InsightPress Release

Why HAVAS Red thinks subcultures like BookTok, FitTok, and Cottagecore rule marketing

MANILA, PHILIPPINES HAVAS Red Philippines recently hosted its second Red Sky Dialogues session, a roundtable designed to nurture deep relationships with media professionals by sharing the latest market insights. The “The Influence of Subculture Shapers on Meaningful Marketing” session brought together media professionals to explore how subcultures are revolutionizing marketing strategies in the Philippines.

The discussion was anchored in a new white paper released by SWAY by HAVAS Red, the agency’s newly launched influencer marketing arm advocating a subculture-centric approach. This report focuses on the communal nature of Filipinos and how social media is driving a shift towards diverse perspectives. These influences became a springboard for various subcultures to rise, transforming traditional communities into a multitude of micro-collectives where new trends and behaviors thrive.

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Dayniel Garcia, Head of SWAY by
HAVAS Red Philippines

Dayniel Garcia, Head of SWAY by HAVAS Red Philippines, emphasized the importance of understanding these niche communities. “Filipinos values of pakikiisa (solidarity) and pakikisama (companionship), when complemented with digital technology, have created a welcoming environment for new subcultures. Brands that genuinely recognize and engage with these groups can forge stronger connections with their audiences,” Dayniel stated.

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Gian dela Cruz, Director of Mx Strategy
and Intelligence at HAVAS Ortega

During the roundtable session, Gian dela Cruz, Director of Mx Strategy and Intelligence at HAVAS Ortega, shared how social media algorithms hold immense power in shaping communities. “Digitalization has resulted in Filipinos valuing their relationships in online spaces rather than real-life communities, like religious and political affiliations. In fact, 65% of Filipino prosumers say they identify better with their chosen communities than their traditional, IRL exposure.”

The democratizing power of social media has enabled ordinary individuals to become key opinion leaders when immersed in the right niche groups. These authentic engagements inspire people to adopt alternative perspectives, fostering a culture of openness and acceptance.

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Jos Ortega, CEO at Havas Ortega and
General Manager of HAVAS Red Philippines.

“Brands have always been operating in a dynamic landscape,” said Jos Ortega, CEO at Havas Ortega and General Manager of HAVAS Red Philippines. “These modern times call for them to see how their corporate values resonate with the various communities they would like to build a meaningful connection with. It is imperative that brands walk the talk, as 89% of Filipino Prosumers believe that when corporations take a stand, it must be complemented with concrete actions.”

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The second Red Sky Dialogues session highlighted the necessity of recognizing subcultures to achieve meaningful marketing. By doing so, brands can build lasting connections with Filipino consumers, allowing them to be allies within a culture of empathy and genuine understanding.

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