Despite all these years in the communications and PR business, I still find things that amaze and interest me regularly. On a recent trip to Hong Kong for a client briefing, I was once again amazed and enthralled by the vibrant, dynamic and bustling city that is Hong Kong.

This was the first in a series of interviews for a client in the big data and analytics space discussing Hong Kong’s quest for artificial intelligence, machine learning in transforming the logistics and transportation sectors.

I always enjoy working with our local team and dealing with the sophisticated bunch that are the Hong Kong journalists.

HK media landscape

Hong Kong, a dynamic city has a population approximately about 7.31 million. It has over 20 newspapers and tabloids, and arguably has one of the highest newspaper-to-resident ratios of major cities worldwide.

It has long been a major centre for print journalism and has a vibrant newspaper industry.
There are scores of Chinese-language titles and a handful of English-language dailies.

The sector or vertical media might be limited but they do provide great content and are a good read for professionals in the respective industries. They tend to be quality content, insights, updates on the latest trends and challenges faced by the industry in Hong Kong.

In addition to the popular mainstream newspapers and tabloids, Hong Kong is also home to regional and international news brands including the Wall Street Journal Asia, Far Eastern Economic Review, and CNN. It is a media hub that is comparable to Singapore.

Here are some of my takeaways from this trip:

Lesson #1: Parochial content is king

Indeed like other parts of Asia, Hong Kong is KING. Journalists and reporters demand content that relates to their readers and consumers. It is imperative to deliver the “What Is In It For Me” for the enterprises and businesses in Hong Kong. Case studies or local references are powerful data points. How does your story impact businesses in Hong Kong; is foremost on minds and tip of their tongues.

Lesson #2: Hong Kong journalist are an independent lot

Similar to our western counterparts, Hong Kong journalists are independent and do their own research around your pitch. So doing one’s basic data research and homework to identify stories that resonate is critical to successful pitching our team in Hong Kong will tell you – to the point that great personal contacts and relationships will not help if your story is a washout.

Avoid handing out freebies to the journalist especially during the one on ones (interviews). Unlike some parts of Asia, gifts, tokens and giveaways are frowned upon in Hong Kong.

Lesson #3: Be punctual

With such an efficient transport system in Hong Kong, from the MTR to the trams and buses, majority of the media interviews we have conducted are on time. Journalists and editors respect schedules and ask to respect their time as well. This is one of the more appreciated traits of business in Hong Kong – stands with contemporaries like Singapore, Japan and Korea, apart from other territories where you can be made to wait for more than an hour for a media meeting to start.

Always have your spokesperson prepared, suited and ready on time.

These are insights that may be conventional in many parts of the world but definitely I do not take it for granted when I travel in the region.

My turf and indeed Priority’s footprint covers a region that is diverse, similar and yet culturally vastly different; from India to Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Hong Kong, we are home to some of the youngest populations in the world, driving some of the world’s fastest developing economies.

My travels have brought me closer to the different cultures, experiences and given me insights that help me do my job with greater conscientiousness, knowledge and appreciation for local customs, national agendas and cultural nuances. I can do my job of counselling clients and delivering results that much better as a result.


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