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Singapore possesses a developed and integrated advertising, marketing and PR sector, which is one of the leaders within Asia.
Most companies possess in-house departments, especially in relation to marketing, but also make use of the expertise of agencies in advertising particularly. A whole range of companies in Singapore relies on such agencies as a means to break through to target audiences and more recently to exploit the huge potential of the internet.
The industry is limited somewhat by the small area and market of the country, although many international firms such as Young & Rubicam, WPP, Saatchi & Saatchi, and BBDO use Singapore as an Asian base of operations.
Anyone wishing to study marketing in Singapore has a range of options available. Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) accredited courses are available at three institutions in the country in addition to which the Marketing Institute of Singapore offers courses and acts as the main industry body.
The Institute of Advertising (IAS) and the industry body and promotes education, excellence and ideas exchange across the region.
Public Relations has grown steadily since its establishment; it grew by around 6% per annum from 1995 to 2001. Institute of Public relations (IPRS) was established in 1970 and now has an estimated 500 members.
The World Economic Forum Global Competitiveness Report (2012-2013) ranks the Singapore 22nd out of 144 countries in extent of marketing with a score of 5.3 out of 7, well above the world mean of 4.1. In this scale 1 indicates that little use is made of sophisticated marketing tools and techniques and 7 means that they are extensively used. Buyer sophistication in the Singapore is very strong; it ranks 8th out of 144 and scores 4.6 out of 7, above the world average of 3.5. This indicates that buyers in the Singapore base their decisions more on sophisticated analysis of performance attributes than solely on lowest price.
Commercial radio and television stations make up the bulk of available broadcast media in the country thus advertising via these media is popular with businesses. According to Nielson’s Media Index Report 2012, radio, cinema, internet and public transport and outdoor advertising has remained steady. It also states that 68.4% of Singaporean residents read a hardcopy of a newspaper every day, a figure which is in decline as digital newspapers become more popular.
Global trends for a growth in social media advertising and marketing are reflected in Singapore’s market. In 2012 over half of the population, 62.8%, was on Facebook making this an important interface with customers for companies doing business in Singapore.