Malaysian Media Awards Winners Showcase

2022 | |

Not A Planner. A growth enthusiast

Advertiser: -
Brand: -
Creative Agency: -
Credits: Joanne Wong Zu Er - Associate Director, dentsu X Malaysia

Growing up in a close knitted town in East Malaysia, Joanne knew very early in her life that she was meant to spread her wings and explore the opportunities beyond it. She came to KL at the age of 17 and went on to complete her degree in the UK and she did this all independently and on her own. She is a determined individual who not only pressures herself to deliver the best but also from the team that she works with as well. This is the exact resilience that has built and made her who she is today – an exceptional media professional. However, media was never her choice as a career. She wanted to be a reporter and specifically, a sports reporter because she loved telling stories and only wanted to tell joyful stories. But she decided to join the media world because she was offered to work on a brand she truly loved and admired which was Malaysia Airlines. This is where she had an incredibly steep and fruitful learning curve about media as she was managing the international market for the brand and very quickly, at the age of 22, became the preferred PIC for the client for all international media planning. Joanne then realized that she was beginning to see gaps in her knowledge set which was the intricacies of media planning foundation and this was when she decided to take up the challenge to work on a category and industry that is unknown to her which was Samsung, an account that until today, she holds fondly close to her for teaching, coaching, and equipping her with the media planning knowledge and skills. And thereafter, continued to add more accounts to her portfolio, namely Digi and Nestle. Today, Joanne leads one of the largest client portfolio and independently drives business growth for the agency as well as for the client.

What’s Special about You & Key Achievements
A leader for a team of 5, she’s proud to achieve it at the age of 33 while partnering with the largest Media client portfolio, Heineken Malaysia; a massive difference to her initial career aspiration. During her time managing Heineken Malaysia, she ensure over index YOY on PRIP, growth the market share +4 YOY and TRR score +17%. Reliable and trustworthy, she easily and importantly became the go to person among the clients. During her time with the agency, she has improved the business by developing and introducing a structured “Ways of Working” to the client and agency’s partners. She is also the main brain and muscle who is leading the global strategic framework called “iDDM”. Joanne consistently showcase her dedication and leadership skills which eventually puts Malaysia to be one of the fastest country in South East Asia (SEA) to adapt to the framework, despite the initial struggle by the brand team and agency’s partners to understand it. She is a passionate talent who constantly pushes the boundaries and challenging the norm for her businesses. These characteristics of hers enabled her in helping Tiger Beer to secure a spot in Pavillion’s DOOH (Digital Out of Home) platform, ensuring Tiger Beer to be the first ever alcohol brand to ever advertise on the 3D screen in Malaysia. She has also retained all her team members since she took over the leadership role 3 years ago, achieving zero turnover of team. Joanne managed to achieve: 2 bronze in Festival of Media APAC Awards 1) Best Use of Digital media and Web 2) Best Event and Experiential Campaign.

Leadership Skills
Joanne is the complete package when it comes to leadership. She is the living proof that a leader can lead by having compassion and at the same time, being stern on expectations. She can command attention in a room full of leaders within the agency as well as with the client. She leads by example which allows her to continue to set new benchmarks of expectations and this allows her to push boundaries of possibilities every time. She positions herself not as a media professional, but as a business consultant and her single minded objective, is to solve client’s business problem and to help them grow their business performance through media. In addition to her business acumen, she is highly empathetic towards her team and her clients which makes her trustworthy and an extremely reliable go to person for anything and everything. She is a strong believer in being transparent, inclusive, and open; and she cultivates the same value within her team and the agency. She encourages everyone to speak their mind, to always extend positive and constructive criticism, and to continuously grow and improve. Her leadership values enable her to skillfully balance the art of managing people while optimising business effectiveness and efficiency.