Mostly Everything

SM Hypermarket: Business Blogging Booming?


The SM Group of Companies has always been, in my opinion, one of the more traditional and conservative corporate institutions to have inculcated itself as a strong part of Philippine culture and mass consumerism. Which is why I was surprised to have been invited as a resource speaker a few weeks ago to help shed some light to the Hypermarket staff on the business aspect of blogging. Sounds crazy right?

Here was my proposition: SM doesn’t need to concern itself much with online marketing as they don’t have any “controversial” products and services such as broadband Internet service that tend to lean towards more colorful discussion online.

So why bother?

I began listening to Mr. Robert Kwee (“RK”) and his objectives to take SM to the next level. From the way people describe him, RK seems to be very progressive in his methods, not wanting to be left behind in the information age. It was the bloggers that excited him and he wanted to make use of blogging as an effective PR and communications tool not just for the consumers, but also internally.

What Mr. Kwee is looking for is a proposition built around Jeremy Wright’s Blog Marketing book:

The challenge for companies who invest in ideas is often that the best ideas don’t get to the top, don’t get reviewed, or don’t even get considered. This idea barrier could be killing your company. A truly open and internally viewable idea blog, or even individual employee blogs that allow people to float new ideas for peer review, should allow the best ideas to rise to the surface for selection and review.

Jeremy Wright is the founder of b5media, the network which I proudly work for as channel editor for technology.

SM Hypermarket does have a blog set up. Although most of the posts by far deal with contest mechanics I am truly enjoying the ghostblogger’s tone. He or she really brings a very casual face to a very traditional company as you can read from this post:

Believe it or not, the event was hatched and planned only in 2 weeks and 2 meetings. Who would’ve thought that the original targeted hundred bloggers would balloon to almost 200? That’s why we were so excited to hold this event. We have to admit that we are newbie bloggers too, but all these are just really exciting! [source]

Congratulations, SM ghost blogger, whoever you are!

Going back to the initial question of why should corporations bother with the whole blogging gig, I will try to answer it:

Regardless of whether your company’s core competence is found online or not, what people should be concerned with is reaching new and broader markets through creative means. Blogging is one way, but blogging is not an end in itself. It is merely a very efficient platform that can be used to deliver information about campaigns, advocacies, and serve as an effective communication tool to facilitate dialogue between consumers and the service providers.

Is this a challenge to the “more forward” companies in the Philippines to take on progressive ideas such as these? SM is one big corporate giant, but they’re starting. Congratulations to them!

Here’s some trivia for you. The SM Hypermarket and the Supermarket are two different business units. SM Hypermarket is supposed to be the one stop shop for everything, which is why they sell clothing and electronics apart from groceries. The Supermarket on the other hand is really the more traditional grocery we’ve all come to grow up with. To the foreign readers, SM Shoemart can be closely alluded to our version of Walmart.

By Jayvee Fernandez

Jayvee Fernandez is a tech enthusiast, EAN certified SCUBA Diver and underwater photographer based in Metro Manila, Philippines. His photos and videos have appeared in various international and local publications including Random House Germany, Discovery Channel Canada, and CNN.

12 replies on “SM Hypermarket: Business Blogging Booming?”

good post.. its a good sign.. Local businesses are now starting to appreciate the importance and impact of bloggers… i hope you guys can organize more of these type of events.. and hopefully i can join in the future (LOL)

I hate SM!
My friend bought from SM hypermarket’s groceries…someone stole an item, although the workers there (including the manager) said that they put the item in the plastic bag!
Someone stole it! Definitely it is the worker!
Another thing is that 7 of the eggs (container of 12-dozen eggs) were spoiled eggs!
SM has SAD and FURIOUS workers who are tempted to steal.
They have WORKERS who don’t do their JOB well!

If you hate SM as a consumer…believe me or not but Suppliers hate SM even more..they are unprofessional business people..if you go to their office.. the way their people “the buyers” treat you is as if they own YOU.. ‘Even Worse, they do not pay their suppliers..but of course they have a strategy to make it as if they are good customers. AS per experience, they will charge you for store opening supports, marketing support, distribution fees, anniversary support, and all the fees charges & support etc etc etc that at the end of the day you end up owing them money instead of collecting your A/R for the deliveries you make..many suppliers or start up business people make sm as the ultimate customer & prioritize selling to them but beware…they are not good customers & will eat you alive! Dont sell to SM if you want to succeed in business & earn a decent living…The time of the old man Henry Sy as a professional businessman is not anymore applicable on how his children manage his business..

I hate SM…the Sy family are unethical business people..they treat suppliers like dirt. the only reason they are rich is because they do not know how to pay suppliers for what they buy for their stores…..F*** You SM SHOEMART… SINUSUMPA KITA..SANA MA BANKRUPT KAYO!!!

I hate SM they are everywhere! sobra dami na talo pa ata 7/11 na! kawawa mga small businesses sa every area na tinatayuan ng SM pinapatay nila. Tpos buti kung madali makapasok or makabukas ng store sa loob ng SM e rent pa lang hirap na habulin tpos may percent pa sila sa kinikita ng store.WTF! SM lang yayaman sa loob ng Mall nila believe me. lalo na pag starter business ka…

SM sucks big time! They give higher salaries to Filipino chinese employees while Filipino employees get a minimum. F#@%! SY!

I agree that SM dictates everything. But some merchandisers naman are very friendly and supportive. What I hate about SM is the yearend subsidy they get from their suppliers which amount to millions of pesos and this is a requirement. This is how they are able to build their malls which are sprouting all over the country. I doubt that they declare this to the BIR since they don’t issue official receipts for the subsidy.

I hate SM too for many reasons. some are personal, some i learned from business associates and friends who have either dealt with them as suppliers, contractors or retailers.

Thats why i never go to any of their malls. and if i have a meeting where i absolutely have to go? I park outside or someplace else. I do not eat and pay for meals there. I do not purchase anything there. you will not find a single receipt or shopping bag from SM at my place. I know of a few people who do this too. we are a few but at least our money does not go to those greedy B##&$*.

To name a few:

-Mahal ang grocery nyo! humihingi ba kayo ng mas malaking percentage from your concessionaires? or mataas lang kayo mag mark up?
– Kayo lang ang mall na naniningil ng 1000-1500 pag nag apply ng work permit for construction and a separate cost to use your elevator. Bakit? special ba building nyo? Ayala Malls, Robinsons, Shangri-la and other small Arcade/Malls do not charge us anything for permits. Ayaw nyo bayaran night shift guards ninyo? Sa Shangri-la may EMT pa na naka standby. – walang bayad! Kapal nyo!
– Forcing restaurants to use your bank or even your SM Bonus bottled water. Di ba monopoly yan? I have to pay what? 20 pesos for your stupid SM Bonus Brand. how big is it? 300ml? when i can buy half a liter for the same amount. Lahat ng stalls ninyo forced to sell SM Bonus water
– Monthly? or is it quarterly – 1500 for drain maintenance for resturants? na liquid sosa lang naman binubuhos nyo. tapos ayaw nyo pag kami na lang gagawa
– Nung nag open kayo ng Sport Store nyo. nag ban kayo ng construction ng one or more branded footwear/apparel. why? so the brand will be forced to sell thru your Sport Store.
– natatakot ang retailers sa inyo. if you have a mall location that is not viable, the retailers cannot decline to put up a store there for fear of getting banned. even if the store is bleeding to death.
– some of their people from Head office schedule a meeting with you at a certain time but lets you wait for an hour or two.
– yung mga head ng malls nyo mayayabang. pag nag rounds may mga alipores pa na naka flying V formation.

I could go on for hours here kaya lang tumataas na blood pressure ko. pababain ko muna tapos dadagdagan ko. 😉 Feel free to ad to this though

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