Malaysia Digital Marketing 2022
3 Aug , 2022

AsiaPac_Malaysia Digital Marketing 2022_EN.jpg

It is safe to say that the pandemic has been an unprecedented shock for many. Given that Malaysia’s internet penetration rate peaked in 2022, employing effective digital marketing strategies may be the way to go for marketers to expand in Malaysia, as uncertainty continues to loom. With its robust economic growth and highly urbanized traits, Malaysia consistently proves to be one of the most conducive locations for digital marketing.

In this article, we are going to walk through Malaysia’s digital marketing landscape, trends, and opportunities that lay your business’s success in this valuable market.

  1. Digital Marketing Landscape in Malaysia

  2. Most Popular Digital Marketing Platforms in Malaysia

  3. Digital Marketing Opportunities in Malaysia

1. Digital Marketing Landscape in Malaysia

Malaysia has one of the highest internet penetration rates in the Southeast Asia region, with 89.6% of its 32.98 million population. Meanwhile, 30.25 million are active social media users, accounting for 91.7% of the population.

Malaysia Digital Marketing 2022_1_Malaysia digital marketing landscape.png
Malaysia digital marketing landscape

Thanks to technological advancements, we can witness a growing trend in all 3 aspects of cellular mobile connections, internet users, and active social media users. These set a solid foundation for the success of Malaysia’s digital marketing as your business will have a better chance to reach your ideal Malaysian audiences.

Malaysia Digital Marketing 2022_2_Malaysia digital marketing digital growth.png
Malaysia digital growth

Malaysians spend an average of 9 hours and 10 minutes daily on the internet, which is equivalent to nearly one-third of their day. To be specific, they spent the most time on videos (broadcast and streaming) and social media, with 3 hours and 18 minutes and 3 hours and 2 minutes respectively.

Particularly, short videos are encouraged to leverage in your Malaysia digital marketing strategy. Mobile has emerged as Malaysia’s primary internet access point today. While cellular mobile connections (128% of the population) and time spent online have increased, attention spans have not. Based on studies, 6-second video ads help increase 271% video completion rate and 12% return on ad spend. Marketers are strongly advised to embrace the powerful video marketing strategy on Malaysia’s most popular video platforms like YouTube, TikTok, and Bigo Live.

Take the Malaysian mobile telecommunications company Celcom as an example. During the month of Ramadan, it sought to establish an emotional connection with its customers by using a series of short videos. The 30 short video ads successfully raise brand awareness and keep the Malaysian audience engaged. Overall, the campaign drove over 8.3 million video views, 13% uplift in ad recall, 337% increase in post-paid signups, and 30K gift redemptions. It is evident that videos are an effective Malaysia digital marketing strategy.

Malaysia Digital Marketing 2022_3_Celcom short video YouTube ad.png
Celcom short video YouTube ad

One interesting fact is that 54.7% of Malaysian internet users visit social networks to look for information about brands and products, far surpassing other tools. This data displays that the social networks is the most popular mean when it comes to accessing information. It would be ideal to launch campaigns through social network to increase visibility.

Malaysia Digital Marketing 2022_4_Malaysian accessing online information.png
Malaysia’s source of accessing online information

2. Most Popular Digital Marketing Platforms in Malaysia

2.1 Most-visited Websites in Malaysia

Malaysia Digital Marketing 2022_5_Most-visited websites in Malaysia.png
Malaysia’s most-visited website 

81.6% of Malaysians access the internet primarily for searching for information. In regard to this, it is no surprise that Google, a prominent search engine worldwide, ranks first as the most visited website in Malaysia with 7.25 billion total visits and 97.5% search market share. Google Search does best with its excellent user-friendliness to provide users tailored and high-quality results in a matter of seconds. This presents an optimal opportunity for marketers to reach Malaysian audiences through Search Engine Marketing (SEM).

Google advertising tools come in handy for your Malaysia digital marketing journey. Google Display Network (GDN) is another powerful marketing tactic that marketers should pay attention to. Simply speaking, your brands may reach 29.55 million Malaysian internet users through engaging display ads across all Google Networks, including Gmail, YouTube, and millions of websites. Ultimately, you may maximize your brand’s exposure and considerations frictionlessly among the Malaysian audience.

Following Google are social media platforms - YouTube, Facebook, and WhatsApp. In a world of Fear-of-Missing-Out (FOMO), social media has become essential to the majority. Speaking of Malaysia’s digital marketing, social media marketing is definitely something worth investing. Shopee, an online shopping platform, is also frequently visited as reflected by 562 million total visits. Without a doubt, these platforms might be viable touch points for marketers looking to increase their online presence and reach out to potential Malaysian customers.

2.2 Most-used social media platforms in Malaysia

In Malaysia, Facebook (88.7%), Instagram (79.3%), and TikTok (53.8%) are the most popular apps when it comes to lifestyle and content sharing. In terms of communication software, WhatsApp (93.2%), Telegram (66.3%), and Facebook Messenger (61.6%) significantly outweigh other similar platforms.

Malaysia Digital Marketing 2022_6_Most used social media platforms in Malaysia.png
Malaysia’s most-used social media platforms


In case you forgot, the popularity of YouTube in Malaysia cannot be overlooked, despite not being shown in the chart above. YouTube has 23.6 million users in Malaysia, which is equivalent to 71.6% of the Malaysian population. Indeed, even more than that of Facebook. Regarding the content type, music, food, gaming, and beauty categories are seeing the most significant growth on YouTube in Malaysia. Marketers, particularly those lay in entertainment-related industries, should definitely have a presence on YouTube.

Malaysia Digital Marketing 2022_7_YouTube advertising audience overview.png
YouTube advertising audience overview in Malaysia 


Facebook, being the king of social media, has the potential to reach 21.7 million Malaysian Facebook audiences through ads, which accounts for up to 82.4% of its population over 13 years old. Adults aged 25 to 34 are the largest user group, with over 9.3 million people.

Malaysia Digital Marketing 2022_8_Facebook Advertising audience overview.png
Facebook advertising audience overview in Malaysia


Malaysians are among the Asia Pacific region’s most active Instagramusers, with over 15.55 million potential ad reach and recording a positive 11.1% annual increase. Instagram is more popular among female users in Malaysia, with nearly 60% of the ad audience being female, although varying with industries. Intriguingly, despite the fact that younger people use social media more frequently in Malaysia, the ‘Insta-Gran’ is gaining traction there; more than half of the country’s Internet users aged 55-65 now use Instagram. This creates a fresh opportunity for marketers when aiming to target older adults in Malaysia.

Malaysia Digital Marketing 2022_9_Instagram advertising audience overview.png
Instagram advertising audience overview in Malaysia 


TikTok is the most downloaded app in Malaysia in 2021, with over 14.59 million users (aged 18 or above). The ability in allowing users to create their own videos with music, filter, and other artistic effects made it appealing among young Malaysians. TikTok is gaining popularity among Malaysia’s Gen Z and Millennials; almost half of its demographics are between 16 and 24. When trying to reach a younger audience group in Malaysia, TikTok would be the best social media platform to engage in.

Malaysia Digital Marketing 2022_10_TikTok advertising audience overview.png
TikTok advertising audience overview in Malaysia

3. Digital Marketing Opportunities in Malaysia

The majority of Malaysian internet users tend to turn to social media, online retail sites, and search engines as their sources of brand discoveries. As a result, we’ve piled up some effective digital marketing strategies that can help to heighten your Malaysia digital marketing effort.

Malaysia Digital Marketing 2022_11_Sources of brand discovery in Malaysia.png
Malaysia’s sources of brand discovery 

3.1 Social Media Marketing in Malaysia

It’s pretty obvious that social media marketingis at the core of Malaysia digital marketing when you see it’s the only country to rank social media first for product discovery and research. The Malaysian social media market is burgeoning to reach $403.2 million in 2022. Additionally, 37% of Malaysians use social media for finding products to purchase. And all of these, point to the notion that reaching out to your target Malaysia audience via social media is essential.

Malaysia Digital Marketing 2022_12_Main reasons for using social media.png
Malaysia’s main reasons for using social media 

Brands incorporate social media marketing strategies by posting posts and stories on popular social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram. This content regularly updates customers regarding new products, fosters community among your target audience, and raises your brand awareness. It’s a great way to keep tabs on both your prospects and your competitors. Brands may also work with local trending KOLs to expand their brand reach on social media platforms. They are frequently regarded as trustworthy and known to their crowds. Your Malaysia social media strategy can gain momentum from the social proof initiative. In AsiaPac, we have our self-developed KOOLER AI, which leverages the 200K+ cross-platform database in China and Asia to match your brand with the most suitable KOL. Your brand and products can definitely generate buzz on the platforms.

To further shoot from the lip, brands are encouraged to utilize the inbox, chatbot, or comment section on social media. The instant messaging feature offers a remarkably cost-effective approach to reaching and interacting with your potential Malaysian audiences. In fact, over 77% of customers prefer chats, and the conversion rate for conversations was shown to be 266% higher than that of the typical social ad. Brands now are empowered to engage customers on a more personal level by giving support to their needs and efficiently resolving their inquiries.

3.2 Search Engine Optimization (SEO) in Malaysia

Malaysian internet users conduct trillions of searches every year, often with commercial intent to find information about products and services. Simply remember this rule: the more visibility a website has on search engines, the more likely that the brand captures customers. Search engine optimization (SEO) do wonders on it. Your website can rank higher in search results, enabling consumers to encounter your brand through organic search. And you can garner the desired attention you want.

In contrast to paid search ads, no advertising spend will be induced by SEO, which means you can’t pay search engines to get higher organic search rankings. That’s where we come in. SEO specialists do thorough keyword research, analyze customer behavior, enrich your page content, add backlinks, and do semantic markup. All these keep your brand website in front of motivated Malaysian audiences. By ranking high on the most prominent search engines like Google and Yahoo, your brand and website will have a better chance to increase exposure to potential audience in Malaysia, thereby driving your wanted website traffic plus online sales.

Malaysia Digital Marketing 2022_13_Search engine market share.png
Malaysia’s search engine market share 

3.3 Ecommerce in Malaysia

With the greater convenience of online shopping made possible by advanced shipping and online systems, ecommerce has its place in the Malaysian market as seen by its projected revenue of US$10.12 billion. In Malaysia, online retail sites are a popular way to discover a new brand. Speaking of online retail stores, Shopee is one of the most-visited sites in Malaysia. Malaysians are spending billions of dollars on ecommerce annually. By developing a mobile-friendly website, customers can view your products when searching for their desired products on Shopee, Lazada, and other online shopping sites simultaneously.

Malaysia Digital Marketing 2022_14_Popular ecommerce platforms in Malaysia.png
Malaysia’s most popular ecommerce platforms

To heighten your ecommerce in Malaysia, brands are encouraged to adopt image recognition tools when developing ecommerce sites. It allows online shoppers to easily find products by uploading or taking photos of their desired items. As a result, consumers can satisfy their needs and wants while your product can reach those who show an interest. Moreover, image recognition can identify the user’s preference. This can be exemplified by Instagram’s algorithm, which recognizes and analyses images to conclude on the user’s preferences and suggest relevant ads subsequently. To sum up, image recognition can ensure that your brand and your products are reaching the right Malaysia audience and driving sales as customers discover products that meet their needs and wants.

Malaysia Digital Marketing 2022_15_Image recognition on ecommerce sites.jpg
Image recognition tools on ecommerce sites

Summary of Digital Marketing in Malaysia

Malaysia has consistently demonstrated itself to be having a very promising future in digital marketing, underpinned by a high internet usage rate and sturdy economic growth. To excel in the Malaysian digital market, strategies such as social media marketing, SEO, and ecommerce are especially worthwhile to investigate. If you aim to maximize your digital marketing performance in this lucrative market, click here to contact us now!

About AsiaPac Net Media

With an extensive digital marketing experience of serving more than 2,500 clients across Asia in sectors such as education, travel and hospitality, finance, Government and others, AsiaPac’s expert team is highly recognized for the excellence in providing performance-driven services to businesses across Asia, and global corporates targeting Asia markets. If you’d like to learn more about AsiaPac and the work we’ve done, visit our Work page. For more information on AsiaPac/ AdTech and our services, please contact us at