a boring GE for your fading members and our pelancong politik.

Some may ask what about Khairy Jamaludin‘s cyber team? Pooh, pooh, I say. In Twitter, FB, blogs, frankly, the MCA writer of the original rebuilding trust article seems to possess more politically solid content than his army’s.

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April 27, 2012

Who’s your social media manager cum listening specialist?

Filed under: Citizenry, Life, Malaysia, Media, Politics, Repair — Tags: , , , , , , — bananachinese @ 1:59 pm

Most, if not all businesses think community metrics equals revenue, ROI, brand equity.

But if you are only basing your success on retweets, influence scores and popularity then you are standing on shaky ground and bound to fall flat on your face.

If your business really want to make it in a social environment, you must

1. Be open to a mindset change

Do you have the guts to listen to what people are really saying about you and your business in the social world?

Any good social media manager or agency or consultant should have the guts and knowledge to provide you the real information, and help you set priorities and decisions for how to best embed social within the DNA of your business.

2. Get real with your team skill set and available resources

If your team doesn’t have the necessary skills to enable successful engagement, then you must either train them or figure out how you are going to obtain the necessary skills from elsewhere eg terminating employees or re-assigning them to different roles. Without the right people to do the planning, integration, execution, listening, engagement and measurement, you will be doomed to continue to struggle.

This is evident In the Malaysia political arena. Political parties’ cybertroopers or social media team would rather go about their happy retweeting, demeaning and scolding peeps whose ideals differ from theirs. It is amazing how BN (UMNO, MCA, etc) is spending much $$$ on their social media and web team to only able to produce numbers of followers, bragging about retweets and top influencers who they are engaging with.

Shockingly, the paymasters didn’t even have the gumption to realise the lack of engagement ability of their social media people.

If you are only talking to yourself all day and ignoring your target audience or leaving them out of conversation because you have no understanding of what they want to talk about or what they need, then it is highly unlikely you will ever see a solid return on that social media and expensive web team you hired.

The BN social media teams are well on their way to being nothing to nobody.

Be good to your business, it is never too late to go get yourself a top social media listener/manager today.

September 7, 2010

Speech for BN political leaders: Are you brand Barisan Nasional?

“… Whether we realize it or not, we members of UMNO, MCA, MIC, Gerakan, et al, are involved in the brand Barisan Nasional.

I hope the first thing you do when selecting your next role as a BN member is to unleash the potential of the coalition.

BN, while maybe not the sexiest name in the current political business, offered me an underrated hipness factor and the horizon to transform into something even more special than prior Merdeka.

All BN parties must consider to operate like a startup with the stability of a 59 year-old political vessel.

We must come out of the rough sea and work feverishly to repair our brand reputation in a giddying political demography.

BN is a great place for its members; BN members made the right choice in the first instance.

But how would new voters know all this? How would they become aware of what we can do to make lives even better for their future and Malaysia?

First task on hand is to overhaul the social media activities for our membership and install savvy customer relation efforts in our public conversations in either Twitter, blog or Facebook.

Okkk, now over to you, Najib Tun Razak, Chua Soi Lek, Samy Velu, Koh Tsu Koon, et al. If you still need ideas to transform this into rousing speeches for your party members, please do not be too shy to ask me.

March 4, 2010

Malaysia Netroots and Citizen Bloggers

Ever wonder if our savvy politicians are even aware of the changing pattern of communication of our loyal party grassroot voters?

Let’s do a checklist:

Got blog? – check

Got Facebook and Twitter? – check

Got interactive conversation to walk with and connect with commentators’ fears and tears? – “Itu software belum lagi di pasaran, boss…,” explained the hapless political aide. “Pergi tanya dekat bloggers,” exclaimed the half awake politician.

Suddenly a vision pops in my head – she, the internet evangelist grandma in a TV advertisement going, “Jom Streamyx !!”

Share with you below highlights from a related article:

Rise of the Netroots: How citizen army of bloggers is changing Malaysian politics

Malaysian politicians need to rise up with the digital reality and collaborate with social-political new media practitioners to extend constituencies beyond their silver haired circle of loyalist voters. Never before has the need to connect with today’s digital-savvy consumers been so crucial to winning campaigns for a high income economy aspirant nation state.

Thanks to information technology, the possible spectrum for ideological debate in Malaysia has been widen a little especially since the advent of emails, blogs, sms, Youtube, Facebook and Twitter dented the traditionally unidirectional political messaging and campaigning that voters have been subjected to.

So instead of issuing numbing political slogans or lamentations of political parties attributing their troubles to the machinations of their adversaries rather than to their own failures or sheer misfortune, why don’t they just get to work with the netroots as an outreach connector to reach constituents beyond their traditional voters neatly segmented by race, association or party membership?

Click here to read the article in full.

February 10, 2010

Rebuilding trust in Barisan Nasional

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Prime Minister Najib Razak’s government should remember to move cautiously to rebuild trust if they care for 1Malaysia and Vision 2020 to succeed.

With some 2,000 nationwide activities, over 2,000 projects and 100 programmes, the Government Transformation Programme (GTP) by Najib’s administration declares that it ‘focuses on generating positive outcomes which are based on what the rakyat wants and needs (“People First”) by ensuring fast delivery of results (“Performance Now”) to contribute to 1Malaysia and Vision 2020.’

I admit it makes a great work plan to improve efficiency for the government bureaucracy.

Unfortunately, in the enthusiasm to produce the visible public goodies to fulfill the National Key Result Areas (NKRAs) identified to spearhead the government’s transformation, Najib’s administration forgot to care and manage the intense public distrust for the Barisan Nasional political entity.

Poor communication and unprogressive comments by Barisan Nasional leaders dismissed, rather than effectively minister to concerns on issues like security concerns of missing fighter jet engines or acts of terrorism that fed on religiosity and attacking places of worship.

Emotive polemics that were not backed by reason were given the leeway to intervene in the democratic pillar of legislation’s process to dispense justice.

These contributed to heighten the suspicion of voters that indeed, Barisan has not learnt or understand a cause of its poor results in the 2008’s General Elections.

Literate Malaysians are served generous servings of unthinking and autocratic decrees from Najib’s cabinet ministers in replying to issues of Constitutional rights in religion and right to information.

Apologetic acknowledgement of the problems without legislative follow through over headlined issues by Barisan’s large stable of politicians contributed to make the people more bewildered, agitated rather than informed.

Why are the lawmakers unable to perform their duty to effectively resolve the citizens’ fears and insecurities?

Perhaps, our Yang Berhormats’ media communications were not meant for the everyday rakyat’s consumption.

Maybe their messages are a form of instructions for their underlings, not the rakyat because the rakyat could not compute the logic of what they are trying to say.

I do not envy Rais Yatim on the load he has to bear for 1Malaysia on his national duty as the Information, Communications and Culture Minister.

I can empathise with Rais Yatim’s patriotic concern on dangers of Twitter, Facebook and internet culture affecting the Malaysian identity and culture.

But his choice of words failed to convince minds and more unfortunately, entrenched him as a Twitter celebrity for the wrong reasons amongst twitterers.

Perhaps it is a result of a clash between the old and young lifestyles and changed aspirations.

It is commendable that Malaysia political parties recognized the perils of modernity and have taken the trouble to invest and keep up their messaging through combined force of new and established media forms since its lesser electoral win in 2008.

However, fervent Barisan Nasional propagandists and their cyberspace avatars have diluted the message of BN’s love, caring and sharing vision for 1Malaysians.

News articles and web postings populate the internet with more emotive religiosity, racism, magnifying distrust and plays on the illusion of Malays or Chinese or Indians under siege by the rest of the other Malaysians.

To be fair, it is not justifiable to rebuke only the members or fans for they must be severely limited in their training and the scope by Barisan Nasional’s political ideology of race nationalism.

UMNO fights for Malay nationalism and bumiputeraism.

MCA usually retreats to negotiate behind closed doors for its Chinese ‘rights’.

MIC is seen to beg for its Indian ‘rights’.

Did you notice how the words ‘fights’, ‘retreats’ and ‘beg’ invoke unintended responses in young and the undecided voters’ brains?

And so, in the interest of political sustenance, relevancy and lifelong learning, it is not a bad option for Barisan leaders to go back to the drawing board, to understand that fundamental constructive approach to communication based on clear political ideology.

Oh, by the way, I applaud the Federal Court’s recent courage to uphold justice to protect landowners from losing their lands to forgers.

After nine years of waiting under the shadow of the Adorna Properties principle, many landowners could finally be assured that their property rights is once again secure in law.

This is one good way to start again into the new economy.

By: Ho Aoi Ling

The writer was a former Senior Research Executive with MCA think tank, INSAP. She can be contacted at: thelivingwall@gmail.com

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