Honour­ing its com­mit­ment to fans

> Honor Malaysia e-com­merce di­rec­tor Allen An shares why the brand has gone a dif­fer­ent, sep­a­rate di­rec­tion from Huawei, with its de­vices tar­get­ing younger dig­i­tal na­tives

The Sun (Malaysia) - - LIFESTYLE - DENISSA GOH

IF YOU’VE ever won­dered why the Honor de­vices are so pop­u­lar de­spite the fact that the brand has no ded­i­cated re­tail stores of its own, you’re not alone. Orig­i­nally es­tab­lished and re­leased as part of Huawei, the brand’s de­vel­op­ers even­tu­ally be­gan to see a dif­fer­ent re­cep­tion to­wards the Honor de­vices.

That prompted them to make Honor an in­de­pen­dent op­er­a­tion that fo­cuses on goals and mar­kets which are dif­fer­ent from its prin­ci­pal.

“We saw a trend in China [where] the e-com­merce mar­ket is grow­ing very fast, that is why we chose Honor as a ded­i­cated se­ries to pen­e­trate the e-com­merce mar­ket,” says Allen An, the ecom­merce di­rec­tor of Honor Malaysia in a re­cent in­ter­view with theSun.

“The first prod­uct from Honor [as a] ded­i­cated brand was the Honor 3c [which] we [re­ceived] very good feed­back from the mar­ket.

“Dur­ing the one week pre-or­der [pe­riod], we got over eight mil­lion [reser­va­tions] in China, and af­ter that, we [no­ticed] there is a big po­ten­tial.”

When it comes to its tar­get mar­kets, An adds that Huawei is de­signed for work­ing pro­fes­sion­als while Honor has its eyes on the younger gen­er­a­tion which he refers to as “dig­i­tal na­tives”.

That’s the rea­son why Honor grav­i­tates more to e-com­merce and fans when it comes to gen­er­at­ing sales.

It’s been two years since the brand has gone on its own. In that time, Honor has man­aged to pen­e­trate into 74 mar­kets glob­ally.

An re­veals that the amount of re­sources put into each coun­try varies ac­cord­ing to the shop­ping be­hav­iour of that mar­ket.

He says that while e-com­merce is pop­u­lar in de­vel­oped coun­tries with a larger pop­u­la­tion such as the United States, China and In­dia, in Malaysia, some 90% of the sales still come from re­tail.

So, An has to relook at the sales strate­gies for Malaysia, which ride on both e-com­merce and re­tail.

How­ever, he em­pha­sises that while Honor is de­signed to be an ecom­merce brand tar­geted at dig­i­tal na­tives, it doesn’t nec­es­sar­ily mean its re­la­tion­ship with its ad­vo­cates is only sub­jected to the vir­tual world.

An strongly be­lieves that pur­chas­ing a de­vice goes be­yond the hard­ware and spec­i­fi­ca­tions.

To him, it’s about the ex­pe­ri­ence of us­ing a good qual­ity phone and the long-term ser­vice that comes af­ter that.

He has no­ticed that most of the ques­tions asked dur­ing af­ter-sales ser­vices are soft­ware-re­lated is­sues which can be eas­ily re­solved through tech­ni­cal guid­ance.

While they can seek pro­fes­sional help, Honor has pro­vided an al­ter­na­tive by or­gan­is­ing events for users and fans to help each other out, and build new friend­ships in the process.

“When we sell a de­vice to our con­sumers, it’s not the end of the re­la­tion­ship, it’s just the start [of it],” he adds.

“Af­ter that, we will use our so­cial plat­forms such as Face­book or WeChat to con­tact and or­gan­ise [events] for them. I’ve no­ticed that young peo­ple are ac­tu­ally ea­ger to share what they have ex­pe­ri­enced.”

On top of that, Honor is en­deav­our­ing to build an ecosys­tem that of­fers more ben­e­fits for fans.

Apart from cre­at­ing strong bonds with its users, it is also cul­ti­vat­ing good re­la­tion­ships with se­lected part­ners such as Lazada, Cha­time, RedBox and more. It’s no won­der Honor users get lots of dis­counts!

Since its mar­ket­ing strate­gies re­volve around the spe­cific life­style needs of the dig­i­tal na­tives, you can ex­pect the same from its de­vices.

The newly-rolled-out Honor 8 has about ev­ery­thing the com­mon dig­i­tal na­tive needs – from its looks to the feel and spec­i­fi­ca­tions of this hand-held de­vice.

Apart from the eye-catch­ing fu­tur­is­tic look of the Honor 8, Honor has cho­sen to in­vest more on the devel­op­ment of the top three most im­por­tant fea­tures to suit the life­style needs of its users – cam­era, speed and se­cu­rity.

Equipped with a dual cam­era to shoot clearer and a larger aper­ture for brighter pho­tos, the de­vice works just like a com­pact ver­sion of a DSLR (dig­i­tal sin­gle re­flex lens) cam­era.

Speed, on the other hand, is in­flu­enced by the chipset of the de­vice. Ex­pect a much faster phone that doesn’t af­fect the power con­sump­tion of the de­vice since Huawei is the lead­ing the chipset de­sign in­dus­try.

The Honor 8 has taken its se­cu­rity fea­ture to the next level with a fin­ger­print sen­sor lo­cated at the back of the phone which dou­bles up as a cus­tomis­able short- cut ac­cess to ap­pli­ca­tions.

Lev­er­ag­ing on its pow­er­ful chipset, the Honor 8 reg­is­ters all fin­ger­print data into it in­stead of the phone soft­ware – an ex­tra pro­tec­tion that makes it harder for out­siders to gain ac­cess.

An cites the bat­tery as be­ing the big­gest is­sue for phone mak­ers but Honor for­tu­nately has man­aged to re­solve this is­sue with the use of its chipset that is rel­a­tively smaller than oth­ers, which helps to re­serve more space for the bat­tery.

He adds: “If we want to in­crease the ca­pac­ity of the bat­tery, it will make our phones larger, [so] the bat­tery tech­nol­ogy is im­prov­ing very slowly, and that is the next bar­rier we want to re­move.”

While some of us still can­not get over the cut­ting-edge fea­tures and con­sumer-cen­tric af­ter-sales ser­vice, An is say­ing that its de­vel­op­ers are al­ready plan­ning for the next gen­er­a­tion of the Honor se­ries.

This will come with even more ad­vanced tech­nol­ogy – prov­ing once again that the brand in­tends to stay on top of its game for gen­er­a­tions to come.

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