What Is the Zero Moment Of Truth (ZMOT) To the Singapore Digital Marketer?

what is zmot

What exactly is ZMOT?

The world of digital marketing is awash with concepts and theories, some of the most often mentioned theories being SMART Goals, FPs, 5Ms and the SWOT Analysis. ZMOT is an abbreviation of “Zero Moment of Truth” and has been around long enough to qualify as a buzzword since being coined by Google in early 2011.

Now, if you are a keen digital marketer there is a strong chance that you’re familiar with it or perhaps know a few bits insights about it.

To brush up on the concept, ZMOT is the new and fourth step in the customer decision making hierarchy after stimulus (the customer is influenced by an advert to buy a product), “first moment of truth” (picking the best product from the shelf), and “second moment of truth” (using and experiencing the product).

With the advent of the internet, customers have since changed their shopping patterns which, at the present moment, start with the collection of information on the web about the product before deciding to purchase it.

Thanks to the explicit digital marketing study conducted by Google, it has been found that buyers conduct in-depth research about the products’ features and their usefulness, comparison of the product with others, what other people say about the product, and where the product is offered at the cheapest price possible. This research process done by buyers is now referred to as the Zero Moment of Truth.


Significance of ZMOT to the Singaporean digital marketing arena

The ZMOT has become an integral part of commerce in which it serves to determine the success or failure of a product.

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Just like their counterparts in the developed and developing world, Singaporean consumers tend to share information about various products on the web through product reviews regarding their experience. As such, hundreds of thousands of Singaporean shoppers are exposed to the shared in information while researching about products and ends up being influenced by them while decision making decisions.

On the other end of the pond, e-commerce sites and other businesses are offsetting the trend by readily availing rich information about their products to shoppers online. Better yet, they now encourage their clients to review their products and services on TripAdvisor and Yelp to spread the good reputation and influence the curious minds of potential customers.

Getting your services and products to a given buyer’s guides has become one of the sure ways to wade the waters of ZMOT.


What is the Zero Moment Of Truth (ZMOT) to the Singapore Digital Marketer?

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In Singapore, digital marketing is imperative because of the high connectivity in the country. The booming Singaporean economy has attracted international brands in the country which strive to diversify the country’s market base. Such brands compete with local brands and among themselves for clients thus creating demand for new and cutting-edge digital marketing strategies.

But since search engines and the general e-commerce landscape varies widely from one country to another, new digital marketing strategies are devised – albeit with minimal noticeable changes – and integrated with local techniques to influence the process of decision making among shoppers who seek information on the web before going out to buy products.

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An analysis of the Singaporean demographics and online search patterns can greatly help digital markers in establishing ppc campaign strategies


1. Internet usage and mobile connectivity

Internet connection is the lifeblood of ZMOT. Deep internet penetration in the population is also essential for digital marketing to be successful. 81% of Singaporeans have a direct access to fast internet connection.

Singapore is in the league of few South East Asia nations with fastest and reliable broadband internet connection. LTE, the largest mobile telecommunication company in Singapore, covers 99% of the nation and provides fast internet connection with an estimated speed of 38mbps.

This means that over a third of the Singaporeans actively seek commerce related information on the web more than before. Since most of the web searches are done on smartphones, it is prudent for any brand in the country to create mobile responsive websites to flawlessly interact with clients.

Digital marketing strategies, on the other hand, should be designed with smartphone users in my mind. 


2. Social media and the influence of influencers

With the advent of Social Media Marketing, social media has become part of e-commerce not only for promoting products but also for potential buyers to seek information about products.

For instance, I would log in to my Facebook account and search for what others are saying about a coffee joint in Tanjong Pagar or simply glance at the reviews on their page. As with most countries, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are the go-to social networks in Singapore. Facebook Audience Tool indicates that close to 2.5 million Singaporeans uses Facebook every day. Twitter for Business lists its English-speaking user base in Singapore as being between 350,000 and 550,000 users.

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Brand influencers play a critical role in exposing the brand and even marketing their products. Some influencers dig a little deeper and review the products. If I want to know the reputation of a clothing brand in Singapore, I will dash on YouTube and watch a video created by Xiaxue, a renowned lifestyle and beauty blogger. Ieatishootipost is a famous food blogger whose opinion and advice would be golden if I wanted to know the best and the worst dinner joints in the city. So big is the influencer hiring industry in Singapore that and any brand oblivious of which influencer to employ quickly seeks the services of influencer agencies such as Nuffnang and Gushcloud.


3. Shopping centers and e-commerce

Singapore has perhaps the slowest growing e-commerce in the developed world mainly due to the presence of many shopping centers and the fact that the country is a city-state. Yet Singaporeans sought product information on the web more than anyone else in South East Asia and ended up spending US$3.5 billion in 2015, a 25% jump from the preceding year. These figures are estimated to be higher for the years that followed.

In conclusion, the Zero Moment of Truth in the Singaporean digital marketing arena is similar in many ways to that you would expect from any developed country; a robust wealthy population actively searching for information about products sold in a network of shopping centres.

In order to fully utilise ZMOT, its usually best to engage a professional digital marketing services firm like MediaOne.



About the Author

Tom Koh

Tom is the CEO and Principal Consultant of MediaOne, a leading digital marketing agency. He has consulted for MNCs like Canon, Maybank, Capitaland, SingTel, ST Engineering, WWF, Cambridge University, as well as Government organisations like Enterprise Singapore, Ministry of Law, National Galleries, NTUC, e2i, SingHealth. His articles are published and referenced in CNA, Straits Times, MoneyFM, Financial Times, Yahoo! Finance, Hubspot, Zendesk, CIO Advisor.


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