Search engine marketing (SEM) can be a powerfully effective tool in maximizing the search visibility of your web properties. When executed poorly, however, a pay-per-click (PPC) campaign can lead to high expenditure, but negligible results.

The Egg team is comprised of search marketing specialists who are experienced within the Chinese, Japanese and Korean markets, and possess cross-platform capabilities. Developing profitable campaigns is possible only with market-specific optimization strategies.


SEM in China

Paid search in China is forever in a state of flux. Google has long been forgotten, and local players are constantly jockeying for consumer loyalty, market share and seeing who can cut the most partnership deals.

In recent years the Baidu interface has changed from something similar to Google into something more focused on giving Baidu PPC advertisers a greater number of options for promotion. The top half of the first page of results is dominated by advertising, and it would also usually display a Baidu property of some kind. This is a double edged sword – on the one hand, it is great to have more options for promoting one’s brands; on the other hand, it may affect Baidu’s usability in terms of its main functions. After all, its main objective should be to help users find what they are looking for quickly.

Another recent development involves the emergence of Qihoo 360 as a new challenger: in the past few years, it has been overtaking Google, Sohu and Sogou and seized the second largest piece of China’s market share. In contrast to Baidu, this search engine offers a much simpler interface which could be a sign that they are seeking to offer a “cleaner” alternative to Baidu. Or it could just mean that their ad sales have not quite reached Baidu’s levels.

The Egg’s Shanghai and Hong Kong Team helps brands choose the best approach that matches both the client’s exposure and budget requirements. Get in touch to talk to one of our team members.

SEM in Japan

Japan is a fascinating paid search market with options for campaigns on both Google and Yahoo. Unlike in other Asian markets, these platforms have successfully embedded themselves within the Japanese search market, thereby making them part of the furniture. Given this familiarity, the interesting part is managing the nuances of the Japanese language.

Keyword selection can be challenging due to the Japanese usage of 3 different scripts. Many keywords can be written differently in each of the 3 scripts, making it complicated to know which word to target. The key to successful Japanese keyword selection is understanding the context of each individual query and comprehending how local audiences will most likely be searching for the desired keyword.

Furthermore, since Japanese is a high-context language with significant importance placed on respect and politeness, it contains many subtleties in word usage. Content aimed at different types of audiences could utilize drastically different language sets. Creating content or choosing keywords with the right tone for your specific target audience requires a high level of cultural knowledge and expertise.

The Egg’s English-Speaking Japanese team is based in Hong Kong and Japan, and it excels in managing campaigns on both Yahoo and Google.

SEM in Korea

With the 11th most internet users in the world, Korea undoubtedly represents an attractive market for online marketing in Asia.

Although the Korean internet environment is flourishing and relatively mature, the search culture and user patterns within Korea are drastically different from those of other markets.

Greatly preferring domestic providers, the Korean market is dominated by local search platforms. The Korean web portal, Naver, is far and away the clear leader with a 75% market share. Daum trails behind at a distance, with a 20% share. Meanwhile, the global leader in search, Google, clutches onto a paltry 2.5% of the Korean search market.

Differing from the major global search engine players, Korean search providers such as Naver operate more like a portal or a directory, instead of truly functioning as a search engine per se. Setting up and running accounts on Naver is radically different from doing so on any other platforms that we run campaigns on. Our Korean team works with Naver directly to set up, manage and optimize your accounts.