We recently caught up with Carly Yoshitani, Studio Administator at digital transformation agency Global Digital MOJO. With a total of seven offices worldwide, Carly is part of the Osaka team in Japan. In the latest of our interviews series, we wanted to find out more about the work they’ve done, and continue to do, in the Japan digital strategy market.
What is Global Digital MOJO’s core business? How does it relate to Japan digital strategy?
O2O (offline to online) digital transformation through design, strategy, experience design, marketing, communications and professional training.Global Digital MOJO (formally, Asia Digital MOJO) is an International Strategy, production and digital solution agency. We focus on Digital Transformation by Design, working in the crossover between international business strategy, experience design, marketing communications and professional training. We offer end-to-end services to clients who want to enter new markets (especially start-ups and SMEs), innovate digital transformation strategies, disruptive O2O brands, products and services, O2O marketing campaigns and develop cutting-edge corporate training and education.
What are some of the key projects you’ve worked on relating to the Japanese market?
- Promoting international Japanese innovation at the Smart City Expo World Congress 2019. Read the case study here.
KGAP+ Global Startup Accelerator for Japan and International Markets. Read the case study here.
- Catalunya Tourism Agency O2O Communication Collateral. Read the case study here.
Tell us about your work for the Barcelona Smart City Expo
Part of the International Business Strategy for Japan, GDMOJO worked on creating a revolutionary acceleration program for its Client in Kyoto. With the help of MOJO in Spain, we were connected with the Spanish Accelerator program Barcelona Activa. MOJO worked with its Kyoto partners to set up an Expo in partnership with Barcelona Activa and took 4 top teams of the Acceleration Program to be a part of the Expo and showcased their Companies. GDMOJO was asked by its clients in Japan to help prepare for the Expo in Barcelona. MOJO Japan and India worked on creating a Unique design for the stand at the Expo, while MOJO Barcelona worked on the production of the stand. MOJO also worked on creating the Branding and Marketing Communication for the Expo and creating a truly unique O2O experience. You can read more about the project here.
You did some work for the Catalonia Tourism website. How did you get involved with that?
The Catalonia region of Spain is a major global tourist destination, thanks to its jewel, Barcelona. We had already supported Catalonia tourism with its communication work in China, so it seemed natural that Catalonia’s tourism team in Singapore and Tokyo should turn to us to develop their online microsite in Japan. Following Japanese consumer preference studies and with our knowledge of the Catalonia region, we created a responsive microsite that showcases the cultural, culinary and natural beauty of the Spanish region. We will continue to develop the site’s functionality and web marketing throughout 2020 and beyond. You can read more about the project here.
Are there any particular challenges you face when working with Japan, and if so, how do you overcome them?
The Japanese market is very fast moving, culturally influenced and promising. One of the major issues one would face doing business for the first time in Japan is understanding the client’s emotions due to language and cultural differences. GDMOJO has a significant advantage here due to our several years of experience in the Japanese Market and strong native Japanese speaking team. This bridges the barrier between the client and the international market. Japan is technologically advanced and MOJO is always at the forefront of promoting new technologies and implementing them as part of our projects. Being in Japan helps MOJO be more aware of market trends and also brings international trends from our global offices to Japanese Clients.
What’s one of your main success stories relating to Japan?
At the request of ATR, Global Digital MOJO’s Osaka office led the design and execution of the Keihanna Global Acceleration Programme Plus. KGAP+ is a new International Accelerator programme which brings Japanese and international businesses together. The goal of the programme is to lead companies to create a proof of concept demonstrator, as well as find new investment and enabling partners in Japan and overseas. In its first year, the programme welcomed 21 international and Japanese companies to follow two intensive 3-month O2O acceleration programmes. Key results of the programmes were that 5 companies found POC partners in Japan, and 2 companies have now established operations in Japan. The programme, curated by MOJO, incorporated live events and online activities. You can read the complete details about the project here.
Tell us more about your expansion into the Japanese market and setting up the Tokyo office
The MOJO Osaka office has been in the forefront of providing Design and Execution services to its clients across the various services offered by MOJO. Paired with the addition of our Global Team, this brings more value and quality to the company and its projects. While the Osaka office works on the creative side, we decided to establish the MOJO Tokyo Office to work on sales and business development in Japan. Tokyo, being the capital, brings a lot of opportunity, with our years of experience in International Business Strategy we decided it was the right time to set up a hub in the business capital of Japan and contribute to Japan’s growing business economy.
What are the next steps for growing the business in Japan?
The GDMOJO Tokyo office will work to create and provide unique opportunities to international businesses trying to enter the Japanese market by providing end-to-end services. We are prepared to do this via the help of the KGAP+ Program or via offering business matching services. MOJO will also support businesses within Japan planning to take their business internationally or to one of the 6 locations where MOJO has a presence, backed by the expertise of each of its global studios. MOJO continues to work on developing and growing along with the advancement of technology by bringing unique and highly skilled services under its banner. MOJO will also continue to provide professional training to Universities, Corporates, as well as curated masterclasses providing industry insights & more.
Do you have any advice for foreign companies looking to set up a branch office in Japan?
Yes, it’s very important to understand the Japanese market and culture before you plan to prepare and take your business to Japan. It’s important to have the know-how and get local guidance as Japanese are willing to trust you more if you have a local expert & a familiar face guiding and backing you. MOJO has been in Japan for a long time working on creating relations which helps boost credibility for inbound businesses. We have the knowledge, experience and the team. Let’s transform your business and create a disruption in Japan.
Learn how MOJO can guide you further by contacting them at http://globaldigitalmojo.com