#12: KOFFee + wHine – Part I


We will be starting an interview series to collect thoughts and inspiration from within our agency, partners and among industry players. We are going to bribe them with coffee or wine, and get them to reveal some of their darkest secrets. Ok, maybe not. But, we will pick their brains on anything from branding, digital, to entrepreneurship.

This week, we start off with our Co-Founder and Account Director, Audrey Kho.

Audrey started her advertising career as a Graduate student in Australia circa 2011. In front of her desk, armed with a laptop and a mind full of ideas, she founded Brand Babbler (now known as a.Kho). After graduating from RMIT, Melbourne, she moved to Singapore and later, Kuala Lumpur, where she worked in several international ad agencies as part of the Account Servicing teams.

Describe yourself in 5 words. Headstrong, oxymoron, curious, thinker, achiever.

How do a.Kho and cactus digital fit into the STE11AR Group mould? Creation and growth.

Creation because these are our pioneering brands before merging as STE11AR.

A bit of context, a.Kho is my personal brand which evolved from Brand Babbler, a content strategy freelancing agency I built since my Grad School days in Australia. I will let my partners tell you about cactus digital, but what I saw in this digital agency was its propensity to transcend. We need synergy of various disciplines in order to thrive and be at the top of our game. And I believe with cactus, we can be just that.

Growth – very important aspect of brand building. Along the way, we will be adding different disciplines to the STE11AR brand. A.Kho and cactus digital will play lead roles in doing so.

You said that Brand Babbler was a content strategy platform before a.Kho came in. How has that changed? We still offer content strategy; in fact that’s one of our core specialty. But on top of that, we also offer solutions that center around a brand. I see it as the Big Picture. I feel that a lot of attention are being paid to doing things around the brand but not to the core of the brand, or its products. We have to determine its personality, essence and identity before we can device a marketing plan.

How do you think branding and digital work together? We have to see things from a bird’s eye view before we narrow them down. How they work together is through planning and strategy. Using different touch points which complement one another in a synchronized manner. It is always perceived that branding is a mixture of emotions and perception; digital can be made up of engagement, number-crunching and analytics. But truth be told, both branding and digital are a melting pot of those things these days. Bringing these elements together will create something magical and greater than what they each can do on their own.

Lastly, what do you think are the core ingredients to entrepreneurial success? A hungry heart and curious, constantly-ticking mind. And, never back down.

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