Tribe Theory’s dive into digital marketing

Travel Massive Yangon hosted the “Deep Dive into Digital Marketing” seminar at the Tribe Theory hostel on May 23.

The organiser invited three main speakers: Aung Than Toe, Co-Founder and Head of Business Development at and Min Than Htut, CEO & Founder of Pro Niti Travel as well as Wai Yan General Manager of Tribe Theory Yangon.

Wai Yan talked about his experiences setting up the hostel, and how the hostel was a nexus for entrepreneurs’ nomads.

“Tribe Theory has been in Yangon for five months now, and has gone from strength to strength,” he said. The company is different from a conventional hostel in that it not only includes beds and bathrooms, but also facilities for remote workers and those wanting to host community events.

“Our company has grown with the help of Tribe Theory Global, which means we can appeal to travelers and nomad-entrepreneurs from around the world,” he said. A few weeks ago the company helped fund-raise 120,000 Euros for European startups in Barcelona, and plans to open new franchises in Manila and San Francisco by the end of the year.

According to Wai Yan, “our vision is to have 50 Tribe Theory hostels around the world by 2020.”

“Tribe Theory’s media company is called Tribe Theory Media. The media company selects successful nomad-entrepreneurs who are staying in the city, as well as local entrepreneurs, and features them on our Facebook, Instagram and YouTube channels,” he said.

Wai Yan was followed by Min Than Htut, CEO and founder of Pro Niti Travel. Min Than’s philosophy was “marketing first, digital later.”

“When I talk about marketing, people think I am just talking about Facebook, or creating a new website and enhancing my LinkedIn profile,” he said. “Those things are important, but they are not the whole process.”

Trying to cut through the hype surrounding marketing, he said: “marketing is all about creating value for people who need your service or products, not just having a good message. It’s important to know what kind of product people need and what kind of products you have before you start marketing.”

Min Than Htut went on to talk about the importance of research in the marketing process, a sector that has grown rapidly in Myanmar over the past five years. Research companies have important data on different market segments, so “you need to understand how particular demographics use media, and what they think about your product.”

“Actually, it’s more than that,” he continued. “We need to understand our belief systems. How we think is important to what we do, and every behavior can be thought of in terms of purchases individuals make or don’t make. Consumers have likes and dislikes, and changing those preferences can be challenging for marketers.”

He spoke about the importance of story-telling when constructing a good marketing plan. “People are buying stories rather than things.” This proved a useful discussion point, as the audience considered the new narratives being constructed around overseas products and brands in Myanmar.

Aung Than Toe, co-founder and head of business development at, then stood up and gave a presentation about digital marketing and content creation in the travel industry.

“Content marketing has two parts, creation and distribution. Content has to be relevant for the target audience, but the problem for marketers is that only 20 percent is creation and 80pc distribution,” he said. Reiterating Min Than’s point about creating compelling narratives, he said that “you can create micro-content for a Facebook or Instagram story, but it has to fit in with your long form content.”

Aung Than also shared his experiences with content creation, including technical tips about photo dimensions, software packages and the timing of posts.

Tourism marketing has changed significantly over the past decade, and local bloggers and content creators have been a big part of that change. It’s the job of Business Managers like Aung Than to keep up with these changes, and to adapt to the changing market – in terms of both user preferences, and the places they like to visit.

The Deep Dive was an interesting occasion to discuss the changing nature of the digital world, and the place of Myanmar within it.

San Lin Tun is a freelance Myanmar-English writer of essays, poetry, short stories and novels.

Source: Myanmar Times

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