Pictured from left to right (Mark Chen, Head of Asia Pacific, 4Paradigm; Nicole Lu, General Manager, HUAWEI Asia Pacific Partner Ecosystem, Cloud and AI; Joval Gan, CRO and cofounder of Advocado; and Eric Chia, CEO and cofounder of Advocado)

Singapore, 20 April 2021 – Global ICT provider HUAWEI, AI unicorn 4Paradigm and Singapore-based startup Advocado today announced a landmark partnership to launch a first-of-its-kind AI-enabled CRM solution. 

By integrating 4Paradigm’s Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology and HUAWEI CLOUD capabilities into Advocado’s existing CRM software, a new smart solution, AdvocadoINSIGHTS will empower small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and retailers across Singapore to personalise and automate customer engagement. This will also help businesses to digitise and scale across Southeast Asia (SEA) by providing them with access to next-gen machine-learning technology. 

Already excited to get your AI-Ready up and running? Click here to learn more.

Making AI Accessible For Singapore’s SMEs

Launched in 2016, Singapore-based startup Advocado is the leading SaaS provider of CRM software for SMEs in the city. Advocado has served over 1.5 million customers in 800 outlets across the island, with traction in Thailand and Malaysia. 

SMEs and retailers on Advocado’s CRM platform can now look forward to data-driven and intelligent customer experience solutions, enabled by 4Paradigm’s AI and machine learning systems. 4Paradigm’s fully automated (close-looped), integrated customer data and AI services will reduce customer acquisition costs and increase total customer lifetime value for businesses across SEA. 

Bespoke machine learning models are created for each client in partnership with 4Paradigm. Currently, Singapore-based businesses like 20-outlet bed linen chain Linen Gallery by Epitex have already adopted custom AI solutions to automate their marketing campaigns.

“Epitex has been leveraging AI to enable our digital transformation, gain insights into consumer behaviour and create personalised customer experiences. With the implementation of Advocado’s AI-driven Electronics Direct Mail (EDM) campaign, we have seen a 3 times increase in click-through rate. We are pro-actively exploring ways to scale our business, especially as the pandemic hinders physical footfall to our outlets,” says Judy Zhang, CEO of Epitex.

“At Advocado, we believe that AI technology isn’t just reserved for billion dollar companies – it should be within reach of businesses, big or small.” said Eric Chia, Founder and CEO of Advocado. “Our new AI solution offering, AdvocadoINSIGHTS, and our robust cloud CRM software will empower SMEs and retailers to build better customer engagement processes and boost their revenue. We are committed to serving Advocado’s customers faithfully, especially in these trying times.”

Integrating AI With Retail

This partnership marks another successful foray for 4Paradigm into the SEA marketplace. The China-based AI Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) provider has been hailed as the leader in the AI space, and is best known for its end-to-end industry-grade AI platform 4Paradigm Sage. 

With 4Paradigm’s integrations into AdvocadoINSIGHTS, retailers can segment customer demographics, manage omnichannel sales leads, and create personalised and targeted content like automated product recommendations on Advocado. 4Paradigm’s integrations can also create a unified customer profile based on data collected via websites, social media, mobile apps, payment gateways and more. These integrations improve customer retention rates and help businesses bridge the gap between digital and physical sales channels.

4Paradigm has the number one AI platform market share in China according to IDC MarketScape™️, and its retail clients include the world’s top enterprises, such as YumChina, Zegna, DHL, Budweiser and KÉRASTASE. Having just raised US$700 million in funding in a Series D funding round earlier this year, 4Paradigm now intends to herald its regional entry into SEA with Advocado to spearhead the digital transformation of businesses in Singapore.

“Today, 3 out of 4 consumers expect a fully personalised and immediately satisfying customer experience journey when they walk into a store. Unless you have AI that can iterate next steps for your business based on a large set of data, it will be difficult for any business to capture consumer interest,” says Mark Chen, Head of APAC, 4Paradigm. “4Paradigm’s machine learning solutions provide SMEs with a no-fuss way of optimising their CRM strategies, in collaboration with Advocado.”

Accelerating Cloud Adoption Across SEA

As Covid-19 accelerates digitisation, the rise of “Cloud 2.0”, where governments and enterprises are facilitating the large-scale shift of data and digital services into the cloud, has become the new norm. HUAWEI CLOUD is leading this shift as the fastest growing Infrastructure As A Service (IaaS) provider in the world, and the 6th fastest in the global market. The Chinese tech giant is actively incorporating SMEs into its cloud services, with SMEs in the SEA region joining their European counterparts through the tripartite partnership with Advocado and 4Paradigm. 

By supporting the regional ambitions of Singapore’s SMEs, HUAWEI CLOUD’s service enables SMEs to accelerate digitisation and scale at speed. Advocado’s entry into the HUAWEI CLOUD Partner Network (HCPN) will allow businesses to develop AI and CRM tech solutions that leverage HUAWEI CLOUD Elastic Cloud Server (ECS), Elastic Volume Service (EVS), Elastic Load Balance (ELB), Relational Database Service (RDS) and Object Storage Services (OBS) services.

“As HUAWEI CLOUD continues to expand presence in SEA, we will empower small businesses across the region to grow rapidly. We have faith that this venture with Advocado will empower SMEs with the capabilities to supercharge their digital transformation and bolster their market expansion,” says Nicole Lu, General Manager, HUAWEI Asia Pacific Partner Ecosystem, Cloud and AI. 

HUAWEI CLOUD is now available in 170 countries and has launched over 210+ cloud services and solutions. 3,500 applications are available on the HUAWEI CLOUD marketplace, with offerings from over 18,000 partners and three million clients, who are developing cloud services with the tech giant. 



Founded in 1987, Huawei is a leading global provider of information and communications technology (ICT) infrastructure and smart devices. We have more than 194,000 employees, and we operate in more than 170 countries and regions, serving more than three billion people around the world.

For more information, please visit https://www.huawei.com/en/

About 4Paradigm 
4Paradigm is an AI platform and technology services provider. With machine learning technology, 4Paradigm helps enterprises to realise intelligent transformation. 4Paradigm has the number one AI platform market share in China according to IDC MarketScape™️ and has been named as one of the 50 Smartest Companies by MIT Technology Review. 

4Paradigm has been promoting the rapid and scaled industrial application of AI relying on its technology and enterprise-level AI PaaS platforms and AI technology including AutoML and transfer learning. Currently, 4Paradigm has extended the AI application in over thousands of cases in the fields of finance, retail, manufacturing, energy, healthcare, the internet, media and more, facilitating every industry with AI innovation.

For more information, please visit https://www.4paradigm.com/

About Advocado
Advocado is a leading Cloud CRM SaaS for retailers in South East Asia. We help B2C businesses in F&B, retail, beauty and wellness to generate more revenue and regulars through growing, managing their customer base, and bringing loyal customers back again and again with marketing automation and AI. 

For more information, please visit https://legacy2.advocadoapp.com/

1. Special Offers

marketing strategies

One of the most common strategy is 1-for-1 Special Offers. In fact, it is so frequently implemented that some Singaporeans expect it and actively search for a F&B’s available offer. When executed well, Special Offers offered at the right time can help drive sales and footfall.

For instance, offering 1-for-1 during off-peak hours can attract deal-seekers and help to increase sales during the off-peak hours. Further, this deal encourages customers to come in pairs, which can potentially help F&B gain new customers.

2. Birthday Treats!

good foods

Going out for meals is one of the most popular ways people choose to celebrate birthdays. A simple birthday wish, a gift voucher or a free meal from you creates a positive image of your brand in their minds. A personal touch like this helps you show that you care about your customers, that they matter to you. In return, happy customers tend to revisit your business. This is one of the best opportunities to grow loyal customers.

Birthday meals typically involve huge groups of people. Not only does this help to drive sales during this particular birthday event, it is a great chance for your brand to enrol new customers and turn them into your loyal customers. A simple birthday treat can bring you numerous benefits!

Tip!  Use a good CRM system to automate this process. This saves you precious time spent on manually keeping track and sending out wishes.

3. Loyalty Program

happy customer

Loyalty Programs are designed to help build, retain and grow loyalty amongst your returning customers. Having a reward system in place makes your customers feel important, acknowledged, and cared for, and in return, they tend to return for more.

A popular loyalty program suitable for F&B businesses is a voucher system. This can be done in a various way, depending on your objectives.

For instance, rewarding your customers with vouchers each time they make a purchase can encourage them to visit again. A good strategy would be to offer free membership along with vouchers so that you can have a better understanding of who your customers are.

Tip! To reduce queue-time and enrol customers quickly within seconds, learn more here.

4. CRM

Effective Marketing Strategies for F&B Businesses in Singapore

How awesome would it be if you knew your loyal customers’ frequent orders and preferences? You don’t have to manually memorise it for every single customer. With a good CRM system, the tech does the heavy lifting for you to care better for your customers.

A well-implemented CRM System helps to record all your customers’ information and past interactions with your brand. This allows you to better understand your customers’ behaviour, so that you can make better recommendations to your precious customers.

5. Social Media Promotion

Effective Marketing Strategies

Of course, we cannot forget promotions on social media. One of the best ways to attract new customers is by posting mouth-watering photos of your food online. With how widespread social media is, having delicious looking food online is essential in spreading word of mouth.

You can consider hiring professionals to take high-quality photographs. Or, you can also work with food bloggers to push out visual images of your food to huge number of viewers. A cheaper and more organic way to grow is to re-post or share good photos taken by your customers.

6. Gifting or Cash Vouchers

Another amazing strategy is through the power of sharing. This is an excellent opportunity for your customers to send a birthday gift to their loved ones, or simply express a thank you. You can do this by allowing customers to purchase vouchers and then helping them send it to the recipients. Through this, you deliver more value to your customers while growing prepaid revenue.

Tip! A good CRM system can help you easily implement this. Learn more here.

7. Improve customer retention and revenue

F&B businesses in Singapore

According to Harvard Business School, if your customer defection rate decreases by 5%, you can experience 25 to 85% increase in your sales or profit. Using CRM solutions enable your business to improve the retention rate of your customers, and it often translates to increased revenue. Your business can use CRM to address at-risk accounts and encourage satisfied customers to purchase again at the right time.

Read here to learn about effective ways to retain your customers.

Case Study

Let us tell you the story of our amazing customer COCA. COCA is a 3-outlet Thai-Chinese hotpot restaurant located in shopping malls. We are sure many of you reading this must have had delicious meals at there. 

 COCA offered return vouchers to the customers. Their challenges were:

  • High printing costs.
  • No way to track which customers have the vouchers.
  • It was stressful for the staff to give vouchers to every customer.
  • Less than 5% customers revisit from return vouchers

To manage these vouchers more effectively, they decided to take up a Loyalty-CRM. They started using Advocado, and just within 6 months of the usage, they saw following results:

  • COCA enrolled 8000+ new members in their loyalty program just within 6 months.
  • They saw a 14% increase in new customers on a regular basis.
  • All the vouchers given to the customers were tracked. The system also sends automated reminders to those who haven’t used their vouchers.
  • They now have a more comprehensive loyalty program with a mix of membership, cashback, voucher and special deal.
  • It became easier for the staff to just enrol a customer with their mobile number, and the system takes care of everything else.

Take a look at their membership program that brought in these results:

F&B businesses in singapore

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