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Humphrey Ho

Guest Blog:  Humphrey Ho, Managing Partner, Americas, Hylink Digital

How did you get started in the advertising/marketing/data industry?

I started in the advertising industry 11 years ago, after I did my MBA and was drawn to the industry because of the challenge of their novel problems requiring novel solutions. I saw an opportunity to bridge the gap between Western brands entering the Asian market and vice versa.

Do you specialize in serving specific verticals?

We have a heavy weighting in B2B, Pharma, Healthcare, Fintech, and Beauty/Luxury clients.

What has been the most exciting data/identity/measurement innovation during your career?

Privacy and data regulations are forcing the world to evolve and forcing everyone to become a data scientist. The development of UUID, Identity Graphs, and being able to match that to realtime LBS has been pivotal in contextual advertising. The advertising industry is now requiring that everyone comes with data science built in, and if they don’t, you and your agency will be left behind.

What is unique about working in highly regulated markets such as (healthcare, pharma, financial services, etc. IF APPLICABLE)?

Custom audience data is critical in highly regulated markets. Specific platforms and processes are what regulate healthcare and financial services - it actually makes it easier to work with data onboarding, 3P, and 1P data as the rules are clear, and most marketers are hyper-aware of the do’s and don’ts of user data - it’s just a matter of getting down to prospecting, converting, or acquiring.

What trends are you keeping an eye on over the next year? Five years?

How marketers manage around first party and third party data refinement, data onboarding, and really keeping up with pixel-less and cookieless identity management. Also, advertising opportunities in the metaverse.

What major challenges do you (and/or other advertisers/marketers/data industry) face today?

Pixel-less and cookieless are the major threats coming to marketing in the next 6-12 months. The level of preparedness between client-agency is currently limited to the Fortune 50, at best. What marketers need to learn is that cookieless is mandated by pubs, but pixel-less technology is being regulated by governments. Are they ready?

Everyone’s identity is multifaceted. What are the unique characteristics of who you are?

I would say that as an ethnic minority, adversity combined with the privilege of
experiencing the evolution of advertising in real-time in America, China, and Europe has definitely provided me with a unique competitive advantage that my agency is sought by leading brands.

Do you think the metaverse will be as successful as it is projected to be? Should B2B brands begin planning advertising/marketing strategies for the metaverse or do you think the hype will die down?

The success of the Metaverse is a given. It may experience bumps getting there, but it will get there. Like anything else, brands should prepare to be part of the Metaverse and have a strategy. As a brand, the last thing you would want is for the Metaverse to be in full effect and your consumers can’t find you. Once metaverse advertising is cracked, it will succeed.