Although I’m surprised it took me a while to realize this fact, I’m glad that I understand it clearly now.
Fact: If you want to make money online in Malaysia, sell in Bahasa Melayu.
This idea is reinforced recently when I took a look at my Google Adwords data, in which I put up simple ads for JomNiaga to get more user registrations. Although the entire site is still in English at the moment, you can clearly see that the ads in Bahasa Melayu receive the best CTR, conversions and cost per conversion.
Once we’ve implemented the BM language for the site, I’m pretty sure the conversions will increase dramatically.
This is why this year I decided to stop doing our seminars in English, and our company has been shifting to the BM medium. Most of my recent products for Malaysia have also been fully in BM.
If you grew up speaking English and living in urban areas like me, you may think that English is the way to go. But the reality is that the English speaking community in Malaysia is still small, centered in highly competitive urban areas, and is difficult to make money online in Malaysia from the English market alone.
Plus, as I mentioned in my post about Internet marketing in Malaysia, these two markets cannot always be served at the same time so you have to choose one.